Why the verb shun is missing from the JW lexicon

by cognisonance 20 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • cognisonance

    So my parents when I confronted them about how unhappy I am at them shunning me, responded by saying: "You keep using the word shunning, we're not shunning you."

    I am a bit confused how they can say that. I'm an ex-JW and an atheist. They know this. They don't speak to me, unless I force it by showing up at their door every couple years. And even then sometimes they don't even talk to me. They don't respond to texts. They don't respond to emails. It dawned on me that there is single verb in the JW lexicon to describe what they are doing. The closest seems to be concepts: "not having association with" or perhaps "not mixing in company with" or "stay clear of" or "have nothing to do with" or simply "don't talk to."

    But there is no single verb for some reason. My question is why? Why don't JWs or the governing body use the word shun? Seems like the exact word to describe to the T what is happening. For that matter there doesn't seem to be a single verb euphemism for shunning in the JW lexicon. WTF? Is it manufactured such that when objections come up like this members can believe what they say when they say, "we don't shun?"

  • Pistoff

    Because 'shunning' is unchristian, something they have said in the past.

    More mind games and loaded language from the boys in brooklyn.

  • OneEyedJoe

    If you refuse to name something, it becomes much more difficult to criticize. They know the practice doesn't stand up to scrutiny, so they never name so that any criticism of the practice is fraught with grey areas that the cult mind can retreat in to as a refuge.

  • DesirousOfChange

    Same with the word "CULT".

    They can't get it out of their mouth.

    Fact is, the truth hurts. ("The Truth" hurts!)

  • Tallon

    Cambridge dictionary:

    Shun ... meaning; To ignore someone and not speak to that person because you cannot accept their behaviour, beliefs etc,:


    Collins dictionary

    Shun ... definition: If you 'Shun' someone or something, you deliberately avoid them or keep away from them,:


  • jp1692

    They're in denial, and it ain't a river in Egypt!

  • jp1692

    Q: Do Jehovah’s Witnesses Shun Former Members of Their Religion?

    A: Of course they do, they just lie about it—even to themselves.

    Those who were baptized as Jehovah’s Witnesses but no longer preach to others, perhaps even drifting away from association with fellow believers, are not shunned. In fact, we reach out to them and try to rekindle their spiritual interest.


  • dubstepped

    To shun is wrong, they know it, and they know it makes them horrible people. It's easier to deny it and blame their victims for "leaving".

  • scratchme1010

    Why don't JWs or the governing body use the word shun?

    Because if they use that word, they would be admitting that they are in fact shunning you. By not using it they convince themselves that they are not doing anything wrong, and therefore in their mind they are earning paradise on Earth by shunning you.

    One distinctive characteristic of cults and high-demand, controlling groups is the use of unique, made-up words and concepts. The only organization (that I and the researchers I know, know of) that uses the word "disfellowhip" is the WT and the JWs.

    Other groups use different, exotic sounding terms, concepts and words that they make up, to make their followers believe (a) that they are the only ones who have some kind of unique truth or knowledge of something no one else knows, and (b) that they are not taking harmful actions by not calling their actions for what they actually are. Followers buy into that nonsense and convince themselves that they are not doing something bad.

    Other words/concepts that I have heard other groups use are:

    1. De-foo: In one of those groups that word means that you are cleansing yourself from abuse from your "family of origin" (F.O.O.), what they are doing is actually shunning their family or "de-fooing" themselves. That group convinces all members that you were abused by your parents simply because you have parents, period. Every person has been abused according to them and therefore need to get "de-fooed".

    2. Out of righteousness: Another group uses this term to shun family members who don't follow everything and anything that their leadership says they should. They believe that they are the only ones in "the right path", and therefore anything and everything else is "out of righteousness" and should not be considered worthy of anything.

    3. Liberal: Some groups (and people) use this term to identify anything and everything that they don't like hearing from other people, or anything that represent things that makes them uncomfortable, or don't agree with. They use that term to dismiss and, therefore, shun people and things that they don't/can't hear about.

    In my files I have a collection of ridiculous made-up terms that religious, political and other groups that don't care about their people use to mask their harming, shunning and/or isolating people from their loved ones. I used them in a speech I gave on cults and other high-demand, controlling groups.

    The JWs use disfellowship, which is their made up term for shunning.

  • freemindfade

    I used it once and my aunt told me that was an "apostate word", "shun"

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