Jehovah’s Witnesses: Using This Blog

Jun 27, 2015 by

hqPerhaps this is your first time to view this blog and if so, welcome!

Perhaps you’ve been visiting the blog for years. If so, welcome back!

I want you all to know that I’ve slowed down a bit in my writing because of my work as well as the fact that I think I may have written about as much as I can write about the subject of Jehovah’s Witnesses without repeating myself. I used to write almost weekly, then monthly, but as the years have passed I’ve noticed that the “Aha!” moments have become fewer and farther between. Rest assured as I get new thoughts I will write them down and share them with you.

If you haven’t yet done so, please join the blog so that you can get every single post without missing any. There is no cost, no salesperson will call (that’s a joke) and your information will never be sold. We currently have over 17,000 people in our little community and the numbers are continuing to grow.

Let’s get some things out of the way up front so that we are all on the same page:

1. This isn’t a recruitment website to get errant Jehovah’s Witnesses to join any other religion or church. I’m not even interested in getting you to follow me or anyone else. (Except maybe following the blog!)

2. This isn’t a means to bash Jehovah’s Witnesses or to spread hatred or intolerance toward them. I believe they are, for the most part, good people who are simply misled.

3. This is a chronicle of my life and my observations in and out of the Jehovah’s Witnesses. It is a “marker”, if you will, of my own experience and a shared collection of knowledge and wisdom that I have gained as a result of having been in the group and having left it of my own free will.

4. I’m not here to convince you of anything other than your own God given right to determine what it is that you believe apart from anyone else’s influence including mine.

5. I really don’t care what you think of me. I’m not here to validate myself or my own experience. I’m here to help you work on yours by sharing mine.

6. This blog forces you think, question, and reexamine your stance on all things to do with being a Jehovah’s Witness. If you choose to join, leave, or stay in the organization that is your business. My goal is that you make any one of those decisions with both eyes open and all the facts in front of you.

7. I am a Christian and believe that the Bible is, for the most part, the inerrant word of God. I’m a skeptic when it comes to intolerant thinking, circular thinking, magical thinking, and all things hurtful and hateful. When I see people mistreated in the name of religion I don’t see the love of Christ. Instead I see men misusing religion, the scriptures, and matters of faith to achieve their own desire for power, money and control over others. In this, the Jehovah’s Witnesses are just one of many offenders.

8. I know that there are a lot of terribly unhappy current and former Jehovah’s Witnesses out there. I know that many of them are experiencing doubt, pain, sadness, and suffering as a direct result of what they’ve been taught as well as how they’ve been mistreated by those in the organization. My aim in this blog is to educate current and former JW’s as to what the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society teaches and has taught in the past. I compare that to what the scriptures really teach and I allow my readers to draw their own conclusions.

9. This blog is also for those considering studying with or becoming one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Life in the Jehovah’s Witnesses can look really attractive to the uninitiated. My posts and articles provide a stark, unflinching, and realistic look at what life inside the Jehovah’s Witnesses is like versus the elaborate facade that is presented at the door and during the weekly home Bible studies they conduct.

10. This blog is also for those who may have married or become emotionally involved with someone who is either in the Jehovah’s Witnesses now or has been in the past. This can be extremely challenging and there are many articles and posts on this blog dealing with that in detail.

11. There is no cost for joining or reading this blog. I will never ask you for money. I don’t need it or want it. I’m not starting a church or a movement. I’ll never sell your email or information. I’m merely telling my story, the story that I was never allowed to tell when I was in the organization. If my experience can help you to avoid or mitigate the impact of your involvement in or with Jehovah’s Witnesses then I will have accomplished my purpose.

12. There is no real order of posting other than chronologically. When I think of something that can possibly help visitors to this blog, I start writing and don’t stop until I’m finished. I then post it for the world to see. There are almost 1,000 posts and articles that I’ve written over the past several years. They deal with all aspects of life in the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

13. There is a search box at the top right. If you want to research a particular topic it will search every single post and find what you’re looking for. It will only pull so many posts and then at the bottom you’ll see a >> to the right of the page. That means that there are more posts to see.

