Why Do JWs Come Here to Debate?
He who has sight is blessed; he who has insight is a thousand times blessed.
What motivates JWs to engage in a debate with former JWs? This question is something I have written about in years past and my hope is that it will provide some insight to the newbies. While there are many variables I will write about some of the most obvious.
The personality type of the JW who frequents ex JW sites. I go back over the years and give you some history of some prolific posters as memory serves me best.
Voyager: This individual claimed to be an anointed one who would debate namely RalphRuok on theological issues back in the infancy of AOL. Voyager was a self-proclaimed theologian who could hold his ground. He could convolute simple yes or no answers and put so many spins that by the time you finished reading his rebuttals you had no clue what he said. Very typical mental gymnastics of Watchtower writers to smoke screen the obvious.
You Know, fits into this same personality category of JWs who are self proclaimed elders who think that they are above the Watchtower’s dictums to never visit an apostate site. In their mind they rationalize, justify and deny to themselves and others the obvious fact that, “no apostate site” means no apostate site. Since they use fuzzy logic with themselves it comes very natural to them to use it on ex JWs.
People like Praotes another prolific Watchtower defender are already suffering from cognitive dissonance going into debates or their experience produces or magnifies it, creating a crisis of conscience. Last I heard Praotes was dfed due to no longer believing in the dogma he once fiercely defended.
Then there is the sociology major (I also forget his name) they come here with a hidden agenda and never really expose their true intentions. Just as easily as they come they easily are history due to not having solid concrete facts on their side. People of this type of skilled spin meisters and could even be Watchtower plants to create discord.
YoMomma (potentially resurrected as Sword of Jah) would often speak out of both ends of his mouth. On one side he would say JWs had problems and out of the other he would spew typical party line dogma of “Jehovah will take care of things we just need to be patient and wait on him”.
Alvinas was a good-hearted JW who only wanted answers. In the end she left due to the overwhelming evidence of deception on the part of the JWs.
On the other end of the spectrum lie the JW dummies. People like the guy who had the icon of the Star Wars character I forget his name. I am also reminded of the redneck guy who used to be a prolific writer on Philia and Jesus Wit. He did not have both oars in the water from his writings. If he could not defend a Watchtower flaw he just attacked with silly nonsense. Some of you will recall his take and spins on the issue of rape and how the Watchtower had done an atrocious job of creating current flawed policy based on old testament mythology.
All these people have the same things in common as us former JWs:
A need to be heard: In this fast paced world we live in, most people lack a genuine friend that they can express their inner most thoughts to. This self-expression gets them the following human need.
Attention: Some JWs are so lonely that they are starved for attention. In a JW forum they are just another fish with another opinion but at apostate sites they get preferential treatment. Even if it’s negative attention, can you say Saddam or battered wife ?
Which leads to the need to feel special and unique. This is another human need we all have to separates us from all the masses. It is our gift wrapping we present to others as being same but different.
Then there is the high that comes from people reading your words and responding to you even if they are attacking your ideas. If people totally ignored them which is not going to happen they would not get their daily fix of stardom. This is one reason why trolls are addicted to forums even if they don’t believe anything about what they write. It can be an adrenalin rush to log on and see that your post has 2 or more pages of responses. We often see that JWs and trolls get the most responses and hits on their posts.
A need to flex their knowledge muscle, which of course they quickly find out that they are mere weaklings amongst, educated people who know the truth about their truth. It is not the same to debate an ignorant householder at their door as it is to debate apostates who have years of investigating the facts and rational free thought.
A need to do something to kill time from their existence of quiet desperation as a JW instead of reading their same ole same ole stale current truth.
“Some people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices” William James
ps this post is for you Scully for old times sake :)
I find your ability to remember these characters out of the thousands of members, and to analyse their input quite remarkable.
Although I don't have anything to say on the individuals discussed, I liked your reference to " typical mental gymnastics" which describes well the argumentation used to hold up what I call the Witnesses "house of cards".
Yup, Victor, couldn't agree more.
If you're a good JW, and functioning well in the Watchtower congregational network, you don't care about debating ex-JWs because you're too *&^%$# busy with all your JW activities and, number two, you don't want your life upended by upsetting your little JW nest. In every congregation there is the crazy person, loon, nutter, emotionally damaged person beyond repair. They don't function well within the JW system but they sure adopt the arrogant attitude. They come here to get an audience but it has nothing ...absolutely nothing to do with truth or a love of logic. It's just because they need someone to pay attention to them because they have nothing.
ps this post is for you Scully for old times sake :)
awwwwww thank you Victor!!
