What about the ones who WATCHED THE PATIENT DIE?

by Terry 13 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Terry

    I was deep into my Jehovah's Witness life pre 1975 as the drumbeat to that mysterious yet specific date loomed large.

    It was presented as a countdown to Jehovah's promise of a 1000 year reign. "How fitting" was the popular phrase!

    But, it was more like a countdown of a different sort.

    It was like a hearbeat of a patient on life support. Credibility was on life support. The GB either was or was not guided by Jehovah!

    ____^____^_____^ Each day was a blip on the cardiac machine counting down to LIFE or DEATH.____^____^_____^____^____^_____^

    By the end of 1975 even the most ardent JW could see nothing but FLATLINE______________________________________!

    The world at large laughed.

    But, the brothers and sisters who had toiled 7+ years advertising a....a.... spectacular....NON-event?

    Now, even a truly incurious person knows when the joke falls flat and nobody laughs it is embarassing.

    This was a VERY PUBLIC reckoning. The whole world was watching Jehovah's Witnesses' collective face grow redder and redder.

    The GB knew you can't e-x-p-l-a-i-n a joke and MAKE it funny. They zipped a lip.

    Fart in the elevator. Everybody smells it. Nobody says anything.

    Well..maybe not everybody.

    You see, there is really no proper etiquette for how to deal with 7 million people telling a whopper because they were gullible.

    You want to laugh. You sorta feel empathy...but...nah--you don't really.

    Poking fun--is it rude? Or, maybe it's called for!

    The patient on life support (credibility) circled the drain and flushed down like the stinking turd it really was.

    What a sad and pathetic display of hubris!

    Once burned-twice cautious is the old saying.

    Suddenly quite a few upset people started whispering questions very hard to answer.

    Most of those people are no longer JW's. Many of them are us here on JW-net.

    But, what about the ones who watched the patient DIE?

    Is simply saying "cognitive dissonance" enough to explain their willingness to continue pretending?

    Is it enough to explain loyalty to a disproved religion through the word "fear"?

    Can it be intellectual dishonesty or laziness or stubborn insistence?

    There are many opinions, conjectures and explanation--but--do any of them even begin to suggest a total answer?

    If a wife catches her husband cheating she faces a terrible reckoning and moment of decision.

    She can't just go with the anger and everything else be damned. She looks at the total blowback on her own well-being, her family, friends, reputation...

    She can sometimes....forgive. But, such forgiveness almost certainly includes an apology and promise to never do it again by the cheating spouse.

    This DOES NOT APPLY to the Governing Body and the wronged JW's who remained behind when the other disaffected members left in disgust.

    No meaningful Apology exists to this day from the Watchtower leadership. What people got was more of a weasel-worded shrug about being "eager" for Jehovah's promises.

    That's not much to go on if you are searching your heart and mind for a basis to forgive and stay with them!

    No, it must be something deeper at work.

    I once attended a wedding in Las Vegas connected to extended family. The mother of the bride was known to be a person with a huge gambling addiction.

    There was enough worry to go around!

    She had blown through a sizeable inheritance by gambling and losing and losing and losing. She borrowed money from relatives to sustain her family and often gambled that away as well.

    I mention this because I think it has a strong connection to the topic above.

    I'll call that lady's name: Suzy.

    I was stuck in the lobby of our Las Vegas hotel with Suzy for about 45 minutes waiting on just about everybody who was late to arrive and assemble to

    leave for the wedding in the limo.

    We had a chat. Suzy and myself.

    It got around to gambling. Suzy was completely uninhibited about the subject. Particularly her own feelings.

    "Everybody seems to be watching me like I was Russian spy" she laughed.

    I responded with polite curiousity.

    "They are soooo afraid I'm going to go to the tables and blow a wad of money!" her voiced was amused and jaunty.

    I tried to give a neutral reply.

    "They think I have an addiction but they are dead wrong. I'm addicted to these cigarettes--but, not gambling."

    I think I just made appropriate facial expressions and kept silent.

    "Gambling is alot of goddam FUN! You stand to lose everything---but--what the others just don't get about it---WHAT IF YOU WIN? You win BIG!"