14. I no longer do telephone consults or answer emails. I only work with posts to the blog. That way, the entire world gets to see what the issues are and they can learn from your experience. You can post anonymously. I find this to be helpful when readers are sharing a particularly difficult experience or situation.

I sincerely hope that you find this blog to be helpful, challenging, insightful, maddening at times, and a “kick to the side of the head” for many of you.

I want you to use it to challenge your own preconceptions and to help you to understand that you, and not some nebulous hierarchy of religious old men, are in charge of your life.

I want you to post questions, observations and even challenges to what has been written here. I welcome your criticism as well as the occasional “attaboy”.

Finally, I wish you peace and joy on your journey of self discovery.

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Jehovah’s Witnesses: I’ve Got Some “New Light” For You!

Mar 31, 2015 by

 

First of all, let me just say that I don’t endorse homosexuality, nor am I against it. I tolerate it just as I tolerate plaid shirts, women wearing sweat pants in Walmart, sleeved tattoos, purple hair, and nose rings. It doesn’t affect me and therefore I choose to live and let live. I’m not for or against gay marriage. I believe that everyone has the right to be who they are without any interference from me. What people choose to do with other consenting adults without violating anyone’s human rights is absolutely NONE of my business.

That out of the way, let’s move forward.

I’m always looking down the road a bit to try to figure out what might happen with our friends at the Watchtower.

Because of current trends and events, I’m going to make a shocking statement.

Within the next ten years the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society will come out with “new light” about homosexuality and declare that it is a “conscience matter”.

The alternative is a total public relations nightmare. As gays and lesbians become more widely accepted by the mainstream, the Watchtower’s strict rules and attacks on homosexuality will isolate them even more than their archaic views regarding blood transfusions.

This will open them up to severe criticism, much like the State of Indiana recently, and create a media circus that their leaders simply won’t be able to handle.

Gays and lesbians are already a protected class in twenty-two states plus D.C. and Puerto Rico. If the Watchtower continues it’s bias against the people of this class by shunning or openly disfellowshipping, they very well could be sued for human rights violations in civil court and possibly brought up on criminal charges.

As we’ve already seen, there are a host of lawsuits, many that have already been settled, against the Watchtower for pedophilia, negligence and human rights abuses.

Other countries are even more openly accepting of the LGBT community which would indicate, at least to me, that the Watchtower is in for some major trouble in its attempt to operate in more liberal countries that recognize and aggressively protect the rights of gays and lesbians.

What lies down the road is utter financial ruin unless the “boys in Brooklyn” change their stance.

Many other previously closed minded and bigoted religions have opened their doors to the LGBT community. Even Pope Francis has made some headlines with his shocking statements about gays and lesbians and recently lunched with gay and transgender inmates indicating that he and the Catholic church are slowly but surely becoming more accepting of the LGBT community. I believe this is a direct result of the power of public opinion.

Things will eventually get to a point where the Watchtower’s policy of shunning and behavior modification will be completely unenforceable and their manipulation of their members will be subject to monetary damages in the millions of dollars as well as criminal prosecution at the highest level.

When the seven old men get hit with these new lawsuits and a few large payouts are ordered, it will result in a lot of “new light” flashing forth in a very short period of time.

I’ll bring the popcorn!

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Our Blog: “The Little One Has Become Fifteen Thousand!”

Feb 1, 2015 by

That’s right folks! The blog now has over fifteen thousand members since we started offering free memberships in 2013.

Thank you all for making this blog a resounding success and a useful tool to help those who have been “skinned and thrown about like sheep without a shepherd” by the con men at the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society!

See the following excerpts from the 2014 annual report. You can access the full report by clicking here.

How many visitors?

visitorsnumbers

 


wheredidtheycomefrom

 

We are most definitely making an impact and helping so many people from 175 countries around the world.

We couldn’t have done it without readers and posters  like you!

