Facts about Universal Medicine: A Dangerous Cult – I think NOT!

by Jacqueline McCoach

I would like to start with a little of my personal history. I grew up in a cult in which my mother was heavily involved. This was a group she stayed with for approximately 10 years: over this time I experienced a whole lot of questionable behavior from older men and women whom I was supposed to look up to and learn from.

There has been a complete denial of the true facts as people accuse Universal Medicine of being a dangerous cult with founder Serge Benhayon as the cult leader, for I truly know what a dangerous cult looks like and is, having experienced it firsthand! Labelling something as such is not an accusation to make lightly as the way a real cult impacts people’s lives is very destructive and emotionally crippling.  

So I would like to take this opportunity to put forward facts I have come to know based on my experiences with the cult I grew up in – and in total and complete contrast, my time attending Universal Medicine.

Fact – In the cult the leader encouraged the followers to have sex or relationships with her and, as it was presented to them, this was in order to develop their sexual awareness. People were encouraged to touch the leader all over for her pleasure. This was openly talked about and everyone was aware of this practice.

In Contrast At no point in all the years I have attended sessions and workshops with Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine practitioners, have I or anyone I know, ever been touched in a sexual way, encouraged to touch another or felt abused in any way, shape or form. In fact the complete opposite is truenever have I been treated in such a respectful and non-imposing way in a massage or healing session before I experienced one with Universal Medicine. Furthermore, I have only ever been encouraged to try and work out my existing relationship issues or encouraged to date when I have been single.

Fact – In this cult the adults were kept up all night participating in group sessions, sometimes going for 24 hours – which is a well-known technique for putting the body into a state of dysfunction, weakening the ability to keep emotions and issues under control.

In Contrast – Universal Medicine courses and presentation days run for no longer than 8 hours with a good lunch break, as well as morning tea and toilet breaks. It is not compulsory to attend, anyone can book in, paying for courses offered with no obligation.

Fact – In this cult my mother, as well as many others, gave away a lot of money to the leader when in fact they had very little to start with.

In Contrast – Universal Medicine does NOT allow donations.

Fact – In the cult we went to rave parties where the members would all take a lot of drugs, losing themselves then in music. Drugs were encouraged as according to the leader, it opened your consciousness and made you more in touch with the world and people.

In Contrast – Universal Medicine is about true well-being and supporting the body in a way that allows one to fully contribute to society – in fact, the true harm and widespread devastation that drugs and alcohol inflict are discussed openly. Music is used in a way to celebrate who we are and in that, to have fun: we have dance parties, however they usually go for 1-2 hours starting at 6pm.

Fact – Everyone in the cult lived on cigarettes and coffee. Our diets were terrible we would eat vegemite on toast for dinner… a lot! No exercise was encouraged and personal care was NEVER a topic of conversation.

In Contrast – To put it simply, Universal Medicine encourages clean eating in accordance to one’s choices. It is not a new thing, but many are not aware of how beneficial it is. Serge talks about the food choices he makes at times, but what is really presented at UM is to listen to the way your body reacts to foods and eat accordingly. Listen to your body and don’t poison it is the pretty simple message. Exercise is encouraged as part of supporting the body to be strong and active to live life and work. In fact, I never exercised regularly until I came to Universal Medicine. Again, it is just encouraged to the level that you feel is right for your body; nothing is compulsory.

Fact – The people who I was surrounded with as a child were quite crazy! They would cry all the time – most of them were severely depressed. They would talk for hours on end about their feelings and other cult related business. They took no care in their appearance. Most people did not work and spent most of the time at sessions or sitting around talking about their feelings.

In Contrast – The people I am surrounded by now are really quite amazing: I am inspired every day by them! They don’t indulge in their issues – they get on with life. They have great jobs or businesses where they offer a service – which is second to none. Their focus is not on personal gain and money but on how they can truly help others. Much dedication is applied to the way they live so when they go out into the world the quality of being they are in is an absolute pleasure to be met with. All this not just for themselves, but because they understand the impact we all have on one another and the responsibility that comes with that. This is pretty incredible and again so inspiring to be around.

Another amazing quality I am surrounded with is that people always keep growing emotionally as well as practically. Personal issues are dealt with to the best of their ability. For some, their businesses grow and evolve, new projects are started regularly, there are no limits. People I see involved with Universal Medicine welcome hard work as it seems for them it is never hard, but a pleasure. I could go on and on, as it is very inspiring!

Fact – My mother would move us around wherever the cult went. Dad had no say in this, his wishes were disregarded because he was not amongst the cult.

In Contrast – I have close friends who attend Universal Medicine events and are separated from their partners and have children together. What I see is rational women (and men) accommodating the needs of their ex-partner as well as their own, and who care deeply about their children.

