Deborah Layton - Jonestown Survivor
Saw this on the exJW Reddit forum - very thought provoking.
"When your own thoughts are forbidden, when your questions are not allowed and our doubts are punished, when contacts with friendships outside of the organisation are censored, we are being abused, for the ends never justify the means.
When our heart aches knowing we have made friendships and secret attachments that will be forever forbidden if we leave, we are in danger.
When we consider staying in a group because we cannot bear the loss, disappointment and sorrow our leaving will cause for ourselves and those we have come to love, we are in a cult ...
When family and friends are used as a weapon in order to force us to stay in an organisation, something has gone terribly wrong".
Seductive Poison: A Jonestown Survivor's Story of Life and Death in the People's Temple.
I personally contacted her. She is such a loving person. She contacted me and asked me how she could help me. Lovely lady
Deborah Layton summed up the reality of being in a cult.
The terrifying thing is that when a cult is in decline or its leaders are, their only defence is to take the most extreme measures to maintain control or avoid exposure and the humiliation which goes with it. The Jonestown suicide massacre is testament to this and the deaths caused by Koresh at Waco happened when the authorities challenged the legitimacy of the Davidians cult.
What sort of organisation is it which instills into the imagination of its members the notion of retreating to a hidden bunker?
What organisation is educating its members to put the value of their lives as of secondary importance to an imagined utopian future?
Which organisation is it which has warned its followers to obey its leadership "whether the instructions seem reasonable or not"?
Please don't say that Jehovah's Witnesses are not a cult.
When we first left the Org. I found this quote, printed it off, simply with Deborah's name on it, not "Jonestown Survivor", and left it on my desk for later ease of reading it again.
Mrs Phizzy saw it, and said " You shouldn't leave that quote about the JW's around for all to see".
Says it all really.
Bo Juel (former Witness and molestation survivor, author of The Least of God's Priorities) likened the organization to a "Jonestown in slow motion". That, it is.
@Half banana Everything you listed is what WOKE ME UP. The religion has taken a dark turn in the last few years, getting more and more macabre with each drama. At least they're being up front with how insidious its expectations are for Witnesses.
My advice for anyone floundering inside the organization:
Great thread and quote!
Who Joins a Cult?
“Nobody joins a cult. Nobody intentionally joins a group or organization thinking they’ll be harmed or injured; nobody imagined they’d give their lives for the People’s Temple. We join all kinds of groups all the time – self-help, political – but some become malignant. The people that join [such groups] tend to be idealistic and kind; they’re people you’d want as a friend. They get drawn in and trapped.” - Deborah Layton
Wake Me On - "...At least they're being up front with how insidious its expectations are for Witnesses..."
Refreshing - if unintentional - candor, I have to say.
Thanks for sharing that quote Tallon.
That just about sums it all up for anyone who has become a member of the Watchtower Bible and tract Society and then wakes up.