I'm an aspiring writer, but overall, I am an American who seeks a better United States of America.
*Note - This Article Here Of Mine Was Initially Published On March 19, 2021.
I realize that I am probably going to receive a great amount of pushback and even hate for publishing this article. However, there is an issue that has been eating away at me for a long time, and I feel very strongly about it. I am not mindless that this is a very sensitive subject, but the biggest mistake that our society makes is neglecting to see it for what it is. I must speak my mind about this topic, and I will not be silenced about it.
First, allow me to tell you a disturbing story about an incident that took place so many years ago that got me thinking about the topic of this article here of mine. Once upon a time my brother-in-law was a uniformed police officer and he was working on the SWAT team. He and his colleagues had to deal with a situation in which a former police officer who had been terminated from his position was threatening to take his own life. The man was armed and planning to shoot himself.
My brother-in-law and his colleagues tried every way to talk this man out of harming himself. However, the man pulled the trigger of his gun before my brother-in-law or the rest of the SWAT team could do anything to stop him. The man did not die immediately. Instead, he stood there with a large hole in the front part of his face.
The man's eyes were gone. His nose was gone. Part of his chin was still there. My brother-in-law could now see the muscles in the man's throat.
Paramedics came on the scene, and they were going to attempt to save the man from dying. However, my brother-in-law stopped them and told them that this man had already suffered enough. They let him die.
If the paramedics had saved this man, he would have likely been a near vegetable. My brother-in-law and his colleagues on the SWAT team did the humane thing and allowed for the ex-police officer to die so that he would finally be put out of his misery.
Whenever an animal is suffering, what do we do? We put it down. I find it strange that the rules should be different for humans. Of course, this article here of mine is not about mercy killings but rather about what happens to people's souls after they have taken their own life.
Now, don't get me wrong. I'm all in favor of people holding on to their lives and toughing it out through thick and thin. However, throughout my life, I have witnessed unusual situations in which people take their own lives when they believe that their life has hit a brick wall.
My mother had this one friend of hers out in Iowa whom she had known most of her life. For the purpose of this article, I will refer to her friend as Katy. Anyhow, Katy's husband was confronted with what was unfortunately a serious ailment. He was fearful of having to go into a nursing home. He immediately locked himself in the bathroom and ended his own life.
Katy suffered terribly from her loss. She never even saw it coming. It hurt her even more than before after she received a telephone call from her husband's doctor's office as a reminder that he had a doctor's appointment. I would not have wanted to be in her shoes for anything when she had to break the tragic news to the woman who called her from the doctor's office.
Everybody in my family, including me, pitied both Katy and her late husband. However, none of us believed that Katy's husband had gone to Hell. It simply would not have registered in our minds as anything that would have been a possibility, because he was such a kind person.
Any of us who attend church regularly or have been to church at one time or another in our life know that Hell is supposed to be a place where evil souls are sent to face the consequences of their actions in life. Whether or not you believe in the existence of Hell, the majority of us would have no problem with the thought of someone extremely evil like Charles Manson spending an eternity there.
When the question comes up over whether or not all suicides go to Hell, then heated arguments ensue all over all the place. Now, if we're talking about a monster like Adolf Hitler or even Jeffrey Epstein spending eternity in the lake of fire for committing suicide, then I guess the majority of us would not really have any problem with the idea of it. However, when we bring up the subject of someone decent and kind taking their own life because they have had nothing but ongoing misfortunes and suffering for a very long time, somehow eternal damnation for that individual simply doesn't sit very well with the majority of us; and the reason for it is because a loved one or a friend or perhaps simply a nice person taking their own life is a sad tragedy that cannot be equated to or even compared with someone committing an act of violence or some other heinous crime that would warrant that person spending all eternity burning and being tortured by demons and the devil. That is, if the devil and demons really do exist.
After the late Robin Williams passed away in 2014, allegedly by suicide, a whole host of people posted videos on YouTube in which they insisted that he had gone to Hell. These fanatics went as far as telling others not to tell the late Mr. Williams to rest in peace, and they stressed that there was no peace in Hades.
There was some information floating around in the press and the media that claimed that the late Mr. Williams may have been a murder victim instead of a suicide victim. In any event, for the sake of this article here of mine, I am going to assume that the journalists who said that he took his own life were accurate.
Some of you reading this article here of mine may be old enough to consider the late Mr. Williams to have been a major part of your formative years. Most of us likely remember him in the television sitcom Mork & Mindy or you may have seen him in the movie titled The World According to Garp. My favorite Robin-Williams movie was One Hour Photo, because he played a role in that film that was different from anything he had ever done in front of a camera.
This man was clearly talented as an actor in television sitcoms and on the silver screen. He knew how to make us all laugh. He took pride in everything he did on camera. He seemed like the happiest man on the planet. I was sad to find out back in 2014 that he was no longer with us.
Whenever an actor or anyone of celebrity status commits suicide, everyone finds it shocking, especially when that same entertainer appears to be an upbeat individual who would not have had even one worry in their entire life. Losing the late Mr. Williams was a melancholic ordeal for many of us. However, what I find so very unacceptable and even morbidly vile is when all the religious fanatics and psycho-Christians come out of the woodwork and begin spewing their nonsense about how they believe that a celebrity or an entertainer who committed suicide went straight to Hell.
Now, I don't want anyone to think that I am looking to disparage the entire institution of religion. I am not. This article here of mine is not an assault on the entire institution of religion.
The reason that I use the term "psycho-Christian" with no shame is because I have heard devout Christians using it to describe fanatics in clown-car religions like the Westboro Baptist Church and the now-defunct Peoples Temple. For example, once when members of the Westboro Baptist Church appeared on Ricki Lake, people in the audience who proclaimed themselves to be Christians denounced the members of the Westboro Baptist Church as being psycho-Christians for promoting the kind of hate that they did against anyone who opposed their beliefs or did not meet up to their set of values.
I strongly support freedom of religion as well as other rights that are protected under the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. However, because I find that many devout Christians are going as far as agreeing with agnostics and atheists that all suicides do not go to Hell, I feel that I have every right to speak my mind about this same archaic myth that has ferociously clung itself to our supposedly Westernized culture for way, way too long.
