I had an prominent elder tell me once that he would never look at the original writings of the Watchtower because reading them would destroy his faith and his relationship with Jehovah. WTF!
In a recent thread someone mentioned that the WTBTS uses mind control techniques. Do you think this is a conscious ploy?
Yes, I think it is deliberate.
Think of the great effort that goes into producing the graphical illustrations for the publications. Every detail in those images are carefully planned to convey the right message with exactly the right nuances to match the points made in the paragraphs. Think of the great emphasis that is placed on the message behind these graphical illustrations with paragraph questions referring to those images. The emphasis Watchtower places on emotive imagery is very reminiscent of the emphasis that communist Russia placed on propagandistic emotive political imagery. Think of the very predictable, almost formulaic writing style of Watchtower study articles - almost like they're using a writing template where the language structure remains the same with only the contents changing. Think of Watchtower's teaching method of spoon-feeding the followers one paragraph at a time, with exactly what they want them to think - even providing the very questions that they think the reader should ask along with the answers. Think of the fact that Watchtower discourages independent thinking and higher education. Think of the fact that Watchtower has published an Awake magazine on the subject of propaganda techniques, showing that they are aware of these techniques; and think of the fact that these very same techniques can be seen in Watchtower literature!
But I also think that they rationalize their use of mind control techniques as being a positive thing rather than negative. They probably use some other euphemistic term to refer to their practices rather than "mind control". As an example of what I mean, last month (or the month before) a member of the governing body, on the monthly jw broadcast program spoke about critics' claims that JWs are brainwashed. Rather than outright deny the claim, he essentially set about playing word games by choosing more euphemistic language and by putting a positive spin on the term brainwashing saying that it means having the mind cleaned from the filth of Satan's world. He really did not deny that JWs are brainwashed, but instead he was essentially saying: 'what out critics refer to as brainwashing is what we see as having our minds cleansed from the contaminating influences of this world'.
I think it's possible that Watchtower similarly justifies its use of mind control techniques and propaganda. In their own reasoning they're probably saying: 'what the world sees as mind control and propaganda, we see as wholesome teaching methods to guide our thinking into conformity with Jehovah's will and direction'. So I think they use those techniques deliberately but are probably deluded enough to rationalize it as a positive thing for the benefit of the brothers.
Very interesting responses to my question. What set me off on this track was that we have a few new elders in our cong, one of whom was basically sent in to replace me when I resigned as an elder less than a year ago. He is a very nice guy but now sees ut as part of his mission to try to include me in lots of the theocratic activities like reading at the meetings and has even asked me to take a field ministry meeting. I suppose he is hoping that I get back on that horse again. Everything he does is out of the elders playbook in how to help this bro who has slowed down, when all I want to do now is sit on the sidelines. The other new elders are also nice guys but even more super theocratic and can't quite make me out but they are also casually asking me when I can go on the ministry with them. Looking at it now from the outside, as it were, they are all, to varying degrees, products of thinking processes instilled through elders schools, CO visits etc.
I'm definitely with the group that say it is deliberate . They must know what they are doing ,They follow the pattern of mind control so closely . Didn't I read somewhere that out of all the brain washing techniques available the WT is the only group that uses all of them ? They tell so many outright lies that this cannot be accidental .
I think most of the experts would agree that mind control, or undue influence as Hassan is calling it now is actually more a way that all humans learn. The Watchtowers intent is to control but the breakdown of what happens to people under undue influence may not be conscience to them. It would seem throughout the heiracy somewhere someone must know the bullshit. But remember Captives Of A Concept was a phrase Franz used to describe the governing body and the org. I don't think you have to know exactly what you're doing to use mind control. But the desire to control is quite obvious and anybody trying to control another adults behavior is evil.