After spending many years influenced by the cult members and others, I developed a very unhealthy way of living. I became a drug addict who had nothing to show for her 20 something years on this planet. That I would call a dangerous environment to be in!

Six years ago I went to a Universal Medicine healing course which inspired me to begin changing my life. Gradually I made the changes I needed and stopped taking drugs and alcohol. I started exercising and I set up a now booming business. Surrounded by truly inspiring people I turned my life around and today I have plenty to show for myself. From someone who hated themselves and felt worthless to a proud woman who is willing to look at these issues and deal with them head on, but who also feels a self love and admiration that was not there before.

“Universal Medicine – a dangerous cult”… I think not! Quite the opposite in fact – my life has improved DRAMATICALLY in every possible way and I am answerable to no one but myself

299 thoughts on “Facts about Universal Medicine: A Dangerous Cult – I think NOT!

  1. I really appreciate you sharing what it is like from the inside of a cult in such a clear way. It makes me realise there are so many pictures we live to, so many ideals and beliefs we are under. We cast out opinions and judgements when we feel threatened and it would be good to have a level of personal responsibility in what we say before we say!

  2. No matter how many times Universal Medicine get called a cult that doesn’t make them one. Actions speak louder than lies and this so-called cult keeps winning business awards and has inspired many to live connected, vital, contributing lives. Your account of the cult you were in didn’t produce such results.

  3. It’s clear when you look at the facts that Universal Medicine is so far removed from being a cult, but in this world of freedom of speech, people can say whatever they want and do not get challenged.

  4. I read a news headline recently where Universal Medicine is labelled a ‘cult’ and in the same breath cites that it promotes practices that have ‘no evidence base’. But where is their evidence that Universal Medicine is a cult? Smacks of hypocrisy to me. If people really want to understand Universal Medicine then attend their events, read blogs and articles like these – from those who have experienced Universal Medicine. Read the amazing stories of people whose lives have been changed/transformed for the better, like mine. Is Universal Medicine a cult? I think not…and I know it is not.

  5. Universal Medicine is a wonderful organisation supporting people to turn their lives around and to live lives of love and appreciation. To label it a cult is to speak from ignorance – or an effort to smear their name and the work of Serge Benhayon. But why would you want to do that? He is helping people to transform their lives in very beautiful ways. Jealousy perhaps?

    1. It seems that anything that threatens what we call our normal is abused in this way. When you look back through history you have many great leaders and inspiring people who were abused and bullied before the penny dropped that perhaps we should listen!

  6. We are able to discern what is energetically true or not so we actually have the choice to be a part of a group or not, in fact it is our responsibility, no one else.

  7. If something does not suit us, we can dress it up in whatever way we want to make it suit us – we forgot to book a flight and when in the panic to do so, our computer freezes so we blame the computer. Somebody calls us out for doing something that is lacking in integrity so in our reaction we call them a cult leader… it’s not that different.

  8. We live in a sea of lies. Therefore when something of true integrity comes along, we get played by our own scepticism and feel it is ‘too good to be true’. This unsettles us and because we cannot corrupt what is true and can only distort our perception of it, we begin to surround the truth with the lies we as a society have condoned so we can embed ourselves further in the comfortable nests we have created for ourselves in order to stay adrift and survive in the world we have created and the ‘sea of lies’ in which we swim.

  9. What Universal Medicine present is a stark contrast to what is going on around the world. If we choose to denigrate it and dismiss it because it sticks out, we will be the ones missing out. In this world of corruption, illness and disease we desperately need a change and one that put Love at its centre. This is what Universal Medicine do with every course, presentation and workshop. They are not a sect but a group of world-changing human beings.

  10. The impact Universal Medicine has made on my life is so strong and palpable that nothing could taint that lived experience.

  11. We have a choice where we participate and these choices have consequences. We also have choices whom we attack and vilify, why and how and these also have consequences.

  12. One day in the not too distant future, the whole world will realise that far from being a cult, Universal Medicine is showing us that our future does not need to be all the pain, angst and ugliness of the past if we first live from our hearts instead of our cold calculating heads.

  13. Wow Jacqui, thanks for comparing the two. Clear as day that Universal Medicine is a true health hub as opposed to the nightmare that was the cult you spent time in as a child. How does one misconstrue something so honest and simple?

  14. Great how you point out the absolute facts that distinguish universal medicine from a cult. And who can make this better, than someone who experienced being part of one cult! Whenever you present something that is not pleasing desires and asks you to go into responsibility for the all, it is not very popular. Putting the label “cult” on it, like is the case with Universal Medicine, is the most simple way to dumb any voice that could possibly offer you a new way of living.

