Children of the Sun, by Matt Jones

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Re: Children of the Sun, by Matt Jones

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Chasing the Sun: Writers on the Riviera
by France Today Editors
March 28, 2015

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“I’VE JUST BEEN FOR A WALK ON MY SMALL BOULEVARD AND LOOKING DOWN BELOW AT THE HOUSES ALL BRIGHT IN THE SUN AND HOUSEWIVES WASHING THEIR LINEN IN GREAT TUBS OF GLITTERING WATER AND FLINGING IT OVER THE ORANGE TREES TO DRY. PERHAPS ALL HUMAN ACTIVITY IS BEAUTIFUL IN THE SUNLIGHT.”

-- KATHERINE MANSFIELD, IN A LETTER TO HER HUSBAND, JOHN MIDDLETON MURRAY


“I WAS ONLY HAPPY ONCE; THAT WAS AT HYÈRES.”

-- ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON


“Take her away, into the sun, the doctor said.” The opening line of Sun, a short tale by British novelist and poet DH Lawrence, which was published in 1925’s The Princess and Other Stories, sums up one of that eminent author’s most cherished themes. You could call it the Mediterranean myth of renewal – the promise of simple restorative pleasures: a gentle climate, a dazzling blue sea and villa life surrounded by a lemon-scented garden.

Although Lawrence and his wife, Frieda, travelled extensively throughout Italy, the writer spent his final years on the tranquil, palm-fringed Côte d’Azur, in search of a new Eden. Like many of the celebrated expatriate writers who took refuge on the Riviera between 1915 and the 1930s, to Lawrence the area must have provided an idyllic escape from chilly northern skies, urban rhythms and wartime strife.

Yet, it was not entirely by coincidence that one group of Anglo-Saxon writers – Lawrence, Virginia Woolf, Katherine Mansfield, Aldous Huxley and Cyril Connolly – ended up as near neighbours in a string of small coastal towns, including Menton, Hyères, Sanary-sur-mer, Bandol, La Ciotat and Cassis. They’d all started as a group of friends in England, and already shared an interwoven history of love, quarrels and estrangement, which continued to develop as the years went by.

However, for ailing writers such as Robert Louis Stevenson, Katherine Mansfield and Lawrence, the Riviera promised more than sheer inspiration and a change of lifestyle. As early as the 1860s, the area’s mild winters attracted a steady stream of wealthy consumptives from northern Europe. The word was out: British doctor, James Henry Bennet published Winter and Spring on the Shores of the Mediterranean in 1861, claiming that Menton – snugly protected by wind and several degrees warmer – was indeed the perfect sanatorium city. Following Dr Bennet’s suggestion, in 1863 Robert Louis Stevenson first travelled to Nice and Menton with his family, as a frail 12-year-old with a recurrent cough.

Stevenson’s biographers have speculated that those happy memories may have prompted the Scottish writer – who was responsible for the likes of Treasure Island, Kidnapped and The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde – to return to the Côte d’Azur 20 years later, with his Californian wife, Fanny Osbourne. Hoping to improve his deteriorating pulmonary consumptive condition, Stevenson initially rented a château in Marseille, which turned out to be a sordid disaster. When Fanny found a dead body dumped on their doorstep, the couple packed up and decamped to Hyères, 85 kilometres down the coast. At the time, like Menton, this sleepy, palm-lined city was slowly becoming a hotspot for British aristos seeking ‘winter cures’, and later it was frequented by the likes of Queen Victoria.

The couple soon found their dream house and rented a tiny pseudo-Swiss chalet, La Solitude, perched on a cliff with a sweeping vista of the shimmering sea and the Îles d’Or. The house, which still stands today, on the present Rue Victor-Basch, was a kind of architectural folly, inspired by Chinese pagodas and Turkish mosques, which was first exhibited at the Paris Exhibition of 1878, then shipped to Hyères and rebuilt. Stevenson spent 16 blissful and productive months at La Solitude, mostly in the large, sun-dappled jardin, where he wrote A Child’s Garden of Verses.

