Help me get my mom out!!!!
So here is the email I just received from my mother. If you look at some past posts of mine, you can see the whole story. I am currently reading Hassan's book, and will not reply until I'm finished with that. But I was wondering if there were any suggestions from the community on how to respond to this. I don't want to shut her down. I want to reply without setting off the apostate alarm, but still get through to her. Here's my email, and then hers. Cheerios.
Ok first I wanted to mention this Watchtower. I thought it was in an older volume but turns out it was 1972.
Homosexuality is definitely condemned in the Bible as something that will prevent individuals from gaining God’s approval. (1 Cor. 6:9, 10) However, whether an innocent mate would Scripturally be able to remarry after procuring a legal divorce from a mate guilty of homosexual acts must be determined on the basis of what the Bible says respecting divorce and remarriage.
In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus Christ said: “Everyone divorcing his wife, except on account of fornication, makes her a subject for adultery, and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.” (Matt. 5:32) On a later occasion he told the Pharisees: “Whoever divorces his wife, except on the ground of fornication, and marries another commits adultery.”—Matt. 19:9.
Thus “fornication” is seen to be the only ground for divorce that frees the innocent mate to remarry.
The Greek word for fornication is porneía. It can refer to illicit sexual relations between either married or unmarried persons. The ancient Greeks, in rare instances, may have understood this term to denote acts other than illicit sexual intercourse between a man and a woman. But the sense in which Jesus used the word porneía at Matthew 5:32 and 19:9 must be ascertained from the context.
It should be noted that in Matthew chapters 5 and 19 “fornication” is used in the restricted sense of marital unfaithfulness, or illicit relations with another person not one’s marriage mate. Just before bringing up the matter of divorce in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus Christ pointed out that “everyone [married] that keeps on looking at a woman so as to have a passion for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” (Matt. 5:28) Consequently, when he afterward alluded to a woman’s committing fornication, his listeners would have understood this in its relative sense, namely, as signifying a married woman’s prostitution or adultery.
The context of Matthew chapter 19 confirms this conclusion. On the basis of the Hebrew Scriptures, Jesus pointed out that a man and his wife became “one flesh,” and then added: “What God has yoked together let no man put apart.” (Matt. 19:5, 6) Now, in homosexual acts the sex organs are used in an unnatural way, in a way for which they were never purposed. Two persons of the same sex are not complements of each other, as Adam and Eve were. They could never become “one flesh” in order to procreate. It might be added, in the case of human copulation with a beast, two different kinds of flesh are involved. Wrote the apostle Paul: “Not all flesh is the same flesh, but there is one of mankind, and there is another flesh of cattle, and another flesh of birds, and another of fish.”—1 Cor. 15:39.
While both homosexuality and bestiality are disgusting perversions, in the case of neither one is the marriage tie broken. It is broken only by acts that make an individual “one flesh” with a person of the opposite sex other than his or her legal marriage mate.
So the way I understand this, (and this policy has changed since 1972, both are now considered porneia) is that if a Christian wife's husband decided he was going to have sex with a man or an animal, because of their interpretation, she was NOT free to remarry. She was required to either stay married to her husband, or divorce on unscriptural grounds, and not remarry. How many people were wrongly disfellowshipped because of this rule? Or how many women had to stay with their homosexual husbands because they were told not to divorce and remarry? I can't accept that God's channel would allow a policy like this.
Now for those other references. They are long so you can look them up in the CD-rom if you want.
w72 734-736 Oral sex was a disfellowshipping matter.
w78 02/15 p. 30-32 Oral sex was NOT a disfellowshipping matter. Here is part of this QFR:
Beyond these basic guidelines the Scriptures do not go and, hence, we cannot do more than counsel in harmony with what the Bible does say. In the past some comments have appeared in this magazine in connection with certain unusual sex practices, such as oral sex, within marriage and these were equated with gross sexual immorality. On this basis the conclusion was reached that those engaging in such sex practices were subject to disfellowshiping if unrepentant. The view was taken that it was within the authority of congregational elders to investigate and act in a judicial capacity regarding such practices in the conjugal relationship.
A careful further weighing of this matter, however, convinces us that, in view of the absence of clear Scriptural instruction, these are matters for which the married couple themselves must bear the responsibility before God and that these marital intimacies do not come within the province of the congregational elders to attempt to control nor to take disfellowshiping action with such matters as the sole basis. Of course, if any person chooses to approach an elder for counsel he or she may do so and the elder can consider Scriptural principles with such a one, acting as a shepherd but not attempting to, in effect, “police” the marital life of the one inquiring.
w83 03/15 p. 30-31 Oral sex is yet again a disfellowshipping matter.
