Are Jehovah’s Witnesses a Cult?

by mankkeli 28 Replies latest jw friends

  • mankkeli

    This is an excerpt from the 1994 watchtower, February 15. In the entire article, The watchtower tries to debunk any claim of their cultism. See how they go about it.

    " Would it be accurate to refer to Jehovah’s Witnesses as a religious group with radical views and practices that clash with what is accepted as normal social behavior? Are Jehovah’s Witnesses a cult?

    Cult members often isolate themselves from family, friends, and even society in general. Is that the case with Jehovah’s Witnesses? “I do not belong to Jehovah’s Witnesses,” wrote a newsman in the Czech Republic. Yet he added: “It is obvious that they [Jehovah’s Witnesses] have tremendous moral strength. . . . They recognize governmental authorities but believe that only God’s Kingdom is capable of solving all human problems. But watch it—they are not fanatics. They are people who are absorbed in humanity.”

    And they do not live in communes, isolating themselves from relatives and others. Jehovah’s Witnesses recognize that it is their Scriptural responsibility to love and care for their families. They live and work with people of all races and religions. When disasters strike, they are quick to respond with relief supplies and other humanitarian assistance.

    More important, they are engaged in an educational program that has no comparison. How many religions have an organized system to pay personal visits to every individual in their community? Jehovah’s Witnesses do this in more than 200 lands and in more than 200 languages! Clearly, Jehovah’s Witnesses are “absorbed in humanity.”

    It is clear that Jehovah’s Witnesses are as far from being a cult as Jesus was from being a glutton and a drunkard. Admittedly, not everyone who was influenced by the false reports about Jesus and his disciples fell into the trap of slandering him. Some may simply have been misinformed. If you have questions about Jehovah’s Witnesses and their beliefs, why not get to know them better? The doors to their Kingdom Halls are wide open to all who seek truth. You can also benefit from their careful search for accurate Bible knowledge and learn how to worship God in harmony with Jesus’ words: “The hour is coming, and it is now, when the true worshipers will worship the Father with spirit and truth, for, indeed, the Father is looking for suchlike ones to worship him.”—John 4:23."

    You can check up on the whole article if you have the WT- Library. Do you think these claims justify their stance?. Would it still be appropriate to continue labelling them a cult?.
  • dm6


  • blond-moment

    I always thought no, they aren't. Once I woke up, and started to uncover everything, I still thought no, but I wasn't as sure. Once I learned about mind control, and cult mind control, I absolutely say Yes, they are a mind control cult.

    I used to see cult as brainwashing, forced, fringe etc. Now I know that mind control isn't forced, it's designed as voluntary. I can see the indoctrination process. I can see the high control of time, thought, language, friends family, etc etc. Yes, they are a cult, and they are not the only large one. There are some bigger than JWs, and what would be seen as main stream.

    Location, has nothing to with with mind control. The MIND CONTROL is what defines a cult. Big or small. Isolated or right in the middle of Brooklyn. etc. It's the control that defines it to me. <-- quick mental control checklist. There is a lot of other information out there, and it's this check, that check check. I mean the witnesses read like a checklist.

  • Pams girl
    Pams girl

    The JWs are "absorbed in humanity"...????? Thats the funniest thing Ive read in ages.

    YES, they are a CULT.

    B - Behaviour Control

    I - Information Control

    T - Thought Control

    E - Emotional Control.

    And there you have it.

  • sizemik

    The only time they'll be "absorbed in humanity" is when they're shovelling up 7 billion dead bodies . . .

    Louis Jolyon West:

    "A cult is a group or movement exhibiting a great or excessive devotion or dedication to some person, idea or thing and employing unethically manipulative techniques of persuasion and control (e.g. isolation from former friends and family, debilitation, use of special methods to heighten suggestibility and subservience, powerful group pressures, information management, suspension of individuality or critical judgment, promotion of total dependency on the group and fear of [consequences of] leaving it, etc.) designed to advance the goals of the group's leaders to the actual or possible detriment of members, their families, or the community."
  • Black Sheep
    Black Sheep

    They are cherry picking to do a whitewash job ...... as usual.

    Even some of their cherry picking doesn't stand up under scrutiny.

    Notice their reference???? ....... some journo who knows buggerall about them.

    Walks like a duck .......

  • elderelite

    As a leader in the cult i feel safe in saying "yes" we are in fact a cult.