“This spot, our garden, and our view, are sub-celestial,” wrote Stevenson. “I live in a most sweet corner of the universe, sea and fine hills before me, and a rich variegated plain: and at my back, a craggy hill, loaded with vast feudal ruins.”

The couple’s idyll ended when Fanny learned of an outbreak of cholera near Toulon and Stevenson fell gravely ill while visiting friends in Nice. They were forced to go back to England for medical treatment and later moved to Samoa, where Stevenson died, aged just 44.

*********

When New Zealand-born writer Katherine Mansfield fled London and first journeyed to the south of France in 1915, it was partly to escape her grief. She’d just lost her dearly loved brother, Leslie Beauchamp, who was killed fighting on the Western Front in France. Her fragile health – a thwarted pregnancy, gonorrhoea and rheumatic fever – only added to Mansfield’s intense desire to settle in a warm climate, one with a landscape that reminded her of childhood years in Wellington.

Mansfield passed through Cassis – where Virginia Woolf often stayed a decade later, to visit her sister Vanessa and husband, Clive Belle – but decided to head to Bandol, a tiny port village, where she installed herself at the seafront Hôtel Beau Rivage, in a room on the top floor, second from the right, overlooking the sea. Mansfield’s haven still stands and currently operates as the Résidence Hôtelière Beau Rivage, offering weekly rental of three-star studio apartments.

By January 2, 1916, Mansfield had rented the tiny romantic Villa Pauline, boasting clifftop views and “an almond tree that tapped at the window of the salle à manger”. She stayed until April 1916, taking long walks by the port and writing what’s considered to be some of her best work, including Prelude. During this period, her lover, the literary magazine editor John Middleton Murray, often came down to visit. Mansfield’s chaotic love life would be too complex to summarise here, but she eventually wedded Middletown Murray in 1918, once the divorce with George Bowden, her estranged husband from a loveless marriage, had been finalised. Later on, Mansfield noted in her journals that those carefree months in Bandol had been the happiest moments of her life.

Once back in England, in 1917, Mansfield became ill with pleurisy and dreamed about returning to sunny Bandol. When she recovered, her doctor advised a trip south, but the writer was unprepared for the hardships of the journey and the grim wartime changes that had altered the mood of her beloved Mediterranean town. Alone and in poor health, Mansfield immediately attempted to return to England but was held up in Paris, which was under heavy bombardment.

Disillusioned, Mansfield eventually made her way back to London, and in 1920, when her pleurisy had deteriorated into tuberculosis, decided to return to France with her care-taking companion, Ida Baker – this time to Menton. She moved into a small two-storey villa, the Isola Bella, which is set atop a hill in the neighbourhood of Garavan, just next to the Italian border, and is known for its exceptional gardens.

It was “the first real home of my own I’ve ever loved”, she enthused, in a letter to Middleton Murray, who visited sporadically. The sea and garden, filled with mimosa and tangerine trees, was the inspiration for her best novellas (Miss Brill, The Daughters of the Late Colonel), but this feverishly productive time ended abruptly when her health took a turn for the worse. She left for Switzerland and then went to Avon, to the Gurdjieff Institute for the Harmonious Development of the Mind, a monastery near Fontainebleau, where she died on January 9, 1923 at the age of 34. Just before her death, she had written in her journal: “I simply pine for the S. of France.”

Today, Isola Bella, visible from the platform of the Gare de Menton-Garavan, is owned by the city of Menton. In collaboration with the Katherine Mansfield Society, the villa is used as a New Zealand writer’s guest residence.

********

The story of DH Lawrence’s wanderings in the south of France began five years after the death of Katherine Mansfield, a close friend – in a way, he was retracing her steps. In October 1928, the writer and his friend, Richard Aldington, rented an old stone fortress on the nearly deserted island of Port Cros, across from Hyères. At the time, Lawrence’s wife, Frieda, was having an affair with an Italian officer, Angelo Ravagli, which would have important consequences in the tragicomic saga that took place after the author’s death.

