Will Disassociating myself be the same as playing by their Rules?
Depends on your particular situation. There is no simple 'yes' or 'no' answer that encompasses all possible situations.
I'll answer for my particular situation. I refuse to play by their rules and for me to expose myself as 'apostate' or to DA myself is allowing myself to become under their authority and rulership. They have no hold no me any longer. I'll do what I want, when I want, how I want. If, during the course of living my life, I come back to the attention of the elders and they want to pursue charges and a JC meeting, they'll have to go it alone. I won't cooperate, I won't talk, I won't meet. And I won't make it easier for them by just DAing.
Part of the reason for this is that I have JW family. And as I work to slowly free them from the cult, my being exposed only hampers, if not outright destroys, my chances at success.
But, that's me. Not everyone has the ties that I have. For some it might be final closure to DA and leave it all behind and start over. I'm sure you'll hear from some who are in that situation, and their position is every bit as valid as mine.
It will come down to what you need and want personally.
Many say "Yes." I say "Do what you think is best for you."
If DA'ing gets stress-causing people off your back or helps you to tell kids or other family members that you are taking a stand, then it might be the answer for you.
As a fader, I live as I want. But I cannot openly vote, decorate for holidays, smoke cigarettes, gamble. Not that I want to do all that, but I cannot. DA is a statement that "I left" that some need over "They kicked me out."
Others refuse to participate in their processes in any way. They refuse to recognize any authority of the WTS or its elders. They won't DA and won't show up at a JC. If that works for them, more power to them.
No I wouldn't say so. going to a committee meeting and being df'd would be playing by their rules.
I feel the same as those who give the WTS elders no power or arthority over you. They make no rules for you to go by. I would not even let them consider me an apostate. For them to consider someone an apostate would imply that they have God's true religion......which they don't.
How can you really be the bible's definition of an apostate to a wacky, man-made, cult religious sect like the JW's?
Think About It
There are a couple of schools of thought on this. Some will DA themselves and for them it is great. They may have no family in and no business ties that can get pulled out from under them - so they can give the religion the finger and for them it is great -and simple. No stakes involved.
For others it is not so simple. They may have families in and maybe have complicated business connections. It would be foolhardy for them to jeopardize their situation. Remember, the religion doesn't care what happens to anybody. For these people the stakes are high - so they keep their mouth shut. However, they do pay a price in higher stress levels and a complicated life but they prefer to deal this way until that time when they can do like the first person.
In my case, I am neither. But, I choose to do a 'fade' because I feel the religion has NO right to know what I am thinking. If anybody thinks this is 'dishonest', ask yourselves: 'how honest has the religion been to anybody about anything???'
I rest my case.
They have no power over you, so don't give them power by letting them get on the platform and announce your name.
If they hound you just tell them they have NO power OR authority over you and to leave you alone. As long as there is no announcement you still keep your familY.
All the best
Are any other christian religions as anal as the JW's about following policy to have someone DA who just wants out and quits going? The JW's will even spy & stalk people who leave with no intention of ever coming back to try to DF them.
Think About It
It might be. Only you can know for sure.
Like any ritual, it can be a powerful experience.
Carefully examine the pros and cons.
For me, I already feel free - it doesn't matter if they think my childhood baptism as valid or not.
I also encourage my Mormon relatives to feel free to baptize me in absentia - it hurts me none, and gives them solace.