Free Essay

Heaven's Gate

In: Religion Topics

Submitted By Baboos1
Words 695
Pages 3
Heaven’s Gate

Control, brain washed, and mental illness. Those are the first thoughts that come to mind during and after watching this documentary. Heaven’s Gate was founded and led by Marshall Applewhite (1931–1997) and Bonnie Nettles (1928–1985).Marshall Applewhite is a disturbing individual, who seems to me he just wants control over these individuals. The most shocking part is that they actually allow him to control every aspect of their lives. According to what we learned and discussed in class, Heaven’s Gate is definitely a cult. Applewhite was a charismatic leader that kept tight control. He regulated who and when they could go outside to the size a pancake could be. He also isolated them from their family and friends (separation). He controlled all of their resources. One former member even stated Applewhite would use “idol threats” to keep them there, as if they were going to miss out on the best part if they left. This destructive cult claimed the lives of 38 members and the leader.
The followers in Heaven’s gate believed that Earth was going to be recycled or “renewed” and the only way to survive was to leave Earth immediately. I felt like this group should have sat down and actually read the bible. Corinthians 6:19 “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God you are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.” With that said a Christian is supposed to have the Lord in charge of their lives but if someone decides that they are going to end it prematurely, then they are basically "impeaching" the Lord and putting them self in charge of their destiny instead of trusting Him. At one point the group was against suicide, so they even redefined suicide in their own words to mean “to turn against the Next Level when it is being offered.” I did not understand this; they would mention God as if they were his followers but change the word of God to fit their own purpose.
Sawyer, a former follower stated that in 1994 after losing many from the group, Applewhite starting recruiting and did not make it as low key as the years before. He said they felt like it was time to go wanted to die. At that point they were hoping to upset enough religious groups that they would be killed. Another member that grabbed my attention was Yvonne Hill who joined the group with her husband 6 months before the suicides. She was a mother of 4 and before joining the group left her children behind without a second look, she even stated in her goodbye video that “There is nothing here for me.” Nothing here for you, what about your children? They are going to cry themselves to sleep at night because their mother is gone. I am a mother of 2 and could not fathom leaving my children for anyone. They are what is “here for me.” Applewhite had definitely used enough deprogramming on Yvonne, Sawyer, and many others in the group.
Another former group member was a man named Micheal, although he did not stay in the group he still seem brain washed. He spoke openly on the documentary and even seemed to defend Applewhite and his followers. He defended the fact that they believed Mary was impregnated by an alien life form. I am unsure of whether the former members and I use former lightly, received exit counseling but I think it would have been appropriate to make it mandatory.
There was something eerie about these fanatics ranting about the UFOs, being a part of the Next level of existence, and the comet Hale-Bopp. What gets to me the most is that the fundamental beliefs of this cult are really not any more farfetched or improbable than the beliefs of any "modern" religion. This whole event can be seen as a (exaggerated) religious lesson. They might have built their lives on irrational beliefs but in my opinion Religious fervour isn't unlike mania.

Similar Documents

Free Essay

Heavens Gate

...HEAVEN’S GATE Heaven's Gate was an American cult based in San Diego California, founded in the early 1970s and led by Marshall Applewhite, and Bonnie Nettles. On March 26, 1997, police discovered the bodies of 39 members of the group who had committed suicide in order to reach what they believed was an alien space craft following the Hale-Bop comet. The first public meeting was in the seaside town of Waldport, Oregon in 1975. For months before, they had put up fliers on telephone poles urging people to attend the meeting to discover the truth about reality. Two hundred people arrived at the Bayshore Inn Hotel to find out what the fliers were about. The Two believed that to be saved, spiritual-minded people must recognize that the appearance that most humans have souls is only an illusion. Only those who truly had souls and were ready to be harvested by God would recognize the truth of the message. Once they did, they would give up their worldly clutter at once and follow a strict regimen. Using biblical notions about sexless angels and the praise Christ gave to those who sacrificed family life to follow him, they insisted that spiritual perfection came only at a price. One had to first see the truth about the evils around them and want desperately to free oneself. The demands for members were overwhelming, which slowed down the cult's early success, but Applewhite and Nettles believed that purging earthly ways was the only means for rediscovering the alien beings they...