What, though, if one mate wants or even demands to share with his or her partner in what is clearly a perverted sex practice? The above-presented facts show that porneia involves unlawful sexual conduct outside the marital arrangement. Thus, a mate’s enforcing perverted acts, such as oral or anal sex, within the marriage would not constitute a Scriptural basis for a divorce that would free either for remarriage. Even though a believing mate is distressed by the situation, yet that one’s endeavor to hold to Scriptural principles will result in a blessing from Jehovah. In such cases it may be helpful for the couple to discuss the problem frankly, bearing in mind especially that sexual relations should be honorable, wholesome, an expression of tenderlove. This certainly should exclude anything that might distress or harm one’s mate.—Ephesians 5:28-30; 1 Peter 3:1, 7.
As already stated, it is not for elders to “police” the private marital matters of couples in the congregation. However, if it becomes known that a member of the congregation is practicing or openly advocating perverted sex relations within the marriage bond, that one certainly would not be irreprehensible, and so would not be acceptable for special privileges, such as serving as an elder, a ministerial servant or a pioneer. Such practice and advocacy could even lead to expulsion from the congregation. Why?
This is the current understanding. Like I said, I can't believe that God's organization would one minute say it's wrong and can be disfellowshiped for it, the next say it's ok, then the next say it's wrong again.
I'm not telling you this to prove anything. I am telling you this so you can see that I have done my research, and maybe see that my motives are not wanting to date and be a worldly person. There are things that I just can't accept. If you are ok with this, that's great for you. Everybody has to make a decision about what they believe. Personally, this bothers me too much. Maybe you can at least see why I feel the way I do, based on what the Society has printed. Anyways
I look forward to seeing you again.
Dear Tyler, I have read your email and now want to respond. The brothers at Bethel and the literature is NOT inspired by God. The Bible is. To think that there would at some point not be corrections or adjustments that need to be made is unreasonable. Jehovah is using imperfect people today but the brothers are doing the best they can to at least try to offer moral guidance in today's increasingly immoral world. The churches aren't doing that. If you are finding fault with the guidance, I think it more likely that the problem lies with you, that you are grasping for something to support what you are doing when your conscience is screaming at you that it is wrong. It doesn't surprise me that the articles you sent appeared in the 70's. I was a teenager at that time. It was a period of time that has been called the sexual revolution. While there was immorality before that time it didn't really come out in the open like it did during that period. You can see it by watching movies from that time. Many people in the world threw all restraint out the window and began to say that it didn't matter what you did as far as sex is concerned. It was also a time of great increase in the organization. There were barely one million witnesses at that time but many people studying. Some were coming in the truth and trying to bring their immoral practices with them so guidance needed to be given to keep the organization clean morally and keep the disgusting, demonic, animalistic practices of the world out. You mentioned "what about the poor people who were disfellowshipped" at that time. You know as well as I do that no one is just disfellowshipped and thrown out without great attempts to help that person readjust their viewpoint. If someone did fail to listen and had to be removed from the congregation, hopefully they readjusted their view, changed their life and came back. Statistics show the majority do. Jehovah knows his sheep and will not let any be lost that are willing to live by his moral standards. I appreciate the moral guidance we receive to help us in a world that is becoming more and more depraved. I read in the paper yesterday that there are new video games coming out that will involve even more sex. Satan is seeing to it that more and more people and young ones find the increasingly depraved views acceptable. The organization is the only place you are going to find sound guidance on morality. When you were last here, I told you that it doesn't surprise me that you got the award you received. I hope that you realize why you are the way you are. You weren't born that way. None of us are. Your personality has been shaped by the experiences you have had in life. You have received A LOT of positive reinforcement at the Kingdom Hall as a result of being raised a witness. The brothers and sisters have loved you and responded to you in many positive ways. You have received much praise for being a regular pioneer, had numerous parts on assemblies, helped with Kingdom Hall construction and met new people, gone to an International Convention and met new people, gone to Mexico and met new people, had many privileges in the congregation and the list goes on. All of the positive reactions of others toward you have helped to make you who you are. It is the thing that attracts people to you and no doubt what attracted Sarah to you. You didn't make yourself that way and you weren't "just born" that way. It is because you are so well loved by others that no on at the hall can believe the choices you are making. They say "not Tyler". It has hurt a lot of