I read with interest Java;s post re: a therapists view of leaving a restrictive religion.
Using my own experiences, and those of others on the board, it would appear that there are only two ways to go, and one path that has to be taken in order to make sense or order of the situation.
I had to ask myself and do some heavy research as to what I no longer believe and why.
This is my present understanding on the matter.
Shunning is a defence mechanism for the protection of the WTBTS in order to keep members in and neutralise bad press.
1914 would seem to be in serious error as a correct date in the chronology.
Dichotomies exist within the organisation as to the anointed of God, the Governing body and rulership thereof.
Continual guessing and speculation of dates throughout its brief history, is unscriptural, unbalanced and just plain deceitful.
The elder arrangement is not working. It is run on a set of cast in stone rulings from the Governing Body and proves no function other than to keep dissedents in check...
There is no real human love in any of the arrangements despite the usage of the words.
Disfellowshipping destroys families regardless of the public message promoted by the WTBTS.
Disfellowshipping utilises, grief, sorrow, unworthiness, shame, hurt, physical seperation and unjust means to whip someone to their senses..or return with a broken spirit to be in servitude forever.
Being a member of the WTBTS is seriously ijurious to personal mental health.
I no longer believe that the WTBTS has a clear direction from the creator, I no longer believe that the message of urgency is based on accuracy or common sense. I no longer believe that there is a common goal anymore, it has been surpassed by maintaining and increasing material possessons. I have to ask ..why? to what end? What good does another branch office do?
Recently I was in another country where they had just built a branch..sveral millions of dollars..in the middle of no where, has no function for printing or for anything really. 3 families live there..answer the phone and....do nothing. It takes hours to visit and no one has seen the reason for it being in that location. Im sure that later on. due to an event.. the brothers will exclaim " that is why it is there!"
I have lost faith in the whole system, from the reality of the love displayed, to disfellowshipping to information dissemination to ..well just honesty about everything..
The one path we all have to take, is to be honest with ourselves. We have to look real hard at the evidence that the internet has brought to the forefront and weigh that up carefully.
It has been like losing all my family. It IS like losing all my family, my heritage, my history my legacies, my future and my past life.
But..if it wasnt real to start with..the only thing I have lost is human contacts..and if they can not see how hard I tried to make the pieces fit..then shame on them.
I have been put on the outside, I have been made to feel worthless and valueless, or rather that has been the intention from the whole disfellowshipping fiasco...and it will only work if I let it..
It still has the chance to destroy relationships with family members still in..they dont come round, they dont call, trying to do the right thing..and that sucks....
But Im never going back.
and for those of you who had a hand in the gossip and the hypocrisy..and you know who you are, and you are here reading this despite knowing that you shouldnt.. I want you to be aware that I know about your lapses of judements, your darkest secrets....things which you would have to do a lot of repenting for...
and Im going to keep that information to myself...because you have to live within your skin and mind and deal with your own twistedness daily...and that is worse than anything I can do to you..because your God has no provision for hypocrisy when you know you are practicing it.You cannot clean enough toilets to gain the self respect that you need in order to have a quality of life that is biblical..so stay in and live the lie and suffer...because you choose that path..and you cant even do that with honesty.
I dont know anymore about religion, or God, or Jesus, its all a mess of disgusting emotional turmoil..but I keep reading the bible, reading history, reading religious writings....and keep searching..
If the answer is that there is no God...then that is the answer. If tha answer is that this is not the time for his involvement in earth.. then that is the answer...if the answer is being a Moslem.. then that is the answer..
But till then, we just carry on..