Things in the past that show you that your doubts started earlier than you thought

by sabastious 65 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • sabastious

    I was just talking to my wife this morning about underlining or highlighting the WT paragraphs.

    When I was 13 years old I would fight with my dad because I refused to highlight the answers.

    The reason was because I wanted my comment to be genuine. I felt that highlighting the "answer" made me lean on just using that as a crutch and not truly putting it in my own words.

    I still hold that argument now, and I am 26. The only reason you would ever have to highlight something in a study book would be if you needed to remember it, maybe it is fairly complicated or subtle information that could be easily forgotten.

    So many times in the WT the "question" has the same phrase that's in the paragraph! It's literally like playing connect the dots.

    So what I would do is NOT highlight during the family study. Then when it was read again on the stage, I would have to listen to it again and I would figure out a way to answer it (if I was going to comment) while he was reading. I had to create a comment on the fly.

    Highlighting 1 or 2 sentences of a 5-7 sentence paragraph and then psudo-reading it as a comment was not a challenge to me at all once I hit teenagehood.

    It really shows that even at a young age, I was questioning the very policy of the WT. I think deep down I knew I didn't want to be a drone. I wanted an intellectual challenge, one that could not be offered by the WTS.


  • primitivegenius

    good point. i felt the same way in that although i did highlight i tried to give every comment in my own words, thats actually NOT what they want you to do. they want it by rote with no personality.

    i have had many doubts over the years and these persisted long before i finally realized with certainty that it was all nonsense. unfortunately i did what i was programed to do..... i ignored what was in front of me and prayed and firmly decided i was supposed to WAIT ON JEHOVAH........... this added a good 10 or 15 years of slavery to my life before i was able to break out and smell the roses

  • EmergedAsMe

    I have had many, many repressed memories (for want of a better phrase) that showed I had my misgivings about the WT and the organization for a long time. Some of these I had actually forgotten about until I started my exit from the JWs.

    I remember being confused as to who ran the congregation - people kept saying Jesus did. But where was he and why did I only see the elders? (As my dad never became a JW I didn't understand the elder arrangement very well).

    I remember finding out the JW had not been around "forever" and I could not reconcile how they "sprung up out of nowhere" - I chose not to think about it.

    I remember being really confused when my friends mother got disfellowshipped and they moved away, and we didn't play anymore. This never seemed right that us kids should be "punished" for what their mother did (at the time I didn't understand the situation - but this poor women had an affair to escape an physically abusive relationship, she came back to the JWs years later sadly).

    I remember wondering why God cared what I did personally, if I wasn't out to hurt anyone. This in regards to having to go to all the meetings, field service etc.

    I remember feeling like it was unfair that I was born into "the true religion" and I had no choice, and no chance to discover what I really wanted, or have a life - because I knew jehovah and to do my own thing would be tantamount to slapping jehovah and would earn me a sure death at Armagedon.

    I remember feeling really scared of the great tribulation - I thought it would be like what happened with the Nazis. As a little girl I was scared of being tortured, raped and all the rest and having to "stand firm" otherwise I would die right before the new system.

    I remember being upset that my father was going to die at Armagedon. Apparently I told my father at 3 years old he needs to be a JW otherwise he wont be in Paradise

    I remember really giving "spirituality" (my misunderstood view of the term) a go - I pioneered for several years straight out of school. Why did I just feel broke, tired and used up? Where was the joy? Why did I not feel close to God? Why was I still really bad at praying (never found it easy to do what feels like talking to myself)?

    I remember at school some christian kids who were very excited about their God, and very zealous and enthusiastic about it all. I wondered if the JWs were the true religion why did none of them (JW) seem to be very zealous? JWs seemed to just "go through the motions".

    And lots more...

  • OnTheWayOut

    Good thoughts, Sabastious. Yes, they were trying to tie half your brain behind your back. I knew elders that would counsel the potential MS's or elders about underlining their WT lessons. They mentioned how it was not needed for them to comment and study, but the elders would say that if others saw their mag unhighlighted, it appeared to others that they had not studied. Whereas, a chimpanzee could have marked anything in a lesson and it appeared that he had studied.

