The following was taken from R1037 p p regarding questions people had about using tracts in their preaching work. Russell responds. I will highlight some interesting pointsand add my comments in red
[R1037 : page 1]
We receive many suggestions about tracts. Many readers wish that they had something that in few words would state clearly the truth on all subjects. We attempt no such brief statement of so large a subject, knowing it would be unwise. Because with the many errors and prejudices filling the hearts and minds of God's children, such condensed food would be too strong. So long as prejudice remains the truth seems ungainly and unreasonable, and only a gradual meeting of the objections and a gradual showing of the beauty and reasonableness of the truth, can bring conviction and overthrow the power of prejudices favoring papal errors received in early training and supported by popular sentiment.
This sounds likr the "feed them pablum" thinking that underlines all WT literature. Since there is always a turnover of new converts no one ever gets to the meat. No wonder JWs are spiritually starving
For this reason we purposely avoid all such condensed statements, knowing from experience that they never convert any from error to the truth. They would appear strong and incontrovertible and convincing to you, because your eyes are opened, but to others whose eyes are closed they would merely seem to be another creed--your opinion added to the general confusion already existing.
Keep them on the pablum because they just won't see things our way
We believe, and to us experience proves, that the plan we do pursue is the best; namely to treat God's Plan of the Ages comprehensively and connectedly, as for instance in DAWN VOL. I., and to use something brief and pointed like the "Arp Tracts," which implies much but does not attempt to present the proofs, to call attention to and introduce DAWN to such as have an ear to hear.
I'm still looking for a copy of ARP tracts. Spoon feed information that can't be proven one way or another
Those whose interest is not awakened by reading this little tract, are too fast asleep to do anything with at present-- the political, financial and ecclesiastical thunderings of the "day of wrath" and the crashing and falling of Great Babylon will awaken them and liberate them by and by,--then they will be interested.
So one little ARP tract is supposed to awaken the interst of certain people. Forget the rest. It doesn't sound to me like there is any attempt to reach the heart of a person
Those whose interest is sufficiently awakened and who are honest enough to concede the inconsistency of their own and other so-called "orthodox" views, will get DAWN and read it and be blessed and comforted, and truly turned from the darkness of error to God's light of truth. The dishonest, who like the Pharisees of old, say that they see, when in their hearts they know that they are "blind, and cannot see afar off" and can neither understand nor apologize for the character and plan of God which they profess to believe and call great and grand,--these are not now worthy of the truth which is only for the truth-hungry. By and by they will get honest enough to receive the truth or else be cut off in the second death as those who make and love a lie.--Rev. 21:27; 22:15.
If I understand this, if a person already has some doubts then you might have a better shot at swaying their interest. If we slowly introduce these new ideas then they may admit the doubts they may have had with their old beliefs
In this matter of tracts, as well as in all things, our zeal should be according to knowledge, and we should as our Lord said, be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. Wise in our doing of good, as the serpent is crafty for evil.
Is it just me or did they flip that around? they have to be good and crafty? What happened to harmless?
For similar reasons we prefer to use special numbers of the TOWER, and thus introduce the reader to several phases of truth, rather than publish special articles as tracts as some occasionally suggest.
And isn't that exactly what they do even now? Slowly introduce their beliefs in a controlled environment. That is how the webpage is set up. People can't just read it and decide to join up. They would still have to study WT books to get the "right" understanding.
The more I read about Russell the less I like him