Discussion involving my Dad & other long timers - Mood is definately different
slimboyfat - "No, what was that about?"
Back around '01 or '02, The Boss (not Springsteen) got it into his head that because XJWs (DAed, DFed, faded, whatever) were starting to outnumber the Actives with real concrete polling numbers to prove it, these "apostates" would get all organized and start some kind of major action against the WTS (the nature of which was kinda fuzzy), and that that event would trigger the Big A (presumably like the "rebels" attacking the sheeplike minority at the end of the Millennial Reign, and getting snuffed along with Satan for their troubles).
So I've heard, anyway.
Thanks I never heard that before. That's pretty far out.
leavingwt makes a good point about immigrants counting by the way.
slimboyfat: Hey, that was YOUR point.
I gave you credit on page two of this thread, here:
I don't doubt there is something of a malaise in the Org , but to be honest , I think there always has been - it is in the nature of an organisation that keeps on promising jam tomorrow but tomorrow never coming. If you read the letters in Ray Franz's book sent to the GB by district overseers etc in the late 70's during the brief period of glasnost in the WTBTS you can see exactly the same issues being discussed. Nothing really changes. I remember similar hushed conversations 20 & 30 years ago.
If anything the WTBTS is even more secure than it was in the past. Back in the 70's there were new ones coming along with no family connections. Most JWs nowadays are part of large family & social networks and are mainly 2nd / 3rd generation. As many of us know to our cost , it is tremendously difficult & painful to extricate oneself from that situation.
very interesting thread, love the part about the crazies are not coming in any more, the trend in the USA/Canada/Japan/Australasia/the whole of Europe show trends and negative and zero growth rates that the Borg will have to address sometime, the growth in developing/3rd world countries is all very well but they dont bring the cash home.
My mother was an English teacher.
She insisted that I learned correct English grammar.
She gave me the opportunity to discuss the new 'generation' doctrine. She brought up that Joseph and his brothers were contemporaries, so I asked her how she could fall for that crock as they all came from the same scrotum.. I pointed out that Jesus didn't say 'contemporaries', anyway ..... he said generation.
I have heard from Mum & Dad many times since then, but neither have broached any religious subject.
They can't afford to admit they were wrong, but as long as they attack my character for not joining their cult, I reserve the right to defend my honor.
Re: the topic at hand, I think the change happened with the "generation change" Watchtower in 1995 (there's been so many you have to specify which one). Looking back, there seems to be a slow, steady, deflation of spirit since then, as people began realizing that, yes, just like every human who ever lived before them, they will grow old, get sick, and die.
Reading this I was struck by a thought (ouch!):
Unlike most religions, The Watchtower was not designed to meet the lifetime spiritual needs of its members.
The Watchtower was designed to meet a short term goal of getting its members through Armageddon. It was built as an emergency fallout shelter of sorts, for a disaster that was supposed to be here long ago.
Several generations have sat obediently in the ‘bomb shelter’ living off teachings and beliefs that were only supposed to last a few short years.
But now they are running out of ‘food.’
Great comments all. Dozy, you make a very interesting point. There are a bunch of us here that have many family ties that either have been cut as a result of leaving or would be cut if we chose to do so. Many more than in the aftermath of 1975. In that sense, the WTS is counting on using those family ties to keep the numbers up.
However, growing up in the mid 70s/80s, I do recall some disagreements with the WTS official line but it was more on minor doctrinal points. Of course, I was just a kid so there may have been more malasie than I was able to perceive. But, I will say that in the 80s and even pre-1995, the atmosphere was more upbeat. Folks were still coming in from the field. Congregations were still growing and splitting. Divorce was shocking. DF'ings (in my area) were pretty uncommon. Worldwide reports showed big numbers and new branches.
Now, it's not uncommon to see congregations merged (something I didn't even know could happen 15 years ago). DF'ings are quite common (around here). Branches aren't expanding, they're closing. The numbers from even 3rd world countries are not very good and in 1st world countries they are flat to very modest.
The other thing I noticed is that this particular group is exhausted from living the majority of their life as hard charging JWs. I think deep down, they realize that something is seriously wrong.
I seriously doubt that any of them would ever leave or even fade. They will continue to press on and hope that it's all worth it.
The Watchtower was not designed to meet the lifetime spiritual needs of its members.
But now they are running out of ‘food.’
LisaObeesa... my thinking exactly. They weren't designed for the long haul.
Ya know, regurgitation year after year only works for ruminants.