“He’d be better to take arsenic, or go and get some rat poison or something, take a bottle of it.”
Suicide and Bruce Hales, leader of the Exclusive Brethren, or Plymouth Brethren Christian Church.
The delusion of men who pronounce themselves as direct conduits from God - and who meter out their OWN interpretations of divine justice - is as wicked and delusional as anything I have ever heard.
The Brethren do it. And so do others like the Scientologists. They basically say - if you don't believe in me, then you are better off in complete exile from me and your families. Or dead! And if you dare say 'Hang on! - that's not right " then you are branded as an evil 'opposer'. There is no right of reply with these people.
The result is that you have congregations of people who then live in fear of the wrath - not of their God- but of their leader. God doesn't tear families apart and make pronouncements on a person's fate. These tin Gods do. The Brethren basically say - if you have trouble being a fully compliant member of our congregation -then you are better off dead. (This was stated to me in those exact words when I left - a confused upset young man.) Hales has said - in essence that if you do not comply - then the only way out of it, is for you to die! Or as they put it- for God to 'take you'.
It's not God who is doing the 'taking' here - it's the likes of Hales. He is the man making the pronouncements. For any man to promote the concept that he is God's actual anointed deputy is plain nuts. It's not God's mind at play here - but a mere man's! Show me the transaction- the directive - the charter from God to Bruce Hales and I will admit I am wrong. God didn't tell Hales he was to be his main representative on earth. John Hales did! But I digress.
And so we see the most recent take on this reoccurring problem of confusion and non-compliance - particularly among young people. Pushed around by numerous Brethren heavies - they get confused. I know all about it. I was pushed around by the Brethren until I could take it no more. They had stuffed with my life and my future to the point of my absolute despair. They had sneered- they had made all my decisions - that had told me what to do and it didn't work out. So they sneered some more. And when they had me on the ropes - a broken young man in his teens - they still threatened. I wanted to leave - to give myself some sort of chance in life. I couldn't get the education that I would have liked because it had been banned by a pig farmer who hated people who went to University. Because I presume he didn't. They told you who to work for. They controlled every aspect of your life. You had no say in your own life. Not bullshit! A fact in my case and hundreds of others.
And so we see this young man who Hales is at pains to point out is a grown man. At 25 - he is. But Brethren kids are not that smart at 25 either. Because they have been deprived of development normality and threatened with the loss of everything they hold dear all their lives, they are retarded in some way - unaware of the realities and normalities of life. Deprived of further education and forced to work only for Brethren -and having most important decisions made for them (forced on them) they are not like normal 25 year olds. So this young chap is confused and sick of being bullied and cajoled, I presume, by the Brethren. I've seen it before. And the man charged with the care of this young man says to Hales in the meeting where he is holding 'court' because that is what it is - 'How do I help him? He's confused - he doesn't want to come to 'church' anymore - what do we do Oh great oracle of all that is good and true.'
And Hales barks a few questions on this fellow's life status and then embarks on a Taylor-esque tirade that harks back to the madness of the late 60's. He decides that this young man who has had contact with someone outside - should perhaps just take rat poison or cyanide. Having gotten pretty deep into the subject of what works best and what would do the job more effectively- he then has a few seconds of clarity where he says - he cannot advocate suicide of course- but goes onto discuss the concept further anyway.
This is crazy on all sorts of levels. Firstly- the Hales themselves have not been immune to the sort of personal desperation where someone is so confused- so upset - so despairing, that they take their own life. This alone should temper his wild foray into such a subject - even jokingly. Secondly, it ISN'T a joke. Thirdly - it is not something that a genuine, caring, thinking man of any religion - would or should say. The Pope for example - would never say such a thing. It is therefore a stupid- cruel- unconscionable thing to say. I mean- how did this young man's family feel while Hales discussed the potential killing of their son with rat poison or cyanide? How desperate did this make them feel? How cruel was the concept to them? Hales doesn't care about that of course- it's not his family. God knows heaps of people have suicided both in the church and even some who left it who could no reconcile their lives. I know a couple myself. But Hales treats them with total disdain.
OK - so let's examine Hales for his obvious stupidity. And Taylor in the same context as he displayed exactly the same traits as Hales displays now. Including his rudeness to the Brethren. BDH and JTJnr. were more similar than you might think. They both have this arrogance - this right - that they can speak to people however they like. THEY CAN'T! It's bloody rude at best - and unforgivable for anyone in that position to do - at worst.
Look at Taylor. In his last years he called people in the church - while IN CHURCH or the assembly as they call it- 'Bums', 'stinking bums', 'Bastards', and 'Sons of Bitches'. He not only called some brother's wives 'Bitches' but 'Mad'. How dare a man in his position say any of these things to people! If you called a man in the world a Son of a Bitch he would probably punch you on the nose. And rightly so. But Taylor called people's mothers bitches - in a place of worship and gets away with it. In fact they sat there and laughed.
Hales similarly talks to people very rudely. There's no respect. There's no decency or contrition. The Hales can speak exactly how they like to people. His father and uncle did it too - before him. Hales does not concede this is true however. He's now promoting a stream of thought - which is probably already a directive that his father was incapable of sin. Which is plain silly because every man is capable of sin. Just because you say something doesn't make it so.
But Hales is also the authority on what makes a Christian. Which is more arrogance! I keep saying that 44,000 out of 5 billion is not a number that God is happy with. Or would be happy with. According to censuses, there are 2.2 billion Christians in the World. According to Hales - there are not real Christians- but just them- the PBCC. He says that (so called) "Christianity is the light they (evil people in the world) have got and we leave it to them." But if you leave the Brethren - 'you can never claim to be a Christian'. Which is similarly ludicrous! And offensive. And patently wrong. And as usual - bloody arrogant. But they then bugger their own argument by saying in all manner of worldly mediums that they are just a 'normal' Christian church! Not you're not Mister Hales- you just said the opposite in your ministry!
Which is why Hales advocates discussion on killing yourself if you intend to leave or talk to anyone outside their church.
Now I know how Hales would take this line of thought if he read it. He would do what they all do and wave his hand dismissively and say something along the mines of - that's what you would expect a Godless opposer to say. No it's not Mister Hales. It's what you would expect a reasonable, decent person to say. And Hales sadly- with his tenure as Man of God - is adding more weight to the theory, that to be in his position you need to rude, arrogant, a bully and probably quite mad to fill the role effectively.
I know this - that being in this 'evil world' that they shun - I have never- been treated with complete disrespect, had my family called vile names, and been made to feel as worthless as the Brethren are told they are from time to time. I only got that in the Brethren.
I feel for this young man. I was him once. And I too was treated appallingly by their heavies and their men of God. And my enduring respect and decency has now turned, many years later, into complete astonishment that anyone would be expected to put up with their nasty, bullying tactics and cruel predictions, their evil threats and their prophecies of death and destruction. Hales has no right - NO RIGHT - to discuss anyone's extermination because they don't conform to his model of acquiescence.
I wonder if any of these so called Brethren priests told this confused and bewildered young man that Hales had floated the concept of him killing himself with rat poison or cyanide? I daresay - if he had done it- they would say it was the devil that made him do it. Sadly - the devil comes in more forms than a myth with horns in a hot place.
It also takes the form of a delusional fat man with his hand in the till.