A Cult Tactic: Removing Guilt By Dehumanising Others

by pale.emperor 43 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • OneEyedJoe

    I found his comment off putting but also count it as a guard against sensationalism. Where this post could easily go. (or might still go)

    If a topic is going to be considered not worthy of discussion because of where it might go, then we'll never discuss anything. No one was saying that being a JW was as bad as living in Nazi Germany or North Korea. Drawing parallels (while acknowledging that they occupy different positions on a spectrum) is entirely valid. When people actually take things too far or make false equivalencies or begin sensationalizing things, that's the time for criticism.

    Or hell, coming in and saying something like "while Nazis used the same techniques, I do think we should be careful not to equate the shunning that JWs do to the treatment of Jews during the holocaust" would be perfectly fine. I find it difficult, however, not to take the tone of that post to imply that the entire discussion is worthless, which it most definitely is not. It's a valuable comparison that explains how influential these techniques are, and understanding that can be a great comfort to those suffering under the torment of being shunned. Realizing that your family aren't torturing you out of malice or out of any special evil, but that they're just victims of the same sort of propaganda and manipulation that people have been using for centuries - that can be a powerful step towards healing.

  • Diogenesister

    I absolutely don't compare shunning with genocide, no.

    But the psychological tactics used to induce people to shun are precisely the same as those used to induce people to accept genocide.

  • Bungi Bill
    Bungi Bill


    Very well summed up!

  • 2+2=5

    I absolutely don't compare shunning with genocide, no.

    But the psychological tactics used to induce people to shun are precisely the same as those used to induce people to accept genocide.

    Precisely. This is well documented about cult members. Many cults walk a very thin line between harmless and extremely damaging due to this level of psychological control.

  • mentalclarity

    Hannah Arendt's book on the Eichmann trials is pretty insightful on how ordinary people can commit atrocious crimes. It's because they follow orders and are able to distance themselves from their own moral values. They are just fulfilling their duty and unable to think reflectively for themselves. That type of behavior reminds me alot of the witnesses. Especially if you think about how moving up in the rank and file depends so heavily on adherence to the JW "rules".

    I don't think my family shuns me because they see me as evil. I honestly believe they are just following orders and ignore any type of remorse or feelings of guilt because they justify they are fulfilling their duties as Christians adhering to bible principles and that's where the cognitive dissonance kicks in.

  • smiddy3

    Obey the Governing Body even if you think it doesn`t make sense or you don`t understand the reasoning behind their decision just be loyal to Jehovah and obey them without question.

  • stillMS
    In the real world it just doesn't happen.

    I wouldn't agree with that. The JDub propaganda is not smth. unique, and JWs don't abandon their family, etc just because of one magazine read - it's the result of a long-term influence/indoctrination. The same is true about other historical examples the OP mentions. People abandon their relatives (even give them to death) not in a JW world only - it happened/happens in many of the mainstream religions as well.

  • stan livedeath
    stan livedeath

    Seriously? We're going to try to equate "mommy didn't invite me to the family BBQ" to what the Nazis and Japanese did in WWII???

    I think this is a stretch beyond belief. The WTS try to paint us as "the enemy" because to them, we are. It doesn't really come anywhere close to the barbarism that has happened in history.

    the watchtower society expects its' adherents to believe their god will destroy all humanity in the very near future ( except for his witnesses -of course )

    i dont think the nazis were quite that ambitious.

  • GermanXJW
  • amiable atheist
    amiable atheist
    Tameria2001 […] my JW mother [...] said if it was not for the law of the land, and she would go away for murder, she would have no problem stoning me to death. This goes way beyond not being invited to the family BBQ.

    This wraps it up for me. We don't have to look into history, we have just to look into any totalitarian regime. Add religion to it and you get theocracy with, for example, all the atrocities prescribed by Sharia Law in Saudi Arabia.

    Imagine the WTorg could legally get away with applying the Mosaic Law. At conventions we'd have attendance skyrocketing for the Disfellowstoning Event. Performed only by Elders and, maybe, Ministerial servants, who would have to have earned that priviledge, of course. Sorry for your mom, Tameria2001, but lacking the anatomical God-Antenna she'd never be allowed to participate in the execution service.

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