As the American culture evolves into something better than before, it should be expected that outdated traditions and archaic social conventions will eventually be discarded in due time. The theory that all suicides can only have one destination in the form of the lake of fire would appear to be one of those outdated traditions and archaic social conventions that would have faded away in the wind by now. Unfortunately, old habits die hard among religious extremists, and obviously nobody who holds on to such a ridiculous belief is willing to admit that they are wrong.
Herein we are going to explore the background and the reasons that this same archaic myth continues to exist in the belief system of certain individuals who proclaim themselves to be true believers of the faith despite that there is virtually no proof to support their contention regarding suicide. I will not go into what my particular belief system is regarding religion and Christianity. If you are a faithful follower of mine here on this writing platform, then you already know what my beliefs are in this regard. However, I will stress that back when I was heavily into my religious phase from the time I was 12 years old to the time that I was 14 years old, I had rejected this same archaic myth that all suicides can only have one destination, which is the lake of fire. I still reject it.
Quite frankly, I do not believe that there is such a place as Hell. I take no shame in publicizing that same perspective of mine, because there have even been ministers who share that same viewpoint with me. One such minister is Cartlon Pearson. Even if someone could prove to me that there was such a place, I would never agree with them that each and every person who has ever committed suicide since the beginning of humanity is down there burning in eternal misery and being tortured. That is, unless they could provide me with some kind of evidence to the contrary. Even in that event, I would still have to question where the justice in that entire scenario would be, especially if such a dreaded finale would be for an eternity.
2. The Idiocy Of The Suicide-To-Hell Myth
Some of the older readers here on this writing platform may remember the scary soap opera titled Dark Shadows that originally aired on television from the mid-1960s to the early 1970s and was reshown on the SiFi Channel in the 1990s on up to 2003. The creative genius behind that series was the late Dan Curtis.
The late Dan Curtis also released a film in 1977 that was titled Dead of Night, which featured a trilogy of scary stories. One of those stories was titled "Bobby," which starred the late Joan Hackett and Lee Harcourt Montgomery. The late Joan Hackett played the role of a grieving mother who had lost her son, Bobby, to a drowning. However, little by little the audience learns that her son may have committed suicide inasmuch as she mistreated him.
As the plot continues to thicken, the grieving mother resorts to the occult in an attempt to bring Bobby back from the dead. She uses black candles and all sorts of items related to the black arts to do so. She even provides an incantation in her efforts to summon her son back from the afterlife. Ultimately, she ends up getting much more than she bargained for.
Eventually, the grieving mother hears what sounds like her son, Bobby, crying in the pouring rain outside her front door during a lightning storm later on in the evening. She opens her front door and takes him inside. She is so happy to have back what she believes to be her son that she ignores all of the warning signs that materialize before her that perhaps he is not really her son. She actually believes that she has been given a second chance to see her son grow up and to be there for him.
Not before long, events take a bizarre turn, and the young boy that the grieving mother believes to be Bobby begins to behave badly. The grieving mother finds herself seeking a hiding place throughout the house so that she can get away from him, because she notices that something is simply not right about him. It does not take her long to realize that he wants to harm her.
The grieving mother eventually finds a gun and shoots the boy, causing him to fall through a window and down to the ocean. When she looks out that same window and does not see him anywhere, she assumes that his body is now drifting out to sea. She goes downstairs, believing that he is dead and that she is, therefore, out of danger. However, the front door flies open, and the boy appears there before her. She tries to fight him off, but she cannot get away from him; and he pushes her down a staircase.
As the grieving mother lies helpless on the floor after having fallen down a staircase, the boy walks toward her and speaks to her in an evil tone of voice. Except that he is not a little boy. He explains to her that after the way she mistreated her son, Bobby, Bobby did not want to come back when she summoned him from the dead. He tells her that he came back in the little boy's place instead. After the lightning flashes momentarily, his face changes to that of a demon.
The demon approaches the grieving mother and speaks to her in the same evil voice that sounds like that of Bobby. However, this time his face is hideous and frightening. His eyes have pupils that glow red in the dark in a demonic manner. Anyone can see that he is not there to befriend her. The story ends in which the woman is screaming in fear, and the demon puts his face up close to hers as he gets ready to overpower her and perhaps even drag her with him back to Hell.
Most of us can see that in this same scary story in the above-aforementioned film, the late Mr. Curtis was using the vehicle of the archaic myth that all suicides go to Hell. He wove it into a frightening drama about a grieving mother who attempts to bring her son back from the dead; and because her son had committed suicide, she gets a demon instead. Moreover, the late Mr. Curtis clearly implies that there could have been no other outcome in that scenario, because no condemned soul is allowed to leave Hell under any circumstances.
I admit that I enjoyed this same movie. I don't agree with what it implies, but I cannot deny that it kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the entire time that I was watching it. The late Mr. Curtis may not really have believed that all suicides went to Hell, but he had to have known that there were people who believed so back when he was making this same film. The storyline made for a great movie, and a large number of people likely found it entertaining. Then again, this movie was not attempting to push any kind of agenda on its viewers. It was only meant to grab the interest of all the horror film fans out there and give them a bone-chilling movie-watching experience. At the end of the day, it was only a story, and it was not meant to set forth any kind of message in its plot.
Nevertheless, whenever someone pushes the agenda in real life that all suicides go to Hell, many people do not appreciate it. If any of you ever saw the movie titled Judgment Day: The Ellie Nesler Story, which was based on a true story, you may or may not remember the scene in that movie in which Ellie Nesler's son, William, talked to her about wanting to take his own life.
If you don't know what the true story was behind that movie, allow me to describe it herein. Ellie Nesler was a mother who shot Daniel Mark Driver dead after he committed an unspeakable crime against her then-6-year-old son, William. I won't go into the details of what he did; but after you find out what he had done to her son as described on the Wikipedia website, you can probably imagine how outraged Ms. Nesler must have been when she took the law into her own hands.
