JWs biggest problem is not doctrinal issues
It was the lack of love, compassion or any kind of empathy, that made me leave after 50 years. I put up with it decade after decade, always putting it down to 'imperfect men' and making excuses for them.
But in the end, I saw what a bunch of hypocrites they really were. I was shunned because my two eldest went to university. I sat by myself on an empty row for meeting after meeting. No one would sit anywhere near me. I couldn't get anyone to work with me in the ministry because they saw me as spiritually weak. Even though I'd been faithfully going through a life threatening illness, tragedy, depression and so much hardship. My husband did everything for the brothers before he left and continued to help bros after. When he needed help...they were nowhere to be seen.
I saw old sisters sitting in nursing homes, faithful for years, no one went to see them. No elders -- ever.
Brothers suffering from depression, treated as if they were useless. I could go on. I've seen a lot in my life.
People say there are good people in the R&F and maybe there are a few, but mostly they are cold, clinical and look down on people who they don't think are good enough - in or out of the organization.
I seriously have no time for them anymore and I'm just sad it took me 50 years to realize it.
I don't know you, but I care. Everyone on this forum cares for you. Take care of yourself my dear.
Lack of love and concern is what shook us awake. For years I told my spouse, "something is just not right." Once you see WT for what it is , you can not unsee it. Love and concern is either there or it's not. We have been married for many years and I have NEVER had the feeling of not being cared about in our marriage. We don't buy the JW's line, "the organization is made up of imperfect men." That is a cop out! If I went to the Elders with a sin that I committed, they would interrogate me, DF or reprove me and then announce my name from the platform (humiliate me). There is NO...."well, we'll let it slide, he/she is just an imperfect person." No free pass for me. If the congregation has to be kept clean by disciplining me, when will the congregation be "kept clean" from these imperfect men who are free to plow over everyone's life? I see a pattern of Watchtower wanting their cake and eating it too.
A lot of truth in this thread. I note the number who have said that was the first reason they had for questioning it.
I have on many occasions heard the comment that " of course it is loving, but just this congregation is lacking"
The lack of emphasis put on pastoral 'shepherding' amazes me. They tell them to do it but make the work load on elders such that most cannot do so. What company would place the same workload on the manager as the production staff and still expect him to effectively manage, do staff appraisals etc?
Truth is that nothing comes down from the top in terms of organised care. If it was important to them they would direct it.
Phoebe what you say is so true, and no matter what they say otherwise there are lots of people who are not JW's who do care, far more than them. They aren't clothed with love, it is the thinnest veneer, that in a moment disappears to reveal something not so nice beneath.
Also everyone, I'd like to add the YouTube videos of Marcus Vaughn (a.k.a. Wallkill Bethelite). What he endured and experienced while at Bethel is really astounding, showing what the GB really thinks about Jdubs in general, including those who give all of their energy and time to the BORG:
Lack of love and Watchtower doctrine are part of the same ecosystem. The doctrine causes a lack of love. People act in ways they don’t want to, because they are convinced the doctrine is right.
“I really don’t want to shun you, but Jehovah wants me to. How do I know that? Because the Bible says so. How do I know that interpretation of the Bible is the right one? First, we don’t interpret the Bible, but we kinda sort do, and because the Faithful Slave was appointed by Jesus in 1919 to help us understand the Bible. Oh, 1919? Well you see, Jesus came back invisibly in 1914 and a few years later appointed his Slave. Oh, 1914? Well you add 2520 years to 607 BC… So you see I have to shun you.”
Although a lack of love caused great cognitive dissonance over the years, had I believed it was The Truth, I’d be sitting in the Kingdom Hall front row center and knocking on doors. I’d slog it out best I could. No matter the problems, I’d says, “Well, but it’s still the Truth.”
In a way, it was lack of love, actually, seeing not just a lack of love, but the monstrous heart of the organization, that was the catalyst to finally six months afterward examine whether or not it was the Truth. But if I examined the teachings and merely came away with unclear whether or not it was, if the waters were too muddy, I’d still have hung in there. But as the evidence started rolling in, I no longer had doubts, but certainties. Of course, now I look back and see all their doctrine is nonsense upon nonsense and wonder why it took so long for me to figure it out.
I so agree with comments from us facts, it's taken me years to see this but arguing doesn't work because for a start their bible is crooked and they don,t accept any alternative so the source is erroneous. I've spent hours arguing on the doors with them but it becomes scriptural ping pong Far better to challenge ethos and culture I also like to Chuck in the prodigal son when they try and make a case for shunning. I have always enjoyed winding people up by fighting hate with love it's hilarious they can't handle it. I find dropping into conversations examples of goodness and tolerance from 'wordings" to gradually chip away and use phrases like it's who not what someone is that matters is quite good.
If you are not one of them you rant eternity you are the 'infidel' no matter how nice or closely related you are. If you haven't got your paradise pass why would they bother with you. My own mother told me this when I left. She said 'we will in paradise without you but it doesn't matter because we won"t remember you ever existed. This is one of the most vile worldwide cults out there. There is no love in it at all.
The JWs have an artificial love. It's easily seen when the GB sign off on their letters expressing their love for all yet they have no idea who most of these JWs are. Another example is the adulation shown to convention delegates, again they are JWs who are unknown to each other.
"She said 'we will in paradise without you but it doesn't matter because we won"t remember you ever existed."
Unbelievable, that your own Mother said this. I couldn't even think this much less say it to my own child. This is some sick sh*t!
I am sad for you. This is hurtful beyond belief. I'm sorry. Hugs!