A report by the agency, Miviludes, released Wednesday, notes that the picturesque village near Carcassonne should be monitored closely in the days prior to December 21, 2012, when many believe the world will end, according to an ancient Mayan prophecy .
Miviludes was created in 2002 to control the activity of sects, after a law passed last year criminalize fraud or abuse of vulnerable people through pressure techniques as those used in religious rites.
Surrounded by legends for years, Bugarach and rock, the peak Bugarach have attracted many visitors to the New Age movement in recent months, driving up property prices but also the threat of financial scams and psychological manipulations, said Miviludes in his report.
“I think we have to be careful. We should not become paranoid, but seeing what happened in Waco, United States, we know that this kind of thinking can influence vulnerable people,” said council president, Georges Fenech, a Reuters.
Waco, Texas, made headlines in 1993 when federal agents raided the headquarters of “Davidian movement” led by David Koresh, beginning a siege that lasted 50 days. The building was on fire when the troops finally tried to enter, leaving 80 dead.
Bugarach, with a population of just 200 inhabitants, has always been considered magical, partly because of what locals defined as a “mountain upside down”, where layers of rock from the top are older than the base.
The Internet is an infinite number of myths about the place: the mountain is surrounded by a magnetic force, which is the site of a hidden alien base until it contains an underground access to another world.
Now, many see the village as the last refuge from the proximity of the “End of the World.” Alerted to the arrival of visitors by Mayor Bugarach, Fenech went to the area and found six settlements in the surroundings created by members of the Ramtha School of Enlightenment.
Other “gurus” and messianic groups have organized conferences payment in hotels in the region, according to Fenech. “This is big business,” he told Reuters.
Founded by J.Z. Knight, the school says the lessons follow mystic Ramtha, Lemurian warrior who fought against the residents of the mythical Atlantis 35,000 years ago and claimed to discover the secret of immortality.
The report says his goal is not to stigmatize the movement, but to inform the public about “groups or individuals whose speech doctrine or follow the theory of the ‘end of the world’.”