Words: 1663 - Pages: 7

Free Essay


...Cults Cults are often seen as an alternative religion. “A cult is defined as a religious or secular group that employs unethical and extreme measures of manipulation to recruit, control and retain its members” (Study Resources). Most cults are started because someone doesn’t like the way the world is and want to create what they feel the perfect world is. Then this person strives to make others believe as they do so they will join. There are somewhere around 3,000 to 5,000 of these cults throughout the United States, but only 75 to 100 are documented (Study Resources). The most commonly known cults are Reverend Jim Jones and the Peoples Temple, Heavens Gate, and Charles Manson and the Family; these cults were able to drag people in and make them willing to do horrible things to themselves and others. In the early 20th century, Allistar Crowly, AKA “The Black Pope”, started modern Satanism (Satan Worship). It is said that Anton Lavey brought Satanism to the United States; Anton believed that he was the reincarnation of the “Black Pope”. He set his church up in San Francisco in 1966. By the end of the first year, Anton’s cult grew to more than 200,000 members (Satan Worship). Anton then went to Hollywood to help make movies about Satanism. The movies, such as Rosemary’s Baby, glamorized the Satanic lifestyle and drew people in. Satanism was the jumping point for the modern cult movement. Reverend Jim Jones was the leader of The Peoples Temple. Jim thought of himself...

Words: 1273 - Pages: 6

Free Essay

Heavens Gate Religion

...Heaven’s Gate Religion There are many types of religions that have been formed known as new religious movements and Heaven’s Gate Religion is one that fascinates me. Heaven's Gate was an American UFO religious Millenarian group based in San Diego, California, founded in the early 1970s and led by Marshall Applewhite and Bonnie Nettles. On March 26, 1997, police discovered the bodies of 39 members of the group who had committed suicide in order to reach what they believed was an alien space craft following Comet Hale–Bopp. The new religious movement sounds crazy when first reading about it and after writing this essay I hope to learn subjects such as, what are the forms of salvation within the religion and how does the religion address the problem of evil. When looki ng at different websites the first thing that popped up when searching for Heaven’s Gate was the word cult and that’s exactly what I thought about for the group because it reminded me of exactly that. I find it really hard to think of the group as a serious religion since many of them took their own life when I am a Christian and believe strongly against suicide. The first Subject that I would like to talk to you about is what the forms of salvation are when it comes to the new religious movement known as the Heaven’s Gate religion. The group led by Marshall Applewhite had a very interesting way of thinking and it showed when they became convinced that the appearance of the Hale-Bopp comet masked a......

Words: 910 - Pages: 4

Free Essay

Business Class

...Long Island, NY (Stony Brook University Medical Center)1997President Clinton starts his second term in office on January of 1997 | | | 1997…Microsoft becomes the world’s most valuable company valued at $261 billionSecond deadliest tornado kits Texas killing 27 people Civil court jury find O.J Simpson guilty In August of 1997, Steve Job returned to Apple, Inc. Macbook in BostonIn March of 1997, scientists cloned Dolly the sheepBritain gave up control of Hong Kong in July of 1997In September of 1997, Mother Teresa died within a week of Princess DianaMore than 120 countries signed a treaty to get rid of land minesIn March of 1997, 39 people were found dead at Rancho Santa Fe, California, in a carefully orchestrated group suicide. The Heaven's Gate cult was made up of Web developers who used their site to recruit new members. They believed that the comet Hale-Bopp was being trailed by a spaceship that would transport them to a higher state of existence when they left their earthly bodies. Leader Marshall...

