Erin Prophet, MPH, Ph.D., is an author and scholar who studies religious experience and narratives of self-improvement and transcendence. She is a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Florida where she teaches about cults and new religious movements, nature and the environment, and spirituality and health. In this conversation, we explore the nature of belief, charismatic authority, reincarnation, religious studies and most importantly, how her unique childhood and development influences her studies of religion and health. Erin’s parents were the leaders of a new religious group whose practices were based in esoteric religious practices. The members of the Church Universal and Triumphant would eventually take the prophecy of a nuclear strike that Erin’s mother, Elizabeth Clarie Prophet, divinized from “the masters” – those mystical soul’s and leaders who, it was believed, had something to say about the way that they were living their lives.