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Growing Up Moonie

Society-and-culture • Religion-and-spirituality

Hideo Higashibaba left the cult he was born into when he was 22 years old. The Unification Church, also known as the Moonies, was founded in Korea by a man named Sun Myung Moon who proclaimed he was the Second Coming of Christ. In Growing Up Moonie, Hideo asks people he grew up with what theirRead more

Popular episodes

Episode 7: Hideo

Mar 4 • 28:51

In this final episode Hideo shares his reasons for leaving the Unification and all he lost—and gained—when he left....

Episode 6: Katie

Mar 4 • 25:30

Katie and Hideo talk about Katie’s recent marriage to another second generation, the struggle to live the values of the church, and the innate need for belonging....

Episode 5: Ritual in the Unification Church

Mar 4 • 15:27

In the textbook definition of a cult, a group must have three things: a charismatic leader, insider/outsider identity, and shared ritual. In this episode, Hideo shares some of the rituals of the Moonies and what he had to leave behind....

Episode 4: Teruko

Mar 4 • 28:37

In the early days of the Moonies, members all lived together in centers across the country and world. But when the second generation were born many families decided to move out and try something new: being totally separate from and yet a part of society. That’s what the second generation had to juggle, all the time and every day. Hideo and Teruko talk about the struggle to...

Episode 3: The Mythology of Reverend Sun Myung Moon

Mar 4 • 18:27

Sun Myung Moon was born the son of poor farmers in present-day North Korea and by the time he died ruled a global cult and was a billionaire. Hideo digs into some of  the stories and legends surrounding the charismatic leader of the Moonies....

Episode 2: Jenn

Mar 4 • 25:57

Hideo and Jenn grew up going to church, Sunday school, and church camp together, but they had wildly different home lives. Hideo talks with Jenn about the pressures, guilt, and strict rules that guarded the childhoods of second generation Moonies....

Episode 1: Have You Heard of the Moonies?

Mar 4 • 10:17

When Hideo Higashibaba left the Moonies he had no idea how he was going to survive without them. He wondered if other kids born into the church had as much trouble adjusting to adulthood, even if they didn’t leave. In this first episode Hideo reflects on his own strange origins and the history of the Moonies....

Growing Up Moonie Trailer

Feb 20 • 02:24

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