What do you think of the GB's new tactics?
Here is what I am getting at with that subject title:
This Sunday's WT study article really hit home for me what many have been talking about on the forum.
When I was growing up, there was a big deal made about the identity of each GB member - people would wax poetically about working with them at Bethel, meeting them at a convention, etc.It wasn't unusual for them to be frequently named in articles, pictured in books, and somewhat glorified.
The president of the WTBS was practically on par with Christ - he was viewed as practically a deity.
I had friends who could not only name the 12 apostles, but could rattle off the names of the GB members!
Now, it seems like the tactic has changed, starting with the reduction of the presidents' role of a few years ago - place massive emphasis on the GB itself as a unit, but keep the profile of the members lower. I could only name a couple of the members right now, and that is due to having previous experience with them.
I dont know if it is just because I am paying more attention now, but I swear every WT study and CBS somehow works the "Faithful and Discreet Slave" into the discussion. Its pathetic......
The WT this Sunday was totally disgusting, as has been commented on in other threads. I went out and sat in the car because I was fuming - LOL. It was one of those meetings where I should have told my wife that our deal is off for today for me attending on Sunday. It was the strongest example of "Follow Us or ELSE" that I can recall. They seem to really be turning the screws to the rank and file right now.
What I was p'ed off the most about was the paragraph along the lines of following their counsel closely. What did they mention - did they mention LOVE of fellow man, COMPASSION, and other Christian qualities? No, they mentioned dress and grooming, entertainment, etc. It was ridiculous. Then, when the comments were made by the congregation members, I wanted to gag, it was like the Stepford Wives. I think they are trying harder than ever to create Sheeple..........
The great thing about the lesson is that it sped up my resolve to fade faster - I am at the point where the meetings are too much to take.
Another side effect was that I felt really disappointed in myself after that WT study, having believed for most of my life that this was God's chosen channel.
Its all about manipulation and control. They are the masters at playing,"head games". They love to change the focus on things so the members think the time is even closer to the big day. It is just another way they wave the carrot.
WTS is right between the rock and the hard place. They feel they have to do something or lose members. The things they do cause them to lose members also, but they hope their loss is minimized by their assertion of control.
If they don't turn the screws in the study articles, parents let their children be more independent and have more fun. Members themselves, start to enjoy life and do less and less JW stuff. Turning up the guilt and fear and obedience causes many to pay attention and get back in line. Only a few wake up and hate being pushed so hard.
I know I might have been one of the many contributors to their idea to bring back the Governing Body to the members. When I resigned as an elder, I mentioned how I didn't even know the GB members' names. Long after that, I noticed how they started putting the GB picture in the yearbook and tried to become a more important factor in the members' lives. Currently, they are actually trying to become the "charismatic cult leader" as a group to the members that most cults need to survive. I imagine that they have been holding back on putting new GB members into the club until they got their Overlap Doctrine completed. They don't want new GB members to see how silly the 2/3rds vote and politics are on major doctrines. Now, if the most drastic changes are over, they will get some new "charismatic" blood in their group.
At the end of my meeting attendance, I just couldn't take it anymore! It became so obvious to me how much the Organization sucked!!!!
I think that this new intrusive obsession with obedience and even worship of the GB is coming from a fundamental lack of leadership at the top.
It really seems that the Governing Body is becoming desperate - especially when you note that practically every other watchtower or assembly part has mostly to do with preaching absolute obedience to every detail put out by the GB.
Whether or not the general rank and file realize this or not - only time will tell. But certainly there was never the need in the previous administrations to beat on the subject the way these guys have been doing the past few years.
Was just recently reading the...May 15, 1922 Watchtower, I think it was. The tactics are identical to Rutherford's. In 90 years, nothing's changed but the name of the person or 'channel' to be obeyed. Just reading that article showed me how grossly misguided this religion is. The demands for obedience or belief in things that would be regarded as completely absurd (and something many JWs wouldn't believe we ever taught!) today--it makes you think. Obviously, we have to assume that a few decades from now, everything in the WT today will be regarding as absurd and stuff many JWs won't believe we ever taught. It's "an endless present in which the [Governing Body] is always right," to paraphrase '1984'.
What do I think? I think it sucks. I think people need to fight the men who turn the wheels of this machine. To provide and publicize factual, honest information to refute the methods and teachings of these men. That's what I think.
I agree, sd-7, but it's so hard to do from outside and it's even harder to do from within.
Exposure of these clowns isn't really possible unless and until the rank and file are willing to ignore the rules on shunning former members.
With Russell, Rutherford, and Knorr there was a strong promotion of the President of the Society as a figurehead. When you get into Franz presidency the GB was coming into function which dimished the importance of the presidency and "the Society". Henschel had none of the prominence of those that held the office before him. However at the time the GB didn't jump in and fulfill the gap that was created by a loss of singular figurehead. The object of reverence became simply "the Society" and what it represented with the GB working in the background. (This kind of mirrored what happened in Rutherford's time where adoration of Pastor Russell was transferred to the Watchtower Society before moving into worship of Judge Rutherford as "the President".)
With the GB taking the place of an authoritative president there was a lull but then things began to change again. This possibly started with the Governing Body seperating itself from the legal corporations. After that you had the WT leadership encourage the publishers to discontinue using the expression "the Society" and replace it with "the Faithful Slave". Futher promotion came in the revised Organization book where publishers were told that they must trust the Slave completely. But even in this "the Slave" was still pretty nebulous without a real face.
I think certain events of recent years have been to put "a face" to "the Slave". An example is the new "Bearing Witness" commentary on the book of Acts, which features a group photograph of the Governing Body. Also at the beginning of the newly released Creation DVD you have the Ted Jaracz introduction where he is specifically noted to be a member of the Governing Body.
If the trend continues I would expect to see the Govering Body to completely assume the role of the Faithful Slave and distinguish themselves from the rest of "the anointed". Recent Watchtower study articles are heavily leaning toward this without fully committing to the idea. I also would expect the Governing Body to continue to take a more prominent role in the minds of Witnesses. Along those lines expect more face time from them as a group and indvidually. They will continue to become more authorative and the idol worship of them will increase -- because that is just the way it goes in the world and in false religion.
They are going to need it. They are going to have to make people worship the Filthful and Disgraceful Slavebugger--distracting them from their scam of stringing two different generations like Christmas lights by cracking down on piddling things. If they are too busy worrying about how long their skirt is to the millimeter, or the exact shade of black shoes or white shirts, they are less likely to notice that "a generation" now means "the group of people whose lives intersect, albeit barely, those of other people that saw the beginning of the end".
If people are allowed to think when it comes to dress and entertainment, they might think when they see the scripture right out of their own Bible when this "evidently" statement about Jesus meaning "people whose lives intersect with those who saw the beginning" blatantly contradicts the Bible. Rather, they will go along with the Filthful and Disgraceful Slavebugger and just obey them without cross-referencing. Or even looking at that one scripture--this one is so blatant that cross referencing is not even necessary.