“It’s okay to say you don’t know:” How a former Jehovah’s Witness broke free from the religion and from suicidal thoughts.
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Many of our readers will be familiar with the youtube channel JW Awake. Run by activist Sean McGee AKA Cappytan (who has previously written for JW Survey) and Trace Gallagher AKA unrepentantjw, the youtube channel in its own words contains “a variety of videos including satire, leaks and commentary on all things JW.”

They also run the website jwawake.com which tracks the many, many changes in Watchtower doctrine throughout the years, making a point to only use Watchtower publications to do so. No “apostate” material or “worldly” publications are used, and therefore the site is 100% safe for active Witnesses to read.

In the last few days, Sean has posted a new video to the channel. Taking a somewhat different track from the other videos on the JW Awake channel, this is a personal piece to camera in which Sean speaks frankly and openly about the moments where his JW faith was crumbling around him. He relates how for the first time he found himself facing a world where he didn’t have all the answers. He speaks about how this situation led to him to the darkest and most desperate of places, but how by seeking out professional help, he was able get through this painful period. Lastly, he speaks of the happiness he has found outside of the Watchtower religion.

I spoke to Sean about the video, and he told me that he’d made it in response to a post he’d read on the Ex-JW reddit forum. In that post, a person in the process of leaving the Witness religion, and being shunned for doing so, was speaking of their deep depression and of a desire to end their own life. Thus, Sean made this video largely for him (in addition to some other help he was able to give) to show him that he was not alone in feeling what he did, and that there was a path out of the darkness.

It’s an extremely moving and honest video, and serves as a reminder to all doubting and conflicted Jehovah’s Witnesses that there is life beyond the organisation; a full, rich, meaningful life where you are free to walk the roads you wish to walk, and not be forced down a path arbitrarily decided for you by seven men in Brooklyn who like to run away from journalists with questions.

Follow me on twitter @covertfade

Follow Sean McGee on twitter @cappytanexjw

Keep up with JW Survey.org on twitter @jwsurveyorg

 

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163 Responses to “It’s okay to say you don’t know:” How a former Jehovah’s Witness broke free from the religion and from suicidal thoughts.

  1. Big B says:

    Very nice and uplifting article, Covert Fade;

    I am so glad that Sean received the help he truly needed, and that help was available outside Jehovah’s organization.

    God only knows (if he exists at all) how many people are or have been in Sean’s position. Probably, I would wager, in the thousands.

    However, the ‘light is on’ and only the most blinded of the cult followers refuse to see how harmful the WTBTS truly is. Can you imagine taking your own life in pure desperation because someone has told you (or taught you) that you are not worthy enough to gain God’s blessing if you abandon a ‘religious’ belief? Really?

    Sad but unfortunately for many who have been shunned by family this is quite often the case. My heart goes out to those who are having a hard time (both mentally and emotionally) exiting this cult. However, take heart. This too will pass and believe me, there is a “light at the end of this tunnel of darkness.” It is called FREEDOM.

  2. Eric Arthur Blair says:

    Brilliant video, thank you.

    I hit the same point a couple of years ago. Only the faces of my two beautiful boys stayed my hand. But the breakthrough moment for me was when I reasoned “if I’m going to kill myself, then I have nothing more to lose. And if that’s the case, I might as well live and take whatever comes, after all what’s the worse that can happen now? I’ve already stared death in the face. If it all gets too much I’ll do it later, but in the meantime, why not just take life as it is and make the most of it?”

    I know that might sound bizarre to some, but for me it was life affirming and a big turning point. Sometimes you have to hit rock bottom, but it’s better to be alive.

    Don’t let Watchtower or anybody else make that decision for you. They’ve controlled your life, don’t let them take it. It’s yours, not theirs, take it back and take control. Don’t let them have the final victory. Choose life just to prove them all wrong if for no other reason. Give them the bird, with pride.

    I’ve never felt happier since leaving Watchtower. I’m fortunate that I left with my wife and kids in tact, but I could have destroyed that too. We still have dark days and big battles ahead of us. But after staring death down they don’t seem as big a deal anymore either.

  3. Mike says:

    “serves as a reminder to all doubting and conflicted Jehovah’s Witnesses that there is life beyond the organisation; a full, rich, meaningful life where you are free to walk the roads you wish to walk”
    Come on this is a joke! Of course if you leave the organization you can have a full, rich, meaningful, and very happy life. Even the bible states in several places that some will and some won’t it depends who you are. Of course it will not be easy for some. I call it the justification period. I tell my children that in life we have to justify to ourselves in one form or another why we are doing what we are about to do, whether right or wrong. Our biggest problem is that we are our worst biggest liars. no one lies to us like we lie to ourselves. There lies the problem. Sure you are going to have to make some adjustments. Like for some as an ex: You will have to justify Christmas, it still has pagan roots any bible warns against such practices, and JW’s are not the only religion not to celebrate it. (just an example)
    In time like any other situation in life you will make adjustments or adjustments are naturally made just by the way you daily live your life. Come on! you people make it sound like the JW’s are going to come and kill you just because you chose to leave. You want to leave by all means leave.
    Look if the JW’s teachings are all wrong than you have nothing to worry about, what can they do to you and who cares what they thing. If they are right! you still do not have to worry about them because they are not the ones who will pass judgement. So move on, “Don’t worry be happy!”
    Now when it comes to disfellowshipping and being shunned by your JW family. Well that is just part of the adjustment period. The same way that you left because you did not want, how did the writer put it? “Not be forced down a path arbitrarily decided for you by seven men in Brooklyn who like to run away from journalists with questions.” Those JW’s do not what you to decide for them what is right or wrong. Besides you people knew what was going to happen, what did you think, that in time it will go away? That was stupid thinking on your part. So who cares that the rest of the non-JW world things it is some form of cruel punishment, they think it is a form of love, maybe tough love. So deal with it.
    I teach my kids about “what you sow you reap” this way. Reaping has no time limited, it is what it is. You have sex with a person, you get gonorrhea, a penicillin shot & the pain last for 2 weeks. (I know ok) you have sex with a person you get pregnant/or her you sow for at least 18yrs or more. (This I also know) you sleep with the same person you get aids what you reap is for life or till death. (I do not about this just an example)
    The point, depending on your JW family and their spiritual strength, you could reap very little time or reap for life or till death. If that is the case, get used to it, as I said you knew what could happen when you left. Now you want, family over faith, there was a time when it was the other way around for you. Now you have your new, Wait how did the writer put it? “meaningful life where you are free to walk the roads you wish to walk,” and now you want to tell your JW family what road they should walk now. Are you sure you are not part of ” forcing your JW family down a path arbitrarily decided for you (Them) by (You) seven men in Brooklyn.
    Remember, enjoy your walk down happy life lane and let the JW family enjoy their walk. If at the end you meet you have “gained your brother” if not “what you sow you reap.” Judgement belongs to God not to your JW family.
    Thank you for your time. Mike

    • John Redwood says:

      Dear Mike

      Let’s start with “Judgment belongs to God” – you believe this, and your friends say they believe it – but guess what? The governing body does not believe it. Just ask Tony Morris. I have recorded him during the US branch visit stating that the inactive and everyone else are going “down” at Armageddon, after he quoted one of the most disgusting portions of scripture in Ezekiel. Come on Mike – I am sorry to tell you this but it’s all nonsense, and quite frankly, every Witness has their own mental version of the “truth” – just as you do.

      And you can’t use the argument where you stated “if the JW’s teachings are all wrong than you have nothing to worry about, what can they do to you and who cares what they think” – this is like saying “Hey – if you don’t like what Adolf Hitler teaches then don’t worry about it..who cares? You have nothing to worry about”

      I work every single day with victims of Watchtower’s insane policies of blood, shunning, and indoctrination. I work with persons so devastated by shunning that they have attempted suicide on many occasions. I work with individuals who have lost mothers and fathers and brothers and sisters because of a blood policy that you know nothing about. You don’t know its origin, its development, its enforcement, it’s fractional “new light” or the tens of thousands who have died because of Watchtower policy. A great number have been very young persons who do not have the legal right to sign a contract, but they are dead before they can think for themselves.

      You should be ashamed of yourself for thinking that a person can simply leave the JW organization with no consequences, as if you were changing your job, or switching from Jazz to Rock music. You clearly are indoctrinated by this organization and are attempting to defend it on a site where you are outclassed by persons who are free of cult indoctrination – while you are stuck believing on that which is printed by the printing empire of Jehovah’s Witnesses.

      I am glad you commented – as this is exactly what we need to print and show to psychologists, child protection authorities, and our politicians, to demonstrate just how twisted and distorted your thinking has become, and the level of rationalization you are willing to dispense to justify your religious fervor, and on a web site which exposes the very source of your indoctrination.

      We hope you have an awakening in the next few years, and come back to us as a healed and educated person. When you do so, we will welcome you back to the realm of reality

      JR

      • Mike says:

        I do know. I lost my brother 1/30/2013. No blood transfusion. You might work with them, I live it. People act like the JW’s are the plight to their problems. I will admit their are some, Like those who perhaps where molested. or those at a young age whose parents will them to get baptized, or those who are not JW’s who have lost ones due to no blood. and there other situations of course. (do you feel that way for those who have lost their lives in war, are you their Dr. Phil. Oh yeah I forgot God Blesses America and those brave men died for their country and for what they believed in. But when a JW dies for their god, they are wrong, because the populace believe they are)
        I left the truth for over 5 years and moved on with my life, made new friends and those that did not talk to me I just said oh well. at the end of the day, I made the decision to leave and I made the decision to go back nobody made me.
        Do not even pretend to talk like I do not know what your are saying. Like you are the authority on JW’s and it’s origin. Nobody indoctrinated no one. What did those people thing was going to happen.
        I am twisted and distorted because I think this is all a joke. There are two consequences when you leave 1) you become inactive 2) you get disfellowshipped. either way nobody kills you.
        It’s all non-sense! why because you say so. What gives you the right, are you also the bible authority. Adolf Hitler was a person who could do physical harm. Other than the blood issue, JW’s pose no family member physical harm (not to include molestation)
        Tony Morris statement is not a judgement it is a fact. Those alienated from god will not fair well come Armageddon. If he believes that those that are inactive will perish and god views inactive as alienated and views you as inactive god will judge you that way.
        Let me give a simple true life illustration. My daughter who I love dearly is gay(She is not a JW). I will have nothing to do with her gay life. However, she is still my daughter and we have a very good father & daughter relationship. That being said, I have told her several times that come the end, If Jehovah judges you a homosexual he will destroy you. Why? because he said he is going to destroy homosexuals. I am not judging my daughter I am stating a fact.
        Jehovah is going to destroy those alienated from him, including inactive ones. (you do know the definition of inactive?) So if the JW’s beliefs are correct, than he is right. But since as you put it “it’s all nonsense” & “where you are (I am) outclassed by persons who are free of cult indoctrination” and JW’s are adamantly wrong. Than those who leave have nothing to worry about, 1) we are wrong 2) They got you Dr. Phil to save them.
        My “religious fervor” I do not care if anyone wants to believe me or not. Jesus said that many will fall away from the truth. So when that happens I understand why. But,since we do not have the truth according to many, why worry.
        The biggest problem is the way you anti-JW’s over sensationalize JW’s. “the tens of thousands who have died because of Watchtower policy. A great number have been very young persons who do not have the legal right to sign a contract” Do you that “Tens of thousands” could mean anything from 20,000 to 100,000, but it’s most likely on the higher end of that range. “A great number have been very young persons” at the a minimum would be 20,000, but since you said a great number we are probably at perhaps over 30,000. That sounds like a very big logical fallacy. On another side of this page a gentleman made the statement. “how about the 1,000’s of children molested by JW’s in the UK” REALLY?
        A little about myself, I was raised a witness at 18 I left into the world, got married at 24, at 26 she left me with a 2 yr old (I was a bad Boy) started looking at religion (Not JW) spent hours studying religion at the library, had many question, started talking to each religion in my neighborhood. Because of all my questions they all threw me out. Went back to library ask for books on JW’s, never seen so many hate books on one religion. Wondered why, realized that what you people are doing to them Jesus said would happen to his people. Started studying them closer at the library against other religious books. Wife came back. Hated the idea I was going to get baptized. in 1994 got baptized and have been studying ever since. (I just spent 3 hrs this morning researching something for someone who said I could not prove it without JW’s. About 3 pages of different websites proving what we believe. I posted it on this website.) I really do research what I believe. I am reading a book called “23 questions about hell” The guy I am talking to said it will prove hell to me. I am about 1/2 through the book got about 13 pages of how the books is not accurate and I am only using the website Biblegateway.com. 2000 left the truth, dealt with all the misfortunes that go with it. In 2005 went back, you know how, you would think my wife would have been happy me not being a JW anymore. Not so! she got up one Sunday morning and took me herself to the kingdom hall. Saying you need to be a JW.
        On 1/20/2013 I watched my brother died for refusing a blood transfusion. What makes his story interesting, is that he was not even a JW. he just did not want somebody else’s blood in him. A week later a sister died in the room behind him because of no blood.
        For over 20 yrs I have been collecting bibles. I have many of them and I always cross reference them, and I really love using bible gateway.com
        Why do I tell you this about me, not because it is any of your business, because it is not. it is because of your statement “I work with individuals who have lost mothers and fathers and brothers and sisters because of a blood policy that you know nothing about. You don’t know its origin, its development, its enforcement, it’s fractional “new light”
        I am 51 yrs. old I do not know who you are. But I will be surprise if I have not forgotten more about the bible and the JW’s than you know about us.
        I am not trying to be disrespectful, but I am also not stupid and so blind that you think I have to wake up. I am not indoctrinated as you say. I believe because I have studied it researched it and can prove it. Find my post on the welcome page and see for yourself.
        My name is Mike

