Intolerance - a new breed of ex-JW

by LittleToe 260 Replies latest jw friends

  • Lo-ru-hamah

    I notice a lack of tolerance in myself, not necessarily an intolerance for religion, but for the intolerance that religion displays. ie. Not too long ago my neighbor, who is devoutly religious, had a work mate who died of cancer. This work mate was an eastern religion, don't remember which one, and because of this my neighbor said how sad, becuase she is now burning in hell.

    I agree with others here who have stated that they found it necessary to reassess their core values. It is important for each person to find what they believe defines themselves and stick to that. It is not for us to tell others how they should live, think or act. The only person that we can truly change is ouselves.

    I have started some threads on here that have dealt with ideals that I had as a witness and cannot seem to get rid of. Some of the members disagreed. It did not offend me or make me angry, becuase, I came on here and posted my idea to get others opinions on it, whether it agrees or disagrees with what I am thinking.

    Anyway, that is my two cents. And I might add that I have probably said what has been said before and not put as eloquently as others. My opinion is that there are a lot of people on this board who have a beautiful way of expressing their thoughts.


  • Balaams Ass
    Balaams Ass

    <div>It's not your religious beliefs Little Toe

    It's coz your a Scot ;)

    Just Kiddin'

    The Ass

    Just coz your paranoid, don't mean that they ain't out to get ya....</div>

  • Terry
    It seems to me, from my perspective of sitting here on a remote Scottish island, that there are a fair number of folks who may have left an intolerant and generalising religion but forgot to leave those attitudes with it.

    It is a matter of real world alternatives.

    We have two:


    2.Moral responsiblity

    The moral neutrality you reccomend is a mirror of JW neutrality about the evil empires who make war.

    There are two sides to every issue of importance: one is right and the other is wrong--but--the MIDDLE is ALWAYS EVIL

    What you fail to notice philosophically is this:

    Moral cowardice is fear of upholding the good BECAUSE it is good, and fear of opposing the evil BECAUSE it is evil.

    Is morality inconsequential? Then, your view has merit.]

    Neutrality is the common symptom of intellectual appeasers.

    No Brute ever came to power and stayed there without the appeasers making it possible by failure to condemn them directly by opposing them with enough force to gain the attention of the world at large.

    Moral agnosticism corrupts and disintegrates the culture and man's character.

    THE PRIME OBJECTIVE of human consciousness is identifying the good and the bad. SURVIVAL depends on it.

    if you are willing to declare that neither good nor evil may expect anything of you (by way of praise or condemnation) ask yourself this:

    Who do you betray and who do you encourage?


    According to Merriam-Webster intolerant is defined as such:

    Main Entry: in·tol·er·ant
    Function: adjective
    1 : unable or unwilling to endure 2 a : unwilling to grant equal freedom of expression especially in religious matters b : unwilling to grant or share social, political, or professional rights

    FIrst, OFG has confused intolerance with criticism. I am able and willing to endure your use of pot, so long as your use and my life don't intersect in a negative manner. However, your lifestyle choices and your promotion of said lifestyle are not above criticism. Just as mine are not. Being critical is by no means being intolerant.

    Secondly, I don't have a problem with people criticicizing Christianity. There are plenty of disgusting things about Christianity in my mind also. What seems odd is that those that claim to be the "free thinkers" are usually the most intolerant when it comes to those of us that profess faith in Christ. I have seen this on other boards that I frequent. For example, I know of one board with a prolithic post who is a Taoist. Among the "free thinkers" he is lauded when he posts according to his beliefs, but yet when a Christian posts according to his/her beliefs he/she is excoriated with intolerant banter. This is not simply critical thought, but with statements that are similar to what is found on this board. Basicly, it is the inability or unwillingness to endure a viewpoint counter to their own.

    Lastly, the point that should be emphasized is that critisicism is not intolerance. We are critical of many things, and many times that critical look is the sum total of our personal experience combined with our education. Some times it's too much of one and not enough of the other. This is done way too much today. Too many times the manner of deflecting criticism is to raise the intolerance flag. This is happening here in Los Angeles with a charter school teaching a bigoted & seperatist agenda. They have been called on the carpet for what they are teaching, and instead of demonstrating why the news reports are wrong, they are calling the station that broke the story intolerant, and the reporter a pedophile. So again, since when is criticism equated with intolerance?

  • LittleToe

    LoRu:Nicely put.

    I concur that intolerance to intolerance is a good thing.

    Terry:Did you post to the right thread?

    There are usually more than two sides to every issue - if it seems black and white (a la WTS) it probably isn't, hence I repudiate your "2 options" rhetoric in the name of the Lawwwd!

    Alternatively I must be a moral coward... yeah, that must be it...

  • funkyderek

    I was at a restaurant recently and one of my companions ordered a sirloin steak. This reminded me of something I'd heard once, and I proceeded to tell the group of the quirky etymology of the word sirloin - viz., that a king of England had enjoyed a loin steak so much that he had knighted it. I was soon corrected - the word actually comes from the French "surlogne", meaning "over the loin". I confirmed this the following day at

    What's this got to do with anything? Well, while I was mildly embarrassed to be corrected in public, I was glad that I knew more than before. I would be far more embarrassed - humiliated even - had my companion decided to be "tolerant" of my belief, and I had continued in my error. With the possible exception of pride I cannot see why anyone would prefer to be wrong but tolerated, than to be correct.

    So when someone expresses a belief I know to be false, I will usually correct it. If they express a questionable belief, I will question it. If they express a ridiculous belief, I may even ridicule it. None of this is intolerance. If they choose to hold an untenable belief, I will still tolerate them. I will not necessarily respect them, or keep silent about their error - but why should I? And why should there be any difference between correcting someone about the origin of a word, and correcting someone about the origin of the universe?

