What’s going on with JWs who are the studious/scholarly/research-inclined type? I feel that there aren’t many of that type anymore, but there have to be some – mostly old-timers. So, what do they think? How do they study?
When I was active, I collected all the old publications I could find. I studied and researched and kept extensive notes. I could quote points from old publications. I had all the old Franz era prophetic books, and I regularly consulted them. I color-coded the Revelation Climax book and wrote extensive marginal notes in it.
Things just seem so different in JWdom now. stuckinarut2 wrote something like this recently in another thread: “It's anyone's guess now as to what the official JW teachings are.” I feel the same way. Now, I couldn’t be the type JW I was back then. I couldn’t study and research as I did because I wouldn’t know what older JW publications are still “official” and are still accepted (or at least what parts thereof).
So, how do JWs know? Would it be acceptable for a JW in the new JWdom to refer to an old Franz publication in a Watchtower comment? Do JWs still even have access to the older stuff? I feel that a lot of the old-timers still have the older books and other publications, and I guess the older publications are still included with The Watchtower Library software, but I’m not sure. The two younger (30ish) JWs I’ve talked with lately didn’t even know who F Franz was and probably know nothing of the publications he was responsible for, but what about the older ones who know of such? Have they been instructed not to consult them?
It seems that JWdom is, as has been stated on this site, becoming more of a lifestyle religion and less doctrine oriented as it used to be. It seems now to be just concerned about obedience and “light” (as in “not heavy”) teachings.
If that is true, then back to my question. How do the research-inclined feel? How far back in publications can they or do they go to research? How, for example, would they know which of the old type/antitype teachings were still acceptable?
Also, am I right in feeling that JWdom is now light-duty as far as doctrine goes? Could there ever be another “deeper”, prophetic Franz-like publication? Could there ever be another publication like Daniel’s Prophecy or Revelation Climax, or are those days over? I feel for several reasons that those days are over, and that JWdom could never again be specific and bold in the doctrinal arena. Consider the Jeremiah book that was released around 2010. If my memory is correct, it was focused more on lessons (moral, motivational, etc.) that could be learned from the Jeremiah account rather than the technical and prophetic type stuff that an older Franz type publication would have been focused on. And that, to me, is indicative of the general trend in JWdom now.
thoughts on any of the above or anything related appreciated.