        • John Redwood says:

          Mike

          To be honest- I think your statements convict you as not just an indoctrinated person, but more accurately a deluded person. We are the same age, and I left three years ago, not because I hate the organization or anyone in it- but because it is simply not the truth. I was also deluded, and I am willing to admit that. Step one in any recovery program is admitting when you are wrong. I was loyal to the faith since childhood and never experienced any discipline, disfellowshipping or other reproof from the organization – because I had trust in my faith, and honor. That being said – let’s address some of your statements:

          “People act like the JW’s are the plight to their problems. I will admit their are some, Like those who perhaps where molested. or those at a young age whose parents will them to get baptized, or those who are not JW’s who have lost ones due to no blood. and there other situations of course.” – So, you are in agreement that molestation is a serious issue. And that baptism of youths is an issue. And that death by transfusion is an issue. And there are “other” situations. Well – this is rather enlightening for someone who seems to be defending a religious publishing company who has initiated these problems.

          “On another side of this page a gentleman made the statement. “how about the 1,000’s of children molested by JW’s in the UK” REALLY?” – Yes Mike, really. This is a very conservative under-estimate, and we are happy to point you to the proof of such evidence. Even the much less populated country of Australia had more than 1000 cases of child molesters (who molested close to 2000 victims) – with not a single case being reported to police in more than 40 years of accurate reporting. Have a look at ALL the evidence from the Australian government on their public web site. God’s organization? No. And don’t you think for a single moment that I am unaware of these cases personally. Not only was my wife a victim, more than 30 of my close friends growing up were sexual abuse victims- many of them by elders, including one elder who was of the “anointed” and was a close friend or Fred Franz.

          “Do not even pretend to talk like I do not know what your are saying. Like you are the authority on JW’s and it’s origin. ” – Yes, Mike, I am an authority. I am a researcher and writer and editor and work with the media and law firms worldwide to provide credible evidence for the statements made on JW Survey. Try to find an unsubstantiated report – get back to us on that.

          “Adolf Hitler was a person who could do physical harm. Other than the blood issue, JW’s pose no family member physical harm (not to include molestation)” – Well- then I guess if death by transfusion denial and child molestation are the only things Jehovah’s Witnesses have a problem with, then they are certainly God’s people. thank you for clearing that one up for me. You are making this very easy.

          “That being said, I have told her several times that come the end, If Jehovah judges you a homosexual he will destroy you. Why? because he said he is going to destroy homosexuals. I am not judging my daughter I am stating a fact.”
          – What kind of man says this to his daughter. This is despicable and disgusting. You would have been better off keeping your thoughts to yourself than to utter such vile speech about your flesh and blood daughter. Do me a favor – please ask her to get in touch with JW Survey. We will treat her with respect and dignity, not loathing and with the mentally depraved suggestion that God will destroy her at Armageddon. You should really be ashamed of yourself.

          “Nobody indoctrinated no one. What did those people thing was going to happen.” – Well Mike- as an adult, you ought to know that a baptized child has no idea what is going to happen to him or her when they grow up and find out that everything they learned as a child was false, and they are unable to leave with out being shunned for the rest of their lives. Yes, they were indoctrinated.

          “On 1/20/2013 I watched my brother died for refusing a blood transfusion. What makes his story interesting, is that he was not even a JW. he just did not want somebody else’s blood in him. A week later a sister died in the room behind him because of no blood.” – You find it interesting that your brother died for lack of a transfusion, and that he was not a JW? I find it disgusting – as we are not only dealing with the indoctrination related to blood transfusions – but we are dealing with the extended reach of this organization upon individuals who are not even baptized. My father in law, who was never baptized, experienced this when the Watchtower published an article which claimed that blood transfusions carry along the personality of the donor – meaning if the donor was a murderer or gay – their blood would affect the person receiving the donation in this manner. You want references? Check with us and we will give them to you right from the Watchtower and Awake. This is the type of ignorance which is prevalent in the most uneducated religion in the world- Jehovah’s Witnesses (yes – check the research polls on that – you will find that this is accurate)

          And your sister died as well from her defense of the blood policy? You speak of this as if you are proud, when in fact it is murder perpetrated by a religious organization. Shame on you.

          One final thought- we are not here to discuss America or it’s military forces, and those who died for this country or any other country. Your point is useless because we never said anything about neutrality or war in this discussion. Believe as you wish- our goal is to educate the public about what Jehovah’s Witnesses are doing, so if you wish to discuss other issues there are places where you can do that. But here we discuss truth, the kind you are lacking because of your apparent desire to defend a religion instead of defending truth itself. Your willing admission of the evils which have plagued Jehovah’s Witnesses since their inception are sufficient evidence for any reasonable person to conclude that they are every bit as much of a cult as Scientology, or any other organization which practices undue influence.

          JR

          • Mike says:

            Well Mr. John
            Where do I start? how about paragraph 1
            1) I am deluded, because I do not believe the way you believe, or understand the way you think you understand the scriptures? Allow me to ask you something. At Acts 8:30-31 says 30 Philip ran alongside and heard him reading aloud Isaiah the prophet, and he said: “Do you actually know what you are reading?” 31 He said: “Really, how could I ever do so unless someone guided me?” It is apparent throughout the whole bible that Jehovah will have people to guide us. For the sake of argument let us say it is not the GB. Than who? You Dr. Phil? Are you the answer since god has enlighten you to the truth? Or has truth set us free to decide on our own what is truth apart from god? I ask you, who decides since all we have is the Bible and over 50,000 different Christian beliefs in the US alone. Most Witness’s are not stupid to there surroundings, most just have a deeper understanding. I talk to my son a lot. And I have told him, that in life you will run into situations where it is said “you cannot see the trees because of the forest” meaning you are not looking close enough. That is true, However. there are times where “you cannot see the forest because of the trees” Meaning sometimes you cannot get your answer by looking at just one tree you must look at all the trees for your answer. (yes I understand you got to where you are at because you finally decided to look at forest or the tree whatever)

            2) Witnesses that look at the forest (The big picture)are not stupid. About 5 yrs ago or so, a story came out about how the Catholics paid an undisclosed amount of money to a molested child. My son made some kind of remark about that, and I told my son, do not think that will not happen to the JW’s. He asked why. I told him that it is impossible for an organization to have 8 million people and that not happen. We live in Satan’s world, how bad remains to be seen. Last year I read an article about how a young lady was awarded a some of money for the GB hiding the charge. I was out on field service with an elder and we talked about it. He said an amazing thing to me. He said that there is probably more to come. I asked why? He said that it just was not possible for it not to happen. Jehovah’s organization is not perfect and in its rank you can except some really bad people. However in its due time Jehovah will sort it out. At an assembly. It was said that come Armageddon do not be surprised if people we believe to be faithful do not make it, that includes the anointed. Most witnesses are not blind, but they also see the forest. The molestation issue will probably get worse so warm up your typing fingers you are probably going to be busy. Again I ask, What answers do you have?

            3) Parents WILLING their youth to get baptized is wrong. However there are some youths who can make that type of educated decision. My son waited till he was 18. I always told him it had to be his decision. If he cannot make the truth his own do not do it. Consequences are severe.

            3) I agree with the blood issue. I have firm faith that it is a very important issue to Jehovah. Not because of Acts 15:29, Back in the 90’s a man who I was talking to at a door made a statement to me. That other than Acts 15 and Jesus death, How important is the blood issue to god. I thought that was a good question. So I went home took out a concordance and looked up every scripture containing the word blood and wrote down every scriptures that pertained to gods personal feeling to it. I noticed a pattern that went along, that as I got closer to Jesus death I realized how important it is to Jehovah. I gave it to him to examine a couple weeks later he said he was impressed how the blood issue is important to god and he understood why we should abstain. (Now I know that there are many websites that talk about Acts why it is not true in their interpretation. But I guarantee you they did not trace every word with the mindset to know Jehovah’s truth.)
            My statement was that I understand how difficult it is for those who are not witnesses to have to deal with the blood issue.

            5) You are not an authority, you are whanau be. You dissect each tree for your own well being, write opinions on what you think is correct according to what you think is right. but at the end of the day you do not know the deep things of god or the issues at hand. You only know what you want to know. Are JW’s perfect no, have they made mistakes yes, big ones at that. however, if you truly understood the issues at hand and how powerful Satan is and the row that he plays, the anger he has, the freedom he has. Than you would understand. Do get me wrong, I am not saying god agrees with molestation or that the GB does not hold some responsibility for holding back that information. I assure you today at our congregations the moment someone yells rape, we stop the preceding and call the authority. But I am sure you knew that. You are the authority.

            5) The Adolf Hitler paragraph. I am sure there probably will or are other issues. But blood and molestation are your main concern right now. I have faith that at the end Jehovah will sort things out. Trust me it is going to get uglier. Bank on it.

            6) About my daughter. First who are you to tell me what the correct thing to tell my daughter is. You are a nobody, when it comes to my family and just cause you think you are some kind of authority. Do not ever think you know better about my family or what to do better than I do. Trust me you are mentally unarmed when it comes to that battle.
            That being said, I have never once told my daughter, that god was going to destroy her, I do not have the right to judge her like that. I told her come the judgement if Jehovah himself (not Me) judges her to be a homosexual he will destroy her. Why? It is simple, in EVERY bible ever written, it says that he will destroy them. Now if by that time she repents from what is disgusting to god. (Mind you to god not me) he is so forgiving as to forgive her trespasses.

