Why do some Jehovah's Witnesses choose to be atheist or agnostic?
I haven't read the other answers, but I can say that I did not choose to be an atheist like one might choose the beef over the chicken at a restaurant.
Jehovah's Witnesses were wrong. I finally figured that out via investigation. I did not stop investigating until I figured out that the Bible was wrong also. That led to so much more until it was inescapable to realize that none of the gods of man's beliefs exist.
Jehovah's Witnesses were taught to reject mythologies, so many ex-JW's are just doing that.
I recommend if anyone is interested going to the library and checking out Joseph Campbell's the power of myth. Not just because it helped me to appreciate mythology but because it's also an utterly fascinating perspective on what's going on in all religions. I wouldn't be surprised if it really challenged anyone's faith. Might even turn someone atheist even tho it had the opposite effect on me
Bill Moyer (baptist preacher) interviews him and Campbell shakes his faith. Campbell influenced George Lucas Star Wars in creating the mythology in Star Wars
Why do some Jehovah's Witnesses choose to be atheist or agnostic? - I don't see it as a choice but, rather, as an acceptance of reality.
No faith or wishful thinking needed ...
I made my choice because of the benefits of having faith. Being saved would be nice. And I think it'd be very righteous to glorify God. But I'm not quite there.
So then, according to the same WT bullshit that you claim you buy and don't buy at the same time, you are in there for selfish reasons, not to serve their Jehovah as they claim that every single person should. Furhtermore, there are plenty of places and events out there that can give you the same benefits or better, without having to be a hypocrit and go to their place for different reasons than the ones they establish.
Whoa didn't mean to be condescending.
You did. Still coming across like that.
What reason did you choose the path you chose after leaving?
That questions still feels condescending, but mostly uninformed. However, seems like this is going to be the best we can get from you. I was born in that organization. Couldn't care less about it pretty much since the day I was born. At some point decided to give it a fair chance and didn't like it. Hated the people, hated the believes, hated averything about being a JW. Sent them to the carajo once I got fed up with their stupid rules, ridiculous belives and above everithing their hypocrisy. My main reasons were not believes or doctrine related. I just don't give an eff about them.
I'm baffled. If someone came to the conclusion that Atheism is the most reasonable path to take, then how can one say they are an atheist without choosing to be one based on their conclusion.
As a christian bible-induced thinking person you are judging and seeing atheism through their glass. For as long as you keep looking at it in a comparative form with christianism, with the typical elements in the way of viewing things (black and white thinking, I'm right you're wrong, there's only one truth, and blah blah blah), you will remain baffled.
If someone asks me why I like chocolate or vanilla no matter what reasoning I use to pick it is ultimately because I simply chose one of the options despite how I justify myself.
Perfect example of christian simplistic way of thinking.
Is it possible that you did choose chocolate over vanilla and it's as simple as that?
No (see above).
Does it even matter if something is true or false when as humans we can't stop making meaning either way?
Yes it matters, especially if you have people making life and death decisions over it.
I really value JWs use of evidence as I value Campbell's use of poetic metaphors. When it comes to working with a book such as the Bible I wouldn't be able to work with any particular church without scriptural evidence.
I value use of reliable, proper, unbiased evidence that doesn't push an agenda to exploit other people. If you value the JWs evidence, you need to look at what you are valuing. Google "faulty logic".
When taken to extremes reason serves us better than faith. In it's extreme faith is intolerant. People can't stop making meaning so outside of extremes faith serves man very well.
Delusion seems like an extreme word in this conversation
And your point is... again, condescending.
I define faith as an emotional belief in the mystery that is involved in experiencing life.
Then, again, you're in the JWs for the wrong reasons. Keep coming here, it will help you leave.
I mean the emotion deep in my consciousness that creates a sense of awe in the universe that can only be expressed poetically. Faith leads me to the word God. God being the closest word to express that awe
Now, please explain to me what does any of that definition has to do with the ridiculous stupid, biased, unreasonable and just downright creepy rules that christianity imposes on people.
