What do you think would have happened to you if...
you found out about TTATT way back in the 70's or maybe the 80's (basically before the internet) and you thought that you were all alone in this knowledge? What do you think would have happened to you? No Jehovahs-Witness.com, no John Cedars, no ARC, no jwfacts.com and no Crisis of Conscience to fall back on. You just somehow found out the truth about the organization either through the local library apostate books or through your own reading of older WT publications and you just connected all the dots.
So, with nobody else to express this new knowledge with presumably and you were all alone in your congregation, what do you think you would have done? After 5 years what do you think would have become of you?
For those of you who have actually experienced this for real, please share your experience.
Crisis of Conscience did come out in the 1980s. When I was disfellowshipped in 1980 I became part of a "phone tree" of former JWs. That phone tree included notables such as James Penton; Richard Rawee; Randall Watters and Raymond Franz himself. Even with primitive technology I was never isolated.
I did go to Christian book stores to read anti-JW books but they didn't satisfy me. I also managed to find an exJW by the name of Edmond Gruss author of Apostles of Denial who had a complete, and I mean complete library of everything the Watchtower had printed since its inception. He graciously allowed me to visit his library were I saw and read the really old $h!t.
Unfortunately, before the internet was around, most anti-JW info, was passed on thru reading, and word of mouth. If someone got hold of some really life changing information, they would usually discuss it with their close JW friends, and family.
The problem with this, is that it contributed, and gave credence to, the whole "apostate, causing division in the congregation" label. There were MANY who knew they risked a lot by even discussing this with others, yet they still took the chance, as they felt it was worth it. There were also many who were too scared to say a word.
Those that did expose the TTATT, usually had 1 of 2 things occur. They were a "lone wolf", that was DF'd for being contentious. They were labelled, and branded as an "apostate", the worst offence in JW land. The second outcome, was usually that a group of people came together, and realized that the Borg was wrong. They collectively were branded as a contentious group, and all parties usually left, or were DF'd.
It took a lot more courage, I feel, to expose the TTATT, back in the 70's and 80's. The information was not readily available, and it was much easier for the org, or elders, to discredit someone. The "apostate" was easily branded as a "crazy person", or whacko. The R&F easily went along with it, and gave it no more thought.
I specifically remember, when I was a kid in the mid 80's, a "group" in my congregation that were DF'd for "apostasy". They got caught up in the "witch hunts" at that time, which were very prevalent. Fred Franz was on an obsessive mission to "weed out", these apostates. It was on the heels of Ray Franz's book, and DF'ing. My old congregation when I was a kid, was 15 miles outside of Brooklyn bethel, and quite a few in my congregation had ties to the Franz's, and other "big wigs".
This led to a lot of people taking sides, and many who took Rays side, got the boot. Knowing what I know now, you learn to realize how RIGHT those "apostates" were, and the sacrifice and courage they had.
I wouldn't even want to think about what or how my life would be different without the aid of the internet. I do know one thing for sure, I would have been a widow. I say this because my husband was on the verge of committing suicide, because all the unnecessary crap that his JW relatives and certain elders were putting him through. The only reason he did not, was because I knew (from personal experiences) what to look for, and it took some preventive measures to keep him from doing something so permanent. I am so glad those days are far far behind us.
Well my journey started from simply following the societies direction to read all of the old publications. That was the stupidest thing they should ever have recommended to people!
The things I saw and found opened my eyes, and that led me to doing more additional research online. So perhaps I would've reached the same conclusions pre-Internet, but the Internet certainly assisted!
To know that we are not alone is a big thing
If I had known the TTATT before the Internet, I do know that my life would be very different today. I have turned down few attractive female co workers because they are not witnesses. Well I can't change the past and all we can do is to move on!
I use to go to the library and use the reference library to find articles about "the Cross" and other items . purchased books from a church book store, the 1st one was "30 years a watchtower slave" and another book was by a writer named Martin. They were the way then to find out about the T., but I knew that were off because of the 1914 belief, and I use to say, all I have to do is just wait till say 2000 and this will be proved wrong and it will fall apart. They really held strong to this belief and I was sure if this proved wrong, it would be the end of them. wrong.
you found out about TTATT way back in the 70's or maybe the 80's (basically before the internet) and you thought that you were all alone in this knowledge?
Been there,done that..
So, with nobody else to express this new knowledge with presumably and you were all alone in your congregation, what do you think you would have done?
After 5 years what do you think would have become of you?
Apparently nothing fatal..
I came in in the late 80's (but with previous childhood exposure to it). So it is hard to relate. I know that, were I still there, I would have laughed out loud and walked out never to return when they studied "Overlap Generation." I am pretty confident I would have left JW's at some point no matter what was available.
But I relied heavily on the exJW community. Without it, I would have leaned on some kind of support from another source. Perhaps Alcoholics Anonymous or maybe I would have found a hobby group. I would have needed more therapy w/o you guys.