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Jehovah’s Witnesses: The Worst Thing

Dec 14, 2014 by

sadnessWe’ve discussed many ways that the Watchtower leaders and their followers, the Jehovah’s Witnesses have hurt people. They disseminate misinformation. They mislead people. They teach falsehoods. They depart from the scriptures in just about everything they teach. They break up families. They’ve even produced their own flawed version of the Bible specifically designed to legitimize their false teachings.

However, there is one thing that they do that tops everything else. It is so damaging and so despicable that I can’t begin to describe the traumatic effects on their followers.

Jehovah’s Witnesses, as well as most organized religions, teach that their followers aren’t “good enough”.

I can’t think of anything that I was taught as a young person, that was as severely limiting, hurtful, and damaging as this falsehood.

A person’s beliefs about themselves determine almost all of their actions.

When a person is indoctrinated into the JW’s they are taught to believe that they don’t “deserve” to be loved, respected, or valued. They are taught to question everything except what the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society teaches. They are taught to even question themselves. They learn to believe that somehow they can’t “measure up” to Jehovah’s (read Watchtower’s) righteous standards without the help of the Watchtower.

What this does is to make them emotionally (psychologically) dependent on the Watchtower leadership to define their own self worth. Everything they believe about themselves is based, not on their own value as human beings created in the image of God, but by their own level of activity and social standing in the organization.

Then they get on the “Theocratic Treadmill” and start working to improve their “standing” in the group. This in turn improves their own self worth in their eyes and is reinforced by the “love bombing” given to those who take the lead in theocratic activity. In the case of “brothers” this becomes even more toxic as they seek to reinforce the mandate by the Watchtower on their poor families. Everyone is expected to “tow the line” and support him in his theocratic progression to eldership. This creates all sorts of unhealthy dynamics in the family unit.

The more a Jehovah’s Witness works the more they think they are worth to Jehovah (read organization).

I don’t think anyone who is or has been a Jehovah’s Witness would disagree with this statement.

Yet what did Paul say about this?

Romans 4:4-8

Now to the one who works, wages are not credited as a gift but as an obligation. However, to the one who does not work but trusts God who justifies the ungodly, their faith is credited as righteousness. David says the same thing when he speaks of the blessedness of the one to whom God credits righteousness apart from works:

“Blessed are those
whose transgressions are forgiven,
whose sins are covered.
Blessed is the one
whose sin the Lord will never count against them.”

What Paul is saying is that we are all saved by faith in Christ apart from works. I’m not saying that works aren’t a part of the Christian life. They most certainly are. However the works are the result of our being saved by grace and not the other way around! They also aren’t defined by a strict set of activities but are part of the entire gamut of Christian life.

When was the last time you heard an elder say the following?

“Brothers and sisters instead of knocking doors today and hawking magazines we’re going down to the park to pick up litter.”

Or

“Brothers and sisters instead of knocking doors today and hawking magazines we’re going to volunteer at the local homeless shelter.”

Or

“Brothers and sisters instead of knocking doors today and hawking magazines we’re going to help raise money for a family who recently lost their father.”

All of these are truly Christian works as defined by the Bible (something about “love your neighbor as yourself”). Yet at no time was I ever asked to do any of these things at the Kingdom Hall.

The Watchtower has done a hatchet job on the Word of God and made it about their specific worldwide work instead of about faith in Christ. They teach the unsuspecting newly converted Jehovah’s Witness that knocking doors and attending meetings are what will save him when Armageddon comes. They do this by implying that if they aren’t “doing enough” to spread the message that they will be “blood guilty” (an old Jewish Law concept) and will die at the hands of Jehovah when Armageddon comes. How can you take a Jewish law and apply it to a Christian? You can’t! Yet Jehovah’s Witnesses apply the old Judaic Law to their own “Christian” teaching every day!

Anyone who has been involved with Jehovah’s Witnesses will have to admit that what I have said about their teaching is indeed the truth of the matter.

As a result, newly converted ones become zealous and almost fanatical in their pursuit of advancement in the organizational “pecking order”. They also begin to show judgmental attitudes toward those who don’t work “as much” or “as hard” in their mind. They start to find fault in others and develop a haughty attitude about their own self worth because they have become better in their own eyes. They begin to talk about other people to their peers in the group. They become cliquish and “holier than thou”.

