I like tales about Fathers and Sons. Kinda fits the SCREAMS FROM THE TREES ethos. And I just finished one hell of a whopper:
It’s a classic tragedy – goes like this.
Young confused guy becomes a zealot under a new “religion” who then raises his entire family under that same belief system, to ultimately have a major conflict with the monster of a son he helped create. The son turns on the father, the father turns on the son, and the villagers are – one by one – attacking the villainous son as well as the father.
It’s a real-life Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein.
Or so we’re to believe.
On the other hand you’ve got a plot from Tolstoy: old man looks back on a life of regrets, mainly that he raised his family in a “cult” – while at the same time admitting to presently adhering to that very cult’s main tenets.
Ai-yai-yai, it’s enough to make my head spin.
When someone hands over their children to a belief system, and allows that system to shape and mold their developing psyches, rest assured they’ve accomplished one thing and one thing only as a parent: creating little monsters who will one day grow up to be big monsters who will turn on them if they ever discover the jig is up.
This guy, Ron, sent his young son David – who this book is about – sent him off to what amounts to a Scientology boarding school when he was fifteen. Over the decades, David worked and bullied his way to gain private access to the head honcho, L. Ron Hubbard. After LRH died, David took the reins of Scientology. He’s now Chairman of the Board, or whatever. And apparently he’s a raging control freak Type A Dick.
When Ron, the author here, who had devoted his life and career to Scientology since the 1970s, decided to escape the church’s compound and effectively disavow his membership to the church (this book was published in 2016), you might imagine his son David – the new head honcho of Scientology – would be a bit miffed.
I mean, what’s the problem, Ron? Isn’t this what you wanted?
Don’t you think Jim Bakker would be thrilled if his son Jay finally accepted his rightful place next to his throne of Evangelical Cuckoo Conman Nonsense? He’d love it! They’d rule Branson, Missouri, together while sitting atop mounds of gold bullion they made shucking Apocalypse Meals in Buckets and barrels of Colloidal Silver.
But Ron over here needs some tissue. And in the end, says he forgives David. Forgives David for the mess Ron himself created.
I think it’s David who needs to offer the forgiveness.
Ron just needs to ask for it.
Moral of the story?