January 15 WT : Beware of Apostasy

by truthseeker 63 Replies latest jw friends

  • serendipity

    Hi bj rio,

    I think your comments are very astute. People who have no power or status in the world, can aspire to a position of within the org. That could be quite an incentive for some.

  • Sentient

    Hi all,

    The is the first time I've posted in a JW related forum since some years ago when I was an MS, or really made any comments to any former or current members outside of the immediate family. Although this may not be the appropriate subforum for it, I'll explain just a bit of my own history because it relates to my own conclusions as to the topic here at hand.

    I find now that in the big picture ex JWs have opinions that cover the entire breadth of a possible spectrum of opinions. All I can do is offer my own current perspective. Having been raised as a JW, I can tell you that I believe I was about as "in" mentally as it is possible to get as recently as a few years ago. I can tell you that I was the very type of person most "beloved" by the organization, the kind who obediently carries out direction without question, who maintains the outward appearance of spirtual accomplishment along with a growing inward hatred of and disbelief in the self, who has no personal life whatsoever outside the congregation. I was one of those ones the back-room frequenters couldn't stand, one who never seemed to make any mistakes, MS by the age of 19, eloquent speaker, on-the-fly substitute talk expert, insanely intelligent, astute WT policy and prophecy explainer/defender, territory card creator and servant, accounts assistant, enthusiastic volunteer for the worst menial tasks of service and special adopted child of and spy for the congregation elders. I would stay up late into the nights studying and praying, begging Jehovah to help me to be faithful and not succumb to the lure of the Satanic conspiracy that surrounded me. I was brother spiritual/useful/slave-of-all, on the fast track to Bethel and elderhood.

    Through my own ongoing survival (I'm still alive!) and recovery process, I've come to believe there are certain psychological profiles of people who emerge from the mental trauma of that extremely controlled environment to become the leaders and "pillars of the congregation". I think the key to understanding and effectively dealing with what is without lies in understanding and effectively dealing with what is within. I would posit that most who fit my "need for absolute certainty" profile would have taken their own lives or become permantently entrapped in uncontrolled irrational paranoia, but I believe that I have survived with a semblence of sanity for a reason. And I congratulate all of you like me who also have survived or are even going strong now.

    So now I won't tell you what to do, I'll just tell you what I believe. I believe I cannot fight fear with fear. I believe that in order to be of the greatest help to current Witnesses, I must become as much as possible an example of internal control...the polar opposite of the extreme end of the external control model of human interaction so finely demonstrated to me by the GB and their adherants. After all, I was them. They are me. Not long ago I would have defended their doctrines to the death just as they might now. Some of you may disagree, but at the deepest level, I do not believe there are evil people, only more or less damaged people.

    So when the GB, or other Witnesses, go on fearing me and calling me apostate as in this article, I will not try to save them by force or get back at them, but calmly speak my mind and offer them information that I believe will help them when the time is right. I will not ignore or keep silent about the hurt I've experienced or the judgment, labelling and abuse they still promote, but if I am to bring about change I must respect that they are human like me. Life is a journey and we are in it together, even those who have hurt me and others and still don't acknowledge it. I will strive, in my life, to be an example of nonjudgment and unconditional love...what I needed most but never had until I left the organization.

    It is real love and acceptance that WILL change not only the Witnesses but the world (thank God for the internet). It comes through awareness and understanding of the dynamics of fear, and through an internal choice of a kind which I still find hard to explain. As I understand it now, *all lasting positive change is internally motived*. What is it that gives a hardcore Witness the incentive to face that which they have feared most? I believe even the most afraid and dishonest of people can become honest and can learn what real love is about. A single choice-respecting act of true love and compassion can result in a cascade of understanding more powerful than the biggest class-action law suit (though law suits can help). I think soon we will be seeing enormous changes both on the part of the Society, and the world in general. When your dream is big enough and motivated by compassion, anything is possible.

    "Nonviolence means avoiding not only external physical violence but also internal violence of spirit. You not only refuse to shoot a man, but you refuse to hate him."

    "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."

    - MLK, Jr.

    Sorry about the long, drawn out post, I know it can be annoying on a forum. I promise not to make a habit of it.

    ~Your former fellow slave and still current member of the human family

  • AuldSoul
    We should not allow apostates into our homes

    My poor wife...tsk! Being encouraged to lock me out? Could this be seen as alienation of affection? We shall see...we shall see.