            7) On the paragraph 1/30/2013. You are the ignorant one, and so disgusting to think you know so much about witnesses, but know so little, that through your own stupidest you think you are intelligent You are sort of the Korah version Moses had to deal with. My brother’s refusal was simply because he did not what someone else’s blood. It had nothing to do with religion or the thought of. About 30 yrs my dad had triple by pass surgery and he refused a blood transfusion. My dad’s hate for the JW’s is so bad that I have made the statement that Satan’s love for us is more than my dad’s. he too just did not want somebody else’s blood.
            8) Yes I proud of the sister. there is no shame in someone standing up for what they believe in. It is your disgusting thought that shames her.
            9) My point of the military is that many have died for what they stand for or pledge allegiance to and in your eyes it probably is ok. When a JW pledges allegiance to God even to death you find that murderess just because you disagree.
            10) Finally you have no truth, you are just as misguided as you think we are. You think god’s organization should be perfect or follow your rules if not they are blinded. You have no answers or directions. Just “I have deprogrammed you, now you are free, to do whatever you believe is true. No witness will hurt you, god will not destroy, I have help you with shunning of family members and you can now cope with the lost of a bloodless one. (or I helped you get over it.) I have expelled the JW demons” But in reality you are like Noah who set the dove free and it had to come back cause it could not find no place to land. But at the end it found its own place to land without Noah. (It got over it). You probably think this is insensitive, it is a bit tactless, I have been told to be more tactful. These are my thoughts not to be attributed to other JW’s.
            For all you anti-JW’s enjoy the ride it is going to get very bumpy for everyone towards the end. And if you keep looking at the trees and not the forest. May God Have mercy on your soul. Well at least you will have that freedom olive branch JR thinks he is giving you.

            Thank you Mike

          • John Redwood says:

            Mike

            You are really trying hard- I will give you credit for that. You also seem pretty hung up of Doctor Phil, and the Dr. Phil comparison. Perhaps you might enjoy a few sessions with him to air out your feelings.

            A few thoughts for you – when you are deluded by religion, you are unaware of this delusion – that is why it is so powerful. That is why reason and logic are useless, the way they would be useful if we were calculating the trajectory of a rocket. Your reference point is skewed (so was mine) – so I get it, and unless you wake up to indoctrination, you will have absolutely no idea that you are indoctrinated.

            Yes – there are many very smart Witnesses, and a few are educated (very few) – but intelligence is not run parallel with critical decision making ability on subjects out of our field of expertise.

            As for child molestation – I don’t think you get the problem. It’s not that we are unaware that this would occur, the issue is what does “god’s organization” do when they receive a report of abuse? Do they immediately pick up the phone and call the proper authorities and the CPA? No they do not. The Governing Body makes this final decision – and it has ruined thousands of lives – and this is an understatement of great magnitude. Geoffrey Jackson stated on the witness stand that the governing body are guardians of the doctrine. This is how God guards his doctrine? Or will you simply pull out the Watchtower and say “Oh – see here – the governing body are imperfect men, so…..”

            Even the Catholic church has apologized and made reparations and completely changed its policy – including the contacting of police when an accusation is reported. Then the correct authorities handle matters – not Jehovah’s Witness window washers and lawn mowers and office cleaners.

            Your research on the blood issue is personally biased – this is known as confirmation bias – you really did not do research, you just compiled scriptures with your concordance as you sought a good reason to enforce and believe in the blood policy, which is un-bilical and the worst possible interpretation of a “holy book” anyone could imagine. No rational person would believe or concoct such a policy.

            You are also unaware of the men who wrote such policies, and the men such as Gene Smalley who has enforced them at the highest level of the organization, and who has himself had doubts about what he has done, and the lives he has cost. I doubt you know him, or the other men involved in this policy, or the miraculous new “blood fraction” policy- but I do. So if you think you are speaking with someone uninformed, you would be mistaken.

            With a few swipes of the pen- a life is wiped out – including that of your sister. There is nothing to be proud of here – he life should not be ended, and you should grieve this loss instead of backing her enforcement of Watchtower’s guilt. Don’t pretend it’s not my business – it is every bit my business – when someone dies, it is a serious matter, and when it occurs at the hands of Watchtower, you had better believe we make this our business, and will continue to do so.

            I see that all of your illustrations are driven by biblical references – this is really the core of your problem. While we respect persons of most faiths, we cannot have a common-based conversation because you believe is a god who will destroy billions at Armageddon – or that wiped out all the people AND animals in a global flood, or that wiped out an imaginary legion of 185,000 Assyrian soldiers in one night. This is where our real problem is. None of these things happened or will happen- they are fabrications, and until you recognize that you have been fooled by all of this – you will continue to imagine a world where the guardians of the doctrine (AKA Geoffrey Jackson and friends) are in charge of your beliefs. Trust me – these are not your beliefs, not by a mile. Through confirmation bias they have become your beliefs – and you seek to reinforce them. You are already experiencing cognitive dissonance based on your comments, and I look forward to what you have to say years from now.

            In the end- you don’t need to follow anyone – neither Dr Phil nor Dr Who nor John Redwood or anyone. Enjoy life for what it is, and follow no one. When you learn this, you will truly appreciate life, and your family. No longer will you tell your daughter that Jehovah will destroy her at his choosing at Armageddon because she is gay. Instead you will love her for who she is with no strings attached. I hope you get it, and I know she hopes you get it.

            Best wishes

            JR

          • Blushing ex elder says:

            @mike

            Just one point among the many that stuck in my throat…you have a ‘very good father daughter relationship’ only because she is NOT a JW. If she were or had been, you would be required to shun her, ignoring even a phone call from her. You can thank whatever God you choose that she is not a JW.

          • John Redwood says:

            Blushing,

            Exactly my thought. His post was one of the most sad and delusional I have ever read, I am sorry to say

          • JudgeDreddford says:

            @Mike

            “For the sake of argument let us say it is not the GB. Than who? You Dr. Phil? Are you the answer since god has enlighten you to the truth? Or has truth set us free to decide on our own what is truth apart from god?”

            OK, you say it is the GB, then please explain how it is possible the GB was established only in 1970s. Who was “the slave” before that time?

            Who was “the slave” in the time of Russell? Perhaps you know that followers of Russell thought he was “the servant”. Now JW say he was not.

            And who was the authority in 1760 for example? Magisterium of RCC? Individual interpretation?

            Do you really believe the group (the GB) that have 100% of predictions false is the God’s sole communication channel?

          • Caroline says:

            Mike, you mentioned Acts 8:30-31 as a reason that we need the Watchtower to explain to us about Jesus but when you read that account, Philip baptized the eunuch on the spot. He didn’t need to answer a bunch of questions first like what Watchtower does and where was any governing body to guide that eunuch to any congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses at that time? Philip went away and that was the end of that story.

            As to the point “or has truth set us free to decide on our own what is truth apart from god”, I find that especially interesting because wouldn’t you say that the commands of God are an accurate representation of Jehovah’s character (moral standards) or are the commands found in the Bible really men who claimed it was God commanding them to do it, for instance the killing of millions of people with the sword in the Hebrew scriptures, including women and children; the endorsing of slavery and the sacrifice of children in the fire?

            Is there even on moral standard found in the Bible that corresponds to what we today would say was a good moral standard?

            We today don’t rely on the Bible as to what is moral or not.

            If we relied on the Bible for morality, we’d endorse slavery, children being sacrificed in the fire or stoned to death and genocide with the sword, just because God told us to do it.

            As far as it comes to blood, it doesn’t matter what your opinion is on the matter of blood when it comes to anybody else besides yourself.

            If you don’t want to take blood, then that should be your decision, but what right do you have to take that decision away from a child who doesn’t even know what the Bible says about it and by the way, in the Hebrew scriptures, people were allowed to eat unbled animals and all they had to do was wash and be unclean until evening so God’s hating blood transfusions flies out the window when you look at that scripture from God’s law and you are willing to let your child die for that blood doctrine and don’t try and tell us that Witnesses aren’t coerced into refusing blood and refuse it of their own free will.

            About you telling your daughter that God is going to destroy homosexuals you should read the Bible about when that will happen.

            It will happen AFTER the thousand years when there will finally be the Armageddon that Watchtower tries to make you think will happen any minute.

            It will be after the thousand years when Satan will be let loose out of his prison and he will go and mislead the nations of the earth and that is when the war of Armageddon will happen. So, while Satan is imprisoned for a thousand years, people will get bad and go up against Jehovah and Jehovah will take Satan and his angels and throw them into the lake of fire along with all those other people you are talking about and then Jehovah will torture them forever and forever. Why is Satan being blamed for all the badness in the earth now since at that time, people will be bad without his influence? Think about that.

            Why do you think Jehovah will destroy your daughter now at Armageddon when it is after the thousand years? Even the Governing Body are ignorant when it comes to what the Bible really says about Armageddon and when it will happen and Satan’s influence now and as compared to when Satan is imprisoned for the thousand years when supposedly everybody will be perfect.

            You say if we understood how powerful Satan is and the role he plays and his anger and the freedom he has, then we would understand, right?

            Is Satan more powerful than Jehovah? If Jehovah is more powerful than Satan, then why does Jehovah allow him to ruin the earth and what does Satan have to be “angry” anyway since Jehovah gave him free will over the earth and has the whole earth worshipping him?

            Does that even begin to make sense to you? Satan should be the happiest spirit creature ever with what he’s got going for him right now.

            You may be right in that Satan probably did love you more than your dad did but why did your dad hate the Witnesses so much when he refused blood when it had nothing to do with the Bible?

            Maybe it was because 30 years ago, people were getting AIDS from blood transfusions and a lot of people didn’t want it because of the AIDS virus?

            You made the comment that we (apostates) think god’s organization should be perfect or follow (our) rules and if not Witnesses are blind, right?

            The Governing Body say they are spirit directed, right? Then yes, they should be perfect. If not, then they shouldn’t make the claim that God is directing them and that if we don’t follow their rules, then we are going against God and are deserving of death.

            What proof do they have that God is directing the Organization with God’s Holy Spirit and is the stand-in for Jehovah and Jesus? What right do they have to rule over us if God is not directing them with his Holy Spirit?

            If God is directing them with his Holy Spirit, then they should not be making mistakes or else they are going contrary to what the Spirit is directing them to do in which case they are disregarding God’s Holy Spirit and are the evil slave, which you just might be worshipping out of ignorance.

          • John Redwood says:

            Caroline- great points made

            You have mad your points in the context of Christianity, and it is a pleasure to be able to allow freedom of belief and speech here on JW Survey despite the many differing beliefs of those who read our site. It helps us to understand that within the realm of believers, there are many who can explain (as Ray Franz did) that the organization of Jehovah’s Witnesses has no claim to Christianity, without the loss of their individual faith.

            We can argue the same issues from two different perspectives and come up with the same conclusion – that the JW organization is responsible for their actions, which include death, indoctrination, and the senseless practice of shunning – all conclusions we agree upon 100%. Thank you for your comments

            JR

          • Mike says:

            @JR
            You are an atheist?

            Mike

          • John Redwood says:

            Mike

            Do we define ourselves by titles? I don’t. This is why we permit discussion among atheists, Catholics, Buddhists, agnostics, and everyone else inclined to comment or read articles on JW Survey. Titles do not matter, unless your life is on the line, and you need to know whether the person cutting you with a knife is a doctor, or if he is not.

            The ability to locate truth is not dependent upon whether a person is religious or not. Let me give you an example.

            Jehovah’s Witnesses strongly believe that the flood of Noah’s day occurred in the year 2370 BCE, and that Adam was created in 4026 BCE. It does not matter whether I am a Christian, atheist or otherwise to determine that these events did not take place on these dates. A Christian will accept that man was created by God, but he will acknowledge that he was absolutely not created 6000 years ago. This is impossible, both genetically, scientifically, and with every available shred of archaeological evidence. The Christian, or the believer, can reconcile his faith in a creator without attempting to corroborate the impossible dates produced by the Watchtower organization, or the chronology upon which they are based.

            The atheist can establish just as well that these events and dates did not occur, without further requiring an explanation which seeks to consolidate religious and non-religious beliefs.

