"I love my parents more than anything. They gave me unconditional love. They said, 'Son, we love you whether you succeed or fail.' Unconditional love is liberating, and it gave me the chance to dare to succeed. Because of it, I'm a risk taker. Obviously, I wouldn't be sitting here in the White House had I not taken the risk of running for the Presidency. People say to me, 'Aren't you worried about failing?' The answer is no, because deep down inside I know that the core of me is based upon the greatest gift one can have, which is unconditional love."- President George W. Bush, from "Parade" magazine, April 29th, 2001
My question is, why is the WTS so bass-ackwards on this notion of unconditional love? God supposedly has it. Leaders of "Satan's" world have it. But not the WTS, or JW's.
My first thought was "How the hell did he break into the White House", then I finished your quote!
I hear ya the JW's don't have a clue what love is much less Uncondidtional love! And Jesus said you would know his disciples cause they would have love among themselves. Well I think that pretty much settles that!
I love you MAN!!!! (what ever happend to that commercial?)
I remember reading something by Einstein even while I was still active. He categorized religions 3 ways: Religion based on fear, the moral religion, and what he called "cosmic religious feeling". He said common to the first two is an anthropomorphic (human, like old guy in the sky) conception of God. That stuck with me. We're all familiar with how much fear is used in the organization, and I guess there's a little bit of morality. It seems to me the morality model can be arbitrary, whereas fear is obviously the opposite of love. But in terms of the organization, you also have this focus on behavior and conduct rather than being motivated out of love, I believe Albert also said the first two is more primative as far as religion goes.
I'm not sure as there really is such a thing as unconditional love.
But I am in love with it all the same. I definitely agree that love
gets badly cramped in dubdom. I'll drop the measure. Hell, it gets ridden over with a coach and six, for God's sake. And most of us know something about it from personal exp.
I also think (off topic) that romanticism is non-pauline in the extreme, and so un WTBTS. But that's another beef.
I never understood how the WTS claimed that the practice of disfellowshipping is loving. The way they try to justify this is just insane.
They claim that if the df'd person is totally shunned by family and friends, basically made to feel as if they are 'dead' to them, then the df'd one will see what he/she is missing and want to come back. LOL! Will someone please explain to me how that is loving?
This logic may fly in the WTS Bizarro World, but my personal feeling is, if someone, be it family or friends, shuns me because I am no longer a witness, they can BITE ME. If they are going to be like that, screw them.
Unconditional love is a concept that the WTS will never grasp. They show more concern for strangers on the street than to their own because they see the stranger as a potential convert.
Where I am from, if you aren't baptized by the time you are 17, you are 'marked' as spiritually weak and possible bad association. Sad but true.
Insanity in individuals is something rare- but in groups, parties, nations, and epochs it is the rule. - Nietzsche
Good point Riz. The practice of disfellowshipping seems to indicate a belief in an exclusive idea of love, rather than an inclusive one. If anything it's just a glorified clique. It's interesting to note too that those who are still in the organization often miss those who are DF'd, and not just family members. One has to wonder: If the brotherhood is so full of love, and if the person that's DF'd is so bad, why are THEY missing something from this unrepentant sinner?
Now bear with me here, while I can understand how you may want to "shun" some people, (child molester for one) that seems to me to be a function of your own mind and heart, and it would come naturally rather than be an institutionalized practice. It's also kind of funny how people don't know what to do in situations where it's a "conscience matter". If they actually have a bible trained conscience, why the indecision? Are you saved by being a mindless automaton?
Very good observation. In a corollary, Jay-Dubs also pervert the meaning of "neighbor" in the scripture about loving your neighbor. In fact, all the fundys do it so far as I know. It seems pretty obvious to me that "neighbor" means each and every individual on this planet. All of them.
How could it be otherwise? If God is the father of all humans, then the brotherhood of all humans seems inescapable to me. Ironically, that includes each and every member of the JWs as well. And every Hindu, Muslin, Christian...