In the above-aforementioned docudrama, after Ms. Nesler is allowed to return to her residence before her murder trial, a conversation between her and her little boy takes place. He tells her that he doesn't want to live anymore because of what Mr. Driver did to him. In that one scene, Ms. Nesler tells her then-6-year-old son that if he takes his own life, he is going to Hell.
Now, wait a minute! I don't believe for one minute that Ms. Nesler would have ever said anything like that to her little boy. Some fanatical screenwriter had to have ad-libbed and had to have slipped that made-up statement into the conversation between Ms. Nesler and her son, William, in the docudrama.
If I had been Ms. Nesler and I saw that scene in that movie, I would have sued the shirt right off the back of whoever added that same line into the above-described conversation. It also causes me to question why any merciful, loving, and caring God would want to send a sweet, innocent little boy to the lake of fire to burn for all eternity and to be tortured for thousands upon thousands of years with no end in sight. God would have to be in bed with Satan to do so.
Moreover, a 6-year-old child does not have the wherewithal to understand the consequences of his or her actions. Therefore, it would make no sense for a supposedly loving, compassionate, and protective God to allow such an innocent being to burn and be tortured for all eternity at the hands of the devil, and justice could never be served in that manner especially if that child was a victim of Daniel Mark Driver's unconscionable crimes. I don't make this comment and others like it above to be blasphemous in any way or to take the Lord's name in vein. I do so to make a point. That is, someone would have to have a really twisted and deranged mind to hold such a horrendous belief regarding suicidal ideation among children that certain fanatics apparently have. Never mind whether or not that individual is an evangelical. Voicing such a contention goes way beyond all cruelty and malice.
Also, I am perfectly fine with someone like the late Mr. Curtis injecting the suicide-to-Hell myth in their movie's plot to spice up a horror flick. However, I find it in very poor taste whenever a screenwriter has a character get preachy about their firm belief in the suicide-to-Hell myth. The movie titled Sling Blade is a good example of that same impropriety in view of a scene where the protagonist of that film, which Billy Bob Thornton plays, insists that all suicides go to Hell. That offensive piece of dialogue could have been left out of that movie. The screenwriter who injected that offensive piece of dialogue in that movie seemed to be pushing his agenda.
The very first time that I ever heard about this archaic myth that all suicides went to Hell was when I was either 6 or 7 years old. My sister and I had somehow gotten a hold of some booklets about religion, and we stumbled across a section in them that read that all suicides ultimately spent eternity in Hell. After reading it, I became very shocked and absolutely bewildered in disbelief.
I then asked my sister why would anyone who had suffered enough to take their own life be sent to Hell in the same way that a dangerous, nefarious criminal would be. She responded that once a person takes their own life, then they no longer have the opportunity to repent for their sins, especially the self-murder that they committed in that event. She reminded me of the one of the ten commandments that states, "Thou Shall Not Kill." Even back then as a little boy, I was able to see the outrageous unjustness of someone who had been driven to suicide spending all eternity in Hell. Let's just say that it didn't sit very well with me.
I kept telling my sister that I had thought that God was supposed to be merciful, loving, and caring about all humanity. My 6- or 7-year-old mind reasoned that only bad people were supposed to go to Hell rather than good people who had suffered to the point that they simply could not bear living any longer. Hearing such a thing for the very first time had me upset, because it was not something that I would ever have envisioned my church pastor endorsing. In fact, I believe that this type of propaganda is something that could emotionally scar a child early on in life.
Of course, these booklets on religion that my sister and I had been reading were not from our church. I think that we might have even received them through the mail for free. Therefore, for all we know, some religious cult or some fly-by-night television ministry could have mailed them to us.
From that point on, I had numerous conversations and discussions with adults and other kids my age about this same topic. I remember even asking someone whether the character Andre in the science-fiction movie The Fly made it to Heaven despite that he had his wife assist him in taking his own life after he realized that he would never get his human head and human arm back and that he would remain half-man and half-insect for the rest of his life.
When I took religious instruction from the time that I was 12 years old to shortly before I turned fourteen, my classmates and I had numerous conversations and discussions about what happened to suicides in the afterlife. I was still dead set on sticking to my guns that hellfire never entered into the picture, unless the person who took their own life was someone really evil like Adolf Hitler. Our instructor, Mr. Carr, told us that such an archaic myth was pure rubbish and should not be given any credence.
During my last year of high school, I had a friend who was Mormon and several other friends who were mostly Catholic. When we were in our American Studies II class together one day, we all got into a conversation about what happened to people in the afterlife if they were to take their own lives.
My friends were all convinced that all suicides went to Hades. I argued with them that God could not be all so merciful, loving, and protecting if he were to allow for such an injustice to take place. However, they gave me this my-way-or-the-highway kind of attitude and treated the whole debate over this topic as one cold mathematical equation.
My Mormon friend told me that someone who took their own life was committing murder and forfeiting any chances of repentance for it. I argued back at him that it would not seem right for someone to be given that kind of raw deal if they were not in their right mind when they took matters to that extreme. My Mormon friend simply would not budge on this topic, but I continued to find the entire idea of what he said to be outrageous and unacceptable.
Not too long ago I came across a news story about a family that lost their 15-year-old son to suicide. This same family had dumped loads of money into their church as faithful members of it. However, after their son had ended his life, that same church refused to give him a decent burial and they insisted that he was suffering eternally in Hades. Hearing these stories about church officials behaving in this manner gets me extremely furious, because you know that the church officials at the place of worship of the above-described 15-year-old boy had to have found self-serving ways to spend all the money that his family had given them in contributions in previous years.
You don't even have to look very far on YouTube or elsewhere on the Internet to come across this same kind of stupidity. After you watch the video below, you have to wonder whether the people who created it were on drugs.
A Video Alleging That Hell Is The Only Destination For Suicides
Not only is the above video offensive in its content, but it also supports my assertion that Hell is nothing more than a fairy tale that exists in the minds of those who have allowed themselves to be lured into believing in something that is not supported by scientific facts and has even been questioned by ministers as to its actual existence. If Hell really does exist, I cannot be talked into believing that nice people actually go there to spend all eternity as a result of situations in which they felt so overwhelmed with tragic events that they could no longer cope with life and, therefore, decided to end it. At least, without any kind of proof, that is.