Finding that the Riviera’s climate suited him, Lawrence returned to Bandol the following winter, checking into the Hôtel Beau Rivage, where Mansfield had stayed earlier. Still in search of a publisher for his controversial novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover, he and Frieda decided to rent the villa Beau Soleil. Emaciated and exhausted, Lawrence, who was in denial about his long-neglected tuberculosis, soon realised that the damp sea breezes had only made his condition worse. He longed to return to Taos, New Mexico but was too weak – instead his doctor dispatched him to a higher altitude, to the wooded hills of Vence, in the Alpes-Maritimes département.

After a brief stay in a local sanatorium named Ad Astra, Lawrence demanded to be released but, sadly, died several days later at their newly-leased home, the Villa Rochermond near Vence, on March 2, 1930. Frieda and Lawrence’s close friends, Maria and Aldous Huxley, were present at his deathbed.

Lawrence was first buried in carré 7 of the old Vence cemetery, but his remains were exhumed and cremated five years later, a ceremony which was witnessed by a small group of friends. When Frieda – who was consoled by a series of lovers, including Middleton Murray – decided to transport Lawrence’s ashes with the intention of building a shrine in Taos, what happened next still isn’t exactly clear.

Various versions of the story of Lawrence’s ashes exist: one was that Frieda’s lover, Angelo Ravagli, who was in charge of transporting the urn, distractedly left it on a train and, instead, filled another receptacle with chips of burnt wood. Another version claims that Ravagli feared immigration hassles and, one night, drunkenly confessed that he’d dumped the original contents of the urn into the sea between Marseille and Villefranche, while sailing on a ship en route to New York.

Meanwhile, the Huxleys, appalled at the idea that Frieda might charge tourists money to visit the shrine, planned to steal the ashes and cast them to the desert winds. Frieda, who learned of their intentions, made it known that she would put the ashes in the concrete mixer immediately upon their arrival in Taos. It is still a mystery where the ashes may have actually been scattered, but the Taos shrine – since renamed a ‘memorial’ – still stands on the Lawrence Ranch, a site that’s only recently been reopened to the public.

After Lawrence’s funeral, the Huxleys went to Bandol and stayed, as their friends had done, at the Hôtel Beau Rivage. However, it wasn’t long before they bought a house in Sanary-sur-Mer, a tiny fishing port down the coast near Toulon, named the Villa Huley.

“Here, all is exquisitely lovely. Sun, roses, fruit, warmth. We bathe and bask,” Huxley wrote to his sister-in-law. The couple settled there for the next seven years. Living simply but well – Maria zipped around in a red Bugatti – Huxley wrote the visionary Brave New World and Eyeless in Gaza at the Villa Huley.

The ascent of fascism and anti-Semitism during the 1930s gave rise to a new era of expatriate writers and, strangely enough, the tiny, tranquil enclave of Sanary-sur-Mer suddenly became a refuge for a host of intellectuals, who ranged from Cyril Connolly, the British critic and novelist, to German author Thomas Mann and his son.

As Aldous Huxley’s friend and biographer, the novelist Sybille Bedford, recounted during a 1993 interview with the Paris Review, there were “so many people of wildly different ways of life there at the same time”, all with varied languages, incomes and tastes, that “Sooner or later everybody met, this was the point: Sanary was no city – one newspaper kiosk, one post office, one paint-shop, two chemists, three cafés.”

*********

Needless to say, the Riviera’s expatriate literary scene of the 1920s and 1930s didn’t begin and end in the Var département. Further east, down the coast, in the then-poky fishing village of Antibes, a group of American writers were forming a tight clique and inviting their New York friends to come and experience their own hedonistic version of ‘the good life’ – stay tuned for part two…

From France Today magazine
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Re: Children of the Sun, by Matt Jones

Postby admin » Sat May 11, 2019 9:14 pm

Order of the Solar Temple
Wikipedia
Accessed: 5/11/19

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Order of the Solar Temple
Templar Cross used by the group.
Formation 1984
Type Neo-Templarism
Rosicrucianism
New Age movement
Location
France, Switzerland and Canada
Founders
Luc Jouret
Joseph Di Mambro
Parent organization
Renewed Order of the Temple
Golden Way Foundation

The Order of the Solar Temple, also known as Ordre du Temple Solaire (OTS) in French and the International Chivalric Organization of the Solar Tradition, or simply as The Solar Temple, is a secret society and sect that claims to be based upon the ideals of the Knights Templar. OTS was started by Joseph Di Mambro and Luc Jouret in 1984 in Geneva as l'Ordre International Chevaleresque de Tradition Solaire (OICTS) and later renamed Ordre du Temple Solaire.

