July 11, 2011 will be 34 years since I was baptised as one of JW's. The sleeping pill I took was in the form of them providing the information that made the Bible come alive with the truth and insisting that they go by the Bible not adding or taking away from it. I had negative experiences from local brothers from time to time, however I excused them as part of being imperfect. There were other issues but I was always encouraged to "wait on Jehovah".
2 years ago I began to be awaken from my slumber. The visiting CO complained about brothers having the so called "soul patch" (hair patch below the bottom lip). Those that have them, cut them off. He claimed that some grew it as a representation of their homosexuality (thats absurd). All brothers within the congregation except me with blind obedience shaved them off. For the next few weeks the elders constantly attempted to pressure from the platform that it was a sign of our obedience to Jehovah by our being obedient to those taking the lead. I grew tired of the constant pressure to obey and called for a meeting with the Congregation Coordinator and my Fieldservice Group Overseer. I informed them that I do not blindly obey any man and there is no place in the Bible where God has ever directed his servants to change their appearance to appease any one that was to receive his message. A man is designed to have facial hair and as long as it is moderatly maintained then it should be ok, in addition I am not and have never been a homosexual. They eventually brought sanctions against me by taking away so called priveledges (carrying the mike or being an attendant) part of the mind control. Although it does not matter to me if I was ever used for any of these trivial duties, it's the principal of the matter that concerned me.
I sent the WTBTS a letter concerning this matter with an abundance of scriptural evidence that it is wrong to bring sanctions against a brother for wearing facial hair. The reply I received from them was just as absurd. A bunch of rhetoric that avoided all of the scriptural points I had made. However they reminded me to follow Heb. 13:17, to be submissive. This indicated to me that they were more concerned with controll than what God's word said on the matter. Thus began my waking up process.
I became to notice more and more that JW's are manipulated to blindly obey this man made organization. They give Jesus a little lip service from time to time, but generally speak of Jehovah and his organization. It is also common to hear statements like the angels can give positive reports to Jehovah and we can make Jehovah's heart glad, putting faith in Jehovah's organization, and so on. I came to notice that the organization is putting themselves in Jesus' place. Jesus is the Faithful Witness of Jehovah (Rev 3:14). He said that his followers would be witnesses of him (Acts 1:8). Therefore, Christians are Jesus' Witnesses and Jesus himself is the only true Jehovah's Witness. The organization did not die for mankind. Our Most High Heavenly Father delegated all authority to Jesus (Matt 28:18) and no doubt this is why Jehovah humbly allowed for his name not to be used in the Greek (New Testament) Scriptures as it was in the Hebrew Scriptures, but to focus on his Son. But the arrogant WTBTS want to do it their way by declaring themselves JW's.
I still attend meetings but find myself becoming more and more detached from the congregation as they appear to be in a hypnotic condition. I am irregular heading for inactive status in service because members are more concerned with time than anything else. They will harass people within a territory just to get that time needed to complete pioneer time (depressing).
The problem that I find myself in that I see many others face is, Where else can you go? I have awaken to the hypocrisy and arrogance of the organization as others have done. I have noticed that others have faded away to just being "good people", becoming agnostic, atheist, returned to Christendom, or just give up and live promiscuous lives. The scriptures direct Christians to keep associating with each other (Heb10:24-25). So I guess I will stay around until I find something better or until Our Heavenly Father Jah corrects the matter.