Philosophy means admitting for sure that you know almost nothing for sure. It operates with abstract notions, many of them unverifiable by senses. It is a science of great uncertainty. And the JWs have their own philosophy, which is their set of doctrines they pretend to be certain and exact, the Truth. For example, they seek supernatural explanations where in fact is only a big unknown. All religions do that. People are strange beings, they fabricate their own truths and pretend them to be "absolute". F...ck, they even die for those fabrications!!!
Why do the JWs have such an aversion to philosophy?
Well, if it wasn't for Greek philosphers/thinkers (whose ideas were copied by others) we wouldn't have Christianity as we know it today.
I think in the back of their tiny minds is the scripture which in the NWT warns against the "philosophies of men" but of course they don't read the context and think about what Paul was actually saying, Paul, a man well educated as to the philosophical thought down to his day.
They think all philosophy, and indeed all thought, that is not pulled out of the ass of the Governing Body is evil. As Moshe rightly shows, they once again proudly display their abysmal ignorance.
Maybe taking us off topic, but who are your favourite modern P's ? I have enjoyed the writings of A.C Grayling and Julian Baggini for example. As well as other thinkers like Brian Appleyard.
January 15, 1983 Watchtower page 27, "Fight against independent thinking."
If you cant just blindly accept what they have to say you need to read the watchtower more to strengthen your weak faith. And why look into philosophy when they are already telling you the truth? Obviously its a waste of time that could be better spent in service
Consider the example of firewalking.
JWs will immediately say DEMONS are at work, and that "It is Demonism, pure and simple," that is why those people can walk on fire!
End of discussion, Demons are the reason.
No attempt is made to get to the scientific basis of why, under some conditions, people can walk on burning coals.
Critical Thinking and Philosophy are a threat to the JWs' and The Watchtower's world view.
It is as simple as that!
mrs jone5 Because magical thinking requires less brain cells?
Some good comments have been made in answer to the title question. I would add that JWs have been repeatedly told to avoid the empty philosophy of the world. This is an attempt by the Society to brainwash its members into avoiding rational thought & the application of proven facts to arrive at accurate conclusions. After all, they are meant to be sheep!
JWs are taught that "the wisdom of the world is foolishness with God"
1 Corinthians 3:19 - For the wisdom of this world is foolishness before God For it is written, "He is THE ONE WHO CATCHES THE WISE IN THEIR CRAFTINESS"
This causes them to erroneously conclude that the FOOLISHNESS OF THE WORLD is WISDOM, and so they eagerly embrace all manner of nonsense and eschew the perfecting of their cognitive faculties. After all, they wouldn't want their god to think they were fools, would they?
to much damn thinking!
Besides, a jw who read philosophy will quickly discover that the GBs favorite religious arguments are considered quaint, antiquated ideas from a long-gone time.
The JWs like to rag on independent thought without ever realizing that, by their own story, lack of independent thought is what got all of us in this mess. Eve, after all, believed YHWH when he said that eating of the tree would cause her to die. And then she believed the serpent when he told her the opposite. However, independent thought didn't cause her to change her mind - lack of independent thought did. Rather than examining each case and considering the merits of each, she simply first allowed YHWH to impose his word on her, and then allowed the serpent to impose on her as well.
Boethius once said, "You can never impose upon a free spirit, nor can you deprive a rationally self-possessed mind of its equanimity." And that is why learning, intelligence, and thought are the deadly enemy of the spiritual vampires who run the WTBTS.
Edit: "For we wrestle, not against flesh and blood, but against principalities (arche), against rulers (exousia), against the rulers (kosmokrator) of the darkness of this world , against spiritual wickedness in the heavens."
Reasoning from Scriptures book p288-292 by JW say:
Definition: The word philosophy is derived from Greek roots that mean “love of wisdom.” As used here, philosophy is not built on acceptance of belief in God, but it tries to give people a unified view of the universe and endeavors to make them critical thinkers. It employs chiefly speculative means rather than observation in a search for truth.
What is the origin of human philosophies?
They come from people who have limitations: The Bible informs us: “It does not belong to man who is walking even to direct his step.” (Jer. 10:23) History testifies that trying to ignore that limitation has not produced good results. On one occasion, “Jehovah proceeded to answer Job out of the windstorm and say: ‘Who is this that is obscuring counsel by words without knowledge? Gird up your loins, please, like an able-bodied man, and let me question you, and you inform me. Where did you happen to be when I founded the earth? Tell me, if you do know understanding.’” (Job 38:1-4) (Humans by nature have limitations. Additionally, their experience in life is relatively brief and is usually confined to one culture or one environment. The knowledge they possess is thus restricted, and everything is interconnected to such an extent that they constantly find aspects that they had not adequately considered. Any philosophy that they originate will reflect these limitations.)
They are developed by humans who are imperfect: “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Rom. 3:23) “There exists a way that is upright before a man, but the ways of death are the end of it afterward.” (Prov. 14:12) (Because of such imperfection, human philosophies often reflect a basic selfishness that leads perhaps to momentary pleasure but also to frustration and much unhappiness.)
They are influenced by demonic spirits: “The whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one.” (1 John 5:19) “The one called Devil and Satan . . . is misleading the entire inhabited earth.” (Rev. 12:9) “You at one time walked according to the system of things of this world, according to the ruler of the authority of the air, the spirit that now operates in the sons of disobedience.” (Eph. 2:2) (Philosophies that encourage people to disobey God’s wholesome and upright requirements reflect such an influence. No wonder that, as history testifies, human philosophies and schemes have often brought grief to large segments of humankind.)
Why is it an evidence of clear thinking to study the teachings of Jesus Christ instead of human philosophy?
Col. 1:15-17: “He [Jesus Christ] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; because by means of him all other things were created in the heavens and upon the earth . . . All other things have been created through him and for him. Also, he is before all other things and by means of him all other things were made to exist.” (His intimate relationship with God enables him to help us to learn the truth about God. Furthermore, as the one through whom all other things were made, Jesus has a full knowledge of the entire created universe. No human philosopher can offer any of this.)
Col. 1:19, 20: “God saw good for all fullness to dwell in him [Jesus Christ], and through him to reconcile again to himself all other things by making peace through the blood he shed on the torture stake.” (Thus Jesus Christ is the one through whom God has purposed to bring all creation back into harmony with himself. To Jesus, God has also entrusted rulership over all the earth, as shown at Daniel 7:13, 14. So our life prospects for the future depend on getting to know him and responding favorably to his instruction.)
Col. 2:8: “Look out: perhaps there may be someone who will carry you off as his prey through the philosophy and empty deception according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary things of the world and not according to Christ.” (What a sad mistake it would be to choose such deceptive human philosophy in preference to acquiring true wisdom as a disciple of Jesus Christ, the second-greatest person in the universe, next to God himself!)
How does God view the “wisdom” offered by human philosophy?
1 Cor. 1:19-25: “It is written: ‘I will make the wisdom of the wise men perish, and the intelligence of the intellectual men I will shove aside.’ Where is the wise man? Where the scribe? Where the debater of this system of things? Did not God make the wisdom of the world foolish? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through its wisdom did not get to know God, God saw good through the foolishness [as it appears to the world] of what is preached to save those believing. . . . Because a foolish thing of God [as the world views it] is wiser than men, and a weak thing of God [as the world may see it] is stronger than men.” (Such a viewpoint on God’s part is certainly not arbitrary or unreasonable. He has provided in the Bible, the most widely circulated book in the world, a clear statement of his purpose. He has sent his witnesses to discuss it with all who will listen. How foolish for any creature to think that he has wisdom greater than that of God!)