I think that all with truly spiritual vision regard those who have not progressed beyond the primitive religions of fear and authority as family members tardy in their development, and treat them as if we were already citizens of that higher estate of cosmic consciousness that must certainly come after this life.
The organizations to which they belong are not animate things, and are not deserving of such empathy in my view. But deserve scorn only, and every effort possible to help so enlighten their membership that the organization is "destroyed" by sheer lack of membership.
And, yep, I know just exactly how hard it is to put that kind of idealism into practice when what you really want to do is get your powerful fingers around the bony pencil necks every blind, mote-loving, Jehovah's Witness pig-dog ass hole and choke the living shit out of each and every one of them 'till they've had the organization throttled totally out of their life.
How's this post for a study in contrasts?
Hi riz: You read my mind.
They claim that if the df'd person is totally shunned by family and friends, basically made to feel as if they are 'dead' to them, then the df'd one will see what he/she is missing and want to come back
This has been one of my biggest sorespots for such a long time. What I felt from my family when I was df'd was the farthest thing from love. It felt more like their scorn instead of love. What hurried my return was fear of my father dying before I could spend some time him (he was very ill). My family "allowed" me to go to visit him in the hospital, when they weren't there, because they thought he was dying. I remember praying and crying one time all the way to the hospital fearing he would die before I got there. Even when I came back I didn't see any real demonstration of love from many family members and friends, only a few.
This same type of thinking is now supposed to be helping my son. I can tell you right now, it isn't.
Those experiences we hear of df'd ones reinstated because they saw the light because of the shunning, I'm sure are saying that because they've convinced themselves that's what they're supposed to feel, or else they know that's what they're supposed to say.
And this is not just those who have been stung by the effects of df'ing rejecting that teaching. I know ones who are active JWs and have not experienced df'd friends or family who feel the same way as we do. They say: "I can't possibly treat someone like that. That's not loving and helping one to want to come back to God."
you also have this focus on behavior and conduct rather than being motivated out of love,
When I was growing up, I remember thinking we were so privileged to be in an org. that had so much love and was identified as the true religion because of it and being so proud when the CO would say what a loving congregation we had. I didn't take me too long to see your above statement become more true. The GB is so much more concerned with its public image in order to intice new members than to be concerned with actually showing unconditional love and that in turn rubs off on the JW members.
Unfortunately the ideal of unconditional love is used by the WTS to control it's members. To say that the disciplines it forces on its follwers is an example of love makes an otherwise naturally una ppealing practice seem plausible in dealing with a wayward member of the org. And that is simply what it is all about CONTROL, as most of us here already know undoubtably.
I think most mainstream churches far outshine the WTS in their practice of this ideal. But at the same time it is what most ppl condemn traditional churches for the most as this is taken sometimes as a being too permissive in allowing immoral practices. Maybe this is getting off the subject a little, but where do you draw the difference between showing unconditional love and being too permissive in matters of conduct?
[i]"..... anyone who ignores everyday reality in order to live up to an ideal will soon discover he had been taught how to destroy himself, not how to preserve himself." The Prince. Niccolo Machiavelli[i/]
I think the answer has to be that churches shouldn't draw a line. It's crazy to say, "smoking is disfellowshipable" but "telling a lie isn't". Why? Because the Bible says that people have to be perfect to achieve life by their own merit. To draw the line and say: "Some sins are bad, and others aren't too bad" justifies certain sorts of sins. Furthermore, it makes hypocrites out of those men (at least in the WT case) who throw out people for minor infractions when in fact the elders are also imperfect in the eyes of God.
It seems like you have two options if you want to avoid hypocrisy-bar imperfect people from your church, or accept everyone.
The later may seem untenable, but we do have secular authorities, and I think with good reason. There is some need to discipline criminals to protect society, but I don't see this as the church's role. The church's role should be to be like Christ- always loving, always forgiving, no matter what.
If people could ever be that loving and unjudgemental it would be a true miracle.