    And--that made a lot of sense to her! She knew about the losing part of it. She was a person who had a positive spin on the wild possibility of WINNING BIG. That was enough. It gave excitement to an otherwise humdrum life.

    I can remember Suzy saying:"What those fuddy duddies don't understand is that you don't win BIG unless you risk something big."

    I don't know for sure. But, couldn't it be something like that? The "What if" is the reason?

    "WHAT IF Armageddon comes THIS TIME?"

    Inveterate gamblers shrug off the last loss and focus everything on the next time....and next time...and next time......

    They only have to hit the jackpot and it ALL will have been worth the risk.


    What do you think?

  • Finkelstein

    Maybe 1975 and the attention the WTS. created around this year should be seen as a temporary illness, it was great commercial success

    for the WTS. publishing house, in spite of the fact that the organization suffered some membership loss shortly after that poignant year.

    The illness eventually went away and the ones that tended in support of the organization eventually forgot about the illness all together.

    The pseudo bible theologians of the WTS. who owned and opertated their own publishing company, still won, for all that money and

    property given to the organization during those years surrounding 1975 were kept as a possessional asset toward the organization .

  • Terry

    Religion and politics are quite similar in the way people respond.

    People get their information mostly through hand-me-down comments by others whom they trust.

    The JW's shook the tree and the members who didn't fall out clung all the more tightly.

    Like abused mates the members question/blame themselves before they'd ever criticize the abuser.

    "I'm being tested." That is a popular notion. An endurance contest. Whoever can cling the longest no matter

    how thoroughly discredited the Society is---that person WINS.

  • Finkelstein

    And doesn't it make one wonder why the WTS. still puts Armageddon soon with a picture of an atom bomb going off

    on the front cover of their latest magazines ???

    Since that pivotal year/date, every year for the WTS. essentially has become 1975.

    Mankind and the world he lives in is still on that life support system, with the medical prognosis being any day now .....any day now

  • cult classic
    cult classic

    Die-hard JWs definitely live for the "what if" moment of Armageddon. They are so conditioned to believe this life has nothing to offer. Therefore, they can't see that they are wasting this life; desperately hoping and praying and waiting for the grand finale.

  • Pickler

    If they win, they win big.

    If they lose....well they've already lost family, friends, marriages, careers, financial security, the only thing that makes sense is to keep on playing.....I've never thought of it like this, it fits!

  • designs

    Most people that built bomb shelters in the late 50s eventually turned them into storage rooms or filled them in.

    Many of us knew 75 was a huge stink bomb but we hung on until maybe 1995 when we knew the Wizard of Oz was a bunch of old guys making it up on the fly.

  • Terry

    From time to time as I scan the Topic headers here on JW-n I see "What if the GB is right?". Or, "What if---" fill in the blank.

    The operative idea behind their query is speculative curiousity.

    Isn't it the same thinking that lies behind a LOTTERY TICKET? The odds are infinitesimal---but, the appeal is the BIG WIN!

    Remember Dumb and Dumber? The Jim Carrey character asks the beautiful girl, "Do I have a chance with you?"

    She looks him in the eye and answers, "About one in a million."

    Carrey's eyes grow wide and an exhuberant smile spreads across his face. "Soooooo, you're saying I DO HAVE A CHANCE with you!!"

    He heard what he wanted to hear without processing the vanishingly small possibility of it.

    I think this thinking applies.

    Dumb...Dumber....and JW.

  • Ding

    For many, the bottom line is that WT question, "Where else can I go?"

    As unhappy as he may become, as long as the JW thinks that all the alternatives are worse, he will stick with the WTS.

  • gma-tired2

    Terry-my Grandpa the first generation JW died in 1947 in field service before I was born, Grandma died in 1964 when I was entering my teens, Mom the second generation JW died in 2006 I was almost 60 we have third generation JWs in their 70s and they are still waiting but I am sure they are also going to die waiting to live forever. This is why I call my self gma-tired. Inhave been waiting and waiting but I no longer believe in Armageddon. BY thenway in 1964 the JWs fought my family over propery when grandma died becuse she had so lovingly allowed the KH to be built on family property. This has been a long hateful learning expereience PS family won

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