Rationales behind Elimination of the Book Study and Likely Effects Thereof

by Olin Moyles Ghost 18 Replies latest jw friends

  • Fadeout

    No contributions are received at Book Study, it is the sole unprofitable meeting.

    Attendance has been declining and it was already the worst-attended meeting.

    The private environment can lead to the expression of personal non-WT sanctioned thoughts. I've seen it.

    4.75 hours over three days per week of meetings discourages some people from joining. Now they're down to 3.5 hours on two days per week.

    Removing one meeting night per week may have the effect of increasing service time. We'll see.

    Gas prices or being a burden on the members has absolutely nothing to do with it. Gas in Europe has been $8 per gallon and up for many years and they never eliminated meetings because of it. Burden? Having the members eschew college and work part-time digging ditches so they could spend 70-90 hours per month selling magazines is a little bigger burden, ain't it?

    I just hope this backfires bigtime. Two indoctrination sessions per week instead of three can't help but be a good thing, right?

  • skeeter1

    No contributions are received at Book Study, it is the sole unprofitable meeting.

    Very good thought!

  • Narkissos
    The private environment can lead to the expression of personal non-WT sanctioned thoughts. I've seen it.

    Fadeout, could you please expand?

    Who's got similar experiences?

    (Hope I'm not hijacking this thread, I hesitated to create yet another one on the "Book Study" issue...)

  • Fadeout

    At the book study we usually only had one elder.

    If that elder is not strong in his pro-WT stance, people may make comments or even ask questions that do not go along with the book. Some people have the idea that the book study is a perfect opportunity to ask for clarification on points they don't understand. Or perhaps they are closet apostates playing dumb... who knows?

    And if the elder is the one doing the independent thinking, he may raise additional points or questions or scriptures that get people thinking along a different line than the book.

    Overall there just isn't enough peer pressure at many book studies to keep everyone in line. Same rationale behind cutting the public talk length. The WTS wants the speaker to stick closer to the outline and use less of his own material. No doubt some speakers were taking the opportunity to use those extra 15 minutes to expound on their personal views, and outside of the congregation catechistical question-and-answer sessions, there is no place for personal expressions. The question-and-answer parts don't allow for more than a minute of expressed independent thinking at worst, but a rogue public speaker could go off in an unacceptable direction for a half hour in his talk, and worse, it's coming from the platform so people are taking it seriously.

    Book study is the same thing... a whole hour of a small group of dubs talking about Biblical stuff... who knows what kind of trouble they are getting into? Remember the OKM last year that came out against independent group study of the Bible? It's just an extension of that.

  • Narkissos

    Thank you Fadeout, very interesting...

    I remember that following a WT outline for public talks became mandatory around 1980 (I believe as a direct consequence of the "apostasy" in Brooklyn around Ray Franz). Prior to that I had never followed an outline...

    If the practice of asking questions (instead of answering them) and expressing personal views in Book Studies was widespread indeed, I would readily rate this issue rationale # 1 for today's change.

  • knock knock
    knock knock
    No doubt the Society is concerned about apostates, but probably no more so than with materialism, porn, divorce, apathy, depression, etc.

    Materialism, porn, apathy and depression do not turn a direct spotlight on the many misdeeds and misinterpretations of the WT. So called apostates are actually getting quite adept at doing that now. These [other] things don't affect the control the WT has over it's minions. An inquiring mind is something to be feared if you are a cult leader. Just my tacking mind at work.

  • penny2

    There are so few elders that some are doing 2 bookstudies.

    People generally hate going out at night to "study" boring material they've been through before. It's a joke.

    People don't like relative strangers traipsing through their house bringing in mud from outside and ruining the furniture.

    Among the comments I've heard - "Why do we have to wait until January?"

  • bonnzo

    amen!!!! why not start may 1, 2008? i heard that 5 times today, once from an elder and once from a former elder.

  • bobld

    The GB said it was to save money for the R&F,high cost of gas.Why have big conventions,cost of traveling,hotel rooms, meals.Why have a special collection with a resolution for money to bring missionaries home for bigger international conventions.Book studings were located in areas where the R&F didn't have to travel far in fact a number walked.The GB said in their KM's home book studings was a protection when Satan attacks on J.W. at the end of this system.Help the R&F with costs I don't think so.Why,look at all the crap about working less more door-to door.Sell your house get an apartment go preaching Jehovah will provide if you put him first.Look at all the talk about materialism.If the J.W. are so well off that they have to constantly talk about materialism why worry about the cost of gas.

    Maybe it's about control.Maybe they will have quick build compounds /prisons for the R&F.Maybe they want the R&F to think the end is really close.Sorry R&F don't think for themselves.Dam they got me on this one.


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