Words: 547 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Creating a Database for Storing and Managing Church Members’ Record for R.C.C.G. Heaven’s Gate

...DeVry University Keller Graduate School of Management Creating a Database for Storing and Managing Church Members’ Record for R.C.C.G. Heaven’s Gate Gbolade O. Soneyin (770) 598-5006 MIS-535-18371 Managerial Applications of Information Technology Professor Tanya Cannon Thursday, February 12, 2015 Table of Contents Subject of Course Project 3 Business Problem Stated 3 Name of the Organization 3 Proposed Solution 3 General Benefits 4 Audience 4 References 5 Abstract To help Heaven’s Gate move away from tracking its members on spreadsheets and paper, move to a database application that will not only track members, but also track department activities, members contributions, and do it all via the least economically, but yet effective, easily accessible and requiring limited technical or IT expertise to maintain. Keywords: RCCG, Database, Church, Heaven’s Gate, Application, Church Management Company Background Heaven’s Gate is one of many parishes of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), headquartered in Lagos, Nigeria; finding out exactly how many parishes of the church existed was next to impossible. In her well-detailed article on the church, Olufunke Adeboye wrote about the church from 1952-2005. Founded by Josiah Olufemi Akindayomi in 1952, after receiving vision to write down the church’s name on a wooden board, this despite the fact the man was unschooled at the time; he cannot read nor know how to write. After......

Words: 1607 - Pages: 7

Free Essay

Social Networks

...document here. The abstract is typically a short summary of the contents of the document. Type the abstract of the document here. The abstract is typically a short summary of the contents of the document.] | LITERARY TERMS AND CONCEPTS TO DEFINE  Allusion- An allusion is reference from one literary work to another. Most people use allusions in every day conversations, although they may not be aware of it. For example, Shakespeare’s famous line, “To be or not to be” has been used and reused in many different contexts. An example of an allusion from Week one’s reading assignments comes from The Hack Driver by Sinclair Lewis. During the story, the author makes reference the express man. He comments on how this man will probably get to Heaven’s gate and call St Peter “Pete” (LA Rocco & Coughlin, 1996, p. 59). Connotation- Connotation is the meaning or implication that the author gives, and the reader receives while reading a literary work. Connotations are not difficult to spot, because they are usually presented in the form of an opinion or assumption. For example, To Be of Use, by Marge Piercy, refers to workers becoming natives to the elements of their work environment (LA Rocco & Coughlin, 1996, p. 248). The entire poem places much emphasis on the positive aspects of good workers. As the author refers to these workers as natives, it implies that they perform their jobs easily and naturally, so the connotation is positive. Denotation- A denotation is the......

Words: 1022 - Pages: 5

Free Essay


...For any idea, effective negotiation and selling is necessary in order to persuade your target audience. Through means of systematic persuasion the communicator will appeal to reason and logic to help change attitudes, or they may appeal to emotion and habit by means of heuristic persuasion to change beliefs. Every communicator aims to gain different and desired results. For example, sales people, politicians, and leaders in other areas all have different goals and audiences, but use persuasion to their benefit. Cult leaders and other extremists in history have used persuasion to immerse followings and gain social loyalty. Over time they have evolved with different religious, political, and revolutionary motives. A cult by definition is a small religious group that is not part of a larger and more accepted religion and that has beliefs regarded by many people as extreme or dangerous. They are typically characterized by their distinct beliefs and rituals related to devotion to a god or person, are isolated from their surrounding “evil culture,” and have a charismatic leader (Myers, 252). These charismatic leaders of will use persuasion to influence the intentions, attitudes, beliefs, behaviors, and motivations of different individuals (Thoms and Walden, 2007). Vulnerability in the larger community is the main reason individuals find consolation in cults (Richard, 2010). Feelings of inferiority, ignorance, social threat, and other such factors influence an individual’s......

