I'm ok. (I never knew it, anyway).
After Exiting the Witnesses - Are you O.K. Not Knowing about the Future ?
Flipper - when the question is asked as to whether one is comfortable about not knowing the future after leaving the JW's religion, the presupposition is that the JW religion did know the future, or at least the members believed in such.
The reality is the JW's do not, nor have ever known the future. It is a belief system of the future, handed down by Bethel that all members become impregnanted with, that they come to accept.
When the belief system is proven faulty, so then is the said future that was falsely prophecied.
All JW's and all ex JW's do not know the future. The difference is the former are led to believe they know, but in reality they do not; the latter understand they don't and won't let others tell them they don't.
It's a matter of perspective, but both parties don't know anything.
I'm happy knowing my future in general. The details of my future are not important and I'm okay with that.
I am much happier because I ACTUALLY DO KNOW something more of the future than I thought I knew as a JW.
I know that a future in THIS SYSTEM OF THINGS needs to be planned for. Oh, there was some measure of content in believing I didn't have to be concerned with retirement, medicare, pensions, social security. I could get by on a small salary.
But there was always an unsettling feeling to living like that. While still a believer, I started abandoning that mentality. My wife got a college education (gasp) and I set out to get a career that would cause me to miss some meetings (double gasp).
While the ecomony is unstable and many unknowns (such as personal and family health) are present, I know that we will have something of a future in our old age if we live to see it.
If there is no old age for us because of some political upheaval of Biblical proportions (not the Armageddon of JW's or Harold Camping, but you never know what might occur) then I really don't have to worry about it because there's nothing I can really do about it. No peddling of magazines or prayer groups will spare me. So I chill out on such stuff.
great question Mr. Flipper !
After reading all of the comments I look at this question along the lines of the Incredible Hulk" character. Remember how Dr. David Banner would be a normal type of guy ? And then something would get him upset or stress him out and automatically trigger his transformation into the Hulk.( my little nephew is really into this cartoon, so it is pretty fresh to me) .
Anyway, as a witness I had this automatic switch mode that would turn any bad news I read over to what the wt taught about the problem-free new system. It did me good for years, until the reality of their" picture perfec" religion, andt new system sunk in.
When I left I had a very difficult time stepping outside of the boundaries that I set up for myself over the decades. Even now when I hear something bad in the news that the witness mindset sometimes asserts itself again, thereby stressing me out because I no longer believe it yet there is some type of synaptic pathway (hey, I just finished a psych. class at college) that rises up when I least expect it to. I make a real effort to do things outside of the jw box. It is hard to do, but the benefits are really great ! I meet some wonderful people, experience some things that a witness never would and make some truly great memories in the process.. I was a green shirted guardian on this flight :
The current future is a concern but I look at it as an ongoing journey, no longer in the monumentally negative way the witness's look at it.
Thanks for all the great comments ! Wow. Woke up this morning and it had gone to 3 pages ! I'll respond page by page as I'm cookin some breakfast. Thanks again.
TALESIN- I know what you mean when you said we try to bend ourselves into pretzels to get our parents to accept us. I did this in regard to getting my dad's acceptance as I kept explaining for years why I didn't reach out to be an elder. I was needlessly trying to please him. Finally when I turned 40 11 years ago - I figured if he doesn't accept me for who I am, then screw it. I found out he DOES accept me- I was worrying needlessly. The things you mention about nature and appreciating it, rivers, mountains, and I find just sunsets and sunrises are awesome ! It is the enjoying of the journey that is the thing- not the destination, in my opinion.
CANTLEAVE- I agree about living life to the full and not adversely affecting others lives negatively. Also no need to fret about the future- we can't control it anyway !
CHARLIE BROWN JR. - I totally agree with you- I don't have a care in the world either since exiting the Witnesses. I too live my life with no regrets , of course I have stress from earning a living - but at least it's MY stress- not the stress handed down to me from a mind control organization ! LOL !
SNOWBIRD- I'm glad you are O.K. without the JW's view of the future. I'm with ya- there are some JW's I wouldn't want to live forever with either ! LOL ! Some were nice, but most I dealt with were boorish in behavior.