Some historians allege that the Solar Temple originates with French author Jacques Breyer, who established a Sovereign Order of the Solar Temple in 1952. In 1968, a schismatic order was renamed the Renewed Order of the Solar Temple (ROTS) under the leadership of French right-wing political activist Julien Origas.

The OTS is perhaps most notorious for being associated with a series of murders and mass suicides in 1994 and 1995 that claimed several dozen lives in France, Switzerland and Canada. [1]

Beliefs

According to "Peronnik" (a pseudonym of temple member Robert Chabrier) in his book, "Pourquoi la Résurgence de l'Ordre du Temple? Tome Premier: Le Corps" ("Why a Revival of the Order of the Solar Temple? Vol. One: The Body") 1975, pp. 147–149,[2] the aims of the Order of the Solar Temple included: establishing "correct notions of authority and power in the world"; an affirmation of the primacy of the spiritual over the temporal; assisting humanity through a great "transition"; preparing for the Second Coming of Christ as a solar god-king; and furthering a unification of all Christian churches and Islam. The group reportedly drew some inspiration for its teachings from British occultist Aleister Crowley, who headed the Order of Eastern Temple from 1923 until his death in 1947, and the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, a 19th-century Rosicrucian Order Crowley belonged to briefly.[3] Both occult groups had a grade system somewhat similar to the Solar Temple. Another Rosicrucian group, the Rosicrucian Fellowship headed by Max Heindel, also mentioned that Rosicrucians worship Christ as "The Solar Logos" (Rays from the Cross Magazine, June, 1933), although this is not orthodox Christian doctrine.

There were Solar Temple lodges in Morin Heights and Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pérade, Quebec, Canada, as well as in Australia, Switzerland, Martinique and other countries. The Temple's activities were a mix of early Christian Identity, UFO religion and New Age philosophy using variously adapted Freemason rituals. Jouret was interested in attractive, wealthy and influential members, and it was reputed that several affluent Europeans were secret members of the group.

Structure

According to the literature of the OTS, the central authority was the Synarchy of the Temple, whose membership was secret. Its top 33 members were known as the Elder Brothers of the Rosy Cross (an alternative name for the Rosicrucians), and were headquartered in Zürich, Switzerland. The Council of the Order formed Lodges that were run by a Regional Commander and three Elders. Progression in the Order was by levels and grades, with three grades per level — the levels being The Brothers of Parvis, The Knights of the Alliance and the Brothers of the Ancient Times, in ascending order. There were many organizations associated with the OTS, including the International Archedia Sciences and Tradition, Archedia Clubs, Menta Clubs, Agata Clubs and Atlanta Clubs, all of which offered the teachings of Luc Jouret both to the general public and privately to OTS members. The Lodges had altars, rituals and costumes. Members were initiated at each stage of advancement in ceremonies which included expensive purchases, jewellery, costumes, regalia, and the payment of initiation fees. During ceremonies, members wore Crusader-type robes and were to hold in awe a sword, which Di Mambro said was an authentic Templar artifact, given to him a thousand years ago in a previous life.

Mass murders and suicides

In October 1994, Tony Dutoit's infant son (Emmanuel Dutoit), aged three months, was killed at the group's centre in Morin-Heights, Quebec. The baby had been stabbed repeatedly with a wooden stake. It is believed that Di Mambro ordered the murder, because he identified the baby as the Antichrist described in the Bible. He believed that the Antichrist was born into the order to prevent Di Mambro from succeeding in his spiritual aim.

