A white woman and white man sit in chairs with their arms raised and vapid smiles on their faces in 'Escaping Twin Flames.'

Netflix Doc Reveals How a Modern Cult Preys on People Through Social Media

How does a cult gather new members in the modern world? Netflix’s Escaping Twin Flames shows how the Twin Flames Universe preys on people through social media.

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The more we learn about the Twin Flames Universe (TFU) cult, the worse leaders Jeff and Shaleia Ayan look. The couple has made copious amounts of money by “teaching” others about finding their “twin flame,” an extreme version of a soulmate. After members finish the expensive classes, they are encouraged to become coaches, which also costs money. The Ayans even charge their students money for cooking classes to become closer to god.

On Escaping Twin Flames, former members claim they went to TFU to heal themselves and find their dream lover. However, after spending copious amounts of money, they found themselves entrenched in an abusive cult. Video clips on the docuseries from TFU’s online courses are disturbing. Jeff Ayan suggests whitewashed Jesus art is based on him, and he jokes about forcing his wife to be intimate with him. Shaleia Ayan supports everything her husband does while doubling down on teaching misogynistic ideas of what relationships should be. It shouldn’t be surprising that these people would push toxic recruitment behavior from their members, but it’s still a bit of a shock.

They know how to prey through social media

For the TFU cult to keep growing and continue funneling money to the Ayans, new members would need to sign up. Escaping Twin Flames shows a clip where Jeff Ayan tells members to go on social media and join groups that are full of suffering people. He says to join PTSD groups, fibromyalgia groups, and things like that where people are looking to heal. Then he says to start dropping information about this magical online cure. He claims people will pay whatever he wants them to for him to heal them.

The Ayans wanted new folks to enlist in their TFU courses, or their Mind Alignment Process therapy courses. Once again, I feel the need to say they have no background or certification in counseling or therapy, yet they put up a façade that they are qualified to coach people. The Mind Alignment Process (MAP) is supposed to help people work through their trauma, yet former members claim their MAP experiences only made them worse. One former member said they told her that her boyfriend’s mental illness issues were her fault.

The Ayans are pushing people to dangle the “magic cure” in front of others just to make a dollar. I can see how people would be tricked into believing the lies posted on the pristine websites, especially when people in their trusted social media groups are backing up the claims. Some social media groups share some pretty deep stuff and can be free places to vent and try to get help. For those who don’t have access to therapy, this may be their only outlet. It’s disgusting to mislead them to make money on their suffering and loneliness.

(featured image: Netflix)

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D.R. Medlen
D.R. Medlen (she/her) is a pop culture staff writer at The Mary Sue. After finishing her BA in History, she finally pursued her lifelong dream of being a full-time writer in 2019. She expertly fangirls over Marvel, Star Wars, and historical fantasy novels (the spicier the better). When she's not writing or reading, she lives that hobbit-core life in California with her spouse, offspring, and animal familiars.