            Titles are often driven by emotion. The very mention of the word “apostate” results in a highly charged emotional reaction from most Jehovah’s Witnesses. Why? Because it is a name which represents someone who once was a brother or a sister, but who thinks differently now, and is not afraid to express their feelings. Charles Taze Russel was an apostate. Joseph Rutherford was, in fact an apostate of great proportions when you compare his beliefs with that of Rutherford. David Splane is an apostate for many reasons, including his explanation of overlapping generations – a teaching which was written in stone for decades, and which did not change until AFTER it was clear that the generation of 1914 was dying, and would disappear very soon from the face of the earth.

            Titles – what are titles? they are just words on a piece of paper,or on a computer screen. We are interested in truth, not titles. Titles can bond, and they can divide. Let’s dispense with titles and get to the truth. Perhaps start with Adam and Noah, and the reason behind the dates which are a critical teaching for the group titled “Jehovah’s Witnesses.”

            JR

          • Mike says:

            @JR

            That was a long winded way of saying yes I am an atheist.

            I thought your form of writing was unique and explains a lot.
            You have no Biblical hope to offer. The only Biblical comfort you can give to ex-JW(even suicidal ones) is 1 Cor 15:32 “If the dead are not to be raised up, “let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we are to die”

            Where Jehovah God promises a resurrection (Acts 24:15) & Everlasting life (Matt 7 13-14) as an olive branch for the dove.
            You are offering permanent death as a branch for the dove.

            You are not helping Ex-JW’s to cope/over come suicidal tendency/thoughts you are helping them delay it till the end.
            I wonder since you deal with ex-JW on a daily passes. Could this perhaps be your form of employment?

            One can only wonder, since this website criticizes the JW donations but has a “Donate to our work Logo” on the top. Could you perhaps also be in need of donations? I mean every man has to eat.

            If I am incorrect. Please except my apology. Mike

          • John Redwood says:

            Dear Mike

            You are free to draw your own conclusions regarding my beliefs or those of any of the editors. The reason I do not attach labels to myself or others on this site is that we are neutral with respect to permitting free speech on this site – so long as our readers are respectful, and I believe our conversation, though serious, is still respectful. By the same token – you must be respectful of all beliefs as well, since you were likely born under the influence of Christianity, in one of its various forms. You must remember that we were all born atheist, and our beliefs derive from various forms of influence, whether you wish to accept this or not.

            Most rational persons would never wish to live under the Biblical hope which is portrayed by Jehovah’s Witnesses. Think about it – 99.9% of the world’s population destroyed. Why? Because they rejected the Watchtower, or a Bible Study from the JWs, after which Witnesses walk away and say “SEE – THAT’S BIBLE PROPHECY – THEY ARE REJECTING GOD!! ” –

            As for donations – I hope you understand that these are minimal and used to pay for the website, web security, Survey Monkey fees, Domain fees, and and many other web expenses. None are for personal use. However if you examine religion – and in particular the Watchtower organization – they donate absolutely NOTHING to charity. There are several thousand Bethelites who serve the organization much like the Sea Org members of Scientology, and those among the higher ranking members (many I know very well) – such as Branch Committee members, Writing department members, Legal department members and others – these men live in the security of donations by individual sincere Witnesses who simply don’t know any better, they just want to help an organization who teaches that your daughter and the rest of us will die at Armageddon.

            It’s a fantasy – it is false, but it is a powerful tool to keep the flock in line. Fear is king in religion – and your life is lived in fear of the upcoming doom or Armageddon. Have you watched this year’s videos? How many times did you watch the bunker videos? As Witnesses – we used to pluck scriptures from the Bible and move people with fear – just as we did in 1975. Do you remember 1975? Love to have a chat about that, since Watchtower has re-written that event into something completely different than what actually happened. I was there – and I know the facts. Stay tune for more on Survey – you will enjoy the read.

            Sincerely

            JR

          • dee2 says:

            Mike,

            There are people who are not JWs who have been helped and prevented from committing suicide.

            As far as I am aware, the approach used to help such persons does not involve telling them that they are going to be resurrected or that they will live forever.

          • dee2 says:

            Mike,

            Religion/the Bible has turned death into something to fear: Death is punishment, everlasting life is a reward. This is simply not true.

            If this were true then death would have to be considered as punishment for the animals as well……….is everlasting life a reward for animals as well?

            I suppose the curse of consciousness makes human beings feel that they should live forever.

            It is a WT misconception that life can only have purpose if you can live forever.

            The reality is, that by design, everything in the universe eventually progresses toward a state of entropy or decay. Stars, planets etc eventually die.
            The sun will eventually exhaust its supply of hydrogen fuel one day and the earth will be no more.

            Reproduction is nature’s solution to death – we live on, immortalize and perpetuate ourselves by having children.

            If people were to embrace their mortality and not view death as punishment and everlasting life as a reward, then there would be no more religion.

          • Mike says:

            @JR

            First I have to say two things before I start with my buddy JR. 1) There really should be a reply button under every comment. This scrolling up gets difficult when a lot to people write. 2) Just to let everyone know. That I do read all the comments that I think are written to me and I thank you for them even the bad ones. However, I cannot comment on everyone’s hurt feelings. So if I address you it will most likely be inside JR’s comment (So JR if something sounds a little out whack beside my beliefs, it is because I am responding to someone) If I say nothing, it could be because it makes no sense and is stupid. I agree we have different beliefs and I can live with that, but some of you make comments that are all the way from left field. Has nothing to do with JW’s or even atheism, sorry if I hurt anyone’s feelings. but I do read it.

            Ok now for JR.

            “You must remember that we were all born atheist” That is not true we are born without knowledge of God, the same we are born without knowledge of what is right & wrong. Atheist, is someone who has knowledge of a god/or is told of a god and says there is no god. Big difference.

            Setting aside whether JW’s belief is right/wrong for this
            paragraph. “Most rational persons would (REMOVE never) wish to live under the Biblical hope which is portrayed by Jehovah’s Witnesses” if living forever on a paradise earth with no sickness or death was made available to them. Look JR whether you believe in the bible or not, I did not write it. It is what it is. I do not know about %99.9 of the population, However, he saved only 8 people in Noah’s day, when he destroy Jerusalem and the temple in 70ce with the roman army. Historian Josephus stated that only the Christians who fled to the mountains lived, over 1,000,000 Christians/Jews died in Jerusalem. In a prophecy Jesus said “Go in through the narrow gate, because broad is the gate and spacious is the road leading off into destruction, and many are going in through it; whereas narrow is the gate and cramped the road leading off into life, and few are finding it” There are many other scriptures that show that those who perish will by far out number those who survive.
            %99.9 I think a lot less than that, we have to consider the resurrection of the unrighteous.(Please NO how about this scripture, these are just reference points JR does not believe in the bible.)

            As for donations: I do not know what they do with it and really I do not care. You perhaps might know more than me on this issue. (do not forget all the relief/disaster campaigns we do when they is some type of disaster.) I donate because the bible not the GB tells me I should. Even the Israelites where required to donate %10 of everything. Jesus said you give from the heart and that is what I do. I do not donate to charity either, not because of religious beliefs. if the government has 800 Billion dollars for war it can give money to those charities. I pay all my taxes. I have a rental business and sometimes people tell me that they have to move because the landlord did not pay the mortgage even though they paid their rent. I say, you would think for good business that is what he should do. However we do not have the right to tell him what to do with their money.

            “they just want to help an organization who teaches that your daughter and the rest of us will die at Armageddon.” I can see you really are stuck on that. listen, I do not wish for my daughter to die at Armageddon. I did not make the rules. Anybody with bible knowledge who uses the entire Bible not just the parts they like. Will tell you come that day, if God judges her a homosexual he will destroy her, plain and simple. Just so you know, that is not a JW belief, it is the belief of many Christian denominations. Except they will tell you she will burn in hell.

            “and your life is lived in fear of the upcoming doom or Armageddon. So you know, I have no fear of death nor does Armageddon scare me. I have no problems dying it happens to everyone. For the righteous, in Jehovah’s eyes Armageddon is a beautiful thing, the end of a wicked system and the beginning of Jehovah’s new government under his son Christ Jesus. For those deem unrighteous, yes it is going to be a scary thing.

            As for 1975, I was only 10, I know nothing about it, except it was another erroneous end of the world prediction made by the JW’s.

            I think I commented on everything, if I missed something please let me know.

            Oh yes for Caroline;
            “There is nobody that has come back from the dead so far to tell us that when we die that we will be resurrected to either heavenly life or life on this earth”
            To that comment when it comes to evolution. There has never been found once a creature found in fossils or anywhere in half transition from one form to another out of it’s kind.

            Mike

          • John Redwood says:

            Mike

            We can go in circles forever, but I think it’s best to simply let your feelings stand as they are, and those who read them can agree or disagree.

            I think most people would agree though that they would not wish to live in a world where God’s creation is almost entirely destroyed because they will not accept Watchtower’s interpretation of the Bible. That is not the God of love I once thought existed. As for homosexuality – why is this a human function? Do you simply view this as imperfection? Why would God kill your daughter, if you believe that this is a result of imperfection from Adam?

            Don’t you suppose that the God of infinite wisdom and knowledge could manage to find a way to lovingly repair “imperfection” without resorting to destroying nearly ALL of his creation including the animals, which he mercilessly drowned in the flood? This is how the god of love, justice, wisdom and power treats his own creation? – Including your very own daughter?

            My recommendation in all sincerity is to challenge yourself and the research you believe to be correct, including your comments regarding Josephus. In my own case, I have spent months in Israel, and did so with multiple archaeologists, where we excavated Caesarea, and studied the works of other archaeologists working in Israel at that time. One thing you must do is separate truth found in the Bible from that which is fiction. For example, Pontius Pilate did exist, as did Hezekiah. I have seen the evidence myself. I have waded through the tunnel build by Hezekiah from Gihon to the Pool of Siloam. However – these things do not support the veracity of the remainder of the Bible – they simply are events which did indeed happen, and which are included in the Bible record. But they do not prove for example that 185,000 soldiers were executed in one night by God’s angel. There is no evidence for this, just as there is no evidence for the Exodus from Egypt. These are matters of belief and faith, not fact.

            I wish you the best with your further research

            JR

        • Dblaron42 says:

          Yes, let’s just let that one settle in for a bit. If this were a game of footie, this guy would be a hooligan!

        • Caroline says:

          Mike, there is a lot of wisdom in the scripture that you quoted that if there is no resurrection of the dead to eat and drink and enjoy the life that you have.

          There is nobody that has come back from the dead so far to tell us that when we die that we will be resurrected to either heavenly life or life on this earth but remember that it was God who told Eve that if she didn’t eat of the tree of good and bad that she and Adam would not die but if they ate of the fruit, then they’d die and the snake came along and told her that she would know good and bad and be like God if she ate the fruit and not die. Remember that?

          Watchtower likes to say that Christendom follows along with Satan in that promise that Christendom holds out the hope of everlasting life in heaven but it’s their invisible soul that either will go to heaven or hell, right?

          But what does Watchtower do that’s different? They also hold out that promise to us but instead of everyone going to heaven, they say it’s just 144,000 and the rest won’t die because JW’s will live on the earth forever and not die. It’s the same promise of Satan to Eve.

          I came into the “truth” with the promise that Armageddon was going to happen before the generation of 1914 died out and they all died and most of the people that I know keep getting older and older which is better than the alternative but I am old now and now the Society has changed that promise of Armageddon coming before that generation died out to “overlapping” generations instead and I see old Witnesse after old Witness dying.

          They had the hope of being resurrected and that is a nice hope to hang on to. I won’t dispute that it’s a nice hope but it’s no different than the hope that Christendom holds out for it’s followers. It brings comfort to people. But is it a reality or is it a “hope”? It’s a hope. It’s a great hope but it’s not anything you can put your hands on. It’s in your mind.

