The cult Heaven's Gate began in the early 1970s when Marshall Applewhite was recovering from a heart attack during which he claimed to have had a near-death experience. He came to believe that he and his nurse, Bonnie Nettles, were "the Two", that is, the two witnesses spoken of in Book of Revelation 11:3 in the Bible. After a brief and unsuccessful attempt to run an inspirational bookstore, they began traveling around the country giving talks about their belief system. As with some other New Age faiths they combined Christian doctrine (particularly the ideas of salvation and apocalypse) with the concept of evolutionary advancement and elements of science fiction, particularly travel to other worlds and dimensions. Applewhite and Nettles used a variety of aliases over the years, notably "Bo and Peep" and "Do and Ti". The group also had a variety of names. Before the name Heaven’s Gate was used and stuck, it was known as Human Individual Metamorphosis. At the time Vallée studied the group, it was called HIM (Human Individual Metamorphosis). The group re-invented and re-named itself several times and had a variety of recruitment methods. Marshall himself believed he was directly related to Jesus, meaning he was an "Evolutionary Kingdom Level Above Human".
Heaven's Gate members believed that the planet Earth was about to be recycled (wiped clean, renewed, refurbished and rejuvenated), and that the only chance to survive was to leave it immediately. While the group was formally against suicide, they defined "suicide" in their own context to mean "to turn against the Next Level when it is being offered", and believed that their "human" bodies were only vessels meant to help them on their journey.
LAKE R▲DIO - Planet Earth About to Be Recycled - 2010