Joaquin Phoenix, along with his brother River, were raised in the Children of God cult, led by David Berg.
Phoenix left the group later in life, denouncing their unorthodox belief system and becoming an atheist.
“I certainly was raised with a sense of spirituality,” he has said. “But we didn’t follow rules in terms of belief, religion or anything. It was left up to each of us to come to terms with our own understanding of fundamental questions. I just grabbed the best aspects of all religions.”
As far as an afterlife? Phoenix isn’t a believer.
“There’s just nothing. We’re gone. If I do have a soul, I don’t think it’s interpreting life, feelings or experience. My brain is what’s making sense of experience and feelings for me. So when that fucker’s cut off, how can I possibly understand or feel anything?”