Words: 1225 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Definitions Ofabnormality

...To define abnormality there is three approaches these include ‘failure to function adequately’ ‘deviation from social norms’ and ‘deviation from mental health. All three of these definitions are all subjective, therefore by having only subjective definitions no experiments to find direct cause and effect can not be found as you can only do this by having facts. Deviation from social norms shows how implicit and explicit rules effect whom is abnormal. Anyone who breaks either set of rules is therefore abnormal. Implicit rules are rules that or not illegal but are looked down upon by society such as public affection. Explicit rules are the opposite as they are illegal which can therefore end in imprisonment. Actions such as rape and murder are explicit. This definition does acknowledge the concept of cultural relativism (culture bound syndromes). However can not have a universal definition as it varies from culture to culture. Although Kraepelin ‘23 has found that disorders such as depression are worldwide disorders as it is the symptoms and effects are the same from culture to culture. The definition suggests that if a certain behaviour from a person is socially acceptable from their society than it is not abnormal. Therefore no society is ‘bad’ even if they appear that way to someone or another culture. An example of this is the japanese ‘Kamikazes’ As the culture was acceptant of their behaviour it was not abnormal although it may have seemed to other cultures. This......

Words: 767 - Pages: 4

Free Essay

When Unorthodox Religions Become Inhumane or Unjust

...When unorthodox religions or cult practices become inhumane or unjust Introduction This research project examines when unorthodox religions or cult practices either becomes or perceived as inhumane or unjust by specifically focusing on unorthodox religions during a twenty year period between the 1950’s through the 1970’s. The research focuses on five different unorthodox religions: The People’s Temple, founded by Jim Jones, Heaven’s Gate, founded by Marshall Applewhite and Bonnie Nettles, Scientology, founded by L. Ron Hubbard, Children of God, founded by David Berg, and Branch Davidians, founded by David Koresh. Langone, M. D. (1995). These five unorthodox religions or cults may have had or have different doctrines and practices, but research shows that they may all share the common trait of being inhumane or unjust. Rationale/Thesis Statement In the International Cultic Studies Association article, by Dole and Eichel (1985), a survey was conducted about dangerous practices associated with cults and referenced different actions that they deemed destructive, from coercion to enslavement, which they believe to be inhumane and unjust. This research study will attempt to uncover some of these practices and find out what draws people to these unorthodox religions or cults. Likewise, this research project also attempts to determine the point at which practices become inhumane or unjust. It’s interesting to note, that three out of the five unorthodox religions or cults......

Words: 2155 - Pages: 9

Free Essay

Ufos and People

...Ufos and People Almost every civilization in history that has kept a written history has recorded the sightings of strange objects and lights in the skies. These objects have been described as glowing wheels, colored balls of light, and disk shaped objects. Today unexplained aerial phenomena are generally referred to as unidentified flying objects (UFO's) or flying saucers. The effects of extra terrestrial sightings can have an adverse effect on people if influenced the wrong way. No solid proof has shown that UFO's are real, but many sightings cannot be proven otherwise. The media, stories, or one's own experience may often influence what one believes. The government once stated that they had captured extra terrestrials. (60 minutes, CBS) On the contrary, most scientists now agree that almost all sightings and stories of extra terrestrials are not authentic. The United States government has records of thousands of UFO sightings since 1948, including photos of alleged UFOs and interviews with people who claim to have seen them. Since UFOs were considered a potential security risk, the report on these sightings was originally classified as secret. (Craig, 917) When the report was later declassified it showed that 90 percent of all UFO sightings could be easily explained. Most of the sightings turned out to be celestial objects, such as stars or bright planets like Venus, or atmospheric events such as auroras or meteors falling through the atmosphere. Many other sightings......

Words: 1111 - Pages: 5

Free Essay


...compared to the ones in other countries? These are some of main questions to be examined in this course including YOUR OWN. 1. Course Format This course is a combination of four elements; in-class lectures, fieldtrips, student presentations and individual work. The instructor will give introductory lectures to provide some orientation to weekly topics. Along with a lecture, audio-visual materials will be employed and several fieldtrips will follow as scheduled. From the 7th week, the assigned students are expected to present their findings on the selected topic. The class discussion will be followed after the students' presentation. 2. References Kim, Young Hoon. 2013. Understanding World Heritage in Korea: From Dolmen Tombs to Heaven’s Gate. Seoul: Jimoondang. Kim, Young Hoon. 2014. Understanding Korean Everyday Llife. Seoul: Jimoondang. Kim, Choong Soon. 2007. Kimchi and IT: Tradition and Transformation in Korea. Ilchogak Publishing co., Ltd. The Center for Information on Korean Culture. 2006. Exploring Korean History through World Heritage. Hollym Corp., Publishers.   Cultural Heritage Administration of Korea, UNESCO World Heritage, UNESCO Memory of the World...

