Is "Independent Thinking" good or bad???

by The Fall Guy 7 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • The Fall Guy
    The Fall Guy

    One source describes independent thinking this way:

    "One of the primary goals of an educator should be to help students develop the desire and ability to think on their own. Independent thinking is the desire of a person to convince oneself that the information being presented is true or reasonable. An instructor will know that he or she has been successful in fostering independent thinking when his or her class starts asking lots of questions."

    Successive "faithful slaves" apparently couldn't agree on whether it was good or bad:

    GOOD - w57 8/1 p. 469 par. 7 - Minds work, but in the way that a horse is led. Independent thinking is difficult, unpopular and even suspect.

    GOOD - w58 8/1 p. 460 - To ask a sound religious question is a demonstration of lack of faith in God and the church, according to the clergy. As a result, the Irish people do very little independent thinking. They are victims of the clergy and fear.

    BAD - w62 9/1 p. 524 par. 22 - The student must express himself as he understands the truth. He cannot have independent thinking.

    GOOD - w72 3/15 p. 170 par. 7 - Man possesses a mind and a heart, not controlled automatically by instinct, but capable of independent thinking and reasoning, making plans and decisions, exercising a free will.

    BAD - w83 1/15 p. 22 par. 21 - How is such independent thinking manifested? A common way is by questioning the counsel that is provided by God’s visible organization.

    REALLY BAD - w83 1/15 p. 27 pars. 19-20 - This is independent thinking. Why is it so dangerous? Such thinking is an evidence of pride. If we get to thinking that we know better than the organization, we should ask ourselves: “Where did we learn Bible truth in the first place? Would we know the way of the truth if it had not been for guidance from the organization? Really, can we get along without the direction of God’s organization?” No, we cannot!

    BAD - w87 11/1 p. 19 par. 15 - But inside, they [apostates] are spiritually unclean, having given in to prideful, independent thinking.

    Is it any surprise that the WTBTS/CCoJW demonizes higher education?

  • Half banana
    Half banana

    The JW org only disseminates propaganda.

    The JW org never teach anything remotely useful unless it advances their own interests.

    Everything it tells its followers is designed to keep them bound into the cult. Everything it says, as you have posted Fall Guy, is there to promote the leaders and inhibit the normal thinking process of the rank and file.

    Propaganda, unlike evidence based fact, is very susceptible to being exposed so threats and inducements are given by the leaders for the flock to stay blinkered and dumb-- So don't you dare ask questions you miserable worms! (It may expose the propaganda for what it is).

    Progress in any field of activity is only made through seriously questioning everything, including the "received wisdom" related to the matter in question.

  • sir82

    LOL - another case of the WTS redefining words for their convenience.

    In this case the phrase is situationally defined.

    When "independent thinking" causes someone to question their (non-JW) church's doctrines - that's good, good, good!

    When "independent thinking" causes someone to question Watchtower doctrines - that's bad, bad, bad!

  • DesirousOfChange

    I’m constantly amazed at those who have gotten advanced education (nursing, civil engineering as examples) who remain captives to the Cult. Their university really failed to teach them critical thinking.

    There is also an MD who married a DFd JW and has since studied and gotten baptized (and she reinstated). He just made MS. Don’t you know that he will really “go places” in the Borg.

  • Simon

    Yeah, funny how they change whether it's good or bad based on whether it's applied to them or not isn't it ...

    Questioning your current religion and consider joining the WTS? GOOD !!

    Question the WTS leadership in any way? BAD !!!

  • LoveUniHateExams

    Notice, too, that the WT's view on independent thinking has roughly gone from 'good' to 'bad' through time.

    Hmmm ...

  • EverApostate

    Independant thinking is good for you always but bad for the cult, if you are in it.

  • Half banana
    Half banana

    "Independent thinking" is not a common phrase, this is because thinking is normally done independently as a matter of course-- unless that is, you are stuck in a cult.

    What cults demand is not to think thoughts other than officially permitted thoughts--this is by any standards a gross violation of human freedom.

    Note that the Watchtower quotes are not condemning critical analysis but instead condemning any independent thought, in other words stop thinking for yourself and let us do all the thinking for you.

    Really! What authority have these intellectual pygmies at Warwick got to dictate how anyone should think? They have track record of total failure for predicting events from their Bible interpretation and they show not a jot of divine inspiration. Yet they demand your unthinking loyalty and that you hand over your thoughts and even your conscience to them.

    Isn't this a prime example of how a cult works? The JW organisation is truly Orwellian!

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