About "apostate" websites

by Sojourn 12 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • Sojourn

    Just throwing some thoughts out there, from what I've noticed, and interested to see what you all think: agreeing and opposing opinions are welcomed!

    I feel that the "apostate" sites I've run into have a lot of good information on them that I am thankful to have found. My eyes would not have been opened without them. However, I also feel that people are sometimes misrepresented on them, and some hurtful attitudes prevail. I came here years ago when I was still fully programmed as a Witness, looking for real information, but I was turned off by the low blows some people took, and as a result, I stayed in the dark that much longer. I think people would be much more willing to listen if they weren't faced with this kind of thing; at the same time, it's each person's right to heal however they need to. I'm torn...

    Anyway, an example I could use is the issue of unconditional love, and what a true friend is: First, we have to remember that even when you're talking to a Witness, you're basically talking to the organization they've been trained by. They have no idea that they've been programmed - it's done completely under the radar. It's difficult to keep in mind, but if they're a devout Witness, the person you wish you could talk to is not there.
    If you really think about it, showing unconditional love for someone is naive. (To be clear, I'm referring to adults in possession of their faculties, not children; or adults with mental illnesses.) There is probably something, however drastic, that someone could do that would make you stop showing them love. And that's what conditional love means to me... truly loving another person through thick and thin, but I'll be honest - my condition is if you murdered my family, no; I would not show you love anymore. If you have any kind of ceiling at all, whatever your most drastic point of betrayal is, that is the condition you have set where you would stop showing love to someone. I do think shunning is a whacked out, hurtful policy, but I also feel like the conditioned masses hold "betraying Jehovah" as their ceiling... the ultimate betrayal where it now makes total sense to stop demonstrating love. Considering that I am now so embarrassed at some of the things I've done, said and thought as a Witness (which I thought I was doing in love), I truly do feel like I was under the influence of a predatory organization. I don't begrudge anyone the healing power of putting the word friend in quotes (e.g., "I had lots of "friends" at the kingdom hall - UNTIL...") but I do feel that those statements misrepresent the situation - they point anger at the ones being misled and however unwittingly take it away from who is really responsible. If there's anything I have learned from de-tox out of being a Witness, it's how easy it is to join in with a group mentality, to lump people in with others and to judge them. I'll probably be trying to gain mastery over those bad traits for years to come. I feel like some of the opinions I see on this site and others are feeding into that same way of thinking...

  • notverylikely
  • wobble

    I think what you say is correct Sojourn, but on sites such as this it depends where the person is on their personal Sojourn away from the cult of the W.T

    Most who leave go through a process not unlike bereavement, at some point this involves anger, if someone posts on here at that stage, expect some fireworks !

    I do not think that so very many are permanently put off though, they often return after the initial shock of finding the views held on here, and eventually post that they agree with much that is on here.

    When I joined, after 58 years of being in, I was shocked to see one poster whose screen name was "Homerovah the Almighty" that, and comments of a derogatory nature about the name "jehovah" seemed terrible to me, at the time.

    But I stuck with it, learned much, quite a lot from dear "Homey", a good poster in his time, and now I virtually live here. others too have found it not too difficult to be assimilated here.

    There is always the danger that Lurkers will dismiss us with the WT propaganda "They are bitter Apostates", which is why it is always better if we contributors can keep our tone at least a bit measured.

    JWN is the best such site on the Net, it is a lifesaver and a wonderful resource.

    Thank you Simon and all who contribute.

  • inbetween

    sojourn - I agree, it happend to me some years ago, looking for information, came to this site, and read some headlines, dismissed the whole site as some bitter apostate nonsense,

    however, now, I do understand to some degree the anger some people have and the need to express and to vent...

  • Lozhasleft

    Yes I agree with Wobble...I think this is the best forum on the net for our needs...I didnt venture into these sites until earlier this year and was shocked and defensive at the first ones I engaged with...this particular forum with all its nuances and personalities has been an enormous help to me ...it led me to Ray Franz's books and much more research than I had been aware of...

    Some people are justifiably angry ( it happens to me off and on ) and some are sad beyond words, we're all unique arent we? and handle pain and sorrow differently....but....we have in common the abuse of the WTBS .... some of us have lost too much....and recovery, however we manage it is precious indeed...

    Loz x

  • Aussie Oz
    Aussie Oz

    To expect any forum to be all 'nicey nice hugs' is totally unrealistic.

    Visit forums from cooking to classic cars, from knitting to computer problems and you will see all the same personalities as you see here my friend.

    Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to not take all the 'apostate' information as true but to look at each thought or proof and then do your own research. Not to take mud slinging or arguments personally because really, in cyber space we are all largely anonamous.

    Yes, it is easy to jump on the bandwagon of apostacy and believe everything you read, to follow another crowd mentality after leaving another... the challenge is not do that... but thats easier said than done when you realize that 90% or more of so called apostate lies are in fact truth!


  • wasblind

    Hi sojourn,

    i enjoyed reading your post, as you know JW's live in a bubble, as you stated witnesses

    looking for info may be turned off by the low blows, and as a result stay in the dark that

    much longer ( return to their bubble). Most of The posters on this forum have left this religion

    and they are now using their freewill and independant thought, you no longer have an controlled

    robot, but a person expressing who they are, and that's what you will find in the real world. Some

    people need to be controlled, thats' not a bad thing if that's what the individual want, but to force

    it on others is taking away their freewill to choose what they want for themselves.

  • darthfader

    Before I joined JWN, I watched (lurked) this for for almost a year. I got to know the who to "trust" and who to write off. In the "face to face" world, it takes an investment of time to learn people and build frienships -- it's no different for online communities. The only difference I see here is that people are more abrasive and open (some of the openness is outright lies though -- so better be careful) than anyone would be face to face.

  • nancy drew
    nancy drew

    The wtbs attempts to homogenize its recruits, labelling any contrary thoughts as indepentant thinking so that after awhile one gets used to something like "I believe this" "so do I" "good" no contrary opinions are ever expressed. The first time a witness gets on a site like this it can be disturbing because the exchange of free thought is unfamiliar and a little unnerving. So after awhile it becomes more natural and its ok for people to express displeasure with the creator, religion, wtbs and any unpleasant treatment they received.

    Its a process.

  • Perry

    I really appreciate your thoughts Sojourn. I think some people here are really angry at God, because they gave God their all (the WT way) and ended up with nothing. My experience with God and the organization over a 17 year period is that until a person does business with Jesus ALONE, he can expect no peace from God.

    That was my experience in a nut shell.


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