  15. ‘In the cult the leader encouraged the followers to have sex or relationships with her and, as it was presented to them, this was in order to develop their sexual awareness. People were encouraged to touch the leader all over for her pleasure. This was openly talked about and everyone was aware of this practice.’ This paragraph could not be further from the integrity, love and absolute care Serge Benhayon presents all of his courses with.

    1. That part also stuck with me. I’ve done a few of the bodywork based courses from Universal Medicine and every single time, multiple times and it couldn’t be stressed enough how the private parts are no-go zones. The integrity and quality of how you approach and work with another body is of the highest respect I’ve ever experienced.

  16. Love your clear sharing of the facts of living in a cult and living with Universal Medicines presentations and workshops. The difference is very palpable.

  17. Wow, the difference between the two organisations is astounding. It’s great to read your experience of a ‘dangerous cult’ and that Universal Medicine is actually the complete opposite.

  18. A clear exposure of what it means to be attached to a cult and the freedom of choice of all that is presented at Universal Medicine.

  19. Ladies and gentleman, let the facts speak for themselves. I love the way you have stated the facts so clearly, leaving no doubt as to what is a cult activity and what is not.

  20. Jacqueline you are truly an amazing young woman, you have done an incredible job with the support of Universal Medicine to resurrect yourself out of your past and shine like you do today, and to be committed to life and work, and to lovingly caring for yourself – congratulations!

  21. In my experience there is nothing dangerous or ‘cult’ like about Universal Medicine, so could it be that those who use this term loosely are so afraid of the truth they will do anything to destroy it rather than possibly be exposed for the way they live their lives?

  22. Calling a group a cult has become a tool for those who wish to abuse others who belong to a group the accusers don’t like, it is as simple as that. People make choices and yes we need to hold people accountable when real abuse occurs, however there is no magic spell on people they are simply making choices.

  23. There is no doubt that there are abusive organisations out there that people voluntarily join (for reasons that are too strange to fathom). There is no doubt that many of these organizations have some religions undertones as in my path to salvation depends on me submitting to whatever I need to submit to. The point though is that the true the path of salvation has not and cannot have abuse as part of its makeup.

    1. The true path of salvation is lit by the light of who we truly are and thus we are guided by love, to resurrect this in full.

  24. This whole cult smear campaign is getting old, really. The way Universal Medicine continues to grow from strength to strength in the face of such abuse is a much more interesting and inspiring point of focus.

  25. What a great, no-nonsense expose on cults and how Universal Medicine doesn’t resemble anything like a cult. Universal Medicine is all about respecting free will and being non-imposing to a level that is beyond the integrity I have ever experienced in any group/organisation/etc. Experiencing this I now know that integrity is possible in a world that is full of deceit and corruption. I now know that when I fall below this level of integrity – something I do daily if I’m honest. But I cannot deny this and am addressing the issues that get in the way of living with the integrity I see lived through Universal Medicine.

  26. The evidence is clear and undeniable of the fact the Universal Medicine offers a truth that we can ALL live by and benefit our lives immensely from living. NO one is excluded or left out. There is NO judgement no matter what choice you make and you are ALWAYS held as an equal and deeply understood and respected in that. No cult here!

    1. Yes, I totally agree with what you’ve written and all my years of attending Universal Medicine courses and presentations. NO judgement or investment in others’ choices; just loving understanding knowing people will come to their own understanding in their own time.

  27. There is no more true voice than that of experience – when the veil has been lifted off a way of living that is deeply harmful to all concerned… Thank-you Jacqueline for your absolute honesty here in sharing what you knew in growing up within the cult that you’ve described. I also can think of no further opposite to such abuses, as the work of Universal Medicine and everything that this organisation represents.
    The ‘proof’, as you’ve shared is in the pudding – no-one is beholden to any ‘leader’, and what we see here in students of Universal Medicine (UM) are autonomous people who are deeply appreciative of the awarenesses and presentations on life and the living of it, that UM consistently offers… So many lives transformed – inclusive of my own – from a sense of merely ‘existing’, to a sustained knowing of joy and commitment and engagement in everyday life.
    Anyone saying otherwise is completely delusional in my books…

  28. We all really need to be paying attention to this sort of bullying and manipulation by the media as has impacted on so many people. As a society are we Ok with this behaviour ? Is this really how we want to be treated by people who are supposed to be presenting news not making it up?

  29. ‘never have I been treated in such a respectful and non-imposing way in a massage or healing session before I experienced one with Universal Medicine.’ This is my experience too Jacqueline and it was also the first thing I learned when I started to do the courses Sacred Esoteric Healing, so different than anything else I had been involved with.

