What sort of accountability?

by Pathofthorns 6 Replies latest jw friends

  • Pathofthorns

    I was just wondering what the thoughts were as to what sort of accoutability the average Witness bears for their actions?

    How much can be blamed on the mind control of a cult, especially when many of us regret how we behaved with what we knew then compared to how we act with what we know now?

    What sort of actions can be excused and what cannot?

    Actions such as:

    -Good JW parents rejecting children who are Dfed or question the faith.

    -A spouse or a friend turning in their mate or friend for questioning the faith.

    -Protecting the organization at the expense of people's lives such as disfellowshipping people who could be extended mercy.

    Thoughts? (hopefully the question makes sense?) It is something I try to come up with an answer. Should I be angry with these people or just excuse them as victims of mind control? (the "rank and file" not the "higher ups")


  • happytobefree

    The question of accountablity is something that I have been pondering alot lately.

    Personally I think we are ULTIMATELY responsible for our actions. We can blame it on mind control, but our mind couldn't have been controlled unless we wanted it to. And accepting our responsiblity is necessary to HEAL and change.

    IMO, if we (exJw and JW) would have held the WTBS to their writings and not lived the double-talk, the jw organization would not have turned into the monster that it is. I have found in my experience that when I have set boundaries (while active in the organization), that yes, I was probably talked negatively about by some, but there were others who stood by my decisions (but ultimately both groups respected me). I'll give you an example of a elder who allowed his son to play little league basebase and even missed some meeting to attend. Yes there were a lot of tongue wagging, but this brother told many that he made a decision that was best for his FAMILY and was not breaking any bible principles. Well this brother is still an active JW and is the PO of his congreation. So my point in this illustration (LOL, such a JW statement), is if more of us would of really LIVED by what is printed (the conscience matters), then the norms would be a little different than what we see now.

    IMO, I think one of the main reason the JW faith is such a horrible faith, is because of the people who join, they are largely a bunch of fanactical, egotistical people, uneducated people who did not have a belief system to begin with (or a weak one) and they needed a bunch of rules to keep them in line and to make them to feel good about their lack of education, status in life, etc.

    And yes my response is getting too long. I have more to spew, but would like to end on the parents issue. I feel the parents who mistreat their children because of the religion are awful and there is NO excuse for their behavior. ABUSE IS ABUSE no matter how you dish it out. I have lived this and told my parents (my father, my mother would never treat me us bad, she has threatened to divorce my father over him mistreating my disfellowshipped sister and I) such, and believe it or not he has agreed and has been treating me so great. And parents who say that mistreating their child is a form of discipline (love) is full of IT.

    Happy to be Free (Me)

  • Carmel


    I tend to agree that we will have to take responsibility for our actions and decisions whether in a cosmic way or simply the result of cause and effect anthropomorphically. We have at our finger tips access to all the information we need. If we thrust our fingers into our ears and refuse to investigate, we still are responsible. It does say something though about the influence of our peers and our reference group. How many are still draggin their sorry arses to the memorial or assemblies or meetings because of friends and family? In other words, they are saying that they will lead a life of duplicity rather than take an individual stand. I know that sounds harsh, but it is my conviction that accountability will cut a straight line through all the bs and we will have to deal with our decision one way or another once we become aware of the real nature of the WBTS.


  • happytobefree


    I could not agree with you more. I made this point to my sister who is inactive and do not want to raise her children in the JW religion. But she is going to the memorial to keep the brothers off her arse. I told her if she really believe the bible and believe you are held accountable to what is said in the bible, by attending a JW meeting, memorial under the pretense of still being in would be nonacceptable to God.

    Now, I don't believe the bible is an inspired book and don't believe in the God in the Bible. But I will not support the JW organization in anyway, because I know they are responsible for TOO MUCH suffering. And are responsbile for nothing more than teaching lies.

    I don't want to trivalize what many are going through and the reason they continue to pretend to go along with the JW. Because I KNOW it is hard and I have lived that LIFE. But I will tell you that you are not living an authentic life and you are sacrficing yourself unnecessarily. If your family really love you, their love SHOULD accept you. I really have to end this for now, I'm getting so choked up over this topic. BUT REMEMBER TO LOVE THY SELF.

    Happy to be Free (Me)

  • neyank

    Hi Path,
    The individual witness is responsible for his/her own actions.
    While it is true the WTS is a mind controlling cult,
    we let ourselves be controled.
    They (WTS) has no power over us unless we give them that power.

    And to those that are still active going out in field service,you are responsible
    for what you're teaching people at the door.
    That's the major reason I became inactive.
    I could not go door to door telling people that they had to become JWs
    to earn Gods favor.
    So even though the WTS says it is Gods orginization, we the rank and file JW
    go door to door telling people that is so.
    WE are responsible for helping to spread the lies of the WTS.

  • stephenw20

    once the organization is joined...personal responsiblity ceases....imperfection is used as a catcahll weapon and no one person doing soemthing wrong can be identified with the organization........

    its just so peachy........

    when you give your thougth process over to an organization and they demand your energy that you need to live with....you cease..

    may this not happen to anyone anywhere ever AGAIN!

  • Prisca

    Good questions, Path.

    I believe that although we are all ultimately responsible for our own actions, the Society does share some of the responsibility for the actions of its adherents, due to the advice, suggestions and doctrines that are given out to the rank and file as "divine truth".

    This is because the average Witness does not have a great deal of latitude for following one's conscience, if his conscience differs from the info given out by the WTS.

    Also, the average person who was raised as a Witness by Witness parents does not have the same access to "outside" information. Thus, they can become, as Ray Franz described it, "victims of victims", not knowing any better, due to circumstances beyond their control. They did not have the same resources that those who joined the Society as adults did. Thus, although they must still bear responsibility for their actions, there are influnces unbeknown to them.

Share this