The Appeal and Draw of the Watchtower
The social aspect of it is strong. The underlying threat of them taking away every single friend in their life, along with every family member who is JW is not something to overlook. It takes a courageous person to leave that cult, most people don't have the balls.
The emotional control of being shunned by pretty much all of your friends and family can easily over power anyone.
Agreed!! Most people don't have the guts to leave the Borg. That's why the only option sometimes is to ''fade''. As mentioned, it can take years and years to successfully fade. Or situations may arise in one's life where considered ''wrong doing'' can lead to df'ing, which will present that ticket to ''freedom''.
Back in the late 80s, unraveling bible prophecy was fascinating.
The hope that mankind would have the joy of really living in freedom, in a physical universe of delight with a close relationship with the Father and Creator, possible interaction with spiritual beings (Angels) and no fear, but joy - that was a life sustaining hope.
The social interaction with an unlimited number of lovely people grew to be incredibly comforting.
I was, for many years, very happy.
But, when I saw that in the urgent 'the time of the end' - the message I had delivered through books and magazines was unclear, that there was dishonesty in the pages - really.
It was the start of my first real mental breakdown.
It was a receiver of our books that pointed out the misleading quotes after some research. I was gutted. From there, I discovered the truth about Beth Sarim and the news coverage of Rutherfords proclamation that the old prophets were to rise in 1925 or whatever and live in the states.
I wondered what kind of people would be attracted to the crazy teachings of this man at that time? Why didn't people walk away on mass?
And really, would a true God sanction such public rantings at a time when crystal clear 'truth' should be a guiding light to real 'truth -seekers'? The ancient worthies scandal was a truly unsettling discovery - and I was not prepared to diminish my inner hope that God is greater then that. It was just man- made spiritual junk this Rutherford had publicised. Which in turn afforded him a very nice, palatial residence.
There was much about the worldwide association that was really attractive, I loved bible teaching, and I always nurtured the hope that everyone, I mean everyone would turn around and live in a peaceful universe where all things are made 'new', only the truly evil ( whatever that is) would have to be left out.
I didn't relish death or destruction. I hated how some of the brothers and sisters mocked 'worldly' people. I remember driving past a terrace of outdoor restaurants with a pioneer sister who has a heart of gold - she laughed 'look at them' as we passed the diners 'scoffers in the last days' - and I thought, that's a horrible attitude. I looked at her and thought, You have know idea what human troubles each of those people might be struggling with.
Over the years, I found a profound lack of respect amongst witnesses for those who are not JWs.
The attractive 'love' soon shows itself for something else. And I think man-made pride drives the culture.
The Romans in their history used tactics such as instilling fear to its people for centuries for obedience. .. the WT does the same, if you don't do "works" of faith you will not be saved & destroyed....
I asked a longtime born JW, relative to my child from his father, who is in his 60s & i asked him a question about the generation & his response "it's all confusing & too confusing to keep track off the changes, what's important is showing love to one another" .... he is a very smart person, was a captin in from a fire department, but that's it, many JWs are zombies when it comes to changes they believe what's in print of the publications must be true since the other things like hellfire, God's name etc are true....
I love the youtube channel watchtower examination he has the same issue with his brother & dedicated 1 video to him & he put it perfectly 'he became a brain zombie & gave his brain away' ....
1. Resurrection of family
2. You're special for being with us
3. You're superior to everyone else
4. You have knowledge that no one else has
5. You have cut the "world" off because you're better than THEM
If God so LOVED the "world" ..... what are you doing hating what God loved enough to redeem with his own Son's blood?
This is a great thread!
Awesome replies and comments!
Yes, the fear of not "belonging" is powerful for many. "Conformity" is another.
Also the feeling of "specialness" and being chosen by God.....
And the old FOG. Fear, Obligation, Guilt
AND...many are just born ins...and stay just because....just because that's what makes them , them.
As for new converts...usually it's the disenfranchised and lost people of the community that are appealed to...they get something to give their life meaning....even the org acknowledges this using the scriptural idea of "the lowly and those sighing and groaning"
Yes very good thread and comments following