Whats the aim of the people in charge?

by JoeSinclair 18 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • JoeSinclair

    Hello again,

    I was about to post another reply to my previous thread but I decided a new thread would be appropriate for this question.

    I have learned a lot in the last few days about the JW organisation and the waverings towards cult-like behaviour. I have read web sites listing cult like characteristics and then examples of what the Watchtower chaps have done that looks similar. It was tempting, at first, to think that I am hearing from a collective of disaffected people who have been hard done by and to assume the reality lies somewhere nearer the middle than you guys say it is. However, some very well thought out positions are represented here and I am moving towards a view that I should in fact have much more concern about JW and the risks it poses to my relationship with my girlfriend than I previously thought.

    This generates a further question, which is about the people in charge of the Watchtower organisation. If they are operating a cult like organisation I would expect that they either:

    1) Genuinely do believe they are the messengers of God, or

    2) Know it is a sham and they are pulling a fast one in order to derive a benefit of some sort.

    I would imagine that it is in fact neither of those, or rather BOTH of those. Can you offer any insights into the people at the top and their motives?

    If they err towards reason 2 then would you say Power over people, or Cold hard cash are anything to do with it? I believe the JW encourage donations of money? Lots of money? All of your money? Do we know much about the lifestyles of the top men, lavish and materialistic, or miserly and honourable for example? A different motivation that I'm not aware of?

    I thought cults demanded all your money and the boss man has 12 wives and everyone lives in a big community on a mountain somewhere waiting for the end of the world..

    I know that's a ridiculous stereotype but I said it to emphasize that I see some cult like characteristics, but also as far as I'm aware compared to some other cults there are some bits missing.


  • JoeSinclair

    Oh, this is wonderful, I just found this in another thread in this forum. Fits nicely in one of those gaps I was trying to describe above! ;-)

    Source: "What years did the WTBTS society prophesy Armaggedon would come?" ( http://www.jehovahs-witness.com/12/114224/1.ashx )


    1909 "Mrs. Russell's request that the monthly allowance [alimony] be increased from $40 to $100, which was allowed by the Court, but which we were unable to comply with, because all of our property, except that which brought the income of $40 per month (which Mrs. Russell had been receiving), had been donated to the WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY." {WR Jul 1 1909 4424} [Donate your funds to WTBTS to escape paying alimony]

  • DHL

    I often read statements from others here at JWD about how much the "men in power" are into money making or simply enjoy their powerful position in the cult. I do believe this is right for some of them but honestly I can't imagine this speaks for all of them. I am quite sure some of the leading men are blinded themselves and quite fanatical and absolutely sure to be guided by God and doing Gods will. Some of them surely have good intentions, as much as many engaged rank&file witnesses.

    I know that's a ridiculous stereotype but I said it to emphasize that I see some cult like characteristics, but also as far as I'm aware compared to some other cults there are some bits missing.

    If you can see a couple of cult like characteristics then you can bet it's one. I don't think each cult matches all cult like characteristics. But there are some basics that can help you to identify a cult. Like how a group treats people who leave or how critical thinking is viewed within the group. How did the group come into existence? How does the group views itself, how strongly do they advocate their exclusiveness? Can they prove what they preach?

    After all just listen to your own heart! Do you feel good with how they treat each other and outsiders? Could you accept an authority (whether it's a person or a group) to tell you exactly what to believe, how to act, how to feel and what not to do? Could you for example imagine to accept anybody who claimed to have the right to order you to quit contact with even your closest family members? Is that what you really want in your life?

  • nelly136

    dont underestimate the pull of the jw, this can affect more than your present relationship with your girlfriend. this could come back and bite you in years to come.

    i've personally known jws to leave and live great lives out and away from jws then up sticks and off back years later.

    one of them(already had 2 kids from previous non jw) had had a baby by a really nice (non jw) bloke and was getting married when she dropped the jw return card on him, next thing he's having studies and off they go to the hall. her sister who had also been out for years went trotting back at the same time.

    you'll probably find quite a few pepes experiences on this board, where they married and lived happily for a whiles before their partners suddenly decided to go back to being jws, how many are posting now i'm not sure, but theres been a few over the years.

  • jgnat

    The Watchtower is quite unique in that it is a cult run by committee. Committees have very different motives than a dynamic leader. The WTBTS started out in typical fashion. It had two dynamic leaders in a row, both hopelessly egocentric. Both ruled with an iron fist. Both prospered quite nicely on the WT gravy train. BUT the WTBTS beyond all that was an organization designed by lawyers to be self-perpetuating. The complex arrangement of power is absolute genius in design. The printing arm does not own copyright. The governing structure owns copyright but can't print. And the system of elders has no voice without the print. The system is designed to PREVENT any futher takeovers by a single dynamic leader.

