People always seem to end up telling me “You know, it’s a good thing you got out when you did.” Unfortunately this is very true, and it seems to have created potentially dangerous situations for many people. Rumours of domestic violence, extreme polygamy leading to wonders of how cruelly some young girls might be being treated. Or the stress that the followers endure, leading to heavy psychological issues. Or maybe this is just what these types of sects become over the span of five decades.
“The joy is gone, Brandon. There’s no more joy. You remember what it used to be like. There was fellowship, there was laughter, music. But then the wall went up and everything started to go downhill. People are working seven days a week now. There’s no day of rest anymore.
I think that’s what happened Brandon. You’re father started to wake up. He probably saw everything for what it was, and just couldn’t take it. You know how your father was, He was more diligent than anyone. Not one person here can say anything negative about your father.” –An Ex-member.
Contemplating this idea has left me convinced that this would rather be a good scenario; considering other plausible scenarios. But in my father’s case, there’s just too much information missing from this puzzle. Either way, it’s still a dangerous situation.
The evolution of small sects seem to have few outcomes. The sect can come to an end by dissipation, or by an act of extreme consequence. This is the balancing act that happens between the love of illusion against being consumed by it. Jim Jones, his Kool-Aid, Waco and the military tanks, are examples of sects that we don’t really hear about until the extremeness has reached its apex. I don’t any expert could predict when our how this would happen with any sect. Reflecting on my personal experience, I can’t seem to break the chaos that occurs in them.
What my friend said was right, about the House of Yahweh being a joyful and pleasant place. In the beginning, there was excitement for this. Sure it was a little odd in many ways, but at that time there was actually cohesion. It eventually faded, and just started to get more extreme shortly before I left.
What I saw alone allowed me to realize how individuals can be gradually swayed over time, into doing things that at the beginning, they wouldn’t think twice about doing those things. One time when I was younger, about the age of 8 or 9 maybe, I asked my father “Dad, what if they started hurting people, and they said we have to hurt ourselves. Would you follow them?” “No, I wouldn’t.” He said.
The rumors that I’ve heard about this place. What things have become, and how the changes that were being made when I left, played significant results in what’s happened now. Imagine now, the intensity; the evolution, of their practices that I spoke of earlier. What could have possibly become of those things now. Of course without actual proof, there’s no way of knowing.
They do a good job of hiding behind their biggest project; The Peaceful Solution. A claim to world peace through their workshops. If that was true, how come more than 2/3s of the sect had left? Of course we were always taught that three out of every four would turn away, but that’s just a sophisticated way of saying “Maybe only 25 percent of you will believe this story.” And the ones who did decide to leave, were simply told they weren’t called or chosen, so essentially, they didn’t even count in that equation. This adds to the alienation of the ex-members. Not just from the group, but from amongst themselves. They feel like they are alone, and that their own situation has the right to separate themselves from every other x-member. I’m not saying this is How it is, but rather how it can be for some. Only because it was, in part, this way for me.
The alienation works as an advantage to the sect as well, because by means of fear, they have already controlled the actions of its soon to be ex-followers. It’s hard not to see it as strategic insurance policy. If the ex-members were to organize in such a fashion, it might be just enough to result in a safe dissipation of the group. Of course this sort of discussion from the House of Yahweh would be seen as a pure attack. We were told that Yahweh punishes those the most that speak against Yisrayl and his teachings. He is believed to be “The one who rules as Yahweh.” So they’re his teachings now. There is a series of books with this in its title.
I’m not 100 percent sure that I can say that a bureaucracy is the reason why such social manipulation is allowed to take place, but due to particular words on paper, is the reason why sects like Jim Jones or Dave Koresh aren’t able to be stopped, or even investigated in the first place.
It’s so easy to say effortlessly, “Yeah, but polygamy is illegal.” But multiple marriages happen, and they continue to take place unless the government stops them. The Mormons practiced this, but then all of a sudden, God told them it wasn’t okay anymore. So they quit. But how did they and other sects actually get away with it in the first place, and how long did they practice it for? And bureaucracy is where it tends to end for those who have lost a tremendous amount, because of extreme sects. However, again, if people organize amongst themselves, then most reasonable goals can and will be achieved.