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The Order Of The Solar Temple: An Examination Of The Order Of The Solar Temple, Its Practices And Its Decline

2677 words - 11 pages

Religion has served mankind for thousands of years in our search for meaning and direction. Across the world, within virtually every culture, there lies some form of belief in a greater power. From the indigenous peoples of the Brazilian rainforest to first world countries, we all incorporate some form of religion into our lives. Thus, it is arguable that religion is embedded in our very nature. Christianity, Islam and Judaism are only three mainstream religions that attempt to provide this meaning to our lives and provide us the comfort that life might just have a purpose. The term "cult" is a often used to label religious groups which fall outside of mainstream religious ideals . Every ...view middle of the document...

After being officially recognized and sanctioned by the church in 1128, the order became a favored charity across Europe, and grew rapidly in membership and power. At its peak it contained of thusands of knights used its resources to construct numerous fortifications throughout europe and the middle east. However, on october 13, 1307, Philip II had the Templars arrested on counts of heresay, homosexuality and idol worship to which they confessed through torture. It was the Nights Templar Which became the foundations of the Order of the Solar Temple.The one thing that separates a cult from a mainstream religion is the presence of living person who claims some form of religious leadership. This leader, through charisma or other vices, convinces followers that he, or she, is somehow linked to a greater power and offers salvation through his fellowship . While one might argue that that educated people should be able to identify this as bogus, who is really qualified to distinguish between a real and a false prophet? Under these pretenses, could Jesus Christ, the center of modern Christianity, not have been considered a cult leader? In the case of the Solar Temple there were two leaders, Joseph Di Mambro and Luc Jouret. Di Mambro was born in 1929 and was a clock maker and jeweler by trade and became interested in estrothic religions . Di Mambro was a member of The A.M.O.R.C (Ancient and Mystic Order of the Rosy Cross) until 1969 when he left southern France and established the golden way foundation in Geneva Switzerland on July 12, 1978. Luc Jouret became involved within the cult in the early eighties and filled Di Mambro’s needs for a charismatic leader. In the case of Jouret, he was not only charismatic but also a physician, which in turn, made him more credible. During the eighties, successful a lecture tour lead Jouret throughout Switzerland, France and Canada with aspirations of recruiting members to the Solar Temple. Due to this recruiting drive, the group was divided into three distinct groups; the first, called “Amanta” consisted of those who joined in concurrence with lectures and seminars. The second level “the Archedia Clubs” consisted of those who were more dedicated to the order’s teachings and ideals. Lastly was the initiative arm of the Order, "The International Chivalric Organization of the Solar Tradition" . Through charisma and synthetic miracles, Luc Jouret had convinced followers that in a previous life he had been a member of the 14th-century Christian order known as the Knights Templar. According to him, after members left their physical bodies on earth, they would meet together again via "death voyages" that took them to another planet, or the star Sirius. According to Jouret's death was an essential part of life, and through death one could attain a new state of being. Throughout his lectures Jouret taught that the world would end with an environmental catastrophe and the world would be engulfed...

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