  30. A cult relies on people giving their power away to something that is ‘greater’ than themselves and therefore always results in a reduction and compromise of self – and so the growth you have spoken of here (on every level is simply not possible when invested in a cult).

  31. So awesome! That we are answerable to no one but ourselves is the dead give away that UM is most certainly not a cult.

  32. The facts you share regarding your experience with a cult and the contrasting experience you now have with universal medicine are clearly vastly different – great sharing thank you Jacqueline.

  33. That is the thing with jealously (the basis of the smear campaign against Universal Medicine) it has to create lies that are in fact the complete opposite to the truth of the matter at hand.

  34. ‘They took no care in their appearance’, the care we take in our appearance is an indicator of how we feel about ourselves inside and something I have noticed about Universal Medicine students is how much care each one takes of themselves and how the clothes they wear seem to be a reflection of themselves and not what fashion has dictated.

  35. Beautifully simple break down of the facts – from someone who has experienced both sides. Cult is a word that carries so many connotations and ideas, that all one has to do is insinuate a group is a cult and people will believe it out of fear and suspicion because there are groups out there that have harmed people’s lives. But when this is not the case and in fact the very opposite is true, to use the label cult is purposefully defamatory

  36. I can see why simply using the word cult to describe something can be so destructive. Your experiences as a child would be what most people have in mind when the word cult is used and this word used to describe universal medicine could be nothing further from the truth. Discernment is key.

  37. An amazing piece Jacqueline, showing how ridiculous and false the claims of Universal Medicine being a cult are. There is no mistake in the use of the term however, as it instantly illicits fear and prejudice in those undiscerning enough to believe everything they hear. The truth is plain as day, there to be seen and felt, not just in your blog, but in every one on this site, and every other site under the umbrella of Universal Medicine.

  38. I love returning to this no nonsense, say it as it is blog about cults. The experience you describe of being in a cult is a far cry from Universal Medicine as you have laid out so brilliantly here. The other thing as Adam (above) notes – the word cult is used by way of ridicule or to describe anything that seems to be out of the ordinary or extreme. It still strikes me as odd having known Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine for 14 years that anyone could make derogatory comments about it (whether they call it a cult or any other comments) when just like you Jacqueline my whole life has turned around in these 14 years so much so that I am more engaged with my local community, more committed to work, more healthy and well, and more open to life than I ever was before meeting Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine, and I have seen so many (100’s and 100s) whose lives have also changed remarkably so. Serge never tells us what to do, or forces us to change anything, or demands we give money, or even expects us to turn up at any events – everything is completely up to us.

  39. The problem with the word cult is that it is a term used to subjugate the right of minority religions to hold a different viewpoint to that considered by the status quo. In a country where true freedom of religion was celebrated, such a term would not exist, or if it did, it would not be used as a weapon of ridicule, but rather as it was originally intended, as a term used by sociologists to simply distinguish one form of religion from another, and nothing more.

  40. It’s a sad reflection of the level of disregard we allow in society that there has even been a comparison made that is given credence, between this ashram cult and Universal Medicine. It is clear to anyone who pays any attention to what is going on that Universal Medicine is offering wellbeing in the form of talks, workshops and healing modalities, what is on offer is a normal way of life that we seem to have disconnected from. It is different, I would say that, but different in a way that is needed from the struggle that so many people now find they live their lives in.

  41. An inspiring blog Jacqueline – I love the facts you bring from your own personal experience of having lived in a cult for many years and the contrasts you share of your own experience of Universal Medicine and its events. A vast difference between the two and I can certainly attest to the truth about Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine from my own personal experience over the past few years.

  42. Jacqueline it is clear your involvement with a cult when you were younger gives you the authority and power to know that Universal Medicine is the exact opposite of a cult – which it most definitely is by all counts. What is beautiful here to note is the steps you took to truly heal your life by attending Universal Medicine presentations that supported you to commit to your life and to make loving choices that turned your life around in amazing ways.

  43. Having not had much insight into cults it is great to read this blog and become aware of some of the things that become to norm, despite how crazy they appear from the outside. Normally what I have heard has been the sensational media view, with drugs, sex or strange rituals. What really struck me in this blog was the mundane, everyday things that were so distorted. The lack of self-care, poor diets, the indulging in issues and lack of purpose or commitment in life were quite shocking.

  44. Thank you Jacqueline for showing the stark difference between Universal Medicine and the cult you were involved in. The word cult has such a stigma attached to it I am amazed that people straight away believe that when an organisation is called a cult they just seem to believe it with no investigation as to whether it is true or not. Just in the freedom to come and go, to accept or not accept what Universal Medicine presents is in itself totally opposite to the way a cult operates.

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