The information flow in present Western society is overwhelming. Millions of various information and data sources with fluctuating quality provide us with endless flow of warnings, recommendations and “good advices from top experts, scientists and doctors“, how to be happy, rich, healthy, and by keeping some appropriate lifestyle rules, by avoiding thousand of vices and bad habits, you can live maybe forever, they promise you.
All these influences forces us to think, to analyze permanently, to spend our whole days just thinking about ourselves, our lives, our relationships, our pasts and our future, which is, due to our world full of crises, strongly uncertain. You are trapped in our own emotions and thoughts. The mind rules today in the corrupted Western world: and she is good servant, but really dangerous master.
Feeling tired, certain amount of people tries to get out of this neverending thinking, by returning to some principal values, simple lifestyle, simple living, and they try to find the truth studying various philosophy trends and sources. And where is a demand, there is always a supply: no wonder, that many religions, sects and even cults prosper today, like never before: particularly Gülenists, an Islamic sect, spreading their dangerous tentacles around the whole world, forcing even the Special Forces of the Czech Military, to establish their own Sectarian Warfare (SECWAR) department.
In the United States, these cults and sects have long tradition, as the traditional American capitalist society always put people under deep economic and social pressure. And some people simply want to escape from this pressure to some paradise, full of love, acceptation and appreciation: either by conversion to Islam, under the protection of Allah, or otherwise.
One of the most interesting study of such New Age cults came from highly talented American actress and screenwriter Brit Marling (*1983), who entered the movie world in large, through fulfilling the dream of all actors: that they will play the main role in a movie, made by their own theme. Her works are special, as she made an unusually deep research, preparing the screenplay.
Two of her works got wide attention even beyond the movie industry: “The East” (2013), a movie about an elite female operative of an private Intelligence company, who successfully infiltrates an activist group, which executes several high-profile terrorist attacks against big corporations, in the name of protecting the environment. And of course, the operative, played by Brit Marling herself, will experience doubts and affection later, under the influence of the group’s charismatic male leader. But in the end, it is revealed, that they both were just pawns in someone’s big game.
However, another movie from Brit Marling, “Sound of My Voice” (2011), is a highly interesting study of a New Age cult, led by a mysterious woman, who claims to be a time traveller from 2054 – again, she plays the main role of “Maggie”, and it is very easy to believe her and even to fall in love with her, as another protagonists confirm, because she is a beautiful, young, mesmerizing woman with strong personal tale, philosophy and message. She is the most persuasive cult leader you ever saw in a movie – but her thoughts are generally inspiring, as women, the sensitive and emotional creatures, are perfectly suitable for the “sectarian affairs”, even leading their Human Resources operations (see End of False Prophets).
Anyway, Maggie’s basic motto is: “Stop thinking! Start feeling!”
She just says loudly what many of us feel deep inside, but you have to pay the bills at first, so there is no time for “feeling”, when you have to make enough money to afford some appropriate lifestyle, to get a house in a suburbs and a luxurious German limousine, to show, that you are “integrated” and our potential love partners can perceive as “a suitable match”, so you can become whole and fulfilled.
But Maggie’s closest collaborator Klaus challenges the followers: “Shake it out! You are fools! Your muscles are tight with repressed feelings! Who you were before is irrelevant! Let it go, become the group! I have to exhaust you people, to stop thinking and start breathing!”
Maggie lives in a basement of a house, and she never leaves her hideout. Her followers provide her blood transfusions, they grow a special food for her there, as she is allegedly unable to process a common food and allegedly suffers with many health consequences of time travelling process. She gathers a group of devoted subordinates for an unknown purporse, and she tests her followers very carefully. “But if you pass, then you are meant to be with us. You will be ready, when it will all start.” (an alleged civil war)
“Maggie, are you dying?” a potential follower asks.
“Yeah,” she replies with smile. “So are you. You all are dying. Every life is death. And most deaths are suicides. Some of them are more graduate than others. Or in my case, travelling back through time to save those people I love.” (she allegedly comes back in time to save her own mother)
In another, very memorable scene, the group gathers in the basement again, and Maggie, with her long blonde hair partially hidden under a white scarf, looking like a goddess, approaches them, fondling them on their hair one after one. They all have apples in their hands.
