Elders, oh my God what a bunch of losers!
I wanted to do what is right and for that I was hated. Its ironic really.
Ain't that the truth - no pun intended!
OP a bit harsh, but it's true I've met some very genuine, loving and compassionate elders, unfortunately I can count them on one hand after 25 years. Just reading "In Search of Christian freedom", and Ray has some very insightful comments re different types of elders and the control they are under,it's long but worth a read for anyone interested in this subject:
But people who have gained a degree of success in the secular world may simply be reluctant to detach themselves from an or ganization that is fairly extensive, has organizational strength and numbers. They perhaps feel a desire to employ in a religious context the same secular abilities that gained them success in the world, or perhaps donate or loan funds and, as a result, experience a more intimate, privileged relationship with men in authority. I believe the Witness religion, along with some others, lends itself notably to those of such inclination. This was not so much the case in its early history but is so today. The organization’s intense focus on works, on expansion, on big gatherings, big projects, provides an ambience in which those with secular administrative experience and preferences can shine. In a larger religion they might be “small frogs in a large pond,” as the saying goes. The Watch Tower organization is small enough for them to make an impact, gain prominence, and yet large enough that elevation therein can give them an added sense of personal importance. They may be men with insight, who are capable of seeing the flawed nature of the organizational teachings and policies, the variance between these and the teachings of Christ and of Scripture. They may even feel, per- haps cautiously express, their concern about this. Often they can say more than others, and express their thoughts to men in authority, such as members of the Governing Body, particularly if they are known to give strong financial support to the organization. I know men who have done this. In general they have experienced disappointment at seeing that their words often had little effect, did not receive the same kind of reception that their money gifts received.
Yet such flattery and efforts to impress men in au- thority are remarkably common within the Witness organization, and concern for gaining or maintaining organizational favor and position is often obvious in the conduct of a considerable percentage of elders and traveling representatives. In large measure it is such concern for position that gives the organization the degree of power and control over them that it has. Because of it men will even enforce policies that they believe are wrong in order to retain organizational favor. They do this at the cost of their freedom and moral integrity.
These motivating factors are not restricted to men of secular success and ability. They often apply with equal force to those of far more humble background, even the underprivileged. The Watch Tower’s organizational arrangement may allow these to achieve a marked elevation in social status by virtue of diligence in meet- ing organizational goals, zeal in the program of activity; the sheer force of the hours they report. All of this may pave the way to even- tual eldership. They may now deliver lengthy talks before audi- ences of a hundred or more persons, whereas without the official position they hold they might find it difficult to get a dozen per- sons to listen to them for any period of time. Like those of more impressive background, these may feel hesitant to do anything or say anything that might jeopardize the status they now enjoy.
I was also an elder and no, the description in the OP definitely does not match me. I am definitely smart, not just in my own perception, but also according to people in and outside of JW-Land. I always wanted to do the right thing, just like wasanelderonce did. Most of my life I've definitely had good jobs and worked in three different continents and actually lost track of how many countries, to be honest.
As an elder, a lot of the stuff was done sincerely believing on one level that it was the 'right thing to do', even though it did not compute, felt weird and wasn't loving. We were ALL brainwashed and, as we know, intelligence or the lack thereof has nothing to do with it.
By the same token, it can be compared with the shunning 99% of all JWs display. It might go against their "natural love" as humans, but because they've been mind controlled, they still do it, for if they don't, they might be destroyed in Armageddon. This behavior seen by an outsider, simply cannot be understood and it's consider almost inhuman and yet, we all ex-jws, at some point, were guilty of it.
What I mean is that, like in every big group of people, you can find anything among elders as you can find anything among any other population group, but generalizing is definitely not warranted.
Don't forget, a lot of BOE-Letters comes up, leaked by elders. But often the caught in the system. No way to stepping down, without a big lost. Lot of them trying to stay in "stealth-mode" to help the family get awoken. It's hard for them, to live on both sides.
And like everywhere, there also stupid ones.
Although I quite agree that such generalizations are unfair, it's true that even the most intelligent of them are "losers" in one sense: they're betting on the wrong horse!
I know from my own experience that sometimes even the most intelligent of people leave their brain at the door when engaging in "spiritual" activities. The culture of deference, obedience and group thinking can override even the most sensible of people.
Most elders are OK people, just trying to do what they think is right. It's not until your mind is freed of the reverting to type when considering WT related matters that you start to see situations for what they really are.
The sad thing is that people can have their lives wrecked by well meaning individuals.
They come in all shapes and sizes....come need to be seen...on stage...as they have no other podium in real life...some are caring and warm.....some are dumber than believable...some are total arseholes....and a lot simply got there because of the family they were born into...nepotism reigns supreme. The really great ones leave and have a great representation here.
The really great ones leave and have a great representation here.
Yes, yes they do... 🙂
How in the world did cognac's response get four dislikes?
I also don't agree with elders having horrible jobs or "no drive". But I do feel the sentiment that most elders don't have a "drive" to really care for the people. Those are only a few. And even then the rules, the organization will always come first. What good is an elder crying with the family when someone has been DF'ed anyway? What good is compassion then? Are you then "doing the right thing"? No. Participating in evil is always bad, there is no excuse for it. But ex-elders who dropped the job and recognize the evil now don't have to feel bad about it either anymore now. What's done is done.