Welcome onboard...and think things through. If something makes you scared, anxious or depressed your gut is telling you something....listen to it. Lot of good thoughts already posted....wish you strength and determination to do what is right for you. And information out there is not all devilishly promoted by apostates after your soul. Reality is reality....think....critical thinking is key.
Just peeking in for a bit...
Jidders remember these 2 things ALWAYS!
1. Truth should WELCOME scrutiny. It should never be afraid of sincere questions.
2. Extraordinary claims require Extraordinary evidence.
If someone is ever not willing to work under those 2 axioms, something is very very wrong!!! RUN!
When they talk about Satan and apostles spreading lies, you might ask, "How did Satan and apostates manage to put so many lies and falsehoods into earlier Watchtower publications and get the organization to publish it as the truth?"
If they claim the quotes are forgeries, thank them and ask them to get you copies of the originals that will expose the fraud.
I will definitely say that my recent re-entry into study has shown me that recent talk of new light, follow without question, repeating topics in the watchtower and the like all has gone against what I learned about the witnesses being transparent, new light pointing back to old light didn't make sense to me, and the repitition of the watchtower broke the feeling of "spiritual food at the right time".
Also the change from the FDS going from the 144,000 + the rest of the WT anointed to just the GB (something my parent doesn't believe has changed, even pointing out the watchtower they say people are misunderstanding that they're saying they are just a small group chosen as the GB but ultimately are still only a part of the FDS) and the change from what I understood Armageddon to be (witnesses would give people the opportunity to survive the great tribulation but everyone inclined would get the 1000 year chance to recover, only the truely wicked being destroyed first) but now it seems the more I dig the more it points to total destruction for all non-witness.
dont worry about it--the GB are definitely Jehovah's sole channel of communication with mankind...so it must be right.
They say it over and over Jidders both because they're a one-trick pony so to say and because if they don't repeat their nonsense over and over you'll stop believing it pretty fast, it doesn't connect to reality in any meaningful way, they're building sandcastles on the beach that the tide of reason and experience can and will take out real quick.
Since this is Jitters Subject I will address him:
Everything worth saying is in AUDES response to you......... bless her heart. It was thoughtful and kind.
High control religions manipulate scripture to serve their ends. So I am going to quote from Eric Hoffer's book The True Believer .
He never mentions the JW's nor their corporation the WTBTS........ he is speaking truth in a general sense.
All active mass movements strive, therefore, to interpose a fact-proof screen between the faithful and the realities of the world. ...by claiming that the ultimate and absolute truth is already embodied in their doctrine and that there is no truth nor certitude outside it. ...To rely on the evidence of senses and of reason is heresy and treason. It is startling to realize how much unbelief is necessary to make belief possible. What we know as blind faith is sustained by innumerable unbelief's.
Not only does a mass movement depict the present as mean and miserable - it deliberately makes it so. It fashions a pattern of individual existence that is dour, hard, repressive and dull. It decries pleasures and comforts and extols the rigorous life. It views ordinary enjoyment as trivial or even discreditable, and represents the pursuit of personal happiness as immoral.
If a doctrine is not unintelligible, it has to be vague; and if neither unintelligible nor vague, it has to be unverifiable. One has to get to heaven or the distant future to determine the truth of an effective doctrine.
.At this point in time we know that the JW's do not have the truth.
Those last few points definitely feel like recent topics the Watchtower has been trying to wrestle with, like yesterday's meeting (the CO is in town so they had a short WT talk but it was a similar one to a few months ago about the free will stuff).
Something that also threw me off is people taking the recent attacks on the witnesses as proof that the end is close or Gog/Magog are close to attacking which seems way off since other religions are still active and doing fine. In fact a lot of them are getting more love/support from people/governments than before which throws off the prophecy of them being wiped out first before the witnesses attack. It honestly feels more like Jehovah is tired of the child abuse cover-ups and doing what he's done in the past and airing out the issues his people are having (if of course they have his favor).
Well I officially ended my study today, admitting I was feeling conflicted, confused and generally unhappy on a lot of things I was learning. I was advised of
John 6:48-59 and I was aware of the scripture before and figured that was going to be advised alongside being reminded that I have accurate knowledge now and I will be held to that, but ultimately it's my choice and I wouldn't be forced to follow it. I did give him words of encouragement for his continued ministry and said I hope that we can still keep the line of communication open as I still do see him as a good man and a friend. I'm definitely feeling very saddened that my choice ultimately will put us at spiritual odds but my own decisions always come back to the misquotes and the WT admitting to not being infallible alongside that as it brings into question the validity of the truth. I may change my mind again in the future if things do change within the org but ultimately I feel like there's been too many deep changes to what I originally knew or things that I misinterpreted that give me reason to reevaluate things. I do wish the congregation well and I probably will still attend with my parent that goes (if they go that is). But now I definitely feel as though everyone has an idea of god but no one really has everything down.
Hi Jitters and Kevin!! You are all warmly welcomed here. We appreciate your thoughts. Come anytime.