  • finding my way
    finding my way

    I remember my parents always telling me not to repeat the paragraph word for word but to "put it in your own words". I had a heck of a time doing that because, like you mentioned, the answer had the same phrase as the question.... it used to REALLY frustrate me :0)

    When I spent time with my 6 year old brother recently I could tell that his little brain was already so confused. He told me while I was babysitting that I do Halloween and worship Satan. First off, My Mother has no way of knowing whether I celebrate Halloween or not and I have no clue where he got this. But he knew somehow that I did "bad things". I tried to reason with him that His teachers and friends at school where still good people and that people that are not Jehovahs witnesses do not all worship Satan. It broke my heart to see him so confused. He loves his sissy, but why do people act like shes bad..?

  • finding my way
    finding my way

    EmergedAsMe, I have some similar memories. I told my biological father that he would die if he didn't become a witness. I also told some kids in 1st grade that Santa and SAtan have the same letters in their name. My friend and I used to eat grass at recess to "prepare for the great tribulation."

    It's all so F'd to think of little kids doing, saying, thinking the things we did as children!

  • NewYork44M

    In the early 60s and I was a child of 5 or so, I remember my mother explaining that Moses, Abraham, and a few of the prophets from of old would be resurrected prior to Armageddon. I can still remember me saying to myself, "that sounds strange."

  • gubberningbody

    I had this conversation about "mother" with my inner child.

  • The Oracle
    The Oracle

    Hey EmergedAsMe,

    I share a lot of those same "repressed memories" for lack of a better term.

    Even now I am recalling these kinds of memories that I haven't thought about for many years. The "truth" just didn't have the ring of truth to me, even as a young boy. Somehow we soldiered on, repressing these thoughts so we could be good members of the herd.

    The one that I just remembered because of your post was the one about how I felt when I found out the JW religion had not really been around since bible times and that it really just got started in the 1800's. I have a strong recollection of feeling fooled and betrayed. I felt guilty because I had lied to my young friends whom I had witnessed to, claiming that the JW religion had been around since bible times.

    The interesting part of all of this is that it shows us how effective the whole Watchtower brainwashing and mind control game is. You get sucked in to a cult mentality and all your doubts and feelings that "something isn't quite right" are summarily dismissed by your own WT trained mind before they can take serious root.

    Hence the need to CONSTANTLY fill your mind with WT propoganda and to NEVER miss a meeting. Once the flow of mind numbing poison is cut off your mind begins to heal and you can start thinkingT clearly. This is precisely what the WT is afraid of and does not want to see happen to anyone.

    The Oracle

  • Crisis of Conscience
    Crisis of Conscience

    Great thread!! Here is what I wrote to someone in a PM a short time ago regarding this subject. If that person reads this now, thanks for hearing me out.

    One of my first things at Bethel, at 19 years old, was seeing a bit of a double standard. At Patterson I got a lot of opportunities to see GB members. The one thing I questioned to myself was the way I saw them around female visitors. One in particular, Lyman Swingle, before he died, would put his arms around the sisters, point at his cheek, and ask for a kiss.
    Now I'm big on equality, as I will probably point out later in my posts. So I don't care who you are or how old you are. If I would have tried at 19 to get that kind of attention from the ladies, and especially at Bethel, I would without a doubt have been spoken to about how my actions are inappropriate or perhaps at the severest point, been dismissed. Now I don't crave attention by any means, but to me that just wasn't right. And I witnessed it more than once. May not be a big thing but it definitely made an impression in my mind that I just can't forget.

    I was also bothered by the way some were treated by others right in front of their overseers. I talked about it with a brother and he told me in so many words, that we are imperfect and we have to accept and forgive.
    That I can agree with. Except the Bethel standard is pushed so much and praised so high above the "worldly" work standards and environments that I just couldn't be satisfied with that.
    So again, a small thing, but made an impression in my young mind.

    After all these years I finally just couldn't understand how the holy spirit works. That being based on things I have seen take place in the congregation more recently. And those coupled with my Bethel experience is what finally led me here.


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