The Making Of A Jehovah's Witness

by Bangalore 8 Replies latest jw friends

  • Bangalore

    The Making Of A Jehovah's Witness.

    By Victor Escalante

    What motivates people to study and eventually become a Jehovah's Witness (JW)?

    Every religion I know of offers two things: first a set of practices, disciplines, and behaviors, which identify the members of that religion and shape, when successful, their perceptions and consciousness. Secondly, a religion offers security; it says that out of the many paths we as humans could tread this specific path defined by the practices, disciplines, and behaviors is the correct one, that if you follow these directions you will be rewarded either with heaven or a paradise as JWs believe.

    JWs have been programmed with a set of beliefs to proselytize as a prerequisite for that reward. This creates a potential for uninformed persons to be indoctrinated and recruited to the Watchtower belief system. The negative consequences are not explained nor are they apparent to the new recruit until it's too late to leave honorably without any emotional, mental, and spiritual pain.

    In my own experience I was recruited at a very young age of 17. With 20/20 hindsight I made the JWs my surrogate family due to the emotional vacuum in my personal life. In all fairness those were kinder and gentler times and the people I came in contact were for the most part sincere Christians. They were followers of followers and they did not know the long-term consequences of their choice in religion. One clue my parents should have seen in my indoctrination with the JWs was my obsessive meeting attendance on weekends and midweek. The dichotomy though is that they could not see anything wrong with these friendly people that came to study the Bible with me every Tuesday.

    Once I bought lock stock and barrel into this ideology there was no way anyone was going to convince me that JWs or I were wrong. What I did not know was that my perceptions had been skewed to see only what I believed therefore I only believed what I saw. This was a reflection of an illusion and I did not know it until some twenty years later with my disillusion as I faced the facts.

    There are many outward signs friends and family can look for in a person that is studying or ready to become a JW proselyte. Some of these can be:

    This is a sign that the new recruit is twisting the facts to fit the end of time theology.

    This is due to conforming and following the dictates of the JWs, such as wanting to legalize a divorce, changing bad habits like smoking etc, etc.

    This may be due to the lack of disposable time due to meeting attendance and a substitution of friendships to incubate the new recruit and feed more propaganda.

    Many of us will remember how we demonized usual and customary holidays and celebrations.

    This is further investment in the JW way of life and a constructed perception of: love, strength of numbers, and JWs being a mainstream religion.

    This is due to the "zeal" of the newfound "truth".

    This can be seen when a person makes life changing decisions like quitting college, not making long term plans etc. etc.

    This is due to a person not doing their own thinking but parroting clich├ęs or oversimplified answers to complex problems.

    We should be ready to revise any belief, we should change a belief where there is compelling reason to change it, and we should not change a belief wantonly without some good reason. The first point needs intellectual courage, the second, intellectual honesty, and the third, wise restraint. Do not believe anything but question only what is worth questioning.


  • gingerbread

    "In all fairness those were kinder and gentler time and the people that I came in contact were for the most part sincere Christians. They were followers of followers and they did not know the long term consequences of their choice in religion."

    How true! When my parents decided to become part of "the truth", they did it for very good reasons. It was the first time anyone took the time to sit and talk about the bible. They found "answers" to many of their questions. I know the resurrection hope appealed to them. And, as socially aware people they found the apparent peace, love, harmony between people of all nationalities, races, economic position and backgrounds to be a "dream come true" - as young folks in the late 1960's. We were a stable and honest family. They (thankfully!) chose to walk to a different drummer than the other "hook, line and sinker" witnesses. They planned their retirement. Encouraged each of the kids individually to pursue education - in order to be independent, happy adults.

    We were some of the few fortunate kids - with balanced parents. Unfortunately this is rarely the case amoung JW kids I grew up with. It can be hard to decide to act on ones beliefs - to be honest with yourself. Everyone has different circumstances. Leaving (or fading in my case) takes courage and restraint!

  • Phizzy

    The Thread title reminds me of the old joke about a couple of guys driving along and they see a sign that says "Jehovah's Witness Assembly Hall" and one guy says to the other,

    "So that's where they put those zombie robots together !"

  • clarity

    Omg...Phizzy ... you are right!


    Never thought of the word assembly that way before.

    Come to think of it .... I did feel like "the screws" were

    being tightend every time we went there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Nice one


  • WishingLiz
  • WishingLiz

    I'm thinking it starts out with the best of intentions. Someone hears the WT message, looking for meaning in life, and it sounds good. But then the society insulates them, filling their lives while warning them against outside influences. A recipe for cult.

