by Terry 11 Replies latest jw friends

  • Terry

    I never converted to becoming a Jehovah's Witness as an act of volition. I gradually found myself absorbed into a group that "accepted" me.

    Being a part of something larger than myself was key. I'd never been inside a functioning group. But, my talents were tapped. I was sought out. I became a center of interest. THEY WANTED ME.

    An outsider like myself found that irresistable.

    I think this love bombing experience is more vitally effective in conversion than any gymnastic of rhetoric or bible study.

    No matter how smart you are it is your peer group that holds you inside your belief system. This is especially true when your entire family ("family") consists of "brothers" and "sisters" who have expectations of you.

    This may be the one true obstacle to wresting somebody free from the Watchtower Society and not theological error at all.

    The Jw who finds themselves facing facts which pretty much identify their religion as a bogus belief system are really contemplating losing a huge investment in friendships and family and a zone of comfort that isn't likely to be replicable outside the organization.

    There is method in the madness of the Governing Body in constantly beating the drum of ORGANIZATION LOYALTY.

    Where do you "go" when you leave? There is nothing even remotely similar in emotional "support".

    The irony is that there isn't love and acceptance and emotional support at the Kingdom Hall. There is merely the pretense.

    Yet, the illusion is strong, is it not?

  • Arthur

    I think you hit the nail on the head.

  • Wasanelder Once
    Wasanelder Once


    Add to that the distrust you are indoctrinated to build for all others and you have a very limiting view. It is one that keeps you from accepting new people as readily as you would like, or need. I found the whole thing to be crippling in many ways. I love to be with people and do things with others, but now its slim pickings. I dont have the cadre of friends I used to. I am personable and friendly enough to others, its just that it is tainted by that friendly at the hall and ignore outside of it mentality. I'm great in the setting of group goals, but set apart otherwise.

    Yes, it has been hard.

    Dont give up.


  • dustrabbit

    I left the dubs when I was 18 or so, but life never felt right for me until I got into my 30s. Now, I feel so adjusted to life, I can't I was once forced to wear a tie and make a sales pitch for two little JW magazine as if I belonged to a church that was full of used-car salespeople.

  • dustrabbit

    I wrote:

    Now, I feel so adjusted to life, I can't I was once forced....

    correct to read: Now, I feel so adjusted to life, I can't *believe* I was once forced...

  • DannyHaszard

    alt "What does the Bible Really Teach" Page 150 Watchtower recruitment manual SHANGHAIED to SHANGRI-LA alt LOVE BOMBING The 'No Brainer Container' HOW DO CULTS SEDUCE THEIR PREY ? "" ......A tactic used most often is the "LOVE BOMBING"...They swarm over you in a sort of ,"COCOONMENT". All of a sudden,,you have,,INSTANT FAMILY,,INSTANT PURPOSE,,INSTANT COMMUNITY,,INSTANT FRIENDS.....And you don't have to look inside yourself for answers anymore,,.. because cult leaders, or their designated high disciples,,dispense all your spiritual needs.. ....A mass delusion,,mass hysteria,,operating under the illusion of a master plan...In military jargon this is known as ,"Cluster F**k"... Beware of Love Bombing.... Leonard Brenner Love-bombing is characteristic of most cults. Prospects, recruits and members are drowned in a sea of love and caring. Recently in an evangelical church I heard the pastor describe his visit to two cultic groups in which he praised their love-bombing and urged that his church adopt the same loving attitude towards visitors and members. Should the evangelical church practice love-bombing? Is this what Christ meant when he said, "By this will all men know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another," (John 13:35)? I've heard cult members say, "Of course we practice love-bombing: Who'd want to be in a group or church that practiced hate-bombing?" This attitude highlights a common misconception. Hate-bombing is not the opposite of love-bombing. The opposite of love-bombing is unconditional love. alt Love-bombing is highly conditional. The cults will love you to death while you represent a prospective convert to their group. As a member a tight family love will surround you as you faithfully promote their cause. However, when it is clear that a prospect will not join the group or a member voices doubts, create waves, or leaves the group, all love ceases. Indeed scorn is immediately heaped on these individuals and remaining members are told not to have any contact with them. All time, effort and love-bombing is then directed towards new prospects and the faithful members. Is this the love evangelical churches should practice? Unconditional love is what God practiced when he sent his Son to die for us..... All hands abandon ship! The Watchtower's plagiarizing pirate ship was 'scuttled', before it ever left the docks. It was all the 'blind following the blind'.--Their fallacious faith of credulity has been shipwrecked. Shanghaied to Shangri-La. alt