    AuldSoul (of the "Messing With My Family Is Not Wise" class)

    Welcome, Sentient! (frankly surprised that name was still available )

  • jgnat

    I am with you, Sentient! Want to help me organize a love-in?

    Welcome, by the way!

  • AuldSoul

    Okay, Sentient...I soaked up what you wrote and agree wholeheartedly where the individual people are concerned. But then, they aren't the problem. They are slaves to a Corporation, an unfeeling, self-interested entity. I say "entity" because it is regarded and protected as such by law. They say "organization" to try to humanize the beast, but as an entity, that Corporation is as compelled by thought as a circular saw. It is heedless of the damage in its wake and it is about to start its death throes from the wound the Internet gave it.

    It is an unreasoning wild beast, and it is rabid. There is no hate involved in downing a rabid beast, it is simply dispassionate work that must be done for the sake of those it may damage.

    While I agree with you that hate is a wastful and rash emotion, there are other positive emotions and driving forces which can motivate the necessary action. This beast threatens to eat many more friends and family of various people this year. It must be put down to protect them. This beast has already eaten many of our friends and families, it is time to cut open its belly and get them back.


  • Rabbit

    Welcome Sentient !

    If I was as well spoken as you (which I'm not) I would have said what you did.

    Not being hateful, vindictive and especially...not being judgmental has won back one of my 3 kids so far. They had all 'marked' me as 'bad association' after my JW wife divorced me. Many lies were told about me, I was slandered and was suspected of being apostate.

    My eldest daughter has had some real problems in her young life, she cannot really talk to her JW Uber-Mom. She can talk and trust me. I believe me being as opposite as possible from how I was as a controling, judgmental witness -- and JW Dad...is what has helped both of us.

    I am not saying everything JW's stood for was bad by any means, but, I believe the unfair stresses put upon the youth and family in this cult is the biggest reason for so many of them leaving. I also see in her case and others, their parents become totally unapproachable, if the youth has had 'bad' thoughts or actually did something JW's consider 'wrong.' There is such an air of fear that the Elders will get involved -- that their own parents will 'turn them in' (tough love) possibly being 'reproved' publically or even DF/DA and shunned.

    Kids need parents who want to protect their children and at the same time be truly approachable and non-judgmental, otherwise the parents will be kept in the dark.

    I wish I had been this way years earlier, but, at least I've learned a lesson -- their mother is still blindly faithful to the WT and as a result --unapproachable.

    Sentient, I hope to see more of your posts...you're gonna fit in just fine.


  • ozziepost

    G'day Sentient and Welcome Aboard!

    Your first post was a very welcome addition to this thread and kinds proves the lie to what the WT article says. i wonder if you'd like to repeat that post in the Personal Experiences forum? Just do a cut & paste. It's be worth many others reading it as a separate thread.

    Enjoy your time here.

    Cheers from downunder,


  • Sentient

    Thank you all for the warm welcome. AuldSoul- This name was not taken because it knew I was coming.
    I see a lot of reason in what you are saying about the corporation seeming to have taken on a life of its own. You are right, it is aptly described as a propaganda machine, almost like a living breathing thing with a life of its own. If you look at it from a pscyhological and sociological perspective, you can begin to understand how this is so. Just from reading some of the posts here I can tell that many of you here have already begun putting the pieces together. The picture is becoming clearer, there is a bright light approaching a dark place. But do remember the corporation is still controlled by individual people, and we all know the GB still sit up top with the proverbial (but legally invisible) reigns in hand. It is very similar to a virus in the nature of its operation upon the minds of damaged men.
    jgnat- I'll have to think about that. Are you serious? I can't say that it will be a love-in (not sure what that is exactly) but I may be able to help those of you who have a dream similar to my own and who mean what you say. If you will help me. I will believe in you, and you will believe in me. It is with real belief that things begin to happen. All we need is that first mustard grain, then the mountains will give way.
    Rabbit- I admire what you've accomplished, you've learned important lessons that some people never learn their entire lives. With you in their lives, your kids have a chance. Their mother has a chance too.
    ozziepost- Okay, I will paste it there at your request.

  • jgnat

    I am semi-serious. Your style reminds me of the hippy love-ins of the sixties. Make love not war. Non-violent protest. It could work!

    History of the hippies


    Hippy Activism


    Photo, Love-in, Malibu Canyon


  • wiegel

    Welcome Sentient! Great post and one that many of us agree with, me for one....stick around, I look forward to hearing more from you. Trudy

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