Is there a reason to remain a JW other than for family?

by cedars 64 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Black Sheep
    Black Sheep

    Instant family where ever you travel. Especially if you are well connected.

    SuperDubs are welcome anywhere. Need a translator? No problem. Taxi? No problem. Bed? No problem. Adventures? No problem.

  • leavingwt

    Quendi: On thing to keep in mind is this: When these elders and ministerials servant were recrutied into the cult, they joined, reached out and participated with the most noble of intentions. However, when one breaks out of prison, as you can imagine, this takes TIME and preparation. The inmate may have to go with the flow for a time, and then make a run for it when the circumstances are right. There are so many circumstances which are beyond the control of the inmate. As outsides, it's very easy for us to view the circumstances of others, with only limited knowledge and be overly critical. However, the facts on the ground are complex. Moreover, the people invovled are victims of severe spiritual and emotional abuse, at the hands of their closest friends and family. It's not a calm, low-pressure environment in which rational decisions are being made. It's a freaking pressure cooker! All of us have scars when we leave. Some, more than others. I'm still amazed at how well many of us can transition into a new life, given what we were subjected to for decades.

  • Quendi


    Thank you, my friend, for your response. I don't mean for one second to be critical of those who are making their way out of the WTS. You are right that it is a very complex situation that requires careful preparation. The "pressure cooker" environment these men live in must be horrible. I know you are speaking from your own personal experience and what you have learned in conversations with fellow elders and ministerial servants. I really do appreciate the valid point you make about how these men have suffered "severe spiritual and emotional abuse, at the hands of their closest friends and family." To be treated this way by those you love most must cause unbelievable suffering.

    Many who become elders and ministerial servants are seduced by the siren song of being used by Jehovah and serving others in a spirit of love and humility. As long as the cult has control of their thinking, they don't see the reality of their situation. It is only when they begin to awaken mentally, emotionally, and spiritually that they are in a position to make the decision to leave. I appreciate that.

    The point I wanted to make with my posts on this thread is that while there may be no straight line exit from the WTS that a serving elder or ministerial servant can take, once he is aware that he should leave he must use whatever resources available to begin the journey out. Maybe saying no to giving public talks is harder than I imagine, but I just don't understand how that would be the case. Surely a man can come up with any number of valid reasons for removing himself from the rotation of speakers. That is part of the careful planning he must do once he realizes he has to get out of this cult. Public speakers are the organization's front men, and as such they exercise a lot of influence. I believe those who give public talks must realize that they bear much responsibility for the harm their talks do to others. Relinquishing that role, if not the first step he takes, should definitely be an early one.

    Let's keep on talking about this vital topic. I know I have learned a great deal by reading the posts on this thread. Thanks to one and all for their contributions.


  • Quendi

    Cedars, I have sent you a PM.


  • exwhyzee

    I think if you can manage it mentally, there are good reasons to remain. For me it might be the connection I once had with a wide network of people. However I can't imagine having to sit through all those meeitings and Conventions again just to be able to chat with a few friends afterward. I'd be temped during the meetings to let out a loud... HA ! whenever I heard someone say something ridiculous. Toward the end, there was a lot of eye rolling on my part during the meetings and my wife was looking up extra scriptures or taking the time to read the verses before and after the ones being quoted and realizing they were taking things out of context. I definetly couldn't in good conscience do the door to door work or recommend this way of life to anyone except maybe someone who was really down and out and for whom anything would be an improvement. If I were to do it all over again, I wouln't take the whole thing so seriously and just get what good I could, out of it, ignoring the logic the doesn't add up and the pressures to do more and be more. Looking back, I think that's exactly what most of the more balanced ones I met, had been doing all along.

  • leavingwt

    Quendi: Imagine your loving wife of 15 years wanting to divorce you? Imagine having to fight for custody of your three precious chlidren? Instead of watching your kids grow into adults every day, seeing them every other weekend. Imagine your ex-wife poisoning your children's minds by telling them that their father has been misled by Satan.