We’ve all seen it. I don’t believe that any Jehovah’s Witness will deny that this happens constantly in the Kingdom Halls.

My exhortation today is simply this:

Learn to love yourself as God loves you and always has. Learn to embrace your own value as a child of God. Act as if God is working in your life every single moment because He can and will if you let Him. Learn to love others with the same love you receive from God, freely and without judgment. Learn to accept and forgive your own faults and those of others, just as God does.

If you do this, then you will be happy.

I guarantee it!

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Jehovah’s Witnesses: 1914-2014 RIP

Dec 12, 2014 by

fotografie riprese in luoghi pubblici

 

Well folks we’re very close to turning another “tick” on the yearly calendar.

We’re almost to the end of 100 years of expectation of the coming of Armageddon and the ushering in of a “New System of Things” as prophesied repeatedly by the Watchtower leadership.

“It’s just around the corner.”

“The Time Is At Hand.”

“The World Has Ended.”

“Millions Now Living Will Never Die.”

“Oh dear, you’ll never graduate high school.”

“You won’t have time to get married until the New System.”

“You don’t need to have children. Wouldn’t you rather raise them in the New System?”

“The generation that saw these things occurring is rapidly dying out.”

Did any of these sound familiar to you?

Do you think we’ve given Jehovah’s Witnesses and their leaders enough time to show us something or should we give them another hundred years?

I believe that in the next twenty to thirty years the Watchtower will be just another interesting historic footnote of the Adventist movement started in the 1800’s.

You see time has always been supremely important to the members and leaders of the Jehovah’s Witnesses. Time has always been the key to their “faith” in God. The promise of having more time, an eternity even, to live without dying has been the theocratic “hook” that draws in the gullible, the disenfranchised, the uneducated and the lost.

Unfortunately for the Watchtower leadership, the time they have left to prove their point to the world and to their rapidly shrinking group of followers is pretty much gone.

With the advent (excuse the pun) of the Internet, the amount of public information about the Watchtower’s history and failed prophecies has exploded. Anyone with an Internet connection and a little curiosity can read enough in an afternoon to equip themselves with sufficient information to make the wise decision not to pursue a “Bible Study” with Jehovah’s Witnesses or to read their propaganda or attend their meetings.

This hasn’t always been the case. Prior to the 1990’s one had to go to libraries or seminary book stores to get the real story on Jehovah’s Witnesses. Not many had the resources, determination, or time to do so. This gave the Jehovah’s Witness recruiters an edge and they fully exploited it as shown by their growth prior to the Internet Age.

The Jehovah’s Witnesses report a maximum of 7.96 million in followers as of the writing of this article.

So let me ask you something: How do you KNOW that is the number?

How do you KNOW that they aren’t just puffing their numbers to keep the rank and file from becoming disillusioned?

You don’t.

If they haven’t come clean on their deception in the past 100+ years then they aren’t coming clean about their own shrinking membership.

When you get to report the numbers, and nothing you say is ever questioned, you can make up pretty much anything you want to now can’t you?

Let me ask you this: “When was the last time a JW knocked on your door?”

I haven’t had one knock on my door in several years and I’ve moved around a bit so it isn’t like they have me on some “Theocratic Do Not Call” list.

The last time I saw JW’s was in front of a WalMart standing by a Watchtower kiosk and nobody was there but two old ladies who looked like they were in when Rutherford was alive.

The movement is dying folks. Their money supply has dried up. Their membership is rapidly deteriorating. Their recruiting efforts are losing momentum. The leaders are in “damage control” mode and are sucking in all of their resources back to the “mother ship”.

So where does that leave you?

Are you still waiting for their promises to come true? I sure hope not. Life is tragically short.

I implore you to take steps to really learn what the Bible teaches. Stop wasting your precious time, life and resources standing around waiting for the empty promises of a burned out cult to come true. They didn’t in 1914 and they won’t now. The Watchtower Bible & Tract Society is done! However, you still have a chance to make a change in your own life. You have the opportunity to learn what Christ really wanted you to know.

