Reading Konceptual's account of talking to cart 'witnesses' and it reminded me that when we left in '89 we thought the religion would do one of two things. Get more hardline, consequently lose members and eventually come to an end in some way. Or ease up on the members, fewer rules, less FS time, less meetings, just to keep them in.
All the recent apostate stuff, treatment of DFed kids and the hardline attitude to people who leave or try to fade has confused me, made me think they are harder on the R+F., but I don't think this is true. Except if you're a parent being made to shun your kids of course.
Realistically it is much easier now to be a JW. Three meetings a week down to two. Or is it one? One day conventions. You can even listen to meetings on the phone from your living room if you don't feel like going.
Now pioneering's down to what is it 30 hours a month or something? I did 100 and then 90 for ten years. Not proud of it, I was an idiot, just stating facts.
The door to door seems to be almost over. Just standing at carts for an hour or two chatting only to your friends. Hardly any literature to place. We had a bag full of hard bound books. The mags are barely worth opening, there's nothing there.
You can have blood fractions, IVF, transplants ( I think?). All forbidden when I was in. In fact I don't think blood factions were around.
So although the GB appear to be more hardline because of their attitude towards us, in fact for those left inside life is easier. Obviously as the converts keep dropping they are desperate to keep the members they have. The hardline attitude to apostates is all part of that. Don't let them 'poison you against the truth, brothers'. Meaning don't let someone who's seen the magician behind the curtain tell you what's really going on.