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HBO Series Explores Bizarre Tale of 'Mother God,' Cult Leader Found Wrapped in Christmas Lights After Death

Amy Carlson, leader of the Love Has Won cult, died of alcohol abuse, anorexia, and colloidal silver ingestion

<p>HBO/ YouTube</p> Amy Carlson

HBO/ YouTube

Amy Carlson

Amy Carlson claimed to have been reincarnated as Marilyn Monroe and Joan of Arc, and also said that Robin Williams advised her from the Great Beyond.

The Colorado-based guru also said she was 19 billion years old and had given birth to the Universe as “Mother God,” and could cure any disease, including cancer.

These lofty promises, coupled with her charisma, won her a healthy online following and up to 20 live-in acolytes who became members of the group, Love Has Won.

Carlson’s stated mission was to help the world ascend to a higher dimension, free its inhabitants from the purported “cabal” imprisoning them,  and “reconnect with PRIME SOURCE CREATOR, ME!” she wrote in her now-defunct website, lovehaswon.org.

While Carlson maintained that she was saving the world through Love Has Won, others have labeled it a pernicious cult — including cult expert Rick Alan Ross, who spoke about the group on an appearance on Dr. Phil in 2021.

Carlson died in 2021 at age 45, of alcohol abuse, anorexia and chronic colloidal silver ingestion. Her mummified body was found covered with a sleeping bag and wrapped in Christmas lights, with glitter covering the eye sockets.

<p>Dr. Phil/ YouTube</p> Amy Carlson

Dr. Phil/ YouTube

Amy Carlson

Some say Love Has Won died with her. Others say the group continues on.

The new HBO docuseries, Love Has Won: The Cult of Mother God, which premiered earlier this month and is streaming now on Max, has sparked renewed interest in Carlson and the web of chaos, dysfunction and manipulation she created.

Here’s what to know:

McDonald's Manager Discovers New Age

Born in Kansas on Nov. 30, 1975, Carlson “didn't show any signs of acting different” as a small child, one of her sisters said in a 2021 episode of Dr. Phil. 

Carlson said her parents’ 1984 divorce was particularly upsetting to her, and that she had a turbulent relationship with her stepmother.

By the time she was in her early twenties, Carlson had been married three times and had three children with three different fathers, her family said in the episode.

Related: 'They're Brushing It Under the Rug,' Says Mom of Sect Leader Found Mummified and Wrapped in Christmas Lights

Her fascination with all things New Age began in the early 2000s, said her family, who saw bizarre changes in Carlson.  “She started calling herself Mother God and she believed that she was God,” one of her sisters said on Dr. Phil.

A Leader Called 'Mom'

In about 2007, Carlson met a man online named Amerith WhiteEagle, who convinced her that she had otherworldly powers, according to reporting by The Denver Post. Choosing to leave everything behind in the world, from her children to her job as a McDonald’s manager, she moved with him to Colorado where they started a group called the Galactic Federation of Light, the outlet reports.

Eventually, Carlson left WhiteEagle and went off on her own, renaming the group Love Has Won.

She believed her mission was to save the world, her sister said on Dr. Phil.

Her followers were drawn to Love Has Won and its leader they called “Mom” because of her spiritual teachings and because of her self-professed healing powers.

Hawking Dubious Supplements Online

Carlson used the internet to promote Love Has Won and to peddle dubious health products and supplements through daily livestreams, videos, posts and blogs.

Her online presence grew on Facebook and YouTube, where her videos were watched more than 1.5 million times, according to Vanity Fair.

She made money selling questionable supplements online, including colloidal silver, which Carlson herself took — and which an autopsy said was a factor in her death.

Alcohol, Drugs and Abuse

Many videos show Carlson and her followers telling the world how happy they were.

But other members later claimed that Carlson abused and at times, sexually exploited her dutiful followers.

Often high on drugs or drunk, Carlson hurled curses and insults at them, her followers have said.

She forced some of her followers to have sex with her, physically abused them and to wait on her non-stop, others claimed.

Her family alleged on Dr. Phil that Carlson was running a scam, something Carlson herself denied.

Body Found Wrapped in Christmas Lights

In April 2021, Saguache County sheriff’s deputies were shocked when they found a mummified body in a home in Crestone, Colo., draped with Christmas lights and a sleeping bag. The eyes of the corpse were missing. But smudged on the eye sockets was a glittery powder.

Related: Mummified Body of Leader of the 'Love Has Won' Cult Found Covered in Christmas Lights, 7 Followers Arrested

"I used to say I've seen it all," Saguache County Sheriff Dan Warwick told Dateline NBC in a 2021 broadcast. "I don't say that anymore."

The corpse belonged to Carlson, whose followers said had ascended to the next dimension.

When Carlson's health declined and she wanted medical help, her followers, who feared what could happen to her in what they thought of as the "3D" world, refused, Vanity Fair reported.

"Amy created a palace of lies that she could not escape from,” the docuseries' director Hannah Olson told Vanity Fair.

Love Has Won: The Cult of Mother God, a three-part docuseries, ran on successive Mondays on HBO and is streaming now on Max.

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