Dear 100 Hour Board,
What do you guys think of Raelism and the founder? Did he make it all up? Did he really have some strange experience? Thoughts.
I studied Raelism for a World Religions class, and...well, it's something, alright.
In general, I think the idea of building an embassy for future aliens to come and visit is an interesting one. I'm less fond of how their symbol combines a swastika and the Star of David. Yes, I get that they say that they're trying to reclaim the swastika and use it as a symbol of peace (which it was for a long time before the Nazis came around, read more here), but 1) I think there are better symbols you could use instead and 2) putting it right smack in the middle of a Star of David just seems like they're asking for trouble.
Now, what do I think about the origin of Raelism?
...I don't know. If I'm going to be honest, I mostly just want to throw it all into the loony bin. Scriptures about "other worlds" notwithstanding, I don't believe that we've been visited by aliens (angels don't count as aliens don't @ me), and so I'm highly skeptical of people who claim to have had alien encounters or similar experiences.
At the same time, if that World Religions class taught me anything, it's that we should respect the traditions and beliefs of other religions. I don't think that God's preparatory work prior to the Restoration was just through the Christian reformers like Martin Luther; I see a lot of similarities between the LDS church and other religions like Islam and Buddhism, so much that I do believe that Mohammed and Siddhārtha Gautama were inspired by God to teach certain things that they did. So, there is some part of me that thinks that maybe we should respect Raelism at least somewhat and not be too judgmental about its teachings and origin...
...but mostly I think it's bunk.
-Frère Rubik acknowledges that any Raelists in the crowd also have license to call Mormonism "bunk" now that he's said that