Whoever would think of putting together such a video as the one above definitely needs to have their head examined. The video above looks like some surreal product of the mind of someone who is addicted to hallucinogens rather than something in which an intelligent person would place any stock.
After our physical body dies, we do not feel physical pain inasmuch as all of our senses are no longer functioning. I am not denying that each and every one of us may have an astral body. However, once your brain shuts down and your heart stops beating, you are not going to suffer any physical pain inasmuch as it would not be scientifically possible for you to do so. The 2001 film titled The Others offers a good example in this same respect. After the children in that film realized that they were no longer alive, they knew that the sunlight could not harm their skin despite that they had suffered from a rare genetic disorder known as xeroderma pigmentosum that made bright light a danger to their overall health when they were still alive.
Modern-day religions need to abandon this entire archaic myth that suicides are doomed for eternal suffering at the hands of the devil in the afterlife, because there is no genuine evidence to prove it beyond any shadow of a doubt. This archaic myth benefits nobody. It is not serving as a deterrent to this tragic epidemic that has plagued our world of people ending their own lives.
Survivors of people who have ended their own lives need emotional support. They do not need to hear that their loved one will be tortured, tormented, and engulfed in flames for all eternity. The Romans invented this same archaic myth to scare their masses out of harming themselves fatally, so that the Romans could get them to keep on working and believing that they were doing the right thing. They told them that being subservient in life would pave their pathway into Heaven, but taking one's own life to get away from suffering would send them to the opposite place. I am not a major fan of the The Young Turks on YouTube, but they do provide an interesting video about this same topic below.
The Young Turks Report That A Girl Killed Herself To Be With Her Father
The Roman Empire ceased to exist centuries ago. Let's bury this same archaic myth with it, because even the Roman rulers who invented it knew that it could not have been true.
People who know every verse and even every word in the Bible can even attest to the fact that there is nothing therein that specifies that all suicides will definitely end up in Hades. Unfortunately, religious fanatics and psycho-Christians have sought inventive ways to misinterpret the contents of the Bible in such a way that they are able to fool naïve individuals into believing that every person who has ever ended their life is burning in Hell at this very moment. They're feeding you a lie, and you should not buy into it.
3. Pushback From Actual Christians Against The Suicide-To-Hell Myth
Luckily, there are good Christians out there who will not completely buy into the archaic myth that all suicides can have only one destination beyond the grave that involves fire and torture. You can watch a video of one of those Christians whom I would consider to be one of the good guys in this entire controversy.
Hank Hanegraaff Answers A Despondent Caller's Questions About What Happens To Suicides In The Afterlife
Mr. Hanegraaf did not antagonize the despondent caller in the video above. He even prayed for him. Religious fanatics and psycho-Christians do not have this same sense of compassion and empathy as Mr. Hanegraaf does, because they couldn't care less about other people's misfortunes and tragedies. Perhaps it could explain why this same archaic myth regarding suicide has survived for as long as it has despite that one would think that American society would have matured beyond it.
It is unfortunate that people take their own lives, and I am all in favor of life-saving intervention. In any event, families who have lost a loved one in this manner are naturally going to question the above-described archaic myth regarding suicide, if not discount it as sheer malarkey altogether. When you watch the video below, you will be able to see that the mother in that video would definitely not welcome any comments from any religious fanatics or psycho-Christians who set out to promote this same archaic myth.
A Mother Describes The Pain Of Being A Parent Of A Son Who Ended His Life
Rachel Moorefield in the video above is likely still in mourning over the loss of her son. I can be sure that she does not buy into the archaic myth that her son is now in a place of eternal regret and suffering. When you hear her talk about him, you know that he had to have been a good person. I may not believe in the existence of Hell. However, if I knew for sure that it was something real, there is nothing that could persuade me into buying into the twisted school of thought that insists that Ms. Moorefield's son will spend eternity in such a horrible place. He would not deserve that kind of afterlife, and it would not serve justice for Ms. Moorefield to be wrongfully punished by being brainwashed into thinking that her son is in a horrendous place like that. Moreover, if Ms. Moorefield is a devout Christian who follows the rules, it would probably not console her for anyone to fill her head with dreary thoughts that she may never see her son again in the afterlife.
4. Confronting Stubborn Attitudes Regarding The Suicide-To-Hell Myth
Whenever someone cracks a joke about serious partying happening in Hell, religious extremists become offended left and right. They will come back at such people and tell them that the party has been cancelled down there because of a fire. However, those who don't take them seriously will simply laugh in their faces. What else can they do? These religious extremists will not listen to reasoning.
There is a saying that one should not talk about religion, because they never know whom they will offend. I guess that that same saying would also apply to people cracking jokes about joining a party down in Hell. However, here is my response to it all. If religious fanatics and psycho-Christians are going to peddle and promote the suicide-to-Hell myth as though it offends nobody at all, they have to expect for opponents of their belief system to lash back at them with caustic humor. People who disagree with them are simply not going to remain silent while they get fed a load of Puritanical nonsense about the afterlife.
When I was living in New York City, there was this one co-worker of mine who proclaimed herself to be a devout Catholic. For the purpose of this same article of mine here, I will refer to her as "Winnie" herein. Anyhow, because of the way she stabbed her co-workers in the back by either snitching on them to our boss or spreading malicious gossip about them or both, she was hardly a poster girl for Christian values.
If you read my article titled "Don't Fall For The Asperger's Syndrome Fairy Tale!," therein I described a tragedy in which a 22-year-old man named William who had worked for the same employer as I did hung himself. Anyhow, after I had gotten back to my regular office in New York City and I had told a couple of my co-workers there about it, Winnie jumped into the conversation and insisted that he was in Hell. I responded to her that God would have to be completely devoid of all compassion to have allowed for this young man to burn and be tortured for all eternity. However, Winnie simply would not stop shoving her rhetoric regarding her so-called religious perspective of suicide down our throats.