Do you have the guts to take a hard objective look at what the Bible really teaches? If you do then read Romans in any other version of the Bible than the New World Translation and think long and hard about what God is trying to say to you.

It will change your life!

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Jehovah’s Witnesses: The Waiting Is The Hardest Part

Oct 26, 2014 by

waitingSo how long have you been waiting?

Waiting for the cure for all of your ills? Waiting for the answer to all of your prayers? Waiting for that long hoped for “New System” and all that it promises to bring to you and yours?

Waiting…

Jehovah’s Witnesses have lived their entire lives waiting in expectation of the unfulfilled promises of the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society. They have lived and they have died. Yet none of the promises made by the leaders of the Watchtower organization since it’s inception in 1874 have EVER come to pass. None, zero, zilch, nada.

The latter part of 1914 was supposed to have marked the “end of this system of things”. Anyone who has read C.T. Russell’s works will agree with that statement. Then “Millions Now Living Will Never Die” was the lie told by Russell’s successor “Judge” Rutherford. Then the Fall of 1975 was pointed to as the beginning of Armageddon.

Well it has been 100 years since the Fall of 1914. It has been 39 years since the Fall of 1975. Nothing has happened yet folks!

Most who saw these “Watchtower Fallies” (extra points if you get the pun) have either died, left the organization or are simply silent as to these ever so obvious skeletons in the Watchtower’s theocratic closet.

I’m fifty now. I was brought into the group when I was three years of age. I left when I was twenty-six. I lived almost half my life in this authoritarian group that taught me that all of my needs would be met if I was good, attended the meetings regularly, worked hard in the door to door ministry and “waited on Jehovah”. It taught me that to think of my own needs, wants and desires was selfish and “of Satan”. It taught me to put my entire life on permanent “pause” and to work hard to bring others into the fold so that they too could “wait”.

I worked and waited for twenty-three years.

I worked and waited until I realized that my life was passing me by.

I worked and waited until I saw the organization for what it really was: A worldwide sweat shop with religious window dressing.

Where would I be if I had continued to wait? I’d still be knocking on doors and putting everything else in my life on permanent “hold” until Armageddon or, more likely, until I died.

So what have I done with my life since leaving the organization?

I raised a beautiful daughter. I got her well educated and free of the Watchtower’s influence.

I have a thirty year marriage to my lovely wife.

I have a faith in God that is much more powerful than anything that I had in the organization.

I have a much more accurate understanding of the Bible and what it teaches than I ever had while in the organization.

I have been able to make a difference for thousands of people who were suffering in silence in the Watchtower organization by writing of my experiences on this blog. I have done this for no monetary gain whatsoever.

I have a wonderful career that gives me an excellent income and also provides me with a sense of accomplishment.

I have a retirement plan so that I won’t be a burden to my daughter or my fellow citizens if I get too old to work or take care of myself.

Was it easy to leave the organization? No. It was painful, difficult and terribly uncomfortable to do so.

Did I lose a lot of friends and family in the process? All of them. I found out that their “love” and “friendship” was conditional upon my participation in “theocratic activity” and my social standing in the congregation.

Was it worth it to leave the organization and get on with my life? Absolutely!

Today I want you to ask yourself some questions:

If the Watchtower organization didn’t exist where would my life be?

Would I have a better education?

Would I have a larger family?

Would I have children?

Would I have a closer, more meaningful relationship with my children?

Would I have grandchildren?

Would I live in a nicer home or in an area that I always wanted to live?

Would I drive the same crappy car I drive today or would it be a newer, nicer vehicle?

Would my kids have an education and good careers or would they still be living “hand to mouth” working for minimum wage like they are now?

Would I own my own home instead of having to sweat a mortgage or rental payment every month?

Would I do what I love for a living rather than what I “have to in order to get by”?

Would I have a retirement plan in place or would I be living “for the moment”?

Would I have made a difference really helping others?

And the final question:

Would I be truly happy instead of putting my own happiness on permanent pause waiting for the “New System”?

The answer to these questions are supremely powerful in your recovery from cult dependency.

“The waiting is the hardest part.” – Tom Petty

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