I have lurked around this board for a while. I just joined and now feel that I should introduce myself to the group. My name is Paul* and I am currently serving in an appointed capacity in my local congregation. That will probably not be the case for very much longer! I have had my doubts for years and years but always pushed such “independent thinking” out of my mind so as to stay loyal to Jah’s Organization. Several developments in my life and in the lives of several of my friends in the congregation over the past few years have forced me to step back and take stock of what I truly believe. I have done much research, and against the express instructions in the Watchtower, I have researched ALL SIDES of many issues. It has been and continues to be a very difficult personal journey, but I have recently concluded that I do not believe in a god or gods. Furthermore, I feel that some of the teachings and policies of the organization are not only incorrect but actually harmful to many.
So this brings me to a bit of a dilemma. I cannot in good conscience keep serving, so I will step down. My friends and family have no clue what is coming – most are Witnesses who would absolutely stop speaking with me if I were to disassociate myself or was disfellowshipped for airing my opinions. My wife is in no way going to leave the organization. I believe my only option is to try to pull off The Fade, as it seems to be called by those in the know. I have read the threads on this board dealing with fading from the organization, and I am hopeful that I can pull it off. I know that I am risking much by doing this.
I recently confided in a non-witness friend and his advice was to “fake it” for as long as possible. I believe that I have done this for as long as I can. I am considered a very good speaker and am often assigned to give public talks around the circuit. I hate the sound of my own voice as I deliver these discourses. I hate standing up on stage during the school or service meeting, saying things that I no longer believe to an audience that has no idea. It is horribly dishonest of me, and I cringe when I think that some argument of mine based on faulty logic, delivered in a convincing manner from the platform, might be responsible for inhibiting someone else’s ability to think.
In any case, there is as much of my story as I can share at the moment. I apologize if my thoughts are in a bit of a jumble – this is a big and frightening step! If anyone has any suggestions or encouragement, I would really appreciate it! I will attempt to log in and contribute to this group as much as I am able, but the opportunities are few at the moment. Thanks for reading…
*Name has been changed.