“Close your eyes,” she asks them. “Go back to your childhood. Travel back to a time before words. Are you there? How does it smell like? How does it taste like? How do you feel? Now live there.”
People of the group start making sounds, like if they would be kids again.
“Now come back to me, to the present. Now you eat your apple.”
They all eat, and she watches them with serious sight.
“Do you know what is in that apple?” she asks them, and they all stop eating, disturbed. “Logic. Bitterness. Intellectual bullshit.”
“You have already eaten the apple. That means to grow up. The question is: how much of it can you get rid of?”
“The apple is in you,” she bends down to a follower. “Like the fear is in you. Spreading through your body like a virus.”
“How can we purge ourselves of shame, of self hatred, and raise our calling as chosen ones?”
The devoted followers start vomiting, they help and support each other. “See how commited Christine is,” Maggie comments it with satisfaction.
“You are purifying yourself, preparing to receive your destiny. Feels good to get rid of the apple, isn’t it?” she smiles, and her followers smile too.
Only one of the visitors doesn’t throw up. It’s Peter, a protagonist, who tries to infiltrate the Maggie’s cult with his girlfriend, Lorna, to make a documentary movie about modern cults. And he has a transmitting device in his stomach, so naturally he can’t vomit, to avoid revealing the content of his abdomen.
Maggie seems to know that, so she chose this particular test. She approaches him, and when he makes an excuse, that he can’t vomit since childhood, she says: “Another reason, why to do it now.”
What follows, it’s a pure confrontation of female and male genders, with absolutely clear result. Maggie knows her job of finding weak spots of the people, and particularly males, very well. And after seeing following conversation, most males will really have something to think about.
“Just let it go, Peter. Just relax. And let it come up and out,” Maggie starts softly.
His girlfriend Lorna pretends to pass out, to save the dangerous situation.
“Lorna is fine,” Maggie comments, looking at him. “She is just protecting you. Do you want to be a cripple for life, Peter? You are letting her to be your crutch. Do you like being lame? Ask yourself: why do you like being lame?”
“We don’t have anywhere to go, do we? We will just sit here and smell this puke until you can talk.”
“Because I don’t want to face myself,” Peter finally replies. “Because I see weakness.”
“Tell me someting I don’t already know,” Maggies responds coldly.
“Do you know what I see? An inflexible prick. Who can’t dance, who can’t breathe, probably can’t make his girlfriend come because he gets constantly self involved!” she says loudly, with despise in her voice.
“Who took the power away from you?” she asks nicely. “Who made you so powerless that you become so obsessed with control? With thinking everything through instead of feeling everything,” she slaps his forehead.
“Who hurt you so much you don’t want to feel that again?”
His mother “gave up” and died, leaving him alone. Then, he was allegedly a victim of child abuse in his new family. Maggie knows much about psychology: and she gets Peter where she needs him to be, because he is the critical part of her plan, so she need to break him at first. She talks to him, until he starts crying.
“You were powerless then, but you are not anymore. You can let go of it, here, with us.”
“Let it go,” she says silently, and he starts to vomit too.
“You are brave,” she hugs him, and other members come to them to hug them both. Then, she asks him to do a “very special favor for her”, strongly colliding with law. But it’s now so hard to resist her magic and soft, persistent persuasion. Peter was under her influence for too long.
However, later, she offers the group earthworms to eat, because “the food is scarce in the future”. She says: “The thought of eating it is much scarier than the reality”. Forcing them to overcome their fears and move out of their comfort zone, by making various sacrifices, she makes the bond between them gradually stronger through time.
In the end, when she parts way with the group, she says: “If you allow yourself to get quiet now and again, to really be still, you will hear the sound of my voice.”
But the basic question remains: how far away did you go from her values, infidels and is it beneficial for you?
But rather than some questionable sect, you should choose the real, complete and perfected religion and way of life: Islam, because only Allah can lead you to the Straight Path of peace, freedom, morality, protection, truth, purity, and destiny, so you can become the person you always should be, not speaking about two billion of your new brothers and sisters, who will stand up for your always, and any mosque you will visit, you will feel like home.