Oh LOL, I think I may have left the Borg too early. My parents were even more dysfunctional than this religion is, even though my dad was never baptised, and he ended up hating everything about the Witnesses. There were some good people in my home cong I could have learned from; but maybe I was too much of a rebel to ever stay anyway. F**k knows- it was tough getting answers when I was young and there was no internet.
Are some JWs justified in staying in the org?
A better question is how do JW's justify ambient abuse.
There is no justification for ambient abuse. Absolutely none.
The WT claims that the church hierarchy are God's sole channel of communication.
Is that true?
If not .... what is a valid reason for knocking on doors to spread the message that they are?
I suppose it depends upon how much the individual JW still believes of the hogwash, and on their personal integrity.
On the latter, many stay in, in what is in the main a vain hope, the hope of freeing their family. Few have achieved that whilst still in themselves, but the fact that some have managed it shows it is possible.
In that circumstance, for most, it matters not how much of it is true or not.
Some stay in purely out of fear of Armageddon. Such ones have a serious lack of knowledge.
For all that are in, for whatever reason, as Adam said above, you bear responsibility for the many deaths caused by the JW/WT evil in no small measure.
How long can you live with that guilt ?
Well put BLACK SHEEP , that is SO what it boils down to. . . . . .
There's an aspect that is starting to worry me - or at least, I find it very interesting.
I had a conversation with a relative, who's a JW with no small amount of responsability within the Organization. He was very keen about a forthcoming article in the Watchtower, where apparently it urges the Elders to be alert to the possibility that they start receiving apparently illogical instructions from the Organization, and that they MUST stay loyal and do what they're told to do and trust blindly the Organization. Naturally, his interpretation is that the Great Tribulation is around the corner.
Now, this can play out in two different ways:
a) The organization will undergo serious doctrinal changes which will address serious concerns by dissenters (aka 'apostates', although they will NEVER admit to this) but will shake the very foundations of the faith of hard-core organizational loyalists/worshippers (think, for example, abandoning 1914, the two groups/two hopes, partaking the emblems, only heavenly hope, no blood policy, etc etc - this is just me speculating)
b) Handing out mad instructions that may well put in danger the lives of the flock, because of a supposed revelation about an imminent Armageddon. For example, telling the r&f to sell their assets, quit their jobs, drop school or university, forcing everyone to pioneer, collective suicide, whatever - you get the picture.
Something BIG is coming. They've been patiently paving the way for that change. The recent switch to online publishing, cost reductions, Bethel and Kingdom Hall consolidation, new preaching methods sounds to me like they're expecting a massive defection soon. This can only be plausible in view of radical doctrinal changes that may be under way. They've learned that lesson when Rutherford grabbed the power in 1917 and introduced massive doctrinal changes - with the result of massive defections. But the Watchtower not only survived the defection ordeal, but after a few years of radical contraction, it began to grow. It seems to me a similar pattern is building up, only they aren't being hasty as Rutherford was.
I had the chance to look at the new NWT Bible yesterday. I must say I was impressed with it. Looks very nice, lots of useful extras, and to me it seems it will mean the end of the Reasoning book. But that detail on the timeline, about 1914, where nothing is said about the Kingdom being established THEN, seems to me quite a significant switch. Let's wait and see. But I lean towards the notion that radical doctrinal/organizational changes are soon to start pouring in. The construction of brand new, streamlined headquarters in Warwick indicates that they honestly aren't expecting Armageddon to come anytime soon, so I lean towards option A.
And - coming to the OP concern - that is one of the reasons I'm choosing to stay in for the time being. I want to be in to see this playing out, if nothing else, to be able to be rational when it's time to help my family to see TTATT and make an informed decision to stay or leave.
Interesting, by the way, how the Annual Meeting seems to have become the new Day of New Light, with all the GB members sharing in. Previously, there was a 20-lines notification in the WT that so-and-so had been re-elected or elected to fill in the vacancy after an earlier member had died, but now, the October date seems to be The Date to watch out for.
The brochure now being studied at the meetings, it was issued in 2012, some months prior to the Annual Meeting with the new light on who is the Servant, and the two small chapters discussing who is the Servant and what does the GB do - are careful NOT to spell out who is the Servant and NOT to spell out that the GB is its representative (as was said up untill then), so in hindsight the new teaching could be deducted from what was NOT said in the brochure. But the change had been prepared for months. (The brochure is outdated already as for the schools, since the new school that is a merger of the single brothers and the married couples school, must have been decided that quickly that the old schools are still medntioned.)
So the things NOT spelled out are the things to watch - and in that view, maybe something is brewing around the 1914 understanding.
when i was in i believed it to be God's organization. when i left i felt bad but i couldn't accept some teaching and so could not preach it even if it was God's organization.
i think as long as a person isn't being a hypocrite then it's fine staying in.
To answer the OP - Being totally honest, can anyone tell me of any organization/profession/sector of society which isn't corrupt and has countless perverts/criminals operating within? You're gonna get them everywhere, whether you believe this is Satan's system of things or not!
So my view is this, "better the devil you know, (once your eyes are opened) than the devil you don't".
Even Christ prayed that his disciples were "in the world" but were "no part of the world". (John 17:15,16) So no matter where we find ourselves, we can make moral and principled decisions based on our present understanding and knowledge - living our lives as we want to, not as others would have us do!
EDENONE - I agree with you that something BIG is coming - very soon, but I think it is going to be a mixture of "wonderful new lights" to draw closer all those alienated by the two-class system and the increase of partakers, and more money-grabbing!
Therefore, there could be a change allowing everyone to partake, but I truly believe that the BIGGEST shake-up is going to be that the sheep must dig deeper into their wallets.
Money is the main priority - not Bible teachings - therefore increasing income is going to feature very significantly in 2014 I feel.
On that note, I remember hearing some years ago that Coca Cola once requested the Org, permission to advertise on the back of the Watchtower, due to the worldwide circulation. Perhaps "financial pressures" could enable the GB to present such a situation to the 'great crowd' as an acceptable means of generating revenue!!
Great post Searcher. Also I agree it's all about the money. Donations are a feature of every meeting lately. Kate xx