Is the Governing Body EVIL or IGNORANT?

by cedars 82 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • cedars

    Hi everyone

    Some of you will have noticed that I've been paying a lot of attention to the Governing Body recently. This is because most Jehovah's Witnesses venerate them collectively (even if they can't name them individually), and I feel this makes it important to understand this group of men properly and expose their mindset as individuals. As the saying goes, I feel it's important to "know your enemy".

    I realize it's very convenient to think of the Governing Body as being "evil" when we consider that they are ultimately responsible for all the damaging JW teachings and beliefs. Even if they are not all individually responsible for coming up with these crazy doctrines in the first place, they still support them vociferously and make no efforts to change things for the better.

    However, do we need to be more pragmatic? Dare we consider that there may be more to this than meets the eye? I don't ask this question lightly, and I have no fixed answer in mind. It's genuinely something that puzzles me. Do the Governing Body members KNOW that this is all some kind of sick game, or are they genuinely trying to fulfil a role as earthly representatives of God and Christ?

    What led to me asking this was my recent project of creating YouTube videos of Anthony Morris III. I've already started listening to other Governing Body members in preparation for when I will be placing them under similar scrutiny, and I've noticed there are huge differences in how likeable some of these individuals are. For example, Anthony Morris III is a pompous buffoon who thinks and acts like he is royalty and comes out with the most obscene and outrageous statements imagineable. He is, as OUTLAW put it, the typical bumbling villain. In contrast, though I know little about Geoffrey Jackson, he strikes me as being altogether more affable. I get the feeling that he is genuinely a nice man who is simply awestruck by the organization he serves, and sincerely feels honoured and privileged to be playing a part in it. I've spoken to others, and they concur (although I believe Jackson isn't universally liked).

    Anyway - let's assume for one moment that Geoffrey Jackson IS a nice chap, and he is simply oblivious to the fact that he is perpetuating a cruel and damaging cult. What if he isn't alone in his ignorance? What if, dare I say it, even "Tony the Turd" is completely oblivious to the innate malevolence of his position? What if he's just a poor stupid egomaniac who has bought into his own publicity and genuinely believes he is a special "chosen one" who is serving the Almighty? What if the other members are similarly oblivious and/or deluded?

    This is where some of you will say, "Well it doesn't matter whether they're nice or not, because it's not the Governing Body who are pulling the strings - it's the legal department." Yes, I realise this thinking is popular, but I personally don't subscribe to the idea that the Governing Body aren't really the ones in charge. Yes, they have their advisors, or "helpers", but I believe the buck does stop with them. I believe they really are at the top of the tree, no matter what influences they may be subjected to by the various committees.

    I have a hunch that, if ANYTHING is "evil" about this organization, it is purely the legacy of similarly delusional men who have long since died and left others to carry the baton. Collectively, all these mistaken and damaging doctrines have amassed into something that IS truly evil (a kind of snowball effect), and we are left with a damaging cult. And yet, this legacy is faceless and soulless. It is a monster that has consumed its master. Those who perpetuate it no longer have any control over it, because they are just as bound under its irresistable spell as anyone else. Some would say this non-human influence is Satanic in origin. Others who are more secular could argue that it is merely the inevitable by-product of men who take themselves (and their predecessors) far too seriously. However, just because one has a giant ego and venerates his forebears, these factors alone do not render one "evil". They merely make one more prone to make terrible decisions that would make life miserable for others - for generation after generation, thus perpetuating the vicious circle.

    I know this idea won't sit well with everyone. After all, we all enjoy thinking of the Governing Body as the pantomime villains. I'm not altogether convinced myself either way. Indeed, I've heard horror stories of one current Governing Body member in particular (that cannot be repeated because they are unverifiable). But, even so, however dreadful these men may be, it doesn't preclude the possibility that they are all operating under the false impression that this truly IS God's organization in which they have been privileged to play a prominent role. If that's the case, are they truly evil, or just ignorant?


  • Scott77

    I think , the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses are ignorant. That is what I think.


  • sir82

    The WTS is the perfect example of what happens when obsequious yes-men rise through the ranks based solely on their ability to "obey theocratic direction".

    Eventually they get to the top and hey, wait a minute! There's no one left to obey!

    So, instead they "obey" the concepts and policies laid down by their predecessors.

    We have a long-time (25+ years) Bethelite who got canned in the great purge of 3 or 4 years ago, who now is the service overseer. All (yes ALL) the ministerial servants under him can't stand him because he is a micromanaging bureaucrat who squashes any and all suggestions on how to do the work better, even if there is no "written direction" on how to do it. It's "his way or the highway". If someone has the temerity to suggest he might not be doing something particularly well, his reaction is search out ways to criticize the person who broached the subject and make his life as miserable as he can.

    Originality and creative thinking are not only discouraged, they are actively punished. Leadership skills are not developed at all.

    That's Bethel life in a nutshell. "Do it this way, regardless of how stupid / inefficient / wasteful / dangerous it is, because it is the theocratic way."

    What happens when guys like that make it to the GB? Instead of aggravating a handful of ministerial servants in a nondescript congregation, they aggravate 7 million JWs who have been trained since before baptism to "listen, obey, and be blessed".

    Is it "evil" or "ignorance"? Probably a little of both.

  • Sheep2slaughter


    Ignorance is at the root of their issues. Evil because they refuse to listen and then enforce man made rules.

  • slimboyfat

    They are "victims of victims" as Raymond Franz put it.

  • ballistic

    What you have described as a snowball effect I described on the board when I joined 11 years ago as a machine. A machine, a set of protocols and processes and a hierachy and operate as a machine. The other day I described the machine as a neme that is spread and converts but a machine can be completely ignorant as to it's purpose. In a way the whole of society is a machine. People who like to map this machine place interpretations on it, e.g. the drug barons are in contol, bankers control politicians, etc, in truth it's far too complex and changes rapidly. The governing body is the head of a mistaken machine that believes.

  • wolfman85
  • nugget

    If you look at any elder body you can see a duplication of the GB. In elder bodies there are sincere men who believe it all and are occasionally distressed by some of what happens but are willing to wait on Jehovah. You also have the political animals who wish to maintain their position at all costs, they are happy to tread on others and abuse their position. They don't believe and don't care it is irrelevant. There are also those who believe the publicity they are told they are important and because this is reinforced they don't question it and they accept it. Witnesses are not encouraged to question and are deeply conditioned. What makes them culpable is a failure to take their position seriously and follow through leading and serving rather than accepting and consolidating.

  • designs

    In my years in I saw both types. Knorr was punitive, Fred was cosmic and just out there, Schroeder was an elitist, but there were a couple who had the down to earth touch.

  • steve2

    Like most men - and women - on religious missions they can effortlessly be both ignorant and evil.

    Self-practised in tunnel-vision, they remain ignorant, control-obsessed in their quest for obedience, their behaviours are evil.

    Even if they believed they were absolutely right and all others wrong, it is a governing choice to translate that mindset into purposeful acts against others.

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