A few days later, Di Mambro and twelve followers performed a ritual Last Supper. A few days after that, apparent mass suicides and murders were conducted at Cheiry and Salvan, two villages in Western Switzerland, and at Morin Heights—15 inner circle members committed suicide with poison, 30 were killed by bullets or smothering, and 8 others were killed by other causes. In Switzerland, many of the victims were found in a secret underground chapel lined with mirrors and other items of Templar symbolism. The bodies were dressed in the order's ceremonial robes and were in a circle, feet together, heads outward, most with plastic bags tied over their heads; they had each been shot in the head. It is believed that the plastic bags were a symbol of the ecological disaster that would befall the human race after the OTS members moved on to Sirius. It is also believed that these bags were used as part of the OTS rituals, and that members would have voluntarily worn them without being placed under duress. There was also evidence that many of the victims in Switzerland were drugged before they were shot. Other victims were found in three ski chalets; several dead children were lying together. The tragedy was discovered when officers rushed to the sites to fight the fires that had been ignited by remote-control devices. Farewell letters left by the believers stated that they believed they were leaving to escape the "hypocrisies and oppression of this world."


A mayor, a journalist, a civil servant, and a sales manager were found among the dead in Switzerland. Records seized by the Quebec police showed that some members had personally donated over C$1 million to Di Mambro. Another attempted mass suicide of the remaining members was thwarted in the late 1990s. All the suicide/murders and attempts occurred around the dates of the equinoxes and solstices in some relation to the beliefs of the group.

Another mass-death incident related to the OTS took place during the night between the 15 and 16 December 1995. On 23 December 1995, 16 bodies were discovered in a star-formation in the Vercors mountains of France. It was found later that two of them shot the others and then committed suicide by firearm and immolation. One of the dead included Olympian Edith Bonlieu, who had competed in the women's downhill at the 1956 Winter Olympics.[4]

On the morning of 23 March 1997, five members of the OTS took their own lives in Saint-Casimir, Quebec. A small house erupted in flames, leaving behind five charred bodies for the police to pull from the rubble. Three teenagers, aged 13, 14 and 16, the children of one of the couples that died in the fire, were discovered in a shed behind the house, alive but heavily drugged.

Michel Tabachnik, an internationally renowned Swiss musician and conductor, was arrested as a leader of the Solar Temple in the late 1990s. He was indicted for "participation in a criminal organization" and murder.
He came to trial in Grenoble, France during the spring of 2001 and was acquitted. French prosecutors appealed against the verdict and an appellate court ordered a second trial[5] beginning October 24, 2006. He was again cleared less than two months later on December 2006.[6]

Spanish sect

The Order of the Solar Temple was also based in Spain, especially in the Canary Islands. In 1984, the founder of the OTS, Luc Jouret, lectured on the island of Tenerife.[7] The leader of the order's branch in Spain lived on the south of the island.[8] The only Spaniard who died in the suicide of the Order of the Solar Temple was a barber from Tenerife.[9] In 1998, a sect was suspected of plotting ritual suicide in the Teide National Park. Both Spanish and German police initially linked the group to the Order of the Solar Temple.[10]

See also

• Ancient Mystical Order Rosae Crucis – Di Mambro was a member

References

1. L'enquête sur le Temple solaire révèle le monde des sociétés secrètes
2. "Peronnik", Pourquoi la Résurgence de l'Ordre du Temple? Tome Premier: Le Corps (Monte-Carlo: Éditions de la Pensée solaire, 1975).
3. The Eye in the Triangle, Israel Regardie, June, 1993
4. Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill. "Edith Bonlieu Olympic Results". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
5. "Conductor on trial over cult killings in France, Switzerland and Canada". 25 October 2006. Retrieved 23 August 2017.
6. "Conductor cleared of cult deaths". BBC News. December 20, 2006. Retrieved May 20, 2010.
7. "«Spanish police state they prevented mass suicide by Atma (Isis Holistic) Center cult»". Archived from the original on 8 March 2016. Retrieved 23 August 2017.
8. Historia oculta de Canarias.
9. Tenerife, La Opinión de. "Tres sectas destructivas campan en Tenerife - La Opinión de Tenerife". http://www.laopinion.es. Retrieved 23 August 2017.
10. "La líder de la secta de Tenerife recaudó 300 millones entre sus fieles". 1998-01-18. Retrieved 2015-06-17.