    The definition that writer accepted, by hos own admision, for a cult defines JW's to tee... "isolating themselves from family, friends andnsociety in general"

    As dubbied we teach that we "are no part of the world". We dont associate with people who arnt DEVOUTE JW's for fear of satanic influance.....

    Isolate themselves? Oh yes. In every way possible short of a compound and a fence. Fear and intimdation are used to promte the idea that if u ever leave u will be swallowed up by the devil and his world.

    Its a cult by even that simple definition of one, which dosent even begin to cover the true depth of it.

  • jean-luc picard
    jean-luc picard

    Typical JW banter.

    To prove a point they cite an obscure journalist from checkoslovakia ( sorry if hes reading this )

    that few can verify, and present that as undisputable proof of what they are saying.

    Cult members often isolate themselves from family, friends, and even society in general. Is that the case with Jehovah’s Witnesses?

    We reply with a very hearty YES IT IS!

  • Franklin Massey
    Franklin Massey

    I followed the same thought process as blond-moment. Now I see that it was denial and wishful thinking.

    If one is happy in the group, sees no issues with how the group operates and thinks it is the best possible group one could be a part of, then of course they aren't going to think they're in a cult.

    The real test for me came when I began to adopt different beliefs and started to question previously-agreed upon doctrines. It freaks many a JW out when you say something like, "I'm not really sure we have (insert any JW teaching) figured out correctly." I had to stop seeking answers to my questions within the very group that promised to have the best possible answers to my questions.

    If you are up for the experiment, try expressing your true feelings about a JW doctrine in a mixed group of JWs and you'll quickly see how high the level of control is.

  • Rydor

    Perhaps not a full-blown cult like the Unification Church (Moonies) or the People's Temple, but many of the elements common to cults are present among Jehovah's Witnesses. Go read Steve Hassan's book, "Combatting Cult Mind Control." He never mentions Jehovah's Witnesses once in the book, but if you examine the common characteristics of cults, you'll find that most, if not all of them, are found in the Watchtower organization:

    The Doctrine is Reality

    There is no room in a mind control environment for regarding the group's beliefs as mere theory, or as a way to interpret reality or to seek reality. The doctrine IS reality. ...cult doctrine always requires that a person distrust his own self. The doctrine becomes the 'master program' for all thoughts, feelings, and actions....

    Reality is Black and White, Good Versus Evil

    Even the most complex cult doctrines ultimately reduce reality into two basic poles black versus white' good versus evil; verses them.... The 'huge conspiracies' working to thwart the group are, of course, proof of its tremendous importance....

    Elitist Mentality

    Members are made to feel part of an elite corps of mankind. This feeling of being special, of participating in the most important acts in human history with a vanguard of committed believers, is strong emotional glue to keep people sacrificing and working hard. ...As a community, they feel they have been chosen (by God, history, or some other supernatural force) to lead mankind out of darkness into a new age of enlightenment...

    Group Will over Individual Will

    In all destructive cults the self must submit to the group. The 'whole purpose' must be the focus; the 'self purpose' must be subordinated....Absolute obedience to superiors is one of the most universal themes in cults. Individuality is bad. Conformity is good. ...

    Strict Obedience Modeling the Leader

    A new member is often induced to abandon his former behavior patterns and become 'dedicated' by being paired with an older cult member who serves as a model for him to imitate. ...One reason why a group of cultists may strike even a naive outsider as spooky or weird is that everyone has similar odd mannerisms, clothing styles, and modes of speech. ...

    Happiness through Good Performance

    ...The cult member learns that love is not unconditional but depends on good performance....Competitions are used to inspire and shame members into being more productive....Relationships are usually superficial within these groups because sharing deep personal feelings, especially negative ones, is highly discouraged....

    Manipulation through Fear and Guilt

    The cult member comes to live within a narrow corridor of fear, guilt, and shame. Problems are always the fault of the member and are due to HIS weak faith, HIS lack of understanding, ... He perpetually feels guilty for not meeting standards....

    No Way Out

    In a destructive cult, there is never a legitimate reason for leaving. Unlike non-cult organizations that recognize a person's inherent right to choose to move on, mind control groups make it very clear that there is no legitimate way to leave. Members are told that the only reasons why people leave are weakness, insanity, temptation, brainwashing (by deprogrammers), pride, sin, and so on. ... Although cult members will often say 'Show me a way that is better than mine and I will quit,' they are not allowed the time or mental tools to prove that statement to themselves. They are locked in a psychological prison." (from the book Combatting Cult Mind Control, by Steven Hassan, Park Street Press, pp. 78-84)

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