Church of the Last Testament

Vissarion cult


Also known as: Community of Unified Faith.

Cult history: The founder and head of the Church of the Last Testament and its supreme spiritual person is Sergei Anatolevich Torop, born 1961, former employee of the police of Minusinsk city, Krasnoyarski territory, widely known under the cult name of Vissarion. S. Torop asserts that in January 1991 he was baptized by the heavenly Father, by which he received a new name - Vissarion, and a "blessing" for the creation of a common unified faith, which presents itself as the incarnation of all existing religion.

He organized the cult in approximately August 1991. Believing in his teachings, several thousand people sold their apartments in Moscow, Saint Petersburg and other cities, delivered considerable sums of cash to the organization and moved to the Krasnoyarski territory. In June 1994 they joined the "Community of Unified Faith," and in 1995 they registered as the "Church of the Last Testament."

In the latter half of 1994 an action committee of Vissarion's followers appeared with a proposal to create an "experimental ecological settlement" in Kuraginski district, Krasnoyarski territory. For construction of the settlement the territory administration selected 250 hectares of wooded reserves. The project plan is calculated at the current time is for settlement of 120 families.

According to cultists' assertions, their community adheres to a code of "ethical and philosophical principles", strict vegetarianism, and they keep a daily diet which includes only products of vegetable origin. In reality they practice an "aggressive" diet, during which pregnant women and children are deprived of necessary nutritional substances, and nursing mothers are even prohibited from giving their children natural milk. According to doctors' testimony, there have been some cases of emaciation in the fanatical adherents of Vissarion. Childbirth is practiced in water (in ordinary barrels), the children are not allowed to be vaccinated, they have to run for medications in case they get sick. Cult founder S. Torop confirmed the fact of suicides among his adherents as a nevertheless completely acceptable manner, from his point of view, of departing this life. In expert opinion, with respect to the insolvency of the Vissarion project to form a town of the chosen, and to the impossibility of members of the cult to return to their former residences, it's possible a mass suicide could occur. They've also created some "commandments" of Vissarion ("Do not condemn the deceased") which justify suicide as a precondition to such an outcome.

One of the directions of activity considered most important in the cult is the publication and distribution of cult literature, and video and audio cassettes with lectures by Vissarion, by which means new conversion of new adepts is accomplished.

According the the information of leaders of the "church," they have nearly 50,000 followers in 83 population points in the RF and abroad. The real number of adepts is nearly 10,000 people, half of which reside in the Krasnoyarski territory, and the others are engaged in proselytism in many cities in Russia.

Doctrine: Vissarion composed his "Last testament" to accomplish the "Great Holy Reunion" of all existing religions. The actual doctrine of Vissarion is a blend of cosmology, Christianity and yoga. In putting Christianity in the leading role, he actually perverts it.

Vissarion advances five basic postulates. The creator of the material universe (Absolute) in which there is neither good nor bad. The creator of the human soul - Heavenly Father - creator of good, source of the Spirit of Life, which joins with the energy of Heart of Mother-Earth, to generate the Son of God. Hell also exists, and paradise. From Hinduism, teachings are taken about the migration of souls. Souls develop spiritually in fulfilling their predestination, being in paradise. The inability to spiritually develop leads to hell. A person is incarnated on earth for ten times and each time gets the chance to spiritually develop. There's an evil virus, which lives only on Earth and only among people. That's what the devil has, too. The devil generates the sinful intentions in people. People's thoughts are material, they don't die anywhere, and evil thoughts generate evil spirits.

Vissarion forbids going to other churches, asserting that the true Revelation is supported only in his teachings. In recent times, cult members have been actively trying to penetrate into government structures.