    What is the motive of a committee? Self-perpetuation. Don't rock the boat. Maintain the status quo. Beat down the innovators and the visionaries, and reward the mediocre.

    You can see that this motive has infiltrated the entire fabric of the organization. As the leaders go, so do six million people. Especially in an organization as tightly controlled as this one is.

    I am convinced that the ageing Governing Body are suffering from age-related depression and dementia. I see the same beaten look in it's followers; even in the younger ones. As the leaders go, so do six million people.

    Do they genuinely believe they are the messengers of God? I think so. Every con artist will come to believe his own lie if he tells it often enough. The GB's ideas are no more inspired than a brick, but they rely on "inspiration" the same way the rest of the world does. They read the book and follow it the best they can. By this means they have convinced themselves that they are 'inspired'. Where they are unique is that they genuinely belive that this "inspiration" has died on the rest of the planet. Isn't it the most depressing thing in the world to believe that the most loving, inspired words from God today emanate from the Awake!? No wonder they suffer from dementia.

    Do they know it is a sham and they are pulling a fast one in order to derive a benefit of some sort? I think so. Remember, this is an organization that is run by committee. To rise to the committee you have to be a company man. A man who never questions. A man who never sticks his neck out or gives anyone cause to give him the sack. What is the benefit to a man, whose been running scared most of his life, to be on such a committee? Perpetuation and pension. As long as he keeps to the program, he'll continue to survive.

    So you could say their motive is the same as everyone else's, survival. Survival in a brutal organization that does not brook error.

    I am sure there's a bit of ego in there somewhere. After all, these men have survived a brutal elimination program by pure mediocrity. It's a large organization. Big money flows, even if he doesn't benefit directly. People flow at his hand, even if he doesn't benefit directly.

  • rebel8

    IMO at the very very beginning of contact with the org, ppl are often attracted because they want to be special. Some ppl cannot effectively cope with the idea that they are just one person in billions with nothing to make them stand out from the rest of humanity. They want to be unique, "in the know". The JW dogma is perfectly suited to that. Be Jah's one and only special ppl, be the only ones to have the secret truth about the mysteries of the universe that no one else can figure out. Be the only group ever to be persecuted by Satan. Be the only group ever to identify Armageddon's time line based upon complex math that everyone else is too stupid to figure out.

    Then comes the (false) sense of security that comes from being special and morally superior to everyone else, and boom, you're hooked.

    Then comes all the other fringe benefits--power, etc.--that just seals the deal.

    At some point, a person may figure out that the first 2 things aren't true, but they're still "in" because of #3.

  • Swan

    Welcome Joe!

    I think it is a mixture, myself. I think that Pastor Russell genuinely believed his own horse puckey. When he died Rutherford wrested control away for himself, and I think he knew it was all BS. I think Fred Franz really believed all of his pet theories that he expounded in numerous publications. Knorr may have believed it, but I think it was more likely that as a business man, he knew which side his bread was buttered.

    I think many of the Governing Body believe their own rhetoric. I think they are probably, in-part, a victim of the cult-like system which they themselves have perpetuated to enslave others. So I don't hold them blameless, for they are complicit in many hypocritical things that they have rationalized to themselves.

    A great book to read on the subject is Raymond Franz' (nephew of Fred Franz) Crisis of Conscience in which he becomes a member of the Governing Body, discovers many of its lies and hypocrisy, and leaves the Governing Body because he cannot conscientiously support it any longer.


  • greendawn

    Surely the leaders can't be teaching so many false ideas without being aware of it, if they are not it's because they are being hypocritical and refuse to see the obvious. They can have no excuse especially after 120 years. But hypocrites can always find excuses to justify their wrongdoing.

  • drew sagan
    drew sagan
    Surely the leaders can't be teaching so many false ideas without being aware of it, if they are not it's because they are being hypocritical and refuse to see the obvious.

    I agree. I think that leaders of such organizations simply hand over everything they have to mental acceptance that what they have is correct and anything must be done in order to protect it.
    The other day when I posted about Luke 21:8 and how an Elder told me I dosn't appply to JWs because they are chosen by god another post blew my mind away.
    Although that line of reasoning has never been stated in the Watchtower magazine another poster on the board said that in conversation to a Governing Body member that in reply to the same question the exact same answer the Elder gave me was given! They think alike because they are simply reacting to the situation and trying their best to keep their religion and dogma going. It's all about organization, that's what's #1. Your starting to see it more and more. Good luck!

  • DannyHaszard

    I will be blunt and impeccably honest so here goes-The engine that drives the cult high disciples is the trifecta of the 3 "P's" and they are POWER + PRESTIGE + P***Y

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