No it doesn't matter to me whether those things actually happened.
Again, then you are being a hypocrite in the JW because they expect you to care and believe what they tell you. Furthermore, you go there pretending to be one of them when you're not. What's the point of doing that?
I think we choose our beliefs. It's the only real point I'm actually arguing instead of discussing.
I don't see anyone refuting that. You didn't use the word "believes"; you used the expression "choosing your own path". That's different. Don't come now changing what you said.
You don't need evidence to make a choice, and using evidence naturally leads to a choice.
I think people are afraid of being accountable for their choices. It can be a scary word.
And you are trying to apply that to atheists? Look around in your congregation.
You're figuring out what to do next and evidence leads you to reason. Naturally, would you choose to follow reason compared to the the other options available?
That is so naive! You really thing that leaving a cult is about learning something new and start believing something else? Seems like you like stating what you like to say, but want to remain in your own little bubble. If you decide to step aside from your own little bubble, please search for information about cults. On the other hand, and on a second thought, if you are here you may have the chance (or maybe subconsciously you are giving yourself that chance) of learning more about cognitive dissonance, negative influence, and high-demand, controlling groups, also known as cults. That may shed some light about how many more things are impacted in people's lives, other than just choosing a believe over another.
The only evidence for the Bible is contained within the covers of the book itself. Outside of the book it's a different animal
Actually, not really. There is plenty of historical, archaeological and scientific evidence of certain people, places and events in the bible existing. That certainly doesn't make it "the word of God", nor excuses the way people use it to hate and oppress others, but yes, there's plenty of evidence supporting parts of the bible making reference to people, places and events.
Alright new question. What denomination of Christendom are ex-jdubs most likely to join?
Again, you are still viewing this from your own perspective, which is a little limiting. Try to see the world outside as not something "people join".
I recommend if anyone is interested going to the library and checking out Joseph Campbell's the power of myth. Not just because it helped me to appreciate mythology but because it's also an utterly fascinating perspective on what's going on in all religions.
Thank you. I read the book and wasn't too impressed with it, but good read. May I recommend:
"When God becomes a Drug" by Leo Booth
"Recovery from Cults: Help for Victims of Psychological and Spiritual Abuse", by Michael Langone
"Coping with Cult Involvement: A Handbook for Families and Friends", by Livia Bardin
"Starting Out in Mainstream America", by Livia Bardin
"Bounded Choice: True Believers and Charismatic Cults", by Janja Lalich
"Born and Raised in a Sect: You are Not Alone", by Lois Kendall
"Betrayal of the Spirit", by Nori J. Muster
They are great read and can help you understand where some of us come from.
Firstly, I believe when someone starts accusing another person of something there is a good chance they are really talking about themselves. You've accused me of being selfish, condescending, hypocritical, uninformed, and naive. I may be some of those things but some of those things are really coming from you. I do think you're scathing and bitter. Not necessarily bad attributes either.
Secondly, I am not a Jw, nor have I joined their congregation. I am not pretending to be one of them. In fact I don't even see the Bible as they do. I value their emphasis on evidence and not the evidence they believe in. I grew up atheist and eventually joined a Methodist church because I like parts of the Bible and Methodists are really easy going. Methodists are famous for saying "for me." This is what the Bible means for me and not anyone else. What the Bible means to you is none of my business even if I get curious and ask you.
If I grew up atheist I'm not a bible induced person because I am an atheist induced person who came to the Bible, which means I do the opposite of what you're accusing me of. I see the Bible through my atheist lens and do my best to understand faith.
Personally, there are a lot of rules in the Bible I don't subscribe to. I don't have faith because I like most of the rules. I have faith because there are benefits to having faith.
I very much appreciate learning about cults, especially here, and value the members of this forum even if they can be as scathing as you (and me too).
Gosh you gave me a lot of grief for being me.
I value their emphasis on evidence
That is like saying you value the Jewish emphasis on foreskins.