What is the alternative to JW?
Former Brother, you have left "the truth" but "the truth" has not left you, you are still being controlled by the organization. Many, many things that are taught by the organization are simply factually untrue, others are exagerations. It's normal when you leave a high control religion like the JWs to still believe in much of it, most of us were like that when we first left, including me. I knew I could not be a JW anymore, but I believed they were good people who still got many things right and were closer to the truth of the bible than any other religion.
But as time when on and I started doing more research I realized that most of it was hogwash that did not stand up to scrutiny. I then challenged myself to reconsider everything and finally realized that very little the JWs teach is right. It was hard to admit that I had been so wrong, but it is what it is.
The Watchtower uses various means to keep people in the dark and to stop them from questioning things. The statement that they are the only group showing love to all races and are all over the earth is one of the "thought stopping" methods they use. You see some thing that bothers you about the religion but then you think "but they are the only group that is all over the earth, so they must be right". First of all they are not all over the earth, there are hardly any JWs in mainland China for example. Secondly, other religions are in many countries as well, and lastly, that doesn't excuse the bad things that they do.
You need to look at this with fresh eyes, question everything and then look at the facts. The failed date predictions, doctrine flip flops, troubling history they have covered up, child abuse cover ups, lies and deceptions are not excused because they may have gotten some doctrines right.
I've discovered the trek down this new path is a marathon and not a sprint. I doubt I have sufficient time left in my remaining years to examine it all and come to a definitive conclusion on all of it. I have not just stopped everything else in life to jump into examining all of this, because I have concluded it is at least as important to enjoy living some of the life I have remaining. I think that I can perhaps do the greatest good by helping my children and their children to get a good basis or start in their lives so they can more fully enjoy their future. Hopefully they will think of me (in good ways) occasionally when they reflect on where they are in life down the road.DOC: This is a very profound statement that I couldn't agree with more.
LaFrancia - "...we must work to improve the organization: Zero bureaucracy and adopting transparency measures."
Never gonna happen.
They'd rather the WTS crash and burn than implement the progressive reforms of "Satan's World".
Why do I need an alternative to JW's?
i don't - I have no need for others to tell me what to do and how to do it. I am happy without them and see no need to replace that in my life.
But I now believe the entire Bible is Gods word,
That's the source of you're problem right there.
It's funny how you tell me you have thought about things very deeply, and then come out with that shit.
Let's start another thread called "Lies the Bible Gave us", it could even be presented in a similar way to the "simplified WT", if that's easier for you.
Just go live your life out in peace and happiness pursuing freedom of mind without any religious fantasy and superstition. Sounds like a feasible plan to me. Peace out, Mr. Flipper
That. Or in in the paraphrased words of Jesus 'Be nice to each other'
Or you could take it one step further and follow Bill & Ted's advice and be excellent to each other :)
The vatican has over a million tons of gold....formerbrother
International Business Times
What we do know is that Vatican Bank, officially titled the Institute for the Works of Religion, manages €5.9bn ($7.3bn, £4.64bn) of assets on behalf of its 17,400 customers. And it manages €700m of equity which it owns. Another titbit to emerge is that it keeps gold reserves worth over $20m with the US Federal Reserve.
1 Troy Ounce = $1,075.75
Values based upon Current spot gold price of: $1,075.75
I commend you for having the courage and curiosity to examine your believes and biases, which we all should be doing. The people on here has a vast cumulative knowledge base and can help in many ways. But it is not the substitute for research, you have to do the studying and thinking yourself. We can point you in the right direction but you have to find the answers yourself.
"you can lead a horse to water, but you cant make it drink"
Is evolution a viable option to creationism?
This topic is a very big one which requires a lot of research before you get a good feel for it. That is partly because it involves many areas; genetics, biology, paleontology, etc. There are many good books to get you started. Remember, you need both sides of an issue to get an objective view of it. You have heard the creationist arguments and sadly sometimes their misrepresentation of the opposing view("evolution is just random chance" is a common one). Maybe you should look into why it is taught as science in schools, is it; "just a theory" as creationists would have you believe, or is there something to it? Is it "just" a huge conspiracy?
I can share one thing to get you going; the predictions the theory of evolution can make is used to make medicines. (The "success" of a theory is determent by its predictive powers; if the predictions fail, the theory is scrapped. Evolution is taught as science in schools because it works, much like many other successful theories)
Is the bible Gods word?
Another equally challenging question.
For me; my inability to prove that it is, is a huge factor. But everyone is different.
Here as well I would advice you to look at the other side to get some perspective on the issue. You have heard all the reasons why the bible must be from God. Now you need to look up all the reasons others say it is not. Only then will you be able to make a informed decision about what to believe. And reading the watchtower publications regarding those arguments does not count! They are misleading at best, and I understand why... They are teaching something controversial, why would they want to tell their "followers" the best arguments against their own doctrine.
Does God exist?
You have to do the same thing here, just like with the previous question.
By their fruits you shall know them...
This one is interesting because of how it contradicts itself.
Look at the catholic church and all their pedophiles, this is proof that God is not with them!
Look at the JWs, they have a universal love for each other, this is proof that God is with them!
Look at the JWs and all the problems they have had with pedophiles that have submerged in recent times; God is using imperfect men and there will always be bad people, even inside Gods org.
Look at all the good the catholic church have done with their charitable works, the Devil is turning himself into a angle of light...
No matter which way you turn it, this will always be highly subjective. And it will play right into your own confirmation bias.
The light will get brighter...
Others have pointed this out but I will say it again, there is nothing in the context of this proverb that indicates that it is anything but a proverb. No mention of prophesy or anything. You may of course believe that it is one but many of us here do not.
But what you need more than answers to these questions is the ability to get them!
First of: You need to get rid of your biases and prejudices, you have to reevaluate everything you have been taught. Scary, I know! But it will be worth it, maybe you will conclude that you where correct all along.. It would still be worth it, because this time you examined both sides in a objective way to find out what you want to believe. You have to give both sides of every argument a fair chance, no matter how biased you feel.
Second: You need to learn, critical thinking skills, how to use proper logic and what fallacies to avoid, skepticism. How cognitive dissonance works and how confirmation bias works etc. I am not trying to insult you in any way, these skills are generally not learned unless studied. And I doubt any JW have a good understanding of them without realizing something is off... There is much loaded language, fallacious logic and logical fallacies in the publications. And critical thinking does not go well with publications which lack almost any references at all, this applies to all kinds of statements, supposed quotes and flat out exaggerations. How do you back up the statement:
"The moral confusion in the world has left its mark, especially among the impressionable youth."
A critical approach would be:
How do they know there is moral confusion in the world? How did it leave a mark? Are the premises even true? Why is the youth more confused then the others? And how do they know this?
And there are never any source for these kind of statements in the JWs publications(I have yet to find any at least)...
I remember writing a paper at university when I first got there, thinking this was an acceptable way of writing.. I was told that you can not state something like this without referencing a study to back up the claim, unless I made it into my personal opinion instead.
And watchtower does this all the time, mixing factual claims with opinions from their own doctrinal worldview. Wanting the facts to bend as to fit their agenda.
I think I have ranted long enough :P
Regardless to say; learning critical, logical thinking is a real eye opener!
It is not easy, but there are no shortcuts if you want to build you believes on a stable foundation ;)
Good luck in your search for "Truth"! :)
anarchist philosophy ,,,,,,, awesome!