          What you can put your hands on, is the here and now that you are living and every day that goes by and you are closer to death and that is a hard reality to accept. If there really is no afterlife after all, then our life right now is all we have. It is also comforting to believe you will see your dead loved ones again too.

          We were taught by Watchtower that we were evil if we didn’t have “faith” in the new world or the resurrection but there is no proof at all that that will ever happen. All we have is the life we are living right now. Nobody has ever come back from the dead to tell us and so the hope of the resurrection is like trying to hang on to water. Life is too short to waste it on the hope of a resurrection and it isn’t evil to tell people that.

          Just because the Bible talks about a resurrection, does not make it a fact and there is nothing wrong with enjoying every day that we are blessed to have.

          You misunderstand what it means to be an atheist. It just means that you don’t know if there’s a god or not. You are an atheist if you only believe in your god. Everybody is an atheist unless you believe in every god of every person in the world.

          • dee2 says:

            Good point Caroline,

            The WT makes a point of demonizing Christendom’s going to heaven-immortality of the soul teaching by claiming that this teaching supports/perpetuates Satan’s “lie” to Adam & Eve that they positively would not die if they ate the forbidden fruit, when in fact the WT is also supporting/perpetuating Satan’s positively will not die “lie” by teaching people the very same thing that they will not die but will instead live forever on a Paradise earth.

            The only difference between Christendom’s teaching and the WT’s teaching is the destination – earth not heaven. So the WT is also perpetuating Satan’s positively will not die “lie” just like Christendom.

        • messenger says:

          Mike I wish to comment on something you brought out in your comment below, when you stated we need someone to guide us to understand the Bible. You used the example of Philip finding an Ethiopian who told Philip he didn’t understand what he was reading, when reading a prophecy about Christ. It could have just been that he didn’t know the man that the scripture was written about. But how could he unless someone who did know Christ told the Ethiopian who he was?

          The fact is Christ’s message for salvation is a very, very simple message. And all his apostles preached that very, very simple message when they preached. They just preached the Christ-according to Paul.

          The Watchtower states that the message for salvation is complex, so complex that to understand it all must follow them. Why? They claim only they can interpret it. That’s blasphemy! By making that claim they set themselves up as the mediator between Christ/God and mankind. And they have even written that Christ is not your mediator. Their claim is blasphemy also because it is a lie against the scriptures. The scriptures state that Holy Spirit will teach Christians, and therefore Christians don’t need someone to teach them. And even though the WT claims two kinds of Christians, the anointed and non-anointed, they claim neither group is taught by Holy Spirit and able to understand the Bible without learning from the gb or WT. Both so called groups must be taught by the gb WT or they, according to Watchtower, cannot understand and abide by Christ’s message of salvation.

          So, Mike, if their claim is against the scriptures, how is that they do not blasphemy?

          Paul wrote that a sacred secret that even angels at one time wondered about was the means Jehovah would use to save people in the gentile nations. The answer to that SACRED SECRET is about all one needs know to be saved. And I said know…of course they have to also do. But they don’t need to understand one of the many different interpretations of Revelation by the WT.

          • Summer says:

            Yes Messenger, they are guilty of blaspheming ! Thank you for your excellent and articulate comment 🙂

        • Ricardo says:

          @Mike, in the congregation Bible study this week, we study that it seems Jesus maneuvered matters so that Bro. Russell’s lectures would be published in newspapers.

          Doesn’t it seem strange that Jesus was able to maneuver worldly people to do his will, but even with the holy spirit, the most powerful force in the universe, he is unable to motivate his Governing Body to handle child abuse properly? I thought Jesus loved little children.

          How lovely for the elder you were working with to say that Jehovah will fix it in his own time. It has nothing to do with Jehovah, Mike. The arrangement for Judicial Committees and elders meeting up with people in the back room is not found in any Bible verse. It is an arrangement that the GB has imposed on us, and which the GB can easily change. But the GB doesn’t.

          Don’t blame Jehovah for something that is not his fault!

          This organization is dirtying Jehovah’s name by its stubborn refusal to fix this up.

          In Jehovah’s time! What rubbish! It’s a pity he didn’t fix it up way before it became public then, isn’t it?

          But how easy for the elder to say that. To hell with the victims. If it was his daughter I bet he wouldn’t just shrug it off as ‘when Jehovah is ready’. If his wife was murdered, would he just shrug it off, or would he be getting the police involved? So, rather than just excuse this and blame Jehovah, as if he’s gone to sleep somewhere, why not admit that we, as Jehovah’s Witnesses, have made an unholy mistake which we need to seek forgiveness for, from Jehovah and from the victims?

      • Ejecting to Sanity says:

        Kudos. Tough words, but true.
        It’s either the truth or its not.
        It’s life or death or its not.
        I chose life.
        I chose to leave the facade.
        It has been tough.
        I have been alone.
        I have acted recklessly, had anxiety attacks, cried at (seemingly) inappropriate times, expressed anger, used vulgarity, screamed so loud all I could see was black. Been betrayed, slandered, scorned,shunned.

        But…I don’t miss it a bit.
        I will not compromise with the ‘truth’ of God, I will not put up with the hypocrisy, will not honor conditional love.
        After 1 1/2 years out, I have received love, counsel, laughter, understanding, acceptance, friendship, encouragement across the board. With all the expressions of invitation and friendship, I am finally opening my heart to others and my goal is to be a friend and love others, my spouse and myself. To find youthful joy and deep knowledge.
        To accept others’ prayers and well wishes. To let them comfort me.
        I am so thankful for the wonderful people who have not judged me throughout this exodus. I’ve been an unstable bear alternating with a beaten kitten.
        Ready for growth and activism now.
        Think of me. I am tender and strong. We can be so strong if we have survived this indoctrination, this prison.
        Tough out here? Damn right.
        Worth it? You bet.

    • Eric Arthur Blair says:

      As far as reaping what you sow Mike, life is not that simple. For instance, how does that principle at Galatians 6:7 square with Solomon’s words at Ecclesiastes 9:11? It seems to me to directly contradict them. Solomon at least was reflecting reality.

      And how does Galatians 6:7 square with reality? Were Jimmy Saville’s victim’s reaping what they sowed? Did Saville reap what he sowed? Does any child abuse victim reap what they sow?

      And where does the parable of the Good Samaritan fit in with all of that? What sort of God stands on the sidelines while millions of children are raped daily all around the world? It doesn’t matter what institution it happens in.

      While I agree with that parable as a guide to live by, and most of Jesus’ teachings in principle, we still have to live with reality. Solomon’s observations reflected reality, but your reasoning does not; it is flippant and conceited.

    • peggy says:

      @Mike, I do not think you have the slightest clue what we are talking about here. It was Suicide! Your comments were so off it is as if you are mentally dim. (Does anyone else out there think Mike is a nutter?) You display no empathy no understanding of complex emotional issues, and you sound conceited.

  4. Julie says:

    I would like to say I too had the same crisis when my mother died 10 years ago . My children had left JW and my ex ministerial servant husband had left me and I felt all the hope I had for a future gone. The most difficult thing was losing all the friends I had and questioning My faith . It is ok to not know all the answers and it’s also ok to not be afraid to be true to yourself . I’m 60 years old and was a witness since I was 30 . Stay strong and well. Xx

  5. Doc Obvious says:

    Sean McGee is absolutely right. If you are contemplating suicide or hurting yourself in any way, you need seek a counselor. Counselors can help you reconcile your situation and give you purpose in life. You have to strip the control away from religious cults and you have to be in control of you.

    It takes effort to tell religions to stop what they are doing. The Watchtower leadership live in a bubble. Once they know that their instilling fear into you will not work, they leave you alone. You strip them of their power.

    Personally, I have been told by the Watchtower organization that I am a negative person. I tell them that they have no common sense. When you are dealing with severe issues in your life, you need support. If it does not come from your family, you need to seek assistance.

    There is nothing wrong in being realistic. There is nothing wrong in being a critical thinker. Critical thinking is what the educational system in the United States wants to instill in everyone. God has instilled in everyone the capacity to critically think. The absurd Governing Body, especially Anthony Morris III, can’t stands people who can critically think about things. These men go against what God has given people.

    Remember, one of the greatest commandments is “You must love your neighbor as yourself”. Also, it states “On these two commandments the whole Law hangs, and the Prophets”. (Matthew 22:36-40) In essence, you have to love yourself. Loving yourself involves knowing when you need to seek assistance. Watchtower has so many laws that do not hang on love of neighbor. That is why Watchtower is having severe tests. The Child Abuse scandal is showing how unloving the organization is in their handling of this issue.

    The shunning policies (“disfellowshipping”, “disconnection”, or whatever they want to call it) are not showing love of neighbor. It goes against the greatest commandments from Jesus Christ. Using people’s family as a pawn shows how unloving and Pharisaical the Watchtower Babble and Tract Society really is. This is not a Christian practice. It is something detestable to God. Shunning is bullying. Watchtower Babble and Tract Society is a bully. Not a loving organization.

  6. Caroline says:

    I also relate to Sean’s video. What the Watchtower did to me about 4 years ago drove me to the point of suicide too with sleepless nights crying fits and it was the thought of my three kids is what kept me from doing it.

    I was so desperate for some kind of mental help that that is when I went to the internet to look for some kind of support from people who might be going through the same thing that I was going through. In a weird way, I am grateful for that awful part of my life, or I’d still be stuck in the Watchtower, being depressed every day of my life.

    At the time, I thought I was the only one suffering like that but youtube video by youtube video, I realized that I was among probably thousands upon thousands of Witnesses who the Watchtower was destroying mentally and physically and little by little I realized that I had been serving a sham religion but it took me quite a few months before the fear of Armageddon left me. That fear still kept me awake at night for quite a while but that fear is gone now.

    Until I saw Sean’s video above, I had almost forgotten what a dark part of my life was then but I can honestly say, that after leaving that religion, I finally feel alive for the first time in over the last 50 years when I first became involved in the religion.

    I was depressed the whole time I was in the religion but I never realized the source of my depression until I left the religion but just leaving it isn’t enough.

    We also need to do intense research to realize that the Society is not being directed by any god and never was and has no authority over any of us and never did have any authority over us. Realizing that is is how their mental hold over me finally left me and I finally felt free of the guilt and fear.

    Reading Crisis of Conscience by Ray Franz is a great book to read. Don’t be afraid to read it. Nobody should be afraid of their religion and be banned from reading a book by a former member. If it’s really the “truth”, it will stand up to lies.

    • Ricardo says:

      @Caroline, yours is a really sad story. Unfortunately it is one of many as a result of the way the organization operates.

      I don’t know why the GB doesn’t take note of the suffering caused and try to fix it up. As you say, there are sooo many Youtube videos where the victims are testifying to misdeeds or mishandling in the organization. Just ignoring the victims and letting their numbers add up and increase and increase is an unusual way for the GB to deal with the problems. It seems as if the GB doen’t care.

      But decent individuals care. And your story made me very sad. My heart goes out to you.

      • outandabout says:

        I agree, Ricardo

        Caroline’s and the stories of others validate the usefulness of this site.

        I particularly like to hear the stories of Elders who could easily have stuck with their position of power but instead listened to their ‘what!!, now… hang on just a cotton pickin’ minute!’ moment.

        These are the good guy’s who truly listened to their conscience (their god) and if a heaven exists, there’s a place there for them.

      • Winston Smith says:

        I am not sure if it’s that the GB totally doesn’t care or if it’s that they simply have no real solutions. Any problem you have, they have but one answer: pray, go to meetings, go out in service, and wait for the kingdom to fix everything. In reality this advice translates to: ignore your problems, don’t seek professional help, bury your head in the sand, and wait for a magical solution to occur.