Dear Victor_E: I am impressed! One of the things I liked about being a J-dud was the mental challenge of giving talks. Many a brother would confess that they hated going up to the platform after me. A tough act to follow was the phrase I heard many times. Very few J-duds impressed me or showed much intellect. But here, I feel like the dumest guy in the room! Gamaliel, Blondie, Blackguard, you and many others impress the hell out of me. I leave this site thinking. I love to check this site in the morning because it will give me food for thought all day. One of the reasons I am active in Mensa is for the mental stimulation. If you're not members you all should be!... Humbled in your presence. Maverick
They don't function well within the JW system but they sure adopt the arrogant attitude.
Of all the JW's I ever knew, I can only imagine one guy who would venture into a place like this and try to debate people. He was a guy you would see at the KH maybe once every 2-3 weeks. And DF'd, last I heard, but still defending momma. He sent me a big long email when I DA'd ("how come nobody can prove me wrong, etc."). I really didn't want to deal with him, so I didn't respond. He really is an intelligent guy, but obviously made a bad decision as a young man and doesn't want to face reality.
I think that the more intelligent dub-defenders come here to intellectually justify the silly emotional decision they made as a younger person to join JW's. I think that they get some feeling of potency from being able (in their mind) to "take on the apostates".
I think a fair number of the others are immature teenagers, Ah hahaha and Comforter come to mind.
Thanks for your fanship. While I can not speak for the others you mention, I can tell you from personal experience that my clarity of mind has come at a very high price. The journey has been a very long one filled with much emotional pain and hard work at re-inventing yours truly after the trip to hell and back. You will get there also success leaves a trail of clues. I can relate to your comments of speaking. I was a graduate assistant of the Dale Carnegie Courses on Public Speaking and Human Relations, so it was a cakewalk to give talks. Some toilet cleaner elders were also envious and threatened by my extensive knowledge of psycholinguistics. Ah those were the days
No special feat here, the impact of your words and actions will outlive you from the memories you leave in others. These people I referenced as well as yours trully put a lot of energy into our words. In the grand scheme of things we were two sides of the same coin as human beings with the same motivations, hopes and dreams blah blah blah.
I think some of them do it so they can count their time, return visits and Bible studies (if they use scriptures) so they can impress the elders.
forget mee wictor, I am one of few Jw on this bord.
I hade a debbte widh blondie about this topic, when she atack mee fore being here and not the subljekt i putt froward.
I can not understand why you discuss this things, isnt this a JW bord open fore evryone?
alright it is a lot of apostates here, but others to, and if it is 0nly fore apostates i think you have to change the name JW discuss forum, to former JW discuss forum.
Or are you afraid that you soon have 1 million JW to debatte widh?
When this pedofile thing now soon blow uppp in sweden, i am very happy to bee one of few how now evrything about this, I have told evry elder inn the cong about the history , and whats behind this, and have a very good respons from most of them.
When they say this is bigg lies from apostates, i have told them to read the WT now 1995, and see if they can stand fore this polyci, and then i have explaind how it all start widh the elder BB how try to stopp this polyci how hurt somany, and that he was dfd fore that, and the site silent lambs is a place wher we can read about several vicktims, and what they have
I can tell ytou that a lot of woman dont belive this , when they here it, i dont say I have the solution to how to handel this, but i think I have get the messege to a lot of peopel inside the cong, thanks to my intrest to this media.
And I think perhaps jesus when he talk about the weeak and pore, and hurt, say to us to try to comfort them, what ever men say, even if it is Gb, we must all be judge on the day individual fore what we have done, and dont.
widh love from HM
Happy man I am going to pretend you are for real. If you read carefuly this is a JW discussion forum. It is one thing to discuss issues in a spirit of understanding, and another to come here with a closed mind simply to prove how right you are. Some ex JWs are just as adamit about their views without any empathy for JWs, this I know for I have been there myself. In the big scheme of things my take is we are spirits that came here to carry out a certain contract with life and part of our preparation was to enroll in the school of hard knocks namely JWs. They are no different from other high control and manipulative groups. As we mature in our spiritual evolution we awaken to the hypocrisy and the tyranical treatment we once considered "spiritual". That is the begining of the end for many of us and we are pulled to walk our own path, blah blah blah. So if you are an infant soul in need of JWs all the power to you my friend.
He that does not know that he does not know, shun him for he is a fool.
He that knows but is not knowing, wake him up for he is asleep.
He that knows that he does not know, teach him.
He that knows that he knows, learn from him.