    Reminds me of The Matrix Blue pill vs Red pill

    (I'm new at posting links so might not work)

    From this, perhaps the antidote to cult is to keep taking the red pill, but might find it easier to take the blue pill once in a while.

    And then again, what is reality? But that's a whole other thread.

    "The Making Of A Jehovah's Witness"..

    When the BullShit Meter hits 100%..

    You`ve made a Jehovah`s Witness..


    Bake for 20 minutes at 400F..

    This one is ready to..

    Knock on a Door!..

    ............................. mutley-ani1.gif ... OUTLAW

  • LostGeneration

    Interesting article on the recruitment process!

    Thank God Al Gore invented the internet!

    The business model used to work when there weren't independent sources to consult. Now thousands of articles and experiences are online, from many sources.

    It makes my day when a newbie signs up here and basically says 'I've been studying for six months, but it just doesn't seem right'

    I know then they have found a safe place from this destructive org, hopefully saving them decades of servitude, not to mention incredible family problems...

  • andrekish

    What makes one of Jehovah's Witnesses?

    Hoping for something better is a start. Then believing in a Creator is step two.

    This in no way proves the existence or non existance of God and blind faith has to be programmed, unless some other external paranormal events which cannot be explained by science happen, and are witnessed by the individual involved.

    Either way, by blind faith or witnessing a 'miracle' or 'occult' event it usually all goes haywire and common sense goes flying out of the window almost immediately. The human race is in it's mental infancy. The brain of homosapien has evolved into a more complex mind than that of a peanut. Most scientists understand this and can explain in great technical detail the cellular workings of the human brain. But, equipped as we are with this highly complex and evolved brain:

    We are all insane in our own little ways, so:

    Lots of people who find religion become certifiably insaner, and willing to believe many things without question and in defiance of the facts, logic and reason.

    Those who think they are sane are probably not actually sane, rather insane with the odd occurrence of sanity.

    The WTBS is quite possibly extremely mad in some areas and from the sound of many posts on this forum the Governing Body aren't too popular and a sense of WT fanaticism seems to comes from many Witnesses. I've seen it as exactly that myself and I've seen it in other groups I've been involved with. People who find religion often do this. People around here phone each other as soon as any witnesses are seen in the area. This is not proper evangelising, It is a lunatic waste of time. What the heck is wrong with email? How come the WTBS is stuck in the 1930's? Maybe 'coz that's when the old Witnesses got bashed and many like to take the symapthy for other people's suffering. The fact that witnesses of old got thumped doesn't mean that current people can use it as proof they are right.

    This is also done by those who find politics and decide that we must all become democrats 'coz we all have a say and we all know how to fix the world's problems, don't we. None of us has got a clue 'coz we're living in a whirlpool of crisis management, lurching from catastrophy to next media covered disaster. Most politics are as much fanatical bullshit as the religious stuff. Very few of the people I meet who are politically motivated think for themselves either. But bang bang goes the front door and another idiot is standing there. He is offering to solve the world's problems with a tax hike. So, if I join the party I even get a rosette and ultimately get invited to join the Lords after I've been Prime Minister a while and then be a demi-god among men.

    And it's done by the people who have product to sell. It takes a particular mentality to knock on some-one's door and sell them a hoover. It never occurred to me to buy a hoover so the salesman's visit is extremely welcome. He tells me that if I were to sell hoovers for him, and join his pyramid scheme, I could earn a trillion zillion quid an hour after I've also bought the training video and books and mentorship. I'm simply overwhelmed by the man's consideration and generosity. Knowing that I can get a discount on all additional hoovers were I to buy one for each of carpets I've got I'm amazed. Were I to then sell more to all of my relatives and friends I'd be a millionaire like the bloke in the photo on the leaflets. The lifetime seventy year guarantee the salesman is giving as a special offer if i get in quick and buy the leaflets I will need, etc, is especially tempting, so if I'm a really good salesman I may one day get a seat on the board with all the other men in suits. And a yacht in the French Riviera. I'm in heaven.

    Simply put, it seems that 666 is driving people to our doors with something to fanatically sell, mindlessly unaware that we sit on a rock tumbling through space.

    But, at the end of the day, the fact that we are all insane and blind in our own deluded ways doesn't mean the Apocalyse isn't imminent.

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