Actress Michelle Pfeiffer, 55, recently revealed that she was once a member of a cult and only left once she actually realized that she was involved with one. The actress admitted that her now ex-husband, Peter Horton, helped her come to the realization and helped her leave the cult.
"They were very controlling," Pfeiffer said of the couple who took her under their wings and helped guide her through life. "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," Pfeiffer told The Sunday Telegraph.
She described the couple's belief system, which included the belief that food and water was unnecessary and sunlight was all that was needed to survive. As scientific proof has shown, however, the body does require nutrients and hydration in order to function well and thrive. For her part, though, Pfeiffer came to believe in the same way the couple did and actually became vegan during her time with the couple.
"They believed that people in their highest state were breatharian," Pfeiffer noted, explaining the belief that the body can subsist on sunlight alone. "They worked with weights and put people on diets. Their thing was vegetarianism."
She only realized how she was being treated, and that it wasn't healthy, when she met first husband Peter Horton, who had starred in "Split Image," a film based on the Moonies, the name given to followers of Rev. Moon Sun-Myung's Unification Church. The Church became controversial in the 1970s, owing to assertions by members that they had been "brainwashed" into believing Rev. Moon's theology, though nothing was ever proven. Some viewed the Church as a cult, leading to fears from those who had relatives that believed.
"We were talking with an ex-Moonie and he was describing the psychological manipulation and I just clicked. I was in one," Pfeiffer told the Telegraph.
She immediately stopped associating with the couple and developed her own beliefs and career, which is still successful today.