    Something as simple as refusing to give a public talk can begin a downward spiral into losing your wife and kids. It's happened over and over and over with this cult. I get sick just thinking about it.

    I'm one of the people who got VERY, very lucky. My wife was independently reaching her own conclusions about WT not being her cup of tea, at the same time that I was having my awakening.

  • cedars

    quendi - thanks for that, I've replied.

    leavingwt - I think you and quendi are basically on the same page. You are both against hypocrisy, right? I hear your scenario about an elder not refusing to give talks for fear of beginning a downward spiral, however (certainly in western lands) the stresses of the system of things and the need to provide for one's family seem to be increasingly used as reasons to be "modest" in what one is or isn't able to do as a pioneer or elder. I'm sure if an elder approached the subject at an elder's meetings and brandished 1 Tim 5:8, saying that he has too much on his plate and needs to make sure he has giving enough time for his family etc, it would all get pushed through without too many objections.

    I STILL haven't heard from the elders on "Sunday Talks" who are bragging thus: "Ooooh guess what guys, I have this public talk on Sunday, what should I do??!!" Where are you guys??!!

    Family can be a reason for staying in "the truth", and it could even be a reason to remain as an elder, but staying on the public speaker's list? That's optional surely. If the Mrs is giving grief that she wants you to stay on it, and how you can you be so ridiculous as to stop giving public talks, then I suppose that's understandable. If, however, the Mrs is reasonably flexible (even as a devout witness) and is interested in having you around more, I think there are ways out of it if you plan it carefully enough.

  • wasblind

    The WTS holds family and friends as hostages with their rules

    this religion is full of people who are not true believers, Why would

    Jehovah want people who are forced to worship him, forced worship

    is most definitley not true worship

  • Quendi

    Reading the posts on this thread has made me realize just how evil the WTS is. Comparing them to the American segregationists was being too kind. When a religion that professes to be supportive of families institutes rules and practices that destroys them when they are resisted, the only word to describe it is evil. They talk so much about "Satan's world" not understanding or admitting that they are as much under Satan's thumb as the very "world" they condemn.

    I know, leavingwt, you are speaking from personal knowledge when you give the examples of women who have threatened their husbands with divorce if he should step down. However, I wouldn't call such a wife "loving". It seems to me she is only a selfish manipulator, concerned only with her status as an overseer's or servant's wife. How is that "Christian" and why would any man want to remain married to her? I am glad you did not have to endure such hatred on the part of a "loving, Christian" wife, but had her unconditional love and support. You're right to say you were very, very lucky in that regard.

    As cedars says, you and I are on the same page. The question before us is how should a man do this. When a man decides to step down, is he subject to pressure from the remaining elders as well as the circuit overseer to stay on? Why would any wife oppose her husband's decision to do this? It seems to me that she would be glad to have her husband at home more with her and their children. What role do other family members play in exerting pressure on this man?

    I find exwhyzee's post interesting and I have some questions for him. Aren't mental balance and finding good things in the organization mutually exclusive? How can one participate, however minimally, in organizational activities he doesn't believe in or endorse, and believe the "network" contacts he has are worthwhile? I don't think I could.


  • leavingwt

    threatened their husbands with divorce if he should step down

    Please allow me to be more specific. Stepping down from giving talks is merely the beginning. When a person's mind becomes free, they CHANGE. It's inevitable. So, the husband must live a lie or be truthful with this wife.

    I was implying that the JW wife could very well have no desire to be married to an Apostate. In other words, she was unable to remain emotionally attached to someone who will be destroyed at Armageddon, which could arrive as early as tomorrow. From her point of view, it's not irrational at all. She's better off leaving with her kids, protecting them from a demonic influence -- their father, and starting a new life with a man who will live forever with her in Paradise. There is no Biblical provision for divorce over a religious disagreement. However, it happens with JWs, all the time, if one spouse leaves the organization.

    BOTH of my brothers lost their wives when they exited the organization. Both of them had been happily married for more than 10 years. Their wives wanted what they had always wanted: exemplary JW husbands.

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