Indeed WT Society and it's leaders know what they are doing in controlling 8 million JW's. All you have to do as an example of this is look at the recent you tube of Stephen Lett calling apostates " ridiculous for asserting that we protect pedophiles. " He acted so astonished with his facial expressions and stated, " can you believe they would SAY such a thing " ? - so as to influence JW's to even DISMISS the thought that the WT Society might be guilty about protecting pedophiles and child molesters.
Some of these practices in Steve Hassan's books on mind control are called " thought stopping " a method that many mind control cults use- including Jehovah's Witnesses. It's used to dismiss any doubt whatsoever. Then these high control, mind control organizations continue using guilt and fear to keep controlling members . Fear of dying at the big A. Fear of being cut off from your family. Fear of turning into a sinning Zombie if you stop attending meetings. Fear is a very powerful motivating tool and the WT leaders have used this tactic for years as do the Scientologists and Mormons and other cults.
I strongly recommend reading Steve Hassan's 3 books on Mind Control so you can inform yourself of the many tactics in understanding what you're dealing with inside the JW organization. I was born and raised in it- got out at age 44 over 11 years ago and Steve Hassan's books helped me understand more about these organizations and how they operate than anything else. It also helped me to understand why I felt the way I did after coming under the WT Society spell. Steve Hassan's website is : www.freedomofmind.com. The title of his 1st book is Combatting Cult Mind Control. Book # 2 - is titled Releasing the Bonds- Empowering People to Think for Themselves and Book # 3 - Freedom of Mind - Helping Loved Ones Leave Controlling People, Cults and Beliefs. I think you will greatly benefit from reading these books. We are here as a support to you as well. Take care, Peace out, Mr. Flipper
Jehovahism is just one head of the organized Xian Hydra. Somewhere at the top, behind the scenes, a group of leaders KNOW that mind control is being used. They do it purposely.
JWism is just neo-Zionist communism. It's NWO all the way.
The GB are pawns, IMO. The probably get orders and follow through. They probably know what's going on, but don't dare tell. The GB helpers are likely in on it. They are surely given promises of authority and power if the stay loyal. After all, they all KNOW that GB 2.0 will die off, without the big A occurring.
Their articles are carefully crafted pieces of propaganda, just as JW.borg is. It's all about the $$$ and power for the continued success and legacy of those behind the scenes.
The Watchtower Corporation is very much about devious under handed mind control.
They want people in absolute subjection to their directives in behavior and appearance, from there they create a superficially imposed image around the organization. Its all expressed by self supporting propaganda and select information.
Don't agree with their directives and your automatic deemed evil and engaged to be subservient to Satan the Devil and as a result you will die at Armageddon.
Well when you pose a threat to people's lives and there is an assumption that those directives are wholesome and good, its a certain probability that some people are going to immerse themselves in this religion, regardless of the lies, corruption and fear mongering ignorance.
This is a good explanation on what is mind control.Steven Alan Hassan's BITE Model of Cult Mind Control
Many people think of mind control as an ambiguous, mystical process that cannot be defined in concrete terms. In reality, mind control refers to a specific set of methods and techniques, such as hypnosis or thought- stopping, that influence how a person thinks, feels, and acts. Like many bodies of knowledge, it is not inherently good or evil. If mind control techniques are used to empower an individual to have more choice, and authority for his life remains within himself, the effects can be beneficial. For example, benevolent mind control can be used to help people quit smoking without affecting any other behavior. Mind control becomes destructive when the locus of control is external and it is used to undermine a person’s ability to think and act independently.
As employed by the most destructive cults, mind control seeks nothing less than to disrupt an individual’s authentic identity and reconstruct it in the image of the cult leader. I developed the BITE model to help people determine whether or not a group is practicing destructive mind control. The BITE model helps people understand how cults suppress individual member's uniqueness and creativity. BITE stands for the cult's control of an individual's Behavior, Intellect, Thoughts, and Emotions.
It is important to understand that destructive mind control can be determined when the overall effect of these four components promotes dependency and obedience to some leader or cause. It is not necessary for every single item on the list to be present. Mindcontrolled cult members can live in their own apartments, have nine-to-five jobs, be married with children, and still be unable to think for themselves and act independently.
