Thanks for the link. I found the associated link below to be especially relevant. It is apparently an objective review of one of Bergman's books (even though the site is pro-JW). I haven't seen the book, but this review documents sloppy research and questionable editing and credibility. http://www.jehovah.to/freedom/review.htm.
He is apparently very self-indulgent even with his "professional" writings and hurts his credibility. Seems very immature and unprofessional, as has been pointed out by others on this thread who are more familiar with his work than I am.
I still believe that he has some research that is potentially insightful to JWs and ex-JWs. It is a shame that he makes it all seem suspect by his indulgences. As Waiting suggested, he should have gone through enough therapy before attempting his work.
Even then, I wonder how objective a person could ever be after having had part of their life taken from them by a cult association. On the other hand, who else (other than an ex-JW) would ever care enough to work as tirelessly as he seems to have in attempting to document the potential harm of this religion (biased as it may be). Ironically, it is probably the well-read ex-JWs who are past the anger, who are in the best position to critically evaluate his work and conclusions -- and they are probably the least in need of it. C'est la vie.
Flawed as his work may be, perhaps it is better than silence. If nothing else, a big caution flag is being waved to the world. In view of all the wasted lives (including mine) and potential wasted lives, there is a real need for big flags to be waved.
I wish there was some way to gather from every ex-JW a standardized survey of damages sustained through membership and have one place for persons to view them and assess the total impact. This would be relevant to anyone interested in cult influences. The dark side of this scenario is those who would use such data to justify the denial of religious and other personal freedoms. Since membership is voluntary (except for children of members), the danger of cult involvement is a sad but necessary price that society pays. The answer to this dilemma is not loss of freedoms, but rather education. When everyone has access to objective information, then the cults are robbed of much of their power and influence over gullible victims. Hopefully, the Internet will prove to be a valuable resource for such information, and not just a vehicle for those would prey on the unwary.
Edited by - AhHah on 4 November 2000 2:55:30