When you see a headline that any huge star was once reportedly in a cult, it definitely makes you do a double-take. (Even though one could argue that Hollywood may be a cult all on its own ...) And when you read that it was Michelle Pfeiffer who was in a cult ... you may go WTF? Plus, the cult was formed for the most WTF-worthy reason. This particular cult believed humans could exist only on sunlight.
Apparently the cult was run by a controlling -- that's putting it mildly -- couple who believed in "breatharianism." Yes, they believed that humans can meditate and then survive without food or water. She said she was "saved" when she was introduced to her first husband, Peter Horton. He had actually been cast in a film about the Moonies, which was the name given to followers of Reverand Moon Sun-myung’s Unification Church. When she was helping him research the "cult," she realized: "I was in one."
Describing the cult, "They worked with weights and put people on diets. Their thing was vegetarianism," she said in an interview for The Sunday Telegraph’s Stella magazine.
"They were very controlling. I wasn’t living with them but I was there a lot and they were always telling me I needed to come more. I had to pay for all the time I was there, so it was financially very draining ... They believed that people in their highest state were breatharian," she added.
People who, is "practice" the right word, breatharianism believe the body can be nourished by sunlight alone. The 55-year-old was put on a diet "nobody can adhere to" while she was part of the cult -- most likely because the diet didn't involve, um, food.
According to the Seattle Globalist, at least four people have died attempting to live on sunlight. It's not really that surprising, sadly, since basic biology dictates that humans need water and food to function. It seems she got swept up in this movement when she was a young actress first starting out. It's still pretty scary though that people have actually died attempting this!
It's kind of easy to quickly judge her by wondering how the hell she could get involved with something so seemingly out there, and strange, and, well, stupid, but it's also amazing how impressionable you are and how easily you can give into temptation and how desperately you want to belong when you're young and struggling. Granted, living off of sunlight alone is a whole bunch of, well, words fail me ... but luckily for Michelle, she was able to see what she was involved in and is now a self-proclaimed vegan and "foodie." It's always somewhat fascinating to see what stars went through before they made it big!
Can you believe Michelle Pfeiffer was involved in a cult like this?
Image via JeremiahChristopher/Flickr