HONESTY- I'm glad you feel better after exiting the JW's 7 years ago. Glad you are happy with how you perceive the future.
BLONDIE- Indeed, we were all deceived to think we knew what the future was as JW's. I agree the present is a gift and we should value and use it wisely and happily.
SINIS- Indeed, global economic collapse MAY occur in the next 5 years, or it may not. It may come in 10, 20 years. It certainly looks like the global elite are heading us in that direction for sure.
FLYING HIGH NOW- I feel the same way you do. It HAS been a huge relief not to have all the answers. Or even feel we NEED to know the answers. We really don't need to . A lot less pressure. It does make life more wonderful in experiencing what comes along and makes things more interesting and spontaneous. Very true.
MINDSEYE- I agree with you. I find that Christian religions, Jehovah's Witnesses and other such beliefs - put wAY too much emphasis on living for a future life and not enjoying the " here and now " experiences in life. In thus doing so- many people waste their lives by missing out on mANY varied experiences which would enrich their lives.
UNSHACKLED- I like mystery and suspense too. Beer is good. I'm going to be eating a great breakfast in about 40 minutes. So I DO know SOME things about my immediate future ! LOL !
ALIAS - Good point you make. While we're sleeping we don't have to worry about anything ! Cool.
BOTZWANA - We may have global collapse - but it won't be the Jehovah's Witness version of global collapse ! Economic collapse would affect EVERYBODY- even them ! And ALL religious people the same as non-religious people.
LONG HAIR GAL- I could never stand the " can't enjoy here and now " attitude in the Witnesses either when I was a JW. It really annoyed me as I am a person who likes enjoying himself and has fun doing so ! I didn't like being made to feel guilty about enjoying myself . I don't need a structured religion either to know I'm moral or a decent person.
CLARITY- Thanks Clarity, nice hearing from you. Hope you are well too ! It is nice, isn't it to be able to decide on our own how we will spend our time ? Not being told to be at this meeting or that meeting at such and such a time ? Or have to go out in service regularly. Ick. Hated that. I like not having lots of man made rules to have to follow or else be looked at with a crooked eye for not following them ! Freedom is sweet lived day by day.
MRS. JONES- I agree. I don't need to know the future either. Here and now is good for me.
Gotta take a breakfast break. Be back later ! Take care
Trust me, its coming and probably sooner. Lots of scared shitless people, preparations on there way and very high levels... thats about as much as I can say... everyone should prepare accordingly... not trying to be a fear mongerer, but a realist.
O.K. I'm back. Now for pg. 2 responders.
SNOWBIRD- I hope you folks stay safe through the flooding down there ! Jeez. First Katrina, oil spills, now this. What next for you southerners ? It's awful !
TWENTYYEARSOUT- Good points you make which I agree with. The world will go on with us or without us. All religions that have predicted the end of the world were wrong, exactly. And they'll continue to be wrong.
GORWELL- I agree . I'm 100% fine with not knowing the future too. The world still revolves with us or without us.
DIAMONDIZ- It's true that the global elite are trying to railroad the economy off a cliff on purpose , and I agree it's good to prepare in our own private lives to have material provisions set aside. And I agree retirements are good too however if all hell breaks loose with anarchy and runs on banks - retirements will do us little good unless you have hard cash stored and hidden somewhere. I think JW's will go crazy when a economic collapse happens because they think God will protect them. When they find out even THEY will suffer - it may make them wonder how they were conned by the WT society. I'll have to check into the book you were talking about. Sounds interesting.
TRUTHSEEKERIAM- Thanks. That's great that your teenagers bring up subjects which make you ponder. The great thing about young people is they are usually so HONEST about expressing themselves. Once many adults get older ( middle aged or so ) they have pre-conceived ideas and prejudices - not so many young people. They help keep US as older people tuned in. I agree we can learn lots from young people.