Now, I'm not mindless of the fact that the Catholic Church has held on to such an archaic myth for a very long time. Some of you may know that the famous American novelist Ernest Hemingway was Catholic and because he took his own life in 1961, the Catholic Church was initially reluctant to give him a Roman Catholic burial. Of course, I don't believe that Ernest Hemingway is in Hell.
Anyhow, I placed no stock in anything that Winnie told me about William, because by then I knew that she was a pathological liar. For example, she had told her co-workers that she had a Master's Degree in Psychiatry, when fact had it that she only had an Associate's Degree in Business Administration. She thought that everything that she had said was the gospel truth, when reality was that she had no true conception of the difference between the truth and a lie. She was definitely representative of the kind of mentality that most religious fanatics and psycho-Christians have.
What is so disturbing about these religious fanatics and psycho-Christians is that they seem to be mindless of the fact that their school of thought regarding the suicide-to-Hell myth is extremely unpopular among the American people. Not too long ago a Congressman named Jim Hagedorn drew the wrong kind of attention from the public after he told an entire audience of constituents that his church had taught him that all suicides could only end up in one place, which was the opposite of Heaven. So not good! You can watch the video below that shows him making these same statements.
The United States House Of Representatives Delegate Jim Hagedorn Makes Disgraceful Comments About Suicide
Now, I'm not going to badmouth Mr. Hagedorn. He may be a very astute and effective Congressman in his representation of the First District of Minnesota on Capitol Hill. Even though I am a moderate Independent, I usually vote for a Republican candidate over a Democratic candidate. However, if Mr. Hagedorn were to run for president of our nation, I likely would not vote for him because of what he stated in Winona, Minnesota as shown in the video above despite that he is a Republican.
As shown in the video above, Mr. Hagedorn angered and even shocked many Christians among his constituency upon delivering his rhetoric regarding his so-called religious teachings about suicide. He refused to answer a man's question regarding his above-described statements in Winona, when he appeared before an audience once again.
James Dimock points out in his video above that Mr. Hagedorn may have been attempting to pass the accountability for his outrageous statements regarding suicide on to the Saint Paul Lutheran Church, because that religious institution did not really include what Mr. Dimock described as medieval in their teachings. Mr. Dimock is correct in his assertion, because I received my religious instruction for a confirmation class from a Lutheran Church from the time that I was 12 years old up until shortly before I turned 14; and my instructor, Mr. Carr, specifically told me that the Lutheran Church did not teach its parishioners that all suicides were automatically doomed for eternal damnation.
According to Mr. Dimock, it appears that Mr. Hagedorn revealed what his own upside-down beliefs were rather than what any house of worship had taught him during his growing years. If Mr. Hagedorn has been caught in his own web of deceit in this same respect, then he is somebody who needs either to apologize to his constituents for his statements regarding suicide or resign from office. American voters simply do not want to hear such nonsense from their elected officials, particularly ones that are serving them in our Congress in Washington, D.C.
Jennifer Vogt-Erickson denounced Mr. Hagedorn's action in her article. I do not agree with her comments therein about President Donald J. Trump. However, I am glad that she expressed her strong disapproval of any elected official promoting the kind of culturally irresponsible garbage in their speeches to the public that Mr. Hagedorn did in his in Winona, Minnesota.
The biggest problem with these religious extremists who refuse to listen to anyone who contradicts their belief in the suicide-to-Hell myth is that they are insistent that everything they are doing falls within the realms of freedom of religion under the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. However, they could not be any more wrong about their line of defense than they are.
Let's imagine that someone was going around town, slaying black cats, and they got caught and arrested for it. If that individual were to attempt to hide behind the cloak of religion to justify their actions by saying that they believed that black cats were associated with witchcraft and that they, therefore, had to do what they did, no judge or jury would take them seriously. In all due likelihood, that individual would be found guilty and convicted of animal cruelty. Well, I have to question how someone who pushes their suicide-to-Hell myth on others is any different?
Families that mourn the death of a loved one who has ended his or her own life don't want to hear anyone shoving their Puritanical agenda down their throats as described above. They are already in enough pain as it is.
5. Evidence Of Reincarnation Of Suicides Vs. The Archaic Suicide-To-Hell Myth
When I was a freshman in high school, my World Studies I teacher, Mr. Sawyer, always used to tell me and my classmates that none of us were going to get out of our life alive. In hindsight, despite what Mr. Sawyer implied in his statement, I really don't doubt that there is an afterlife. What I firmly dispute is how the afterlife works in a situation in which someone offs themselves. Unless that person is vicious, vile, and evil altogether like Adolf Hitler, I find it really difficult to buy into the archaic myth that such a person who takes their own life is destined for an eternity of torture, burning, and suffering at the hands of the devil. That is, if he really exists.
Once after I had posted in the comments section of a YouTube video about my viewpoint what happens to people who off themselves once they pass on into the astral plain, a man posted a reply to it and he adamantly stressed that the suicide-to-Hell myth was the absolute truth. I did not get into an argument with him about it. I merely probed him to find out upon which he was basing this speculation of his. This man had a Hispanic name. Therefore, I presumed that he was probably Catholic, although don't hold me to it.
This man continued to argue his point, but he never was really able to deliver any kind of clear and convincing evidence to prove his contention. He simply rambled on about how anything that anyone else had told me about it was a load of baloney. Like so many of these religious extremists, this man engaged in what could be best described as selective hearing. Eventually, he deleted all of his replies from the discussion thread, which kind of tells you how unsure he was about his own opinion. Ultimately, he was not able to change my mind on this matter.
Now, I am not a difficult person with whom to reason. I may not agree with someone on an issue at first; but if they have irrefutable evidence to prove that something is a fact, I am going to listen and observe what they have to say to me and what they show me to reach their conclusion. The biggest problem that I have with religious extremists who promote the suicide-to-Hell myth is that they usually demand that everyone simply take their word for it that they can never be wrong about their contention regarding the afterlife. In their efforts to prove what they believe about suicide and the afterlife, they always somehow manage to fall flat on their backs; and, more often than not, they even end their discussion or argument about it on a hostile note.