        Mental & emotional issues need to be addressed and work through, not ignored. I know so many JWs with severe emotional issues; small problems only get worse when ignored.

        WS

        • outandabout says:

          Yes, Winston. Based on the evidence they present with their words and actions, I reckon your observations are correct.

          I feel that as humans, they must care some, but being totally deluded like that puts them in a huge bind, a bind big enough to make them run back to their bunker when confronted by a reporter on the street.

          Actions speak loudest.

          Islam will appear before an audience to explain itself but the GB refuse to and will speak only on their terms and with no chance of anybody questioning them.

          Even when GJ appeared before the ARC, he did it via video link and it looked as if he had been given a copy of the questions he would be asked because those answers of his came all too quick and someone was sitting beside him handing him sheets of paper. If I’m correct about that, not only should he should not have been given the courtesy of a video link, he most definitely should not have a copy of the questions.

        • messenger says:

          Logically how could anyone expect the gb to have workable solutions about anything that doesn’t pertain to the exact jobs they do, unless they get advice from others, or the problem is simple to fix. At least one of them, Jackson, just has a tenth grade education. I mean life experience teaches a lot , but about complex issues that require education these guys just haven’t got it. That’s why every worldly organization hires university grads to head them up, and make the important decisions (wooo I said it-higher education).

          I don’t know if they have a lot of advisors that aren’t in the building trades or their lawyers, but if they don’t it can account to some degree for their incompetence. But even so, that’s not the only thing that accounts for it. While professing to be wise they became foolish. Their arrogance creates many of their troubles.

  7. stuckinarut2 says:

    Thanks for this thread.
    I always enjoyed Cappytan’s comments and input on another forum in years past. His insights helped me in many ways.
    It is great to see his progress.
    Much love to you Sean!

    • Cappytan says:

      Hi Stuck! I remember you! I sometimes open my mouth and speak my mind about things, and sometimes, the people that disagree with me sometimes happen to be the people that have authority to ban me from their website. (They have every right to do that, by the way.)

      But, I do remember the good times on that forum. I’m still around ExJW Reddit if you ever want to catch up.

      Hope you’re doing well!

      • Stucknarut2 says:

        Hi Cappytan!
        It is great to be in touch again!

        So much to share with you…don’t know where to start.
        I still enjoy discussions and posts on the other forum – in fact I am amazed at how many threads I have started and shared in over the past three years!
        But the best news to share is that my wife has also awoken to TTATT at her own pace and in her way.
        I cant tell you how wonderful this is.
        In fact she has shared her story here on jwsurvey, and as been so comforted by the responses and kind support shown to her.

        I will keep in touch! Stay strong, and THANK YOU for the help you have provided to many!

  8. Fred says:

    Thank you J.w survey & Covert fade for you eye opening & informative perspective on this abusive organization..i really enjoy reading your articles you continuously pump out every week. I’m on my way out of this but trying very hard not to get dfd so constantly read your write ups for encouragement. I found another website that is very helpful to me and is 100 ‘/, active or ex J.w freindly is Beroean Pickets..Check it out.

    Best Regards,

    Fted

  9. Zachary Linderman says:

    Thank you for this article! I have run into you on Instagram as @watching_the_tower. Jwawake is awesome at exposing the org for its fallacious flip flops! I awoke in the winter of 2015. It turned out to be craziest year of my life! I can totally relate to crying my eyes out in my truck, feeling hopeless, unsure and even desperate at times. I sought out proper counseling, took steps to level my mental state, lost 20 lbs, cherished my time with my daughter, wife, brother who moved close by and joined my business. He too is awoken. With him and my awesome non Jw’s friends I play on a sports team, have great social times and don’t miss the org one bit! Now each day counts! I look forward to my weekends! Life is amazing! Cutting my ties with the Jw’s was the best and hardest thing I ever did. I almost lost my marriage, job and life but sometimes you have to hit rock bottom to build a strong new foundation! To any of you reading this and facing hard times leaving, the shunning, mental trauma, anxiety, financial losses, ect ect it gets better! DO NOT LET THE ORG WIN!!!!!! You know the “truth” about the truth and now you can live life on your own terms!

    Zachary Linderman

    • Cappytan says:

      Hi Zachary!

      Thanks for the kind words! @watchting_the_tower is not me, however I do follow that instagram account.

      My account is @cappytanexjw.

      I woke up around the same time as you (gradually between Nov 2014 and Jan 2015). Glad to hear you’re living life and loving it!

      Sean

  10. ruthlee says:

    Thank you for the reply to Mike that was most interesting because he seems to do his research but the thought “always learning but never coming to an accurate knowledge of truth” comes to mind. I was also thinking about “you reap what you sow”. Now I have a big problem with that. I never chose this rotten religion . My immigrant grandmother did. How on earth do I deserve Armageddon because of her choice. Do I deserve3rd generation syphilis from an errant grandfather or do I get rescued with penicillin. If I carry an unclean defiled gene who am I reaping from . Who is mocking who?The one thing I have learned from waking up is that the scripture is dead right ” STOP JUDGING.” Jehovah’s witnesses just love to judge and relieve god of his job. They haven’t the first clue as to what Armageddon is, so like to kill every one. it is so much easier to kill every one than convert them or heaven forbid ,love them. This indoctrination is evil because with it comes an arrogance and a kind of weird self serving attitude. The reward of paradise is paramount and nothing will hinder the deluded from gaining their prize. Even death. It is not even a noble cause because as we can see the religion fails to protect the vulnerable. Ray Franz talked of spiritual materialism and that about sums up the mentality. So just thanks John Redwood you write an excellent refute and your experience gives you authority , well I think so . Cheers all Ruthlee

    • Winston Smith says:

      Excellent points ruthlee. I thought the same thing about Mike’s comment to the effect that we all made conscious choice to become JWs. Yes, what about us born-in’s? What choice were we given? None, whatsoever.

      To your other point, the JWs totally miss the boat on the law of love, which is fundamental to Christianity. Judging others and burdening them with made up rules they got aplenty.

      WS

  11. fallingangel75 says:

    I haven’t watched the video yet, so I’m just posting my own thoughts based on the topic in general. Background: raised a witness, baptized @ age 12, now almost 40. Pioneer/Elder dad. Pioneer mom. Self, pioneer 5+ years in youth. By all outward accounts and measurements, solid in the faith.

    I have to say that by my own estimation I did have good critical thinking skills, but as is so often pointed out, as a JW, you live in a bubble. Even if you read and follow the news and work in the world, you are so actively and consciously urged to ‘shun worldy thinking’ and not ‘partake from the table of demons’ that it is still very difficult to find out the truth about the truth.

    I thought I knew everything there was to know about the origins of Jehovah’s Witnesses because I read all the books that they wrote. I really did believe all apostates were just bitter and resentful (for various reasons, none of which were valid) and simply trying to tear down and mislead.

    Like their father the devil: he knows he’s going down at Armageddon and wants to take as many with him as possible. Apostates are his minions. Likewise doomed and aware of that fact.

    They know they have been disqualified from everlasting life and out of sheer hatred and jealousy want to take others down with them.

    That’s what I was constantly told. And let’s be honest, we have all encountered at least one person who was so angry about their experience with the witnesses, their vitriol and hate for the organization could perpetuate this belief.

    So in spite of doubts and unanswered questions I had from childhood, I remained loyal to Jehovah and his organization which are synonymous to every good JW.

    But about 2 years ago, I began to have doubts I could not shake and I was scared! My husband’s faith also seemed to be wavering and I was frightened for both of us!

    What if I fell away and couldn’t find my way back? Would he follow? Would I be responsible for taking us both out?

    What if I barely held on and he fell away? Feeling the way I was feeling, I was certain that I couldn’t go on attending meetings and service without him.

    I prayed. I prayed so earnestly and often. I read the Bible daily. I studied. I immersed myself in videos from JW Broadcasting. I sought good association in the congregation.

    I did everything we are told will strengthen our faith. I begged Jehovah to help me restore mine, to help me regain the love I had at first, to safeguard me and my husband and our marriage.

    Well, after a year of such efforts, I noticed a sudden and marked change in my husband. Not from one day to the next, but I’d say over a two week period.

    He was different and I could tell he wanted to tell me something. It’s weird but I knew before he said anything that it was going to be one extreme or the other.

    I knew he was going to tell me a) he was leaving the organization or b) he believed he was of the anointed.

    I know that’s a very strange either or, and difficult to explain. Any how there was another uncomfortable month of me crying in bed almost every night, praying and miserable – not knowing which was worse – feeling like I was in my own religious version of The Lady or the Tiger.

    Then we had an unrelated argument where he came out and said that Jehovah had revealed to him a new calling and he no longer had an earthly hope.

    Our marriage would end when he is called to heaven.

    Devastated does not begin to describe how I felt. I still can’t articulate how many ways that hurt me. But it was also the last straw for my already faltering faith.

    I had prayed every day for over a year that Jehovah would strengthen my faith and preserve my marriage through many trials. I prayed that I could be a supporter and help mate to my husband. (You will always hear me say: I adore him. He is the love of my life.)

    Jehovah, please, as far as it depends on me, help me do all I can to remain faithful and help him to remain faithful so that both of us make it to the new world – both of us see forever.

    And this is how my prayer is answered? You. Have. Got. To. Be. Kidding. Me!

    What a sick and twisted way to answer. Sure. Your husband gets a golden ticket to heaven, securing his everlasting future. And you get to come to terms with the death of all your dreams for life together in the new system.

    It all seemed so cruel. And like the rug was pulled out from under me. We were experiencing so many bad things at the time – illnesses and unemployment to name only two.

    The one thing I took comfort in was the strength of our marriage and I always thought: if we can continue to love each other and respect each other this much when times are this hard, how much more wonderful will it be for us in the new world when these problems don’t exist?

    That was how I coped with terrible pressures and crushing disappointments. I constantly focused on blessings of the new world.

    Now at worst, it was cruel for Jehovah to take away that hope from me by actually choosing my husband and at best, my husband was simply delusional, but how and why would Jehovah allow me to have this new challenge to my faith when I was already barely hanging on by my fingertips?

    Either way it seemed extremely unloving and that was it. I was done. I checked out in every way that matters.

    And I was suicidal. Not because I thought I was a bad person or unworthy. I have not had one day of thinking that I didn’t deserve to live and love and be happy.

    But my hopes for future and present happiness were all predicated on a lie. And I came to feel that all possible outcomes were so inferior to what I had always hoped for and put faith in as to be totally unacceptable.

    Add to that the fear of shunning and I was undone. I can’t tell you how many days in the last year I’ve contemplated suicide.

    Everything about the way events unfolded in the past year made me feel like Jehovah had abandoned me. And if I was going to die at Armageddon anyway and be treated like I was dead by all my friends and family until then, and only misery lay between now and the end of my natural life – why not just skip to the end and at least have control of the when and the where and the how?

    Most of the reason I didn’t was that most of the effective ways to kill yourself are painful, messy or both. The other reason is support and encouragement I’ve received here.

    In the meantime, I conceived a child, and while I could still take my own life and not feel guilty about it, I would never do intentional harm to my unborn child.

    So as much as I have been equally miserable at low points during my pregnancy, suicide is not an option while I carry this child, but I am certain that I will need to seek counseling to make it through after my child is born.

    As I said earlier in this and other posts: I actually have a strong sense of self-worth. I love myself. I believe I deserve love and happiness. But an insidious teaching of JWs says that is not good enough.

    We are told that we cannot go by what we think of ourselves. Our thinking is flawed and our hearts are treacherous. We can believe we are good people and do good works, but if Jehovah thinks otherwise, it doesn’t matter. We are still deserving of death!

    I’ve had that hammered into me since I could form rational thoughts and it will be hard to let go of, although I am trying.

