Unlike Scientology, the Avatar movement doesn’t claim religious status. Star’s Edge is a for-profit personal development enterprise that supposedly “contributes to an enlightened planetary civilization.” Like Scientology it has its various levels at ever increasing prices. The main levels in Avatar are Basic, Master and Wizard. They are comparable to Scientology’s Pre-clear, Clear and OT.
Harry Palmer, the creator of Avatar claims that the precepts of Avatar were revealed to him during a trance while he was in a sensory deprivation tank. In fact, Palmer was a devout Scientologist for over 15 years and was the mission holder in Elmira, New York for over 10 years until 1984 when he ceased paying his licensing fees to Scientology Missions International.
The original Avatar materials made extensive use of Scientology terminology and Harry Palmer sold them to other Scientologists, claiming that they achieved “end of case” and “covered the entire Scientology Bridge, the Buddhic path and beyond.” Many of the terms continue in use in Avatar today, such as “Rundown”, “Identities”, “handling”; and Avatar offers similar courses of the same names (“Integrity Course” and “Professional Course”).
The basic course consists of doing training drills (similar to the training routines in Scientology), designed to enable the client to face what will be confronted in the Masters course. The Basic course costs $2,395 US.
The Masters Course, at a cost of $3,000 US, involves to process of “discreation” of negative beliefs, visualized in trance as thought-forms or “bubbles.” After one vanishes, the vacuum in mental space can be replaced with a better belief. After the course, most students experience a strong euphoria that may last for weeks. Once the high wears off, some say they have experienced anxiety, obsessive thoughts, or deep depression resembling the downside of bipolar disorder. If they ask teachers for advice, they are told to repeat the course and experience deeper levels.
Now you are ready for the Wizards course. You will finally learn the secrets that have kept you from achieving your true spiritual potential. The price? A mere $7,500. It is here that you will learn that we are not native to this planet but come from the planet Karsak of the Triton system, because of an intergalactic “blight bomb” caused by indoctrination experiments gone awry on that planet. You will also learn that drugs and surgery are misguided attempts at healing, because all human ills — including AIDS and cancer — are really caused by “entities,” possessive spirits that are exorcised using telepathic commands similar to Scientology’s techniques to eliminate “body thetans.”
If you have fallen out of favor with Avatar, or if you have a family member in Avatar, you are “encouraged” to become a member in good standing. According to Rick Ross, Even family members, friends and coworkers have to submit to Avatar’s pushy attempts to embrace them. Ruined friendships and broken relationships are the result. Twenty-three-year-old Aline M. from Saarland complains: “My boyfriend’s family is totally wrapped up in it. His mother follows the tenets of Avatar fanatically.” Her relationship is suffering, too: “My boyfriend is pretty much helpless, and is unable to answer questions. He can’t get his life together any more. He is completely dependent in terms of his personality, which he denies, of course. Eventually, I couldn’t even get near him.”
Palmer now says he is an “educational psychologist,” apparently to camouflage his history; but a public records reveal that he has never held a mental health credential. Despite the self-conferred title, some of his teachings express antipathy toward conventional health care. They oppose pharmaceutical treatments and Avatar Masters have advised students with bipolar disorder to discontinue medication, sometimes with disastrous results. Well known Hamburg cult expert Ursula Caberta says “We’ve heard that there have been nervous breakdowns and that people have not been looked after appropriately“.
This is a dangerous commercial cult, and if you are looking for spiritual enlightenment, give this one a pass.
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