I've been thinking about Audrey Mock Knorr Hyde since I heard about her death some weeks ago.
I met her while at Watchtower Farms in the early Eighties. I knew her second husband Glen before Alzheimers really began to take its toll. I remember a conversation with her in which she noted that perhaps one of the most notable teachings of the JW's was that there was no hell. She reflected on what a god-dishonoring teaching it was. Of course she failed to note how god dishonoring it was to believe that god's bloodlust would soon wipe out billions of innocents at armageddon.
Still she seemed genuine and affable. Not at all aloof or superior. I liked her for that.
What has stunned me in hindsight is the fact that this woman spent nearly 70 years of her life institusionalized. Even though for a short period of time she was Audrey Knorr, with all the privileges and power, she spent most of her life in relative obscurity.
Almost 70 years of waking at the same time. Eating breakfast at the same time. Hearing on occasion a lunatic GB member rail against Star Wars or the Smurfs during morning text. Monday WT studies with the same old drivel week after week. Like the rest of the R and F, meeting after meeting, week after week, month after month, decade after decade. No children. Shitty cafeteria food every day of your life. The endless banal droning of the WT propaganda machine.....Did I mention no children?
I remember hearing about the bethelites that had been there for many years. There was a general consensus that at some point their cheese had slid off their cracker. Their elevator didn't stop at all the floors. A few beers short of a sixpack.
What strikes me is that mostly intelligent people will keep doing the same thing over and over again because of familiarity. Because they wish to be seen as keeping to the faith. Because they want to keep the status quo. This in spite of the fact that they may be aware that their beliefs have been unshrouded as false.
I try to keep a positive view of humanity. That as a species we are moving on to brighter and better futures. Yet when I think of folks like Audrey I get depressed. Many here have written posts postulating and hoping that there will be some sort of end to the WT. I hope they're right. I really, really do. What I'm afraid of is that human weakness will keep that from happening.