    • Caroline says:

      @fallingangel75, hi again from Caroline. I think the post from me before might have been lost because it was a while ago but after seeing your experience before and how hard it was for you when your husband said he felt “called” to heaven has nothing to do with how much he loves you and it’s normal for him to think like that because most people who go to Christian churches also have a strong feeling that they will go to heaven too when they die.

      We were taught by the Society that it is abnormal to think we are going to heaven unless we actually are of the 144,000 but I also thought at one time that I was going to go to heaven when I died and it was because of my intense reading of the Bible and feeling “one” with Jehovah God is why I thought like that.

      It was a really strong feeling and it stayed with me for a long time but my husband told me that under no circumstances was I to discuss those feelings with the elders. I am sure he knew they would think I was crazy and wanted to spare himself of the embarrassment but most people who read the Bible and study it feel that they will go to heaven too. It’s a normal reaction that the Society calls “abnormal” because the Bible only holds out a hope for heaven. It’s the Society that says there’s going to be an earthly class. There are no scriptures that say the earth will be turned into a paradise. We were taught that Rev. 21:1-4 teaches that but it doesn’t teach that. We only thought it teaches that.

      I was married in 1967 and I loved my husband so much when we got married and I could not stand the idea that we would not be together forever but the wedding vows in those days was something to the affect that we’d be married until one of died or until the divine end of the marriage arrangement in the new world.

      One day early in our marriage, my husband reminded me of that when I was saying how we would be together forever and my heart was broken when he reminded me that in the new world, that we might not be married anymore and I felt exactly as you feel when your husband said he was going to heaven and leave you behind.

      It dawned on me at that moment that my husband didn’t care that much about us staying married forever or that he was willing to leave me because Jehovah said so. I will never forget that as long as I live because of how much that little sentence hurt me. Now the Society doesn’t put that in the marriage vows but they did then.

      The Society has a video up now on jwbroadcasting where all those widows of the Governing Body are giving their life experiences and I will bet you anything that they also felt exactly the same as you felt when your husband told you that he was going to leave you behind and they were going to heaven and their wives were not.

      Those women also married somebody that they loved thought they knew and wanted to be with for the rest of their lives and one day their husbands decided they were going to go to heaven and those women would be alone for the rest of their lives. How that hurt them too I am sure.

      The Society expects that those widows of the Governing Body understand and those women probably do accept it but those men were very young when they decided they were called and all the years I was in the Organization, we were told that the ones going to heaven was stopped in 1935 and after that, the only ones called were replacements so those men of the Governing Body are replacements and their wives were not.

      Also, the ones called to heaven had to be old and have served faithfully all their lives to be replacements. That is what we were all taught. You are young and don’t know that but that is what the teaching was for many years.

      Now those men of the Governing Body come along and they were young when they got their “calling” and we are to believe were were anointed even though they did not serve faithfully all their lives.

      We are supposed to believe that they got anointed by Jehovah while young and appointed to be of the Governing Body by Jehovah while still young but if that was the wife and she was young and she thought she was going to heaven, those men would have told their wives not to tell the elders in her congregation because the elders would have thought that those women were arrogant in thinking that she as a young untested woman and Jehovah would never have called them as a replacement for the 144,000 unfaithful. I can guarantee you that that is what would have happened if it was the wife who thought she was going to heaven and not the husband but because it was a man, they didn’t have to listen to their wives and went with their gut feelings and were believed by their elders. Most of those men were pioneers when they got that gut feelings and then went into the circuit work and so were not laughed at but it was because they were men and not women.

      It all has to do with a feeling that they have. With the rank and file, it has nothing to do with arrogance in thinking they were called to be priests and kings over the earth but it’s the Governing Body who have decided that they are so special that they have been called to be kings and priests over the earth but with just ordinary rank and file who haven’t been in the “truth” all their lives or new in the “truth”, they will be considered crazy to think they are anointed to be kings and priests over the earth but a lot of the newer ones are getting that feeling and so that is why the memorial takers are increasing and not decreasing like we were told was going to happen in the last days before Armageddon and that is because the Society decided to end that teaching that the calling was ended in 1935 and that is to make us believe in the current Governing Body members being called as replacements. The Society had to change it’s stance on how many are real replacements because of the age of the current Governing Body members and their life stories on when they were called or anointed.

      Do you see where I am going with this? It’s all a mind screw and your husband’s feelings are normal if he truly believes in the Bible and it’s being inspired of God but if your husband announces to his elders that he feels he is going to go to heaven, I suspect that they will have a sit down with him and try and talk him out of it because he’s too young and they will tell him that he would have to be in the “truth” all his life to be a replacement for the unfaithful 144,000.

      I have a feeling that when he does that and they treat him like he’s crazy and arrogant to think like that and he will realize that the elders are looking at him like “who do you think you are anyway?” and it might wake him up to the truth about the truth. Just a long shot.

      Right now, he is still convinced that it’s God Organization but that could hurt him a lot and he could be the one going through his own crisis of conscience and crying a lot.

      I was fortunate enough that my husband stopped me from telling the elders of my feelings and it was my husband who gave me the lecture about how Jehovah would only chose somebody who was faithful for their whole life but I didn’t believe him and still felt I was going to heaven. It took me a long time before that feeling left me, even so.

      It’s the Society who convinces Witnesses that they are nuts if they think they will go to heaven but if a person thinks about it real hard, they have to realize what a mess the earth would be after Armageddon with no electricity or gas or cars and food and roads and on and on and who wouldn’t rather go to heaven under those circumstances?

      They just think about the pandas and nothing else.

      The paradise earth is not reality thinking and most thinking people have to force themselves not to think too hard about it or come to the realization that the whole idea of a paradise earth after Armageddon is nothing but a fantasy and realize their whole life was wasted on a fantasy and so they don’t think about it and live in their own little fantasy world with each other.

      That is their whole conversation, both at the hall, at home, in service and with each other when they get together for social events.

      They are even told not to “speculate” about what it will be like in the new world. In other words, don’t think about it, even if that means you will be alone for the rest of your life when your husband goes to heaven and you are left on the earth.

      Don’t think about it. That’s their answer.

      • Ricardo says:

        Yes, I remember what Caroline says, that we were taught that any new anointed would be replacements and have a history of faithful service.

        Now we see members of the GB my age, wow! And a young 25 year old brother in my congregation claims he is of the anointed. Hurray!

        What a joke.

        What worries me about the new world is that if the current elders become princes, the suffering that is being caused by them in this system will continue into the next. I do not want to live in a world where these tyrants and bullies hold sway.

        Thinking about this aspect of the new system really saps my enthusiasm.

        • fallingangel75 says:

          Amen to that Ricardo.

        • messenger says:

          My point about the JW anointed is this. The scripture they use to claim anointing reads, “God’s spirit bears witness with our spirit,” well what does bear witness mean? In a court it means to testify (talk), in field service it means to talk. So, if God’s spirit bore witness with them then it communicated in some way with them, according to scripture, which would be a miracle. Yet the governing body claims that sort of miracle does not take place today.

          A second point about the same topic. How come there’s this hush hush attitude about these so called anointed ones sharing with others when and how they know they’re anointed. JWs are advised not to ask them about it. The WT often tells the stories of a gb member, but why don’t they ever tell about that part of that persons life. Wouldn’t that be the most interesting experience they ever had? Why the hush hush?

          Paul told what happened when he became anointed, the apostles and other Christians told what happened when they became anointed, the scriptures tell what happened when Jesus was anointed, but with JWs its hush hush. That’s pretty strange, unless there was in fact no miraculous communication between them and God, and for some other reason, either honestly or dishonestly they make that claim.

        • messenger says:

          This is a problem about what the WT claims to know: HOW COULD ANY MAN KNOW WHAT GOD IS GOING TO DO AT SOME FUTURE TIME UNLESS THEY’VE BEEN EXPLICITLY TOLD.
          I say they need to stop the guessing crap and passing it off as a superior knowledge. The world has had enough of that. If they don’t even know what any of their followers are going to do in the future, then how do they think they know what God will be doing in the future or even now when they’re speculating? Speculating on Bible scriptures serves no purpose except to deceive. I’d rather they just said they didn’t know about certain things, or said this is what I think, or just not write about it at all. There is no place in the Bible that authorizes anyone to TEACH speculation. And saying that there were things the apostles didn’t know does not make that so. The Bible never claims the apostles taught false stories. As a matter of fact didn’t they warn us against those who do that?

          • Ricardo says:

            Why don’t the GB brothers say they don’t know, or at least phrase their case with saying ‘our current is ….’? By saying that this statement means such and such, that Jesus meant this or that, that Jehovah is moving in this or that direction, they look quite foolish when they get things wrong. And by telling us we are taught by Jehovah, it makes him look foolish as well.

            Why would God be changing his mind about what a certain scripture means? Why did he complicate things, and now he is simplifying things? Doesn’t it make him sound foolish?

      • dee2 says:

        Caroline,

        “I also thought at one time that I was going to go to heaven when I died and it was because of my intense reading of the Bible and feeling “one” with Jehovah God is why I thought like that.”

        Your experience of feeling “one” with God has been observed in persons whom psychologists, neurologists and others describe as having a mystical or religious or spiritual experience.

        This usually happens when persons enter a contemplative meditative/ self-induced trance-like state upon engaging in spiritual practices such as intense/deep/strong meditation, prayer or fasting etc.

        A person can meditate/pray/fast to the point where they begin to have a mystical experience in which they feel as though they are in a higher plane, a feeling of being in direct communion with God.

        There is a feeling of union/oneness with the divine/god, a union which is considered the ultimate reality and hence transcendental in nature (think Buddhist monks). There is a feeling of having accomplished a unitive fusion with God, being consumed in a pure union with God which feels satisfying.

        In the mystical state, a person will feel so close to God that they feel like they have really connected with God and know then that they are in the very presence of God. There’s a sense of holiness and sacredness.

        The mystical experience gives an individual the most direct and immediate experience of God, by becoming his living vessel. The experience is so real for some persons that they feel that others ought to be able to see it.

        An individual who has had or is having a mystical experience may suddenly have an “understanding” or “revelation” of the “meaning” of the experience. This “understanding” may include the belief that the person has been chosen to be God’s agent (if not the Messiah in some cases), or is called by God, and a conviction that knowledge hidden from others is now in his or her grasp. This sense of noesis (newly acquired knowledge) is often accompanied by a state of exultation and a feeling of being in direct communion with God.

        Changes in the brain’s neurology make mystical experiences possible. One neurologist pointed out that many people who have intense “spiritual” experiences believe they feel the presence of God.

        The presence is real to that person, and there is a sound biological explanation. The two hemispheres of our brain communicate through the corpus callosum. Generally, the hemispheres share similar firing patterns, and are “in sync” with each other. Occasionally the two hemispheres have unusual discord. This can have the advantage of greater creativity. However because the two hemispheres are acting separately from each other, one hemisphere can perceive the other as a separate person. More severe cases can result in epilepsy. But for those who perceive a fully formed, sympathetic presence often attribute the experience to God’s presence, singling them out for a special purpose.

      • Winston Smith says:

        I agree with you Caroline. Anyone who reads the New Testament (without the JW influence) will draw the conclusion that all Christians are destined for heavenly life with Christ – e.g. John 14:2 “In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you.”

        It is solely JW dogma that creates two distinct classes of Christians, or rather a primary and secondary (sub) class. They go so far as to say that the Bible was not written for the majority of their members, but only the elite group. It reminds me of the inner and outer parties in Orwell’s novel, 1984.

        WS

        • dee2 says:

          Of all the New Testament writers who wrote about the resurrection, Paul wrote the most about the topic (Corinthians especially).
          There is only the mention of a heavenly resurrection in Paul’s writings.