All I have ever asked from these religious extremists who thrive on the suicide-to-Hell myth is that they give me the proof in the pudding. For example, I would at least need to see an authenticated video of a séance in which a group of people summoned the spirit of someone who had taken their own life; and if that person appeared to them engulfed in flames or with demon horns, I would then begin to give at least some credence to what these religious extremists believe. However, I am someone who just cannot rely on the rants, the ravings, and the possible lies of religious fanatics and psycho-Christians regarding this same issue. I have to have more to go on than merely someone's say-so, especially concerning such a sensitive topic.
Also, someone will not be able to convince me of the authenticity of the suicide-to-Hell myth merely by making a video in which they claim that they took their own life and returned from the dead after sharing a cup of tea with Satan. Talk is cheap, and these same people have to know that skeptics like me are not going to buy into their so-called word of honor regarding this topic.
There is a YouTuber named Robert Lyte who peddles and promotes the suicide-to-Hell myth to his viewers. He is one of those so-called born-again Christians who claim to have taken their own life and have returned back from the dead after having spent a modest amount of time down where the so-called devil lives. Here is one of his videos below.
Robert Lyte Provides His Subjective Perception Regarding The Afterlife-Related Consequences Of Ending Your Own Life
Mr. Lyte posted his above video on YouTube in October of 2013. He posted a similar video on YouTube on Christmas Day of 2011, which is no longer available on the Internet. Notice that he has his comments section turned off. Hmmm. I wonder what he is so afraid of if people were allowed to respond to his narrative. I hardly think that anyone is going to let him convince them about this subject with a video of his that is only 9 to 10 minutes long.
I surfed around the Internet to find out what people had to say about Mr. Lyte on other social-media platforms, and I found some very interesting comments about him. One of his critics went as far as accusing him of being a false prophet. Whatever he may or may not be, I am not at all impressed with his chastising lecture on the subject.
Did it ever occur to Mr. Lyte that that there are compelling circumstances out there that drive people over the edge to a point of desperation that nothing seems like a bad idea as opposed to going on with whatever is making them hurt or suffer? He treats the entire suicide-to-Hell myth like one cold mathematical equation. He has claimed that he has had a near-death experience that caused him to experience hellfire.
Nevertheless, even if he did actually see everything that he did when he supposedly had a brush with death, it could very well all have been a hallucination rather than reality. In a video of his, YouTuber Shane Dawson sets forth the deduction that often people who have near-death experiences only see what they expect to see whether it be angels or demons. Watch his video below to get a full understanding of what he means.
Shane Dawson Elaborates On The Subject Of Heaven And Hell
What is so interesting about Mr. Dawson's video is that he describes a white light that a baby sees when it is being born inasmuch as it is entering into the world of the living, whereas certain people who have had near-death experiences claim to see that same white light approaching them. It would cause me to question whether this occurrence could suggest the possibility that people come close to being reincarnated.
Regardless of Robert Lyte's adamant credence of the suicide-to-Hell myth, I wholeheartedly do not believe that the late Landon Clifford is somewhere where the so-called devil and demons are torturing him and causing him to burn. He was a good husband to his wife, and he was an excellent father to his two kids. In my humble opinion, it was really his psychiatrist who ultimately caused his death. I cannot fathom why Mr. Lyte would want Mr. Clifford's family to believe that this young man was currently undergoing all sorts of atrocities in the afterlife. Then again, it is hard to pinpoint exactly what goes through the minds of these religious extremists like Mr. Lyte.
There was once this one Pakistani woman named Fakhra Younus who suffered an acid attack at the hands of her deranged husband. She was burned beyond recognition. Her life was absolute misery for the twelve years that followed until the day came that she simply could not bear it anymore, and she ultimately jumped from a building to her own death. The video below gives the full details about her ordeal.
The Tragic Ordeal Of A Pakistani Woman Is Described
After watching the video above, if I were to come face to face with Mr. Lyte, I would have to ask him why he would even want for someone like Ms. Younus to suffer eternal damnation at the hands of the devil and demons after the last twelve years of her life was an ongoing agony and atrocity. Mr. Lyte might come back at me and tell me not to shoot the messenger. However, I cannot envision that an all so merciful, loving, and protective God that he claims to believe in would want anyone to be subjected to such horrors for twelve years of their life and then be tortured for an eternity afterwards. If this is Mr. Lyte's form of religious justice, I would hate to know what his perception is of God's wrath.
I recall watching an episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show so many years ago in which Oprah Winfrey reported that a homeless woman had struggled so much from day to day that she could not bear the rugged conditions of her survival and eventually she took her own life. Luckily, most people never have to find out what it is like to be homeless. If Mr. Lyte were ever someday to be homeless, I question whether he would continue to hold on to his upside-down assertion that this homeless woman was cast into the lake of fire after she ended her own life.
Not everyone can deal with being homeless on a day-to-day basis. Everyone is different and has different strengths and weaknesses. However, Mr. Lyte appears to take none of those factors into consideration upon promoting his appalling suicide-to-Hell myth.
Dr. Richard Caldwell, who is a devout Christian, does believe that suicides can make it into Heaven. However, he also contends that if someone takes matters to those extremes, that individual has to be selfish. Watch his video below.
Dr. Richard Caldwell Discusses The Lies Of Suicide
According to Kori Fitch-Adams's article titled "Eastern vs. Western Views of Death and Suicide," the Buddhist religion in Japan condones people taking their own lives when they wish to demonstrate that they have failed their loved ones and have shamed them in some way and that they wish to pay for it. In other words, instead of seeing such actions as a sin, the Buddhists view suicide as a sacrifice for the purpose of seeking redemption.
Nevertheless, according to this same religion, people who take their own lives do not go to Heaven or Hell. Instead, they are reincarnated. If the Buddhists are accurate about this subject, then probably most of us can wrap our heads more easily around it than we can do so with Mr. Lyte's above-described contention of eternal damnation. All cultures do not seem to address this issue in the same manner.
