RUTHERFORD - Alive and well?

by sizemik 7 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • sizemik

    Many here are familiar with this entry in wikipedia . . . for those that aren't, here's a link;

    My reason for posting this, is this astounding sequence of paragraphs . . . and in particular how these "traits" of the "Judge" are still strongly evident in WT theology and practices today. I won't get specific . . . I'll leave it for you to comment . . .

    Wills states that Rutherford seemed to relish his descriptions of how completely the wicked would be destroyed at Armageddon, dwelling at great length on prophecies of destruction. He claims that towards the close of his ministry Rutherford spent about half of each year's Watchtowers writing about Armageddon.

    According to Penton, Rutherford's austerity—evidenced by his distaste for Christmas, birthday parties and other popular customs that were described as of pagan origin or that encouraged creature worship and were not to be observed—led in turn to austerity becoming a part of Witness life. In 1938, he directed that singing be dispensed with at congregation meetings; singing was reinstated soon after his death.

    Rutherford's books and magazine articles reveal his strong views on "the proper place of women" in the church and society. In a 1931 book he linked the post-1919 rise of women's movements that encouraged equality of the sexes with satanic influence, and claimed the custom of men tipping their hats to women or standing when a woman approached was a scheme of the devil to turn men from God and indicated an effeminate streak in men who practiced the custom.Mothers Day was similarly described as part of a plan to turn people away from God. In 1938 he urged adherents to delay marriage and child-bearing until after Armageddon, which Wills claims prompted a strong community bias among Witnesses against marriage. Those who did marry, says Wills, were considered to be weak in faith. At a 1941 convention in Missouri he quoted Rudyard Kipling's description of women as "a rag and a bone and a hank of hair".

  • luna2

    What all of that says to me is that many people want a strong leader. Doesn't make much difference if he's autocratic, if he hates women, if he grants himself extra priveleges, if he's a secret womanizer or if he's an alcoholic, as long as he presents himself as if he knows it all and you don't, people will follow. Its kind of a sad commentary on human nature.

  • ambersun

    Sadly, I think you are right luna2, and it seems as long as there are gullible people looking for a 'strong leader', there will always be power crazed, obnoxious, drunken, chauvenistic oafs only too willing to give them exactly what they want

  • TotallyADD

    What pains me is many born-ins who were born in the late 40's and 50's had parents who were still under the spell of this kind of harsh thinking. I know even today holidays and brithdays are not alllowed but that group born then had abuses dealt out by their parents, the congregation members and school officials. I knew alot of old timers in the cult most liked Russel alot. But Rutherford they had little to say about and some told me they did not like him. But that mind set of what Rutherford pushed was still in their personality. Such a deadly mind set. I still have very negative feelings about these things. A cult that appears to the general public as a group of nice people. Sick. Totally ADD

  • sizemik

    Thanks for that TotallyADD . . . It appears to me that the Judge was not "followed" as a leader because of his personal attributes. I feel it's more like he hijacked a concept along with it's organisation and breathed his stinking personality all over it. It wouldn't surprise me if he was disliked by a good many . . . but nobody would say so of course.

    The tight control is one feature of Rutherford reflected in the cult today.

    "Austerity", while not being thier term of choice, is still a policy they persue with rules on college attendance and the unreasonable push for full-time workers . . . austerity fosters dependance.

    And the subjugation of women is still very real in the organisation also. There are some things Rutherford innoculated this Religion with that have never gone away.

    The families of former times must have had no end of challenges, living by those principles. But it's not much better now . . . they're still stuffing up lives big time. It is indeed a sickness.

  • TotallyADD

    The Rutherford mindset was alive and well when I was a child. When my wife and I was first married we was in a congregation with 11 anointed in their 80's and rest of the R&F close to the same age. This was back in the mid 70's. To this day we have never seen such a group of mean and psychotic people. Hated because we were young and married, hated that we had children. All they wanted was the the whole earth to be destoryed. When my wife was with our first child we had a sister come up to her and tell her "woe to the pregnant women in the last days" no how wonderful or congraulations just hate. These were the people who many knew Rutherford personally. Austerity yes if you mean they knew how to suck out any joy in life and hated anyone who was not like them. All because of a very sick man who made the bible students into a cult. Totally ADD

  • clarity

    Reading about that man is stomach churning!

    You're right, Murray, his personality is stamped all over this religion and strangely even more so lately. Seems that when the gb want to 'tighten' things up ... they just get more Rutherfordish!

    His fingerprints are on every aspect of this cult as your quotes show.

    I wonder where the idea came from, that if you are DF'd from the organization, then your prayers wouldn't be heard. Did this idea came from Rutherford also?

    "Bible Students who opposed or abandoned Rutherford to form new groups were increasingly described as the "evil servant class" by The Watchtower, which said it was wrong to pray for those who were "unfaithful".



  • thetrueone

    Sick corrupt men set on self empowerment can only result in creating sick mentally corrupt devoted followers.

    God and the bible are many times exploited to create this sense of self empowerment, a social physiological

    abnormality that can get out of control for some men, resulting in real devastating occurrences to people who are put

    under these men's control.

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