What If?

by peacefulpete 9 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • peacefulpete

    Recent news about beards is getting lots of attention. It made me wonder if any guys will return to the church under the impression that 'so much has changed'. Back when, I knew a couple guys who were outspoken about beards, seeing it as an issue, and was never terribly moved by their viewpoint. Now mind you I usually didn't shave whenever I had the chance, because it just felt natural and masculine, but it was never an issue "worth dying over" (being the believer I was). In reflection, I didn't understand the more fundamental reason it was an issue for the guys, then again, maybe they didn't know why it bothered them so much. Instinctive maybe.

    Since then, opinions about vaccines seems to be a favorite topic. On this forum there seems to be people who felt the emphasis on vaccines was proof the church was not what is claimed to be. (Please let's not discuss that again.)

    What if?

    If next year a new version of the JWs came about, one that didn't care about vaccines, beards, transfusions and pantsuits; one that let you talk to former members and go to college; one that let you decide about who you married and whether you want to vote. Would you return if doing so:

    ...meant that you would have to believe
    In things like Heaven and in Jesus and the Saints
    And all the Prophets

    To quote J Osborn.

    What have you learned through your experience outside the JWs that would inform your choice to return or not?

  • hoser

    I think they are just lowering the bar a bit as they are desperate for ministerial servants and elders

  • DesirousOfChange

    I think they've caught a lot of crap about their pharisaic rules -- "going beyond these necessary things". Beards is just one of the most prominent examples of such and the issues happens to be a BIG issue for so many people because it is sooo obviously BS. Especially when beards have been allowed in some areas of the world, but banned in others. Our kids when only teenagers witnessed this when meeting elders visiting from Australia who all had full beards even though they were one of the "deadly sins" if you wore them here.

    Hypocrites were not admired by Jesus either.

  • peacefulpete

    What have you learned through your experience outside the JWs that would inform your choice to return or not?

  • Queequeg

    First of all, the quality of our "worldly" friendships is so much better than what we had in JW land, so, we wouldn't return for that.

    My JW in-laws are judgemental, unkind hypocrites, and would be regardless of what form of religion they were a part of. So, we wouldn't return for them.

    There's actually one area where I could see a financial benefit, however I can't imagine returning to Watctowerism just for a buck.

  • DisgruntledFool

    No I would not go back. If these things changed 50 years ago I'd think about it. Too many segments of my life have been ruined because of association with this religion since my childhood. (Born in essentially) At 68 years old, all I have to say is FUCK EM.

  • peacefulpete

    Great comments, please anyone else?

  • fastJehu


    I learned outside, that JWs (including the own family) only have conditional love.

    True unconditional love is only outside the JWs possible.

    So I would never ever return to this fake love cult.

  • jwundubbed

    I always tell people that I left not because the doctrine was hinky but because the way they treat people is unethical and lacking in morals. That is true. I was shunned based on a rumor.

    All the things they are changing... are smaller parts of a systemic problem. It will take more than the GB allowing things to change systemic problems. So, no. I would not return just because it seems like a different place.

    Also, when I left I was diagnosed with Extreme PTSD. 'Extreme' isn't a word that medical/mental professionals easily put together with 'PTSD'. I have PTSD because of the cult and their practices and it goes so much further than a few things that make life uncomfortable. I have deeply unsettling feelings towards blood that aren't what they JWs teach outwardly. I have deeply disturbing and terrifying fears of the afterlife, because a basic doctrine is that there isn't one, and if there was one I wouldn't qualify. I'm not alone in these types of fears and thinking. What you are talking about changing is the outward obvious things, but that would not change the internal subtle things that we pick up on in our amazing brains. Having to live with the subtle ideas that they ingrained in us won't be suddenly removed because they changed their minds about those things.

    'Changing their minds' is part of the problem. Whose to say they won't reverse their choices? They do that. They back peddle a LOT. It isn't as noticeable because years go between their choices. Or they made the choice in one country and not in others.

    Even if all of those things change... I still wouldn't be able to live freely as a non-straight person. My friend who was treated so horribly when he came out as gay won't be treated any better. 'Changes' do not excuse nor erase the horrible way that they have treated people in the past and I don't believe it will change how they treat people going forward. It would be different but it still wouldn't be right.

    JWs aren't Christians. They don't follow Christ. If they did they would be called Christ's Witnesses. I can't be party to a group that is so discombobulated that they don't even know they aren't Christians.

    Finally, not long after I left I found a different belief system. It is a belief in multiple Gods. I've never been a Christian. I will never be a pseudo-Christian. My current belief doesn't force me to be someone that I'm not. My current beliefs don't force me to act in ways that go against my ethics, nor even that I simply don't want to engage in.

    No. I still would not go back.

  • Vidiot

    The whole shtick has been - at its core - staying out of loyalty, fealty, and obedience to “God’s Exclusive Earthly Organization”.


    …the more they attempt to mainstream, the less grip they have on that claim, because going out of their way to be “seperate” - i.e. different - from Babylon the Great / Satan’s World was an integral part of “proving” that claim.

    Once that claim is gone - officially or otherwise - what would be the point in going back?

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