Belgium is known for its laws that make euthanasia available to just about anyone in that nation so long as they have the proper medical documentation to support their decision to go through with it. A Christian fundamentalist attorney there in Europe is attempting to get laws passed in Belgium to outlaw euthanasia there. However, because Belgium has the reputation of having a very permissive, secular legal system despite that it is a predominantly Roman Catholic nation, I honestly do not believe that this gentleman is going to have very much luck in achieving his goal.
There was a famous case of a 34-year-old woman named Eva who had someone film her being euthanized in Belgium. You can watch her story in the video below.
PBS NEWSHOUR Explores The Right-To-Die Laws Of Belgium And Interviews Eva
Those who believe in the suicide-to-Hell myth can raise a fuss about it all they want. However, at the end of the day, I seriously doubt that the devil is hanging out in Belgium, getting ready to drag another soul with him down to where he regularly resides. If there really is a devil and he were in Belgium, he'd be too busy eating at a Chi-Chi's Restaurant, sampling the delicious food there.
Recently I stumbled across a very interesting and well-written article by Nell Rose that is titled "Robin Williams Spirit Voice EVP And Ghostly Phone Calls From The Dead!" I found her article to be very informative. However, I did have an issue with a video that was embedded therein. I found it interesting that Steve Huff from the Huff Paranormal YouTube channel was able to communicate with what seemed like the spirit of the late Robin Williams. I listened to the recording of it from beginning to end, and I found it very convincing.
Where I have a problem with Mr. Huff is when he actually injects the entire suicide-to-Hell myth as though every religious denomination promotes it. If the devil really exists, somehow I don't believe that he would allow for a condemned soul to have a conversation over a "ghost box" with a member of the living. In any event, every religious fanatic and psycho-Christian came out of the woodwork to post in that video's comments section and promote the above-described archaic myth.
For the sake of this article here of mine, I will go ahead and assume that Mr. Huff really spoke with the late Mr. Williams through his "ghost box." The first statement that the late Mr. Williams makes to Mr. Huff is, "We're waiting." If the late Mr. Williams was really waiting to move on to whatever lies beyond the part of the astral plain where he was, there is nothing to support that his next destination would be the lake of fire.
In the conversation between Mr. Huff and the late Mr. Williams, Mr. Huff asks him whether he is with the angels. The late Mr. Williams responds, "That's up in Heaven." Okay. I get it. Such a statement would indicate that the late Mr. Williams was not in Heaven. However, it does not necessarily mean that he was in the opposite place either. He could very well have been lingering on the astral plain and doing his best to steer clear of any hostile entities.
In that same conversation above, the late Mr. Williams states, "I must have got it wrong." Now, I can understand how a large number of people would interpret that the late Mr. Williams was expressing regret to Mr. Huff over his decision to end his own life before it was his time to pass on. However, it does not necessarily mean that he was burning and being tortured in Hades.
I heard the foul word that the late Mr. Williams used before he told Mr. Huff that he must have gotten it wrong. I would not doubt that the late Mr. Williams was verbally expressing some kind of regret for having made the kind of decision he did about his life. However, what the late Mr. Williams says afterwards proves that he could not have been speaking to Mr. Huff from Hell.
In this same conversation, the late Mr. Williams states, "There is light." Then he states, "I'm here with Dad." I can tell you from my Biblical teachings as a youngster that there is no light in Hell other than what comes from the fire and the brimstone there. Moreover, if the late Mr. Williams said that he was with his father, who died in 1987, then he could not possibly be burning in Hell at this very moment.
The late Mr. William's father, Robert Fitzgerald Williams, was a kind and giving man, and he supported his son in everything that he did. Therefore, it would be highly unlikely that the late Mr. Williams was sentenced to the eternal fire because of the way that he died.
Now, some of you out there could come up with theories about how the late Robert Fitzgerald Williams flew down from Heaven as an angel into the devil's territory to rescue the late Robin Williams from that eternal horror. It would remind me of the plot of the movie titled What Dreams May Come wherein the late Mr. Williams plays a man who rescues his deceased wife from Hell after she commits suicide. The movie had a sentimental ending in which the protagonist and his wife are reincarnated. Then they meet as toddlers and develop a crush on each other.
It would have kind of a poetic form of coincidence to such a scenario if this time round it were a father rescuing his son from the same horrendous fate. However, none of us can really speculate what exactly happened to the late Robin Williams's astral body or soul after he died. It's not for any of us to say what happened to him in the afterlife. I will boldly attest that he was not someone who would have deserved an eternally infernal fate. The late Robin Williams was a decent, good man who knew how to use his humor to cheer up anyone.
Another point that I would like to make about this same conversation from beyond the grave is that if the late Robin Williams were really in Hell, I seriously doubt that he would be speaking to Mr. Huff in a calm and collected manner. Instead, he would be screaming in pain and misery and begging Mr. Huff to find a way to get him out of there. Therefore, once again all of these religious fanatics and psycho-Christians have fallen flat on their backs in their useless efforts to prove that the late Mr. Williams is confronting eternal agony, consciousness, and regret as a result of his final actions.
The late Dr. Ian Stevenson, a psychiatrist, has been conducting a research study for years. Mainly Dr. Jim B. Tucker, another psychiatrist, has continued the research work of the late Dr. Stevenson now that the late Dr. Stevenson is no longer with us. Anyhow, the late Dr. Stevenson found evidence that suicides have actually been reincarnated as explained in the PSI Encyclopedia article about it. I would trust in the late Dr. Stevenson's research more faithfully than in the Puritanical propaganda that people like Robert Lyte spread throughout the world regarding the destiny of suicides' souls and consciousness.
I have come across people on YouTube who actually believe that we are all living in Hell here on Earth. Their explanation is that if one's soul does not pass on to Heaven after that person has died, it will remain here on Earth and demons will torment that individual. They will also suffer the pain and the agony from the fire that supposedly engulfs all of us but that we cannot sense or feel while we are living.
