- Jeff and Shaleia Divine are still running the Twin Flames Universe.
- Ex-members and documentarians allege the organization relies on coercion and exploitation.
The Twin Flames Universe, a controversial organization founded by Jeff and Shaleia Divine, is still active and ready to accept new members, despite two damning docuseries that came out this fall.
The first, Desperately Seeking Soulmate: Escaping Twin Flames Universe, dropped on Prime Video on Oct. 6. “From encouraging rabid pursuit of exes, to attempting to influence members’ gender identities, each episode uncovers unimaginable realities behind the popular online community,” Prime Video says.
The second, Escaping Twin Flames, hit Netflix on Nov. 8 and “reveals the horrifying stories of coercion and exploitation surrounding Twin Flames Universe … and also documents the active efforts of family members to rescue their loved ones from Jeff and Shaleia’s web,” as Netflix explains.
Here’s what to know about the Twin Flames Universe and the efforts to take it down.
The Twin Flames Universe is still around.
Jeff and Shaleia are still running the Twin Flames Universe — an organization purporting to help members find a romantic “twin flame union” through courses and coaching — from their home in Michigan, according to People.
The Twin Flames Universe website still has workshops, meditations, and classes for sale, plus an “Everything Package” going for $8,888.
And though the Twin Flames Universe still has 70,000 followers on Facebook, people like Keely — who was one half of the first successful “twin flame union” — have left the organization and are speaking out about its methods.
“What Jeff and Shaleia do has nothing to do with love. It’s control,” she says in Netflix’s Escaping Twin Flames, per People. “When someone tries to control you, it’s not love. When someone abuses you, when someone calls you names, it’s not love.”
Jeff and Shaleia responded to the Twin Flames backlash.
In a statement posted to the Twin Flames Universe website and re-posted to Jeff’s Instagram page, the Twin Flames Universe founders addressed “media coverage and recent productions” about the organization.
“We take seriously recent allegations implying we wield inappropriate control over our community members,” they wrote, in part. “We are saddened that so much effort has gone into taking swipes at an organization and community founded on love and mutual respect. The allegations levied against Twin Flames Universe not only distort our true aims, methods, and curriculums but also misrepresent the autonomy of our community members, who are free to engage with our resources as they see fit.”
Documentarians are hoping to help Twin Flames members escape.
Escaping Twin Flames filmmakers Cecilia Peck and Inbal B. Lessner are hoping their work will “help prevent more people from joining this and other high control groups” and “see the former members of Twin Flames Universe as having survived intensive, systematic coercive control,” they told People.
“The main motivation we all shared was to bring the ongoing abuse to a stop and to help the current members leave and recover,” Peck and Lessner explained.
But Desperately Seeking Soulmate filmmaker Marina Zenovich told Variety that “taking a group like this down is really hard” because of the secrecy of such groups’ operations. “But who knows? Maybe this will,” Zenovich added. “Unless I’m mistaken, there are no laws that can help cult survivors. I think that’s really the next step with something like this. Instead of shining a light on all these different groups, it’s about lawmakers writing a bill that protects people (involved in cults).”