I. Behavior Control II. Information Control III. Thought Control IV. Emotional Control
Information Control1. Deception:
a. Deliberately withhold information
b. Distort information to make it more acceptable
c. Systematically lie to the cult member
2. Minimize or discourage access to non-cult sources of information, including:
a. Internet, TV, radio, books, articles, newspapers, magazines, other media
c. Former members
d. Keep members busy so they don’t have time to think and investigate
e. Control through cell phone with texting, calls, internet tracking
3. Compartmentalize information into Outsider vs. Insider doctrines
a. Ensure that information is not freely accessible
b.Control information at different levels and missions within group
c. Allow only leadership to decide who needs to know what and when
4. Encourage spying on other members
a. Impose a buddy system to monitor and control member
b.Report deviant thoughts, feelings and actions to leadership
c. Ensure that individual behavior is monitored by group
5. Extensive use of cult-generated information and propaganda, including:
a. Newsletters, magazines, journals, audiotapes, videotapes, YouTube, movies and other media
b.Misquoting statements or using them out of context from non-cult sources
6. Unethical use of confession
a. Information about sins used to disrupt and/or dissolve identity boundaries
b. Withholding forgiveness or absolution
c. Manipulation of memory, possible false memories
Thought Control1. Require members to internalize the group’s doctrine as truth
a. Adopting the group's ‘map of reality’ as reality
b. Instill black and white thinking
c. Decide between good vs. evil
d. Organize people into us vs. them (insiders vs. outsiders)
2.Change person’s name and identity
3. Use of loaded language and clichés which constrict knowledge, stop critical thoughts and reduce complexities into platitudinous buzz words
4. Encourage only ‘good and proper’ thoughts
5. Hypnotic techniques are used to alter mental states, undermine critical thinking and even to age regress the member
6. Memories are manipulated and false memories are created
7. Teaching thought-stopping techniques which shut down reality testing by stopping negative thoughts and allowing only positive thoughts, including:
a. Denial, rationalization, justification, wishful thinking
e. Speaking in tongues
f. Singing or humming
8. Rejection of rational analysis, critical thinking, constructive criticism
9. Forbid critical questions about leader, doctrine, or policy allowed
10. Labeling alternative belief systems as illegitimate, evil, or not useful
Emotional Control1. Manipulate and narrow the range of feelings – some emotions and/or needs are deemed as evil, wrong or selfish
2. Teach emotion-stopping techniques to block feelings of homesickness, anger, doubt
3. Make the person feel that problems are always their own fault, never the leader’s or the group’s fault
4. Promote feelings of guilt or unworthiness, such as
a. Identity guilt
b. You are not living up to your potential
c. Your family is deficient
d. Your past is suspect
e. Your affiliations are unwise
f. Your thoughts, feelings, actions are irrelevant or selfish
g. Social guilt
h. Historical guilt
5. Instill fear, such as fear of:
a. Thinking independently
b. The outside world
d. Losing one’s salvation
e. Leaving or being shunned by the group
f. Other’s disapproval
6. Extremes of emotional highs and lows – love bombing and praise one moment and then declaring you are horrible sinner
7. Ritualistic and sometimes public confession of sins
8. Phobia indoctrination: inculcating irrational fears about leaving the group or questioning the leader’s authority
a. No happiness or fulfillment possible outside of the group
b. Terrible consequences if you leave: hell, demon possession, incurable diseases, accidents, suicide, insanity, 10,000 reincarnations, etc.
c. Shunning of those who leave; fear of being rejected by friends, peers, and family
d. Never a legitimate reason to leave; those who leave are weak, undisciplined, unspiritual, worldly, brainwashed by family or counselor, or seduced by money, sex, or rock and roll
e. Threats of harm to ex-member and family
PS. I've highlighted the most prominent aspects relating to the JWS. Cult.
Wow. JWism has almost every one of those methods in use.