This article may need to be rewritten to comply with Wikipedia's quality standards. (July 2021)
|Born||5 December 1922|
|Died||24 October 2016 (aged 93)|
|Occupation||artist, author, esotericist|
|Known for||Views on the second coming|
He asserted that the second coming, prophesied by many religions, would come in the form of Maitreya, the World Teacher. Maitreya is the name Buddhists use for the future Buddha, but Creme claimed that Maitreya is the teacher that all religions point towards and hope for. Other names for him, according to Creme, are the Christ, the Imam Mahdi, Krishna, and the Messiah. Creme claimed Maitreya is the "Avatar for the Aquarian Age", is omniscient and omnipresent, and has lived in London since 19 July 1977.
At the age of thirteen Creme began painting, inspired by the works of Rembrandt. In order to become a painter, he left school at sixteen. At the age of fourteen, Creme said, he became interested in the occult, when he read With Mystics and Magicians in Tibet by Alexandra David-Neel. From 1957 to 1959 Creme was the Vice-President of the Aetherius Society, a UFO religion based largely on Theosophy. In 1958 he met George Adamski and Creme said he could personally vouch for the authenticity of Adamski's UFO contacts. Creme became a follower of the Theosophist Alice Bailey and her teachings on Maitreya.
Creme said that he was first contacted telepathically by his Master in January 1959, when Creme was asked to make tape recordings of his messages. Creme first began to speak publicly of his mission on 30 May 1975, at the Friends Meeting House on Euston Road in London, England. His central message announced the emergence of a group of enlightened spiritual teachers who could guide humanity forward into the new Aquarian Age of peace and brotherhood based on the principles of love and sharing. At the head of this group would be a great Avatar, Maitreya, the World Teacher, expected by all the major religions as their "Awaited One": the Christ to the Christians, the Imam Mahdi to the Muslims, the Messiah for Jews, and the 5th Buddha (Maitreya) for Buddhists.
In the spring of 1982 Creme placed advertisements in newspapers around the world saying, "The Christ is now here." According to Creme, the Christ, whom he also called Maitreya, would announce his existence on worldwide television broadcasts. Creme stated in these newspaper advertisements that the Second Coming of Christ would occur on Monday 21 June 1982 (the summer solstice in the Northern hemisphere). On 14 May 1982 Creme held a press conference in Los Angeles. More than 90 reporters attended and heard Creme announce that Maitreya was living within the Asian community in the Brick Lane area of London. Creme presented the reporters with a challenge: if the media made a serious attempt to seek Maitreya in London, he would reveal himself to them. Afterwards, Creme wrote, "It was hoped that the media would respond to my information at a level which would allow Him to come forward to them. This hope, however, was not fulfilled. While the media did show an interest in the reappearance story, it did not go so far as to actually get involved in searching for Maitreya."
After 1982, Creme made a number of additional predictions and announcements about the imminent appearance of Maitreya, based on his claims of receiving telepathic messages from a Master of Wisdom. Creme said that in January 1986, Maitreya contacted media representatives at the highest level in Britain who agreed to make an announcement. Under pressure from high religious and government officials, however, this statement was withheld.
Creme wrote, "On 26 February 1987 Maitreya gave an interview to the major American television company, Cable News Network (CNN). He was interviewed under His ordinary, everyday name, and did not call Himself the Christ. He did say, however, that, among other names, He was known as Maitreya. A group of His closest associates journeyed to the United States to arrange further interviews[...]" The CNN interview was made available for possible showing in 26 of a promised 29 countries in Europe, Scandinavia, North Africa and the Middle East, but was not broadcast in the United States. The CNN office in Atlanta explained that they could not see a framework in which to present the interview.
In 1997 Creme made similar announcements that there would be imminent global TV broadcasts from Christ/Maitreya, though with far less media interest. Creme stated that when the "Day of Declaration" occurred "The Christ will come on the world's television channels, linked together by satellite. All those with access to television will see ... [his face]. He will establish a telepathic rapport with all humanity simultaneously. While the Christ is speaking... [everyone will feel far more love than they've ever felt before, that massive outpouring of love will cause] hundreds of thousands of 'miracle' cures [to] take place simultaneously."
On 14 January 2010 Creme announced that Maitreya had given his first interview on American television. Soon afterwards several people in the United States, working from Creme's predictions, concluded that the British-American economist and author Raj Patel was Maitreya. After newspaper articles spread this story around the world Creme responded that Raj Patel was not the coming World Teacher in an article in The Guardian under the headline "Raj Patel is Not Maitreya, But the World Teacher is Here -- and Needed."
Creme, who claimed that the time was now very near for Maitreya's emergence, apparently did not receive any money for his work or royalties from his 14 books, and for more than 30 years he gave lectures around the world by invitation only. A worldwide network of volunteers worked with Creme to give his views to the public.
Creme died in October 2016 at the age of 93.
During an interview in 2006 Creme confirmed his views on the importance of crop circles: "The UFOs have an enormous part to play in the security of this planet at the ecological level. [The crop circles are part of] a new science that will give us energy directly from the sun. Oil will become a thing of the past. No one will be able to sell energy in the future."
Creme gave his explanation as to how crop circles are made by UFOs in his magazine: "The crop circles are there to draw attention to the fact that the Space Brothers are there. They are amazing constructions. They are made in seconds by the 'ships' of the Space Brothers. They are complex and beautiful constructions which cannot be made in any other way. They appear all over the world, but the majority are in the South of England. Why? Because Maitreya is in London."
Sceptics ridiculed the story presented by Benjamin Creme and took issue with the possibility that his predictions might have come true. Some others have treated Creme's story with interest and are waiting to see what happens.
Between 1989 and 1991 Creme's magazine Share International published a series of forecasts given to two journalists[who?] by an associate of Maitreya, which the magazine claimed had come about with uncanny accuracy. These forecasts were purported to have included the Fall of the Berlin Wall, the ending of Communist rule in the Soviet Union, the release of Nelson Mandela and the ending of Apartheid in South Africa, the release of Terry Waite, the resignation of Margaret Thatcher, and many more.