Words: 563 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Tragedy vs. Sonnet

...Tragedy vs. Sonnet Tragedy and sonnet are the two common forms of writing that William Shakespeare used in his works. Tragedy is written in form of drama that has the main characters suffering through sorrow and unexpected consequence. King Lear is a tragedy by William Shakespeare that tell the tragedy story of King Lear who fall from grace due to his false action. Meanwhile, sonnet is a form of fourteen lines poem that follows a strict rhyme scheme and specific structure. Among all of Shakespeare’s sonnets, Sonnet 29 exceptionally has a relation with King Lear’s tragedy. King Lear, who is elderly and wants to retire from power, decided to divide his realm to his three daughters. Ironically, he foolishly brought up the love test and offer the largest share of his land to one who verbally show loves him the most. In return, two of his daughters, Goneril and Reagan please Lear with fulsome flowery words that they love him more than any thing in the world. Meanwhile, his youngest and favorite daughter, Cordelia, who truly love King Lear the most, could not find a word to properly express her love to the king, which infuriates him. Lear divided his kingdom to Goneril and Reagan while disinherited Cordelia. His thoughtless decision was paid off by a series of tragedies. Goneril and Reagan betrayed Lear; and later the sorrow death of Reagan, then Goneril, Cordelia and finally Lear end the tragedy. Sorrow with King Lear’s misfortune, Shakespeare wrote Lear Sonnet 29 that......

Words: 582 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

English Literature

...When in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes I all alone beweep my outcast state, And trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries, And look upon myself, and curse my fate, Wishing me like to one more rich in hope, Featured like him, like him with friends possessed, Desiring this man's art, and that man's scope, With what I most enjoy contented least; Yet in these thoughts my self almost despising, Haply I think on thee, and then my state, Like to the lark at break of day arising From sullen earth, sings hymns at heaven's gate; For thy sweet love remembered such wealth brings That then I scorn to change my state with kings. When my luck has failed and nobody cares, I sit all alone and cry about being an outcast, and my cries to God feel useless and that he does not hear me at all, then I look at myself and curse my fate, wishing that I had the things others have; or that I looked like someone else, or had friends like others do, or had a good job like someone else, and I am totally unhappy with the things in my life. But, as I'm thinking these thoughts, and as I hate myself, I think of you and then I feel better. Because when I think of your sweet love, just the thought brings such a wealth of happiness that I wouldn’t change places with anyone else. I am sure many people, at one point in time, have felt this way in their lives. There is a part of everyone who wishes that they had something different than what they currently have. Whether it is......

Words: 617 - Pages: 3

Free Essay


... We must reach out to the lost and the oppressed! After all, Christ gave us his very best! May we all preach the gospel and God’s holiness! And strive to seek his awesome righteousness! Living for Jesus must be a daily walk and experience! Not simply based on our “ambitious self appearance.” God isn’t interested in a denomination or a title… He wants to know… Do we really believe the Bible? He’s not interested in the money put in the offering plate. He wants to know; “Are you ready to enter heaven’s gate?” May we strive to serve Jesus with a zeal and passion! And be filled with his holiness and compassion! May we serve Jesus from a heart of humbled confession! And making our commitment to him, our #1 possession! “Unless the Lord builds the house.” They labor in vain that build it! Let’s seek the power of God! May his presence completely fill it!! By Jim...

Words: 708 - Pages: 3

Free Essay

Chinese Literature

...Richard Rokosz CHIN 3801 March 11, 2016 Midterm 1.......

Words: 1798 - Pages: 8