Sources

• Daraul, Arkon. A History of Secret Societies. (NY: Citadel, 1995)
• Galanter, Marc. Cults: Faith, Healing, and Coercion. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1989)
• Moran, Sarah. The Secret World of Cults. (Surrey, England: CLB International, 1999)
• Davis, Eric. Solar Temple Pilots, The Village Voice (October 25, 1994)
• "French Magistrate rejects idea that outsiders killed cultists," AFP, (April 24, 2001)
• Haight, James A. And Now, the Solar Temple. Free Inquiry, Winter 1994-95.
• Hassan-Gordon, Tariq. Solar Temple Cult Influenced by Ancient Egypt, (Middle East Times, Issue 18, 2001)
• Mayer, Jean-François. Apocalyptic Millennialism in the West: The Case of the Solar Temple, Critical Incident Analysis Group, hsc.Virginia.edu, retrieved, January 4, 2003.
• Musician Denies Solar Temple Murders, The Scotsman, Edinburgh (April 18, 2001)
• Palmer, Susan. Purity and Danger in the Solar Temple, Journal of Contemporary Religion 3 (October 1996) pages 303–318
• Probert, Robert. Solar Temple: Tabachnik Acquitted, Center for New Religious Studies, (June 25, 2001)
• Serrill, Michael S. Remains of the day, Time, (October 24, 1994)
• Spanish cops arrest cult leader, Associated Press, (January 8, 1998)
• Gordon, Sean (25 October 2006). "Trial highlights Canadian cult link". Toronto Star. p. A3. Retrieved 2006-10-25.

Further reading

• James R. Lewis (editor), The Order of the Solar Temple: The Temple of Death (Ashgate Publishing Company, Ashgate Controversial New Religions Series, 2006). ISBN 0-7546-5285-8

External links

• Religious Tolerance: Solar Temple
• CBC Digital Archives - Solar Temple: A cult gone wrong
• Order of the Solar Temple - Britannica
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Re: Children of the Sun, by Matt Jones

Postby admin » Sat May 11, 2019 9:39 pm

Cultists killed 3-month-old Quebec boy
by New York Times News Service
The Baltimore Sun
November 20, 1994

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TORONTO -- A 3-month-old boy was stabbed to death in a Quebec village because he was considered the Antichrist in the rituals of a cult linked to the murder-suicide of 53 people in Switzerland and Quebec last month, the Quebec provincial police say.

The police reconstructed the bizarre developments in a burned-out chalet in the ski resort village of Morin Heights, north of Montreal, where five people were found dead early last month.

The incident was followed a few days later by the fiery deaths of 48 cult members in two Swiss villages.

All the victims had some association with the Order of the Solar Temple, a cult that used symbols from Roman Catholicism, astrology, Gnosticism and the medieval Christian fraternities of the Knights Templar and Rosicrucians to attract believers in Europe and Canada.

The cult's two leaders, Luc Jouret, 46, a Belgian-born physician, and Joseph di Mambro, 70, a French Canadian who lived in Switzerland and Quebec and who controlled the finances, died in Switzerland.

At a news conference in Montreal on Friday and in later telephone interviews, the Quebec police said the infant was killed along with his parents by Joel Egger and Dominique Belaton, Swiss followers of di Mambro. The police said they were acting under the orders of di Mambro, an authoritarian figure in the cult, and used a wooden stake in the ritual slaying.

The baby's parents, Antonio Dutoit and his wife, Nicky Robinson Dutoit, did odd jobs for di Mambro.

According to police, di Mambro, who usually decided when women in the cult had babies and what names would be selected, was outraged when Mrs. Dutoit had a baby last July 5 and named the boy Christopher Emmanuel.

Police learned from interviews with some of the sect's former members that di Mambro regarded the baby as the Antichrist because the name matched that of his daughter Emmanuelle and because he had not been consulted. He then ordered two of his followers to Quebec to kill the family. Colette and Gerry Genoud, members of the order who set up the killings, committed suicide three days later.