people. You remember how happy you were when Phillip came back so you know that what you do affects other people. It makes me sad that you are willing to throw all your spiritual family and friends away. As I said, no doubt Sarah was attracted to you in the first place because of your personality. You are different. Of course the reason is because you were raised a Witness. Now she wants to change you. Now you are willing to become like the world. But Tyler, you were raised a witness. You have a conscience that was trained by Bible principles. You know right & wrong. Every time you go against your conscience, it is going to bother you. Your personality will be changed by the world, there is no getting around it. It is not worth it to give up the truth for someone. I have to wonder if she told you she wouldn't date you if you are a witness. I also have to wonder if you've been speaking with apostates or reading apostate literature. And now for the way your decision has affected me-your mother. I cry every single day. I am back to praying every day to die because it hurts too bad to live and breathe. You are the only family I had left and now you've decided to throw me away too. We have done a lot together, gone a lot of places together and been through a lot together. I have loved you since before you were born. I have tried to do the best I could to raise you and guide you. I tried the best I knew how to protect you from the madman we lived with. You were the one I depended on. While it is true I have the brothers at the hall, it is not the same as flesh and blood. I feel abandoned. It makes me very sad that you are willing to throw your relationship with me away for some girl who will only like you if you change and become what she wants you to be. Most of all it makes me sad that you are willing to throw your relationship with Jehovah away. It just doesn't make any sense. You may be happy for a while but I believe that eventually you will see everything that you have lost. You can't just throw your whole life up to this point away. I will always be your mom and I will always love you. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks! Aeiouy
You know as well as I do that no one is just disfellowshipped and thrown out without great attempts to help that person readjust their viewpoint.
Obviously written by someone who has never been an elder, nor disfellowshipped.
If someone did fail to listen and had to be removed from the congregation, hopefully they readjusted their view, changed their life and came back. Statistics show the majority do.
Bzzzt! Wrong again! I'd like to see these "statistics" that are cited.
You are the only family I had left and now you've decided to throw me away too.
Emotional blackmail at its finest!
Not a whole lot you can do with this situation. People don't leave until they are ready to leave - and she certainly doesn't appear to be ready.
Here's what your mom believes from her letter:
The brothers at Bethel and the literature is NOT inspired by God. The Bible is.
Doesn't it make sense to meet her where she is at instead of where you would like her to be? Here's a quote that I have found most JW's are not aware of:
The February 15, 1991 issue of the
Watchtower, pgs. 15-20 paragraph 11; makes this
11 Nevertheless, in a preliminary way, the great
crowd have already “washed their robes and made
them white in the blood of the Lamb.” ( Revelation
7:14 ) Christ does not act as Mediator of the new
covenant toward them , yet they benefit from this
covenant through the work of God?s Kingdom.
Ask her if she is aware that Jesus is not her Mediator. Tell her that you are a big sinner and that you want to make sure that you personally have Jesus as your Mediator. She is your mother and will naturally want to TEACH you something. So, ask her to teach you from the bible how a person can get their sins forgiven without Jesus as their Mediator and while outside of the New Covenant. Tell her that even only one scripture will calm you down a bit and make you feel better. Let her do the research.... that scripture will never be found.
Take it easy on her. This will take some time for her to think this through. Do your own research and get her to teach you rather than the other way around. Show her honor as your mother. That is a command from God and is not subject to change.
I'm afraid to say, reading her email, she is not receptive to changing. She is regurgitating WTS doctrine and displaying cognitive dissonance with regard to the flip flopping of policy.
Hassan suggests taking the approach of getting someone to think about cult traits and how they are manifested in another cult, such Mormons or Scientologists. I think picking on actual Watchtower quotes is going to raise her defences. When she says she is hurt by your actions, she means it, she feels you are making mistakes and she wants to correct you. That what mother's do! By using the types of examples you have, she see's you falling into a debased state and wants to pull you out of the gutter.
It is going to be very tough to get her out, her robust responses, would indicate to me you probably won't.
Your Mum is playing the emotional blackmail cards in spades. This is not untypical and is to be expected. I would start by responding to the emotional issues.
Assure her that as your mother she is important to you and her views are always treated with respect. Tell her that she will never be thrown away by you since something as precious as a mother can never be treated in this way. Your love for her is unconditional and this will never change. This would be tantamount to shunning and it is unkind and unloving and you would never do it.