TERRA INCOGNITA- I agree with you, I don't mind knowing about the future- but I'm open to ANY possibilities that might happen. I agree that we may well face economic collapse in our society. But that is cyclic if we look at American history. I believe in the 1870's a crash happened, in 1929 a crash happened, we are probably due for another one. I feel the global elite are pushing this country towards that eventuality. However - I too don't know when it will come. But it's up to us individually to help our families and friends through it. Nothing will be handed to us - we will have to be very self sufficient .
CHARLIKO- Very true that we need to value and treasure right here, right now. It's all we have at the moment, is now. Being kind to others and helping people is a fulfilling thing.
SIZEMIK- I love those quotes by Einstein. I'm a big Einstein guy. Have a lot of respect for what he accomplished. We should always stay open to the unknown- I agree totally.
AUSSIE OZ- Very true what you say. I never bought the JW future either towards my last years as a JW. And after exiting the Witnesses I partied a bit as well ! LOL !
B_DESERTER- Good example of the Nigerian money scam in showing we never had anything ANYWAY as JW's. So all was not lost. We have reality now.
JRK- I don't care about the religious stuff either. We will die when we die. Pretty morbid sounding - but it's truth and reality ! LOL !
NUGGET- You make a really great point by saying we all need to treasure the time we have with loved ones and relationships because time IS limited in that we don't know how long we'll each live . Very true. So we make the most out of each friendship, relationships we have. Lots of acts by people making a positive difference in this world. That's something each one of us can do.
CHARLIE BROWN JR. - I love the Beatles ! They were right " Tomorrow Never Knows ". I love Zeppelin too.
WT WIZARD- I agree with you- the global elite or Bilderbergs , i.e. Rothchilds, Rockefellers , etc. are out to trainwreck the economy , and they are trying to hide it from the American public. It was good to see the JW version of the future was wrong because we have more freedom to live fully now.
HEAVEN- I agree with you- I cherish my life left because we don't know how much life we will each get ! I too see this apathy in JW relatives like you experienced. They just meander ahead in a rut. It's sad indeed. My parents were born in the mid 1920's and are near the end of their life - Did it do them any good believing in " this generation " not passing away ? No . They will still die after having given 60 years of their lives to a mind control cult. Makes me sad for my parents but makes me angry against the WT society for deceiving my parents and others too.
GAYLE- I agree the GB is clueless . They no NOTHING about the future but act like they DO know. It earns them $$$$ to keep deceiving rank and file JW's.
JUSTITIA THEMIS - I agree with you I'm too busy living life and enjoying it to worry about the future . A great way to live
O.K. Now for page 3 responders. Thanks !
MINIMUS - I'm glad you're O.K. I'm O.K. as well !
MAKSYM- I agree with you , JW's or EX-JW's cannot predict or know the future. JW's are deceived to THINK they know the future from the WT society but they don't.
OTWO- Good points you mention. It is good to plan for the future as best we can with the economy . At least we don't have to be in fear of Harold Camping's or WT society's false predictions of an imagined Armageddon . We can live with happiness and fulfillment. Have to live life while we can !
MAN IN BLACK - It is hard to lose those JW cult triggers which send us into a fear mode . But it sounds like you've done a great job by going to college and studying Psychology. Good for you. So glad you are sending good things through your brain synapses and not any JW info anymore. Good luck on your college education.
SINIS- It's good to live as a " realist " and face what's happening . We should all prepare ourselves
I'm great with it. In fact I feel a deeper sense of peace and tranquility in my life now. Not sure exactly why unless it has to do with the fact that I now know God does'nt hate everyone except JW'S. I also want to please God even more because I 'm not being told every move to make. And I feel we make our own future by how we act and treat others. And there's really a sense of adventure in the unknown. SO I'm happier now than I have been in my whole life.
Once I started to except death as a reality and that every single human being before my time has had to experience death; a great Peace came over me. I was able to put the fear that Jehovah Witnesses instilled into me. I feel that I have more of a future now than I ever did being a Jehovah Witness. I have had a great personal spiritual awakening and feel closer to the real "Truth" of not knowing what the future beholds. I HATED living in a constant state of "the end is just around the corner", it drove me off the edge and out of that religion.