Copyright © 2019, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication
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Re: Children of the Sun, by Matt Jones

Postby admin » Sat May 11, 2019 9:44 pm

The Order of the Solar Temple: A Suicide Cult
by bizarrepedia.com
Accessed: 5/11/19

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The Order of the Solar Temple (Ordre du Temple Solaire or OTS in French) was, and still is, a secret society based upon the ideals of the Knights Templar. The little known esoteric sect was founded by Joseph Di Mambro (pictured above with his daughter) and Luc Jouret. Similarly to UFO religious Millenarian group Heaven’s Gate, the followers of Joseph Di Mambro were brainwashed to believe he was a member of the 14th Century Christian Order of the Knights Templar in a previous life and that his daughter, Emanuelle, was The Cosmic Child, and they would be led a planet which orbits the star Sirius after their deaths.

In October 1994, the sect shocked Switzerland and gained worldwide notoriety when 23 bodies were discovered in the Swiss canton of Fribourg. Another 25 bodies were found in Valais. Only 5 days earlier, 3 people had been killed in Canada – a Swiss couple and their infant son Emmanuel Dutoit, who had been repeatedly stabbed with a wooden stake, because he was believed to be the Antichrist.

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Three-month-old Emmanuel Dutoit and his parents were killed.

Joseph Di Mambro and Luc Jouret

The cult was started by the two men in 1984 in Geneva, Switzerland. Di Mambro was born in 1924, the eldest of three children, the son of a construction worker from northern Italy. He was raised as a Catholic and received his education in a private Catholic school where he was described as an average student. He took violin courses and went to mass every Sunday until the age of 20. In the 1950s, Joseph Di Mambro began practicing occultism. He became a member of The Ancient and Mystical Order Rosæ Crucis. A little later he established Golden Way Foundation, the purpose of which, in addition to making money, was also to forge links between people keen on occultism. Within the foundation, he met Luc Jouret.

Image
Joseph Di Mambro.

Luc Jouret studied to become a doctor but disappointed quickly in modern medicine and left the industry. He travelled the world, studying his spirituality and practising alternative medicine such as homoeopathy. Eventually, his journey led him to Golden Way Foundation, where he met Di Mambro and Michel Tabachnik — a famous Swiss conductor and composer who later testified against the members of the cult for killing children.

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A Swiss weekly magazine L’Illustré showing photos of Michel Tabachnik taking part of OTS’ ceremonies.

Apparently, Michel Tabachni used Google’s New “Right To Be Forgotten” (who is complying with the European Union’s new) to remove his relationships with the cult. By using Google and searching for Tabachnik, this page won’t show up. You decide what to make of it.

[[“european-takedown-notice.jpg” “Michel Tabachnik’s Google European Takedown Notice”]]

The Order of the Solar Temple

Just like in any other cult, money, sex and power played a key role. The central authority was the Synarchy of the Temple. The members were secret, headquartered in Zürich, Switzerland. There were lodges in Canada, Australia, Switzerland, Martinique and other countries. The activities were a mixture of early Christianity and various Freemason rituals. Several affluent Europeans were secret members of the group. The lodges had altars, rituals and costumes.

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Cult leader Joseph Di Mambro.

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Jouret saw himself as Jesus Christ himself. He became obsessed with sex and was having intercourse with one of the female members before each ritual to give him strength for the upcoming ceremony. The members handed over their money and adhered to strict rules.

Upon realizing the hypocrisy, cult member Tony Dutoit spoke out and left. Soon, he and his wife were stabbed to death in Canada. Their little son Emmanuel, who was named by Di Mambro as the Anti-Christ, was wrapped in a black plastic bag with a wooden stake placed through his chest.

Mass Suicide/Murder

The leadership felt that they were being persecuted by governments. They claimed to anticipate the coming end of the world due to an environmental disaster and decided that some of the members should leave the earth prematurely.

In Fribourg and Valais, the cult members either took their own lives or were ritualistically murdered. Some were shot in the head or asphyxiated, some had been drugged. Many wore black ceremonial robes, had plastic bags placed over their heads, bodies positioned in a star formation with feet pointing to the center. Many of the bodies were set on fire.

The two founders Luc Jouret and Jo Di Mambro, were among the dead.

In March 1997 in Quebec, Canada, five more people took their lives. Three children managed to escape at the last moment and were the only survivors of the tragedy. The total number of deaths attributed to the cult was 74, including several children.

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