    You have the right to believe whatever you wish - and I will not only tolerate it but would fight for that right. You do not have the right to have your beliefs respected or pandered to - no matter how sincerely you hold them.

  • Robdar

    ~hands back head with muffled apologies~

    Aw, LT, you didn't have to apologize. I figure we have had so many discussions and you've forgiven me so many times, no more needs to be said. I thank you for accepting me as I am. I also thank you for giving me back my head. Hey! What's that in my mouth????

  • Rabbit

    Geez, Ross. What an intolerant mess we have here.

    Seriously, tho' I see intolerance happening, too. I'm not so sure if it's really increasing or just part of a normal cycle of JW --> doubting JW --> fading, DF/DA JW --> Angry, hurt & shunned Ex-JW --> Ex-JW who is now ...?

    Here's where it gets interesting:

    a) Some of us for our own personal needs and reasons 'jump' right into another religious belief system.

    b) Some of us readily reject anything WT 'like', but, hang on to the Bible as a basis for our guide to living.

    c) Some of us are so completely disgusted with what religion has come to represent in our lives & minds...we are slowly/quickly evolving away from any structured belief.

    Of course, there are many other 'destinations' where X-JW's are traveling to or have arrived. I don't pretend to understand the 'how & why', I am tolerant, partly, because I want the same consideration and respect. I love the diverse beliefs, to me it represents a kind of 'middle finger salute' in the general direction of the WTS -- that they will not control (all of) us.

    My evolution: At the last Texas 'Fest you were at, I told you, "I, was still a 'believer' (Bible) and appreciated the fact that you were, too." I said that, because, I felt a little out-numbered by the atheists, agnostics, pagans, etc. And, because, you were an open-minded, tolerant & non-judgmental Christian...which is a rather rare creature, imho.

    I still have that opinion about you, but, not the Bible or any religion. My travels so far have taken me from, "B" to "C" in my examples above.

    The posters below bring up good examples, although opposed, why a 'monkey wrench' being thrown in sometimes -- is a good thing. Although, it can irritate the hell out of others by making them think 'it's patently off-topic' or it makes them uncomfortable having their closely held beliefs questioned.

    Justin As has been pointed out, people should be met where they are. I don't think it's helpful, for instance, if someone asks how the WTS knows how many of the 144,000 are left, for them to be told that the whole subject is mythological anyway - that there isn't even a God to pick the 144,000, let alone a heavenly kingdom, etc. Let those who are willing to deal with the subject on its own terms attempt to help those people. In the same way, I don't think that someone who has declared themselves an atheist should be told by a believer to "try Jesus"! If we imply that what matters to people is actually irrelevant, then I think we are also implying that the people themselves are irrelevant.

    Narkissos answered:

    That's very insightful.
    However sometimes a shift of paradigm is required, and only a person who do not share a "common ground" with the first poster can bring it about.
    Many xJWs' questions are based on wrong premises (vestiges of JW doctrine), and they need to be questioned rather than answered. E.g. "How do the anointed know they are?" "Was Jesus perfect like Adam?" "Is the WT part of Babylon the Great?" Such questions cannot be adequately answered without questioning the underlying JW definitions (respectively "anointed," "perfection" and "Babylon the Great"). No more than you can answer the question "did you stop beating your wife?" if you never did. Of course there is no need to do it harshly.

    When I first came here 3 years ago, there was this one poster who irritated me by showing up on 'Biblical' threads I was enjoying (in my comfort zone) to brazenly question the very validity of the Holy Bible ! He would declare it was written by ignorant "goat-herders" who worshipped an unseen cruel & vindictive god, that was of course, cleverly dreamed up as a method of controlling people.

    How DARE he make me think of things outside my comfort zone ? Guess what ? After a while I began to think, "What can I really prove about God ?" I finally realized the answer, for me, was ...nothing.

    Imagine the shock JW's have to their systems when someone 'brazenly' gives an answer at the WT study -- that is not the 'pat' written answer they are supposed to give...? It's offensive, but, possibly just what some need to hear to shake out their cob-webs a little.

    My beliefs are now very close to that 'irritating poster', I'm glad my beliefs were challenged & criticized...that helped me grow. Where will I be in a year ? Beats me. All I know is I'll continue listening to everything and take what I need. I believe it's important in these things to, "Never say never."

    I cannot improve on XJW4EVR's comment below :

    Lastly, the point that should be emphasized is that criticism is not intolerance. We are critical of many things, and many times that critical look is the sum total of our personal experience combined with our education.

  • Terry
    Did you post to the right thread?

    There are usually more than two sides to every issue - if it seems black and white (a la WTS) it probably isn't, hence I repudiate your "2 options" rhetoric in the name of the Lawwwd!


    You ask if I posted to the RIGHT thread.

    Is posting a black and white or wrong and right, either/or issue?

    You see? Practically speaking things are pretty much either or when it comes to morality. But, the thinking lingers over to less ethical issues.

    You repudiate thyself.

    "Out"...."out" "unclean spirit!"

  • LittleToe

    I've just gotta say, that I appreciate the comments this thread has drawn. There are some good points being made all round.

    Derek:I completely agree. I take no issue with healthy criticism.

    Trashing another person on the basis of their beliefs is a little OTT, though, IMHO (and that's a personal statement, not an accusation, btw).


    Yeah, I commiserate. Your wife can pinch for Texas

    Looking forward to seeing ya both again next month

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