Angst and the Jehovah's Witness Mindset

by cofty 41 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • cofty

    There is no typical JW personality type.

    Any of us who were in the religion for a number of years will remember all sorts of individuals. There is as much variety among JWs as there is in the general population. Some were arrogant and judgemental but others were humble and kindly.

    However I believe there is such a thing as an archetypal JW "mindset".

    In a word it is ....

    1. a feeling of deep anxiety or dread, typically an unfocused one about the human condition or the state of the world in general.

    It is possible to prosper in the Organisation whether you are a self-effacing introvert or a self-confident extrovert, but it is not possible to remain in the cult unless your mind is dominated by a sense of angst. Every meeting, magazine article, book and public talk is designed to reinforce this sense of angst.

    JWs have a negative attitude to humanity that amounts to cynicism. In this worldview everything is getting worse all the time. Every decade is the lowest point in all of history and the downward spiral is expected to continue until the end. All attempts at improvement are dismissed as pointless.

    The pessimism permeates the language used by JWs. Phrases such as, the world, mankind, and the system of things, are heavy with negative connotations.

    It is not possible to escape the effects of cult indoctrination until you rid yourself of this mindset.

    We are living in the best time in all of human history. It is the fairest, most peaceful and prosperous generation the world has ever known. If you doubt this fact please consider which generation you would prefer.

    Human potential is awesome. We are not fallen sinners. We are the zenith of human history. Our technical progress, medical ability, compassion for our fellow humans, and our efforts to relieve suffering is unmatched.

    Angst will continue dominate the thinking of ex-JWs until they give up utopian fantasies. Perfection does not exist and it never will. There is a great deal more that must be done to create a better world and further progress is not inevitable.

    The challenge is to resist the lazy, self-loathing lure of angst. Join the rest of humanity in the challenge of making a better world. Be part of the solution.

  • GrreatTeacher

    Angst is an excellent word.

    You often hear it coupled with "teenage" because they are such difficult years.

    Those who never progress beyond their "teenage angst" seem to be attracted to the cult.

    Those who are born-in never see the modeling to progress beyond such a pessimistic view of the world.

    They are a group of emotionally stunted adolescents, or that's what it feels like when I'm around them.

  • LisaRose

    Yes, and fifteen years on I am still trying to learn not angst. I think in my case in was innate, but nurtured by the JW brainwashing. It's not as simple as just knowing there is nothing to angst over, I know in my head there isn't, but my mind still goes there.

  • prologos

    The wt mindset is anchored in the downward spiral of mankind since Eve's perfection. and of course that negates the astonishing improvements in humans and their accomplishments. It is kind of a fatalism. and then the constant thwarting of human advancement by "god": the flood, the tower of babel, and then Satan's world rule. Only service and contribution to wt will cure all that. "angst" to the german mind might not be the right word, it means fear. It is more of a pessimism, fatalism channeled into useless non self improvement, aka religion. a good thing to be aware of cofty. thanks.

    There can  of course,  be real cause for "welt  angst" if condition take an uncontrollable turn south, new "leaders", new weapons. 

  • Lieu
    Incessant pessimism. Existence is a negative not a plus.
  • prologos
    Lieu, what do you mean existence is a negative? I thought life is negating the decay that mere existence implies?
  • stuckinarut2

    Very good thread!

    Yes, it is like being in a state of constant hype or dread, a state of constant high anxiety, almost like cowering when someone raises their fist aimed at ones head..

    That sums up the witness mindset.....

    Also, many are coupled with guilt in case they start to enjoy anything in life too much because that would mean they are enjoying this wicked world, rather than being focussed on the future paradise hope.

  • Simon

    Probably true.

    Witnesses are afraid that the devil will get them, that people are coming to get them, that armageddon will come, that armageddon won't come, that they will die before it comes, that other people will dies before it comes, that they will leave, that other people will leave, that people who have left will come back and get them, that they are not doing enough, that they will learn it's not the truth, that it's not the truth, that ...

  • Lieu

    Lol prologos,

    It's a JW mindset that everything in this life is influenced  by bad and they'd very much like for this existence to end so they can enjoy the new system. I don't mean suicide either.

    Don't enjoy this life ... if you do, you are "wordly". Nothing to be truly happy about, move along, nothing to see here.

  • Deleteandrestart

    They are living solely for the future and consider this life to be a load of refuse so that they can never really see any real merit or good in building up anything in this system, and so they get an anxiety mindset that anything in this life could get a hold on them and prevent them from entering the new system, flight and fight chemistry comes into play here and that alone brings angst , I am truly glad I am no longer subject it , because there's no peace in that mindset, and that's not even mentioning the wtbts " do more " or your not worthy ethos ,

    i realy think rouge psychology people  are running this cult the way they keep using trigger words to control the congregation, I feel sorry for them because I was once anxious and blinded by there corrupted mindscrew.

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