    When you first meet the Freemans and their followers, they offer so much acceptance and attention that the experience can be exhilarating, former members say. A few ex-members said that Patsy Freeman purposefully arranges things so that a newcomer will suddenly be invited out to lunch or dinner by a different member of the group every day.

    “They present very well,” said one former member. “They’re very outgoing people – in some ways, just what a young person is looking for.”

    Another former member, who joined the Freeman group shortly after graduating from college, said first encounters with the group were “overpowering to most of us that became involved with their group as college students.”

    Barber had such an experience.

    Barber, whose father was an elder in the Local Church, joined the Freeman group in Seattle at the age of 19. He said he was “struck by the friendliness and genuine humanity of the seeming atmosphere of love and respect in their church.”

    In a 1998 e-mail to a friend, Barber tells of his experience living in the Freeman’s Seattle home for a year:

    “At first I was enthralled with the typical ‘love-buzz’ used by all cults to snare the convert and was treated to a great deal of pampered attention ,” Barber said. “… I must admit there is a strong spirit which one meets at first encounter with the Freeman group, and it feels quite euphoric and spiritually sensual. It is a high of sorts, and I, along with others, felt a blissful transport as long as one fully transferred one’s mind and will, in complete surrender and submission, to the group construct headed by Patsy and Bill.”

    Barber said he was being groomed by the Freemans for a leadership position in the Local Church and was “ranked high in the group hierarchy.”
    It wasn’t long, however, until Barber said he realized that there were costs that came with his elevated position. The Freemans expected adherents’ undivided loyalty, even if it wasn’t openly asked for in public.

    One former member said the process of drawing people into the group was like “boot camp in the Marines. … An attempt is made by Patsy to break down the individual’s will and strongholds that may frustrate her efforts to convince members to drop their individual identity and to take on and operate only according to the group identity.”

  • New Worldly Translation
    New Worldly Translation

    Very true Terry. I've confronted doctrinal issues with my parents and they can't dispute the facts I put in front of them but they don't want to break out of the dream world they've bought into. There are two main things keeping them in; expectation from their peer group including the family and the resurrection hope.

    A lot of JW's have bought into Pascal's wager and even if you showed them irrefutible truth that they were wrong they'd still edge their bets on the org.

  • Balsam

    Love bombing is effective, along with demonizing everyone outside the group, feeling of being special and needed really plays on the human heart strings don't it? Great comments here.


  • poppers

    "One former member said the process of drawing people into the group was like “boot camp in the Marines."
    Having been in the Marines I can assure you that there was no love-bombing to draw us in. That being said, it is true that the individual is broken down and then built back up to serve the purpose of the Marine Corps. The pressure is in being part of a group in which you don't want to disappoint or let down because the cohesion and effectiveness of the group is then diminished. One's life is literally in the hands of the other members of the group, and identification with that group becomes very strong indeed. Even after 34 years out of the Corps I still feel great pride in having been in it. The "love" of the Corps came latter, the fear of being a "weak link" is what held us together as we were trained, and turned us into a powerfully effective force to be reckoned with.

  • Terry

    The blazing irony is this. You can ask any question you want and demand as much information as you need when you don't know enough to ask questions that matter. Once you are wise to the game you cannot ask questions or you are marked as trouble.

    The peer group is all.

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