Remind her that having had the experiences you have had in the organisation it would need to be something more than physical attraction that would make you move away from it. You had committed more than most to the organisation so in effect had more than most to lose. Tell her that this choice was made not through a lack of Bible Study but because of it. You have conducted diligent research and looked into all things with a humble and prayerful attitude.
Ask her to prove the unprovable and get her to think. Don't go in with all guns blazing just with one point at a time. Remember the old door to door training, find common ground, leading questions and baby steps. What works for a cult can work for you.
1914 and relationship to 607, Who is Jesus the Mediator for (as already suggested), rise of the Governing body, where key doctrines come from etc.
Get her to think how the cult has affected her life. What other choices might she have made? Remind her of many who gave up everything for the organisation but who still died without seeing a reward. If they had known this in the beginning what might they have done differently? What choices might she have made for you?
This will require work on your part and remember always address the emotional issues first, mothers need to know they are loved.
Eventually children grow up and have a life of thier own..
Parents either support them or not..
Your mom needs to grow up..
She is Frigg`n Childish..
Most Adult JW`s are..
The brothers at Bethel and the literature is NOT inspired by God. The Bible is. To think that there would at some point not be corrections or adjustments that need to be made is unreasonable.--- So they have made mistakes? and will again? then why would you listen to them at all? why allow them to micromanage your life? Why allow these mortal men decide who you will or will not have a relationship with? Today's new light will only be old light tomorrow.
Statistics show the majority do- bullshit
It makes me sad that you are willing to throw all your spiritual family and friends away.-- You are not throwing anyone away, it is they who will have made the choice to have no contact with you because you have choosen to think for yourself and not worship mere men NY.
I cry every single day. I am back to praying every day to die because it hurts too bad to live and breathe.-- Emotional blackmail. She prays to die? She wants to throw the gift of life back in God's face? sounds sinful to me. Would she quit being a jw if you told her you cried everyday because she is being so terribly misled and does not know Christ?
I feel abandoned.- Like every ex jw who simply believes differently? She has the power to keep her relationship with you going she chooses her own ass over her own child. Sad to put it that way but that is really what it comes down to. How could her (fictional) 'paradise earth' be any sort of 'paradise' without you? I'm a mom myself and I can tell you if my kids aren't welcome well, then I'm not going either. (if I believed in their fictional paradise earth thing)
. It makes me very sad that you are willing to throw your relationship with me away for some girl who will only like you if you change and become what she wants you to be.-- Mommy needs to cut the apron strings and be happy that you want to move ahead in your life and become the human being you were meant to be. "...some girl who will only like you if you change and become...." -you mean like mommy who will only love you if you remain the same? How about what you want out of life?
As for throwing away a 'relationship' with jah, good grief. Many, many ex jw's feel they have finally found God only after they leave the jw's!
Would she be willing to make a deal with you? she can do a jw version of bs with you and you can do a study of your choosing and it may include the C of C book, and other so called apostate lit? Why not? if she has the 'truth' she has nothing to fear. Truth does not fear scrutiny.
The Catholic Church occupies a very significant position in the world and claims to be the way of salvation for hundreds of millions of people. ANY ORGANIZATION THAT ASSUMES THAT POSITION SHOULD BE WILLING TO SUBMIT TO SCRUTINY AND CRITICISM. -AWAKE 8-22-84 pg 28
Is she willing to do what she asks people at the doors? examine her own religion and beliefs? look at other religious writings as she expects the doors to do? Why not? is it a cult that doesn't allow it?
Carla is absolutely right on the money! The works of some old fossils - inaccurate. The word of God - accurate. Seems an easy choice here.
The society may have been inspired by the Bible, but show me where it states that disfellowshipping and shunning is recommended in the scriptures?
And so what if it did anyway? It's all about mind control. Real Estate actually.
Unless you straighten up and fly right per the Watchtower, your mother is never going to accept you or your new life. Try Steve Hassan's techniques to reach her pre-cult personality. Maybe she'll change her mind, but it's doubtful.
I see a lot of the same tactics my wife uses on me. It's amazing that so many people can act in the same way and it shows how the whole mind-control thing really keeps people in line.
In light of some of the comments from Perry and Nugget, maybe I should reconsider that 'Bible Study' with my wife so I can get the opportunity to question their beliefs. Hey, worth a shot considering that my wife is seriously considering getting baptized in the name of the father and the son and the spirit directed organization.