Other people I have come across on YouTube have theorized that because they believe that Earth is Hell, then any of us who are bad will come back again in a different life and will keep getting reincarnated until God accepts us into Heaven. If these people actually believe that suicides don't make it into Heaven, then this theory would tend to support the late Dr. Stevenson's findings that suicides get reincarnated.
I do like this second theory about Earth being Hell a little better than the first one inasmuch as it appears to suggest that everyone gets second chances to get into Heaven until they get it right. However, I still have to admit that I find both of them to be somewhat far-fetched.
6. A Solution To Ending The Imposition Of The Suicide-To-Hell Myth
Once when I was on the Yahoo platform, I read this one article that delved into the subject of suicide. I posted a comment in the comments section of the article, and I stated that I felt that religious institutions that promote the suicide-to-Hell myth should legally be stripped of their Section 501(c)(3) tax-exemption status. Afterwards, this one person posted a reply and got really hostile with me. Then this one other psycho-Christian ranted and raved in his reply, stating that I was going to burn in the lake of fire for all eternity simply for posting the kind of comment that I did. Wow! Did I hit a nerve with this jerk?
The reason that churches and other religious institutions can qualify for a Section 501(c)(3) tax exemption is because they are considered to be charities by law. Unlike other charitable organizations, they are not even required to submit income tax forms under this same Federal law.
I personally have no problem with a Lutheran church or a Methodist church building a bridge in the Appalachian Mountains to make it safe for underprivileged children to walk to school or opening up a soup kitchen to feed the homeless. I find such actions of theirs to be noble and deserving of praise.
On the other hand, it is bad enough that the Church of Scientology is able to qualify for this same type of Federal tax exemption, even though they are really a cult rather than an actual institution of worship. Well, when some clown-car religion like the Westboro Baptist Church or the Quiverfulls start spewing their propaganda to promote the suicide-to-Hell myth, then it makes no sense to me that they should be able to get away without paying any taxes under the Section 501(c)(3) Federal law; and they should not get away without having to pay state taxes either.
Further back herein I mentioned that this one church refused to give a funeral to a family whose 15-year-old son had taken his own life despite all of the money that they had dumped into that same church in the form of contributions. Any decent human being would find this same church's actions to be outrageous and reprehensible. In any event, if there was a Federal law that could strip them of their Section 501(c)(3) tax-exemption status for engaging in this kind of disgraceful conduct, as well as a state law that would strip them of their religious state-tax-exemption status, this same church might think twice about pulling this same number on other members of their congregation.
If our Federal and state laws do not defund these religious institutions in some way or another for stepping out of line in the manner that I described above, they are going to continue to promote this same archaic myth regarding the destiny of suicides and they will misuse it to betray the very same people who have supported them for years like the above-described family of the deceased 15-year-old boy. I say that the best way to stop these institutions from feeding this same fairy tale regarding suicides is to hit them exactly where they live until they have no other choice but to clean up their act and reform their internal policies and practices.
Legislators have already taken action to stop these religious extremists from influencing our culture. For example, both Maryland and Missouri make it illegal for any insurance company to deny death benefits in cases in which someone has taken their own life, so long as certain provisions are met. Whether religious extremists had any previous input in making it legal for insurance companies to deny death benefits to suicides remains to be discovered. In any event, the laws in Maryland and Missouri addressing this issue are representative of the power and the authority that elected officials have to put a stop to the injustices that ensue from the needless promotion of the suicide-to-Hell myth.
7. My Final Thoughts Regarding This Topic
The late Robin Williams' tragic and sad ending shook most of us up. This man contributed so much of his talent to both the television and the movie entertainment industry that his name will always be remembered.
Some of you may argue that religious fanatics and psycho-Christians who preach the suicide-to-Hell myth are no different from the flat-earthers. Well, whenever we hear flat-earthers spewing their nonsense to the whole world, most of us will get a good laugh out of it. However, whenever religious fanatics and psycho-Christians insist that the suicide-to-Hell myth is actually real, too many decent people get hurt in their line of fire.
Suicide is a very serious problem in the United States of America. Allowing for religious fanatics and psycho-Christians to attach a stigma to it and define it as a one-way ticket to Hell does not serve as any kind of deterrent against it. The people who get hurt the most from hearing religious extremists' rhetoric about the suicide-to-Hell myth are individuals who have lost a loved one to a self-inflicted death.
Religious extremists can argue about how God gave us free will until they are blue in the face in support of their agenda to promote the suicide-to-Hell myth. However, at the end of the day, what they are doing is so very wrong and should no longer be tolerated. They are not exercising freedom of religion but rather misusing religion to abuse others.
Regardless of what your religious denomination may be or if you don't even have a religious denomination at all, I think that we can all agree that there is virtually no evidence that people who off themselves spend eternity in the lake of fire. Therefore, it makes no sense that our society even allows for clown-car religions and fanatical cults to promote this sort of malarkey to our nation.
If our elected officials were to act and pass laws to strip religious institution of their Section 501(c)(3) Federal tax exemption and their analogous state tax exemption for pushing their suicide-to-Hell agenda on others, then probably there would be fewer incidents in which churches and religious institutions would deny a proper burial to a suicide victim of a family that has contributed a great amount of money to them through the years. This same archaic myth that promotes the suicide-to-Hell agenda should not even enter in discussions or debates here in the 21st century. All religious institutions should have purged it from their teachings decades ago. Why any religious institution would include it in their teachings in this day and age is beyond my comprehension. Then again, I guess that stupid people will always exist. In any event, society should not allow for those same stupid people to overpower others with their propaganda and their deceptive activities.
A Poll For Americans Who Want To Get Our Society And Its Religious Institutions Out Of The Dark Ages
A Second Poll For Americans Who Want To Get Our Society And Its Religious Institutions Out Of The Dark Ages
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Jason B Truth
Jason B Truth (author) from United States of America on August 21, 2021:
Ladies and gentlemen? Do all suicides go to Hell? My response to that archaic belief is that we need to stop feeding the fairy tale. My article above does not condone suicide, but, at the same time, it will enlighten its readers that guaranteed hellfire after suicide is nothing more than a myth that has never been proven to be true.