          I too recall the WT’s workaround/caveat regarding these and other New Testament scriptures which speak only about a heavenly resurrection – according to the WT the New Testament was written mainly for the heavenly class/144,000.

          • messenger says:

            Many Christians believe all Christians will be resurrected to heaven, but those who did not accept Christ prior to the tribulation will be left on Earth to go though a trail/testing period give them a chance to repent.

            Then they believe that the heavenly resurrected ones will return to the Earth with Christ, to rule the Earth during the millennium. If that happens there would be a resurrection on Earth. The million dollar question is what happens to both classes some billions of years latter. Because even though the Bible claims the Earth stands forever, could that have been hyperbole? If so, according to scripture all must travel into the other dimensions the Bible calls heaven, at some point in order to survive.

            My belief is that God reveals things like a business manager. He reveals what you need to know at the time he feels you need to know it, without giving the whole picture in advance.

          • dee2 says:

            If Paradise is in heaven and good people go to heaven when they die then why does Jesus Christ need to come again?

          • messenger says:

            @ dee2
            According to scripture Christ returns to Earth for several reasons, but it’s not just opinion that scriptures claim he returns, its just a fact that they do; many scriptures state it. Some reasons why are to:

            1. To rapture the church
            2 To separate the sheep from the goats
            3. To judge the world. There is disagreement among Christians about how this is done. WT believes all people that are not JWs will go through the tribulations to be destroyed after or during it at Armageddon. Other Christians believe the tribulation serves as a testing/trail period, allowing for those who did not accept Christ as their savior before it began to have a chance at repentance, and to accept him while experiencing trails.
            4. Another reason is Christ returns to rule the world of mankind and restore peace etc.

            Also you know that the scriptures at Proverbs 37:29, Matt5:5, etc. explicitly state good people will live on Earth. Not everyone believes all good people go to heaven as you suggested, some believe many live on Earth. And even the Christian scriptures speak of that. You’re familiar with Rev 21:3 “tent of God is with MEN, and they become his PEOPLE”
            The church members taken to heaven are never referred to as men or people, but they become a ‘new creation’ with a spiritual body different than a man’s or woman’s. And even if they take on a physical body, the scriptures still refer to them as a ‘new creation’ not people, eg. why Christ said they don’t marry.

            You and I had a debate about my dream experiences when I first commented on this site. And you asked me about the dreams I had that haven’t come true yet. You asked about the three that I said have yet not materialized. Those dreams were about where I will be during this period. I was on Earth during most of them, speaking to someone that is no longer here. Except for the last one. In that one I was slightly elevated and floating down to the ground, as if on an invisible escalator. I would have thought as you do…some type of psychological explanation for those dreams except for two reasons. The primary reason is that the details in the first dream, the one that already happened consisted of circumstances including objects in my environment that were much too complex and precise to be taken as coincidental. When the experience occurred it could only be explained as supernatural. That was enough for me to believe as I do, but the belief was confirmed when I woke from the final dream, and saw a vision of an object that was right above me, and then moved about 6 feet away when I awoke and hovered in the air. I don’t know if it was a vision are really there because it looked as solid as everything else in the room.

          • dee2 says:

            Messenger,

            I will deal with each of your points one by one.

            “There is disagreement among Christians about how this is done……….”

            Why has God made the bible so difficult to understand if it is such a matter of life and death?

             It is certainly puzzling why sincere and devout people equally seek God’s will and pray to him yet they all come up with different answers so that there are approximately 40,000 different Christian denominations (Center for the Study of Global Christianity (CSGC) at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary).

            If God has a relationship with every Christian and every Christian is praying to him then wouldn’t he tell every Christian the same thing so that Christians would agree on matters of doctrine and practice?

            Before his death, Jesus called for agreement among his followers rather than division (John 17:20-21). He declared that he would send the Holy Spirit to guide persons into all the truth (John 14:16 – 17, 26, John 15:26, John 16:7,13 – 15).

            So shouldn’t anyone who has a relationship with Jesus, reads the Bible, and listens to the Holy Spirit come to the same conclusions as others who are doing the same thing?

            Aren’t Jesus and the Holy Spirit capable of communicating the same ideas, beliefs, and practices to all of his followers so that sincere and devout Christians would all agree on what Jesus is telling them?

            It seems to me that if Jesus and the Holy Spirit were capable of communicating the same ideas, beliefs, and practices to all of his followers then the Christianity we would see would look very different from the Christianity we see today, with all of its division and disagreement. 

            I can only conclude that Jesus tells different people different things, but then why would Jesus contradict himself? Why would Jesus tell some people one thing and others something else?

            How are we to understand that Jesus tells some people one thing and others another?

            Further, the disagreement among Christians indicates that ends times Bible prophecies are ambiguous and invalid since they are open to a variety of interpretations.

            For a prophecy to be valid it must be clear and unambiguous. It must not allow for a multitude of possible interpretations or events. It should be clear and unambiguous so that its meaning cannot be misinterpreted or changed; and it should not be just a logical guess about an impending event.

          • messenger says:

            @dee2
            The problem with your reasoning is that you often make assumptions or reach conclusions that things have to be done a certain way, the way that is the most logical from your point of view. But can you agree that others do things in different ways and for different reasons than you do? Knowing the Bible you know what the scripture says in Isa 55 th chapter vs8-9.

            I can’t presume to speak for God and answer why he had the Bible written as he did, but I can give a couple simple logical explanations for it that easily refute your reasoning.

            Unity is not the same thing as conformity. You may have that impression having been a JW, because that’s what they teach. In John chp 17 Christ prayed that his followers be united not that they all be the same or think the same. Reading the scriptures it’s easy to see Christ loved and helped a diverse group of people who had different beliefs.

            But the most critical error is what you assume a person has to do and/or believe to be saved. My belief is that this is biggest sin of WT; not that they just have that belief, but because they teach it and judge others using that false reasoning. SCRIPTURALLY WHAT IS NECESSARY FOR SALVATION IS THE ACCEPTANCE OF THE GOSPEL, AND THAT’S A VERY SIMPLE MESSAGE, ONE THAT COULD EASILY BE UNDERSTOOD BY ALMOST EVERYONE.
            Gospel message=Christ gave his life to save sinners from condemnation and death. He was resurrected as an assurance of that, and if we believe in and follow him, he will judge us worthy of life instead of death, and give us life.

            As far as a need to understand everything else the Bible claims to be saved, that contradicts the Bible itself. Daniel 12th chapter, 1Cor 13th chap.-see end of both chapters.

            I didn’t write the book, but here is one possible explanation for it being written in a way which leads to different interpretations. It gives people who don’t want to accept Christ (the gospel) a reason to feel justified if they don’t do so….”looking they look in vain, and hearing they hear in vain, and they don’t get the sense of it and turn back so that I should heal them.” The point Christ made wasn’t about them not understanding, it was about them not coming to him and using that as an excuse. If he conducted his ministry in that way, maybe the whole Bible is written in that way to do the same thing….Christ said the word that he spoke is what will condemn (judge) people in the last day. The Bible is also written in a way, and this site proves it, that causes some to become judgmental-look at WT. If you don’t believe WT’s way you’re damned. In short the Bible is written in a way to separate people, the living from the dead.

          • dee2 says:

            4) cont’d:

            How will it be possible to live forever on a Paradise Earth when the earth won’t last forever?

            The sun, like all other stars, cannot go on burning forever as it has a finite source of hydrogen fuel which will eventually be exhausted as the hydrogen is consumed by the nuclear fusion process that converts it into helium and light energy (the light energy is needed to sustain life on earth). 

            It is a scientific fact that the sun will eventually die like all stars do. As the sun goes through its death throes it will either consume the earth or simply render life on earth impossible:

            http://www.space.com/14364-earth-consumed-red-giant-star-5b-years.html

            http://www.space.com/10245-sun-die-earth.html

        • dee2 says:

          [“According to scripture Christ returns to Earth for several reasons……”]:

          1. To rapture the church.

          **** Isn’t the outcome the same?
          People will end up in heaven if they are believers whether Jesus comes again or whether Jesus does not come again:
          – If Jesus comes again people end up in heaven if they are believers
          – If Jesus does not come again but people continue to go through the life cycle of birth and death, they will still end up in heaven if they are believers

          2 To separate the sheep from the goats.

          **** In the sheep-goat parable (Matthew 25), why are the sheep entitled to the Kingdom?

          Because, says the king, “I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.” These righteous ones, though, don’t understand, since they had never laid eyes on this glorious divine figure, let alone done anything for him. And so they ask, “When did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you…?” And the king replies to them: “as you did it to one of the least of these, my brothers, you did it to me” (Matt. 25:34-40).

          In the sheep-goat parable (Matthew 25), why are the goats not entitled to the Kingdom?

          Matt.25:41-46:
          Jesus then turns to the group on his left, the “goats,” and curses them, telling them to “depart into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.” Why? Because “I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.” These, though, are equally surprised, for they too have never seen this king of kings. But he then informs them, “Truly I say to you, insofar as you did not do it to the least of these, my brothers, neither did you do it to me.” And he then sends them “away into eternal punishment,” whereas the righteous enter “into eternal life”.

          Is this future judgment based on belief in Jesus, his death and resurrection? OR is it based on doing good things for those in need?

          Nothing in this passage hints at the need to believe in
          Jesus – THESE PEOPLE DIDN’T EVEN KNOW HIM – hence their surprise:
          “When did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you…?”

          What matters is helping those in need.

          This parable therefore shows that belief in Jesus is not necessary for salvation, so it wasn’t necessary for Jesus to come to earth to die for mankind to be saved – all you have to do is help those in need in order to be saved, belief in Jesus is not necessary.

          3. To judge the world.

          **** Aren’t people judged at the time of their death as to whether they will go to heaven or not?
          Whether the judgement takes place at the time of the person’s death or at a future judgement when Jesus comes again (3rd time for the WT), isn’t the outcome the same?

          The believers will go to heaven and the nonbelievers will not go to heaven.

          4. Another reason is Christ returns to rule the world of mankind and restore peace etc. Also you know that the scriptures at Proverbs 37:29, Matt 5:5, etc. explicitly state good people will live on Earth. Not everyone believes all good people go to heaven as you suggested, some believe many live on Earth.

          **** How does a person on earth achieve bodily perfection so that they will no longer age, get sick and die?

          Is there something which God does to their bodies to achieve this?

          **** Also, who are these many people who will be on earth? Where do they come from?

        • dee2 says:

          4) cont’d:

          How will it be possible to live forever on a Paradise Earth when the earth won’t last forever?

          The sun, like all other stars, cannot go on burning forever as it has a finite source of hydrogen fuel which will eventually be exhausted as the hydrogen is consumed by the nuclear fusion process that converts it into helium and light energy (the light energy is needed to sustain life on earth).

          It is a scientific fact that the sun will eventually die like all stars do. As the sun goes through its death throes it will either consume the earth or simply render life on earth impossible:

          http://www.space.com/14364-earth-consumed-red-giant-star-5b-years.html

          http://www.space.com/10245-sun-die-earth.html

          • messenger says:

            Isa 34:4 “And all those of the army of the heavens must rot away. And the heavens must roll up, just like a book scroll: and their army will all shrivel away, just as the leafage shrivels off the vine and a shriveled fig off the fig tree.”

            Christ said essentially the same thing as Isaiah ,and some apostles wrote essentially the same thing also. Bible writers used a lot of figurative language, and as with all figurative language it is not meant to be taken literally.

            Who can irrefutably prove if these statements were meant as figurative, or if instead the Bible statements which contradict them were? I don’t think anyone can prove either were meant as literal or figurative beyond a reasonable doubt. That’s why its important not to have a narrow view and insist that everything stated in the Bible must be interpreted a certain way…and then react to its writings based upon that type of view.
            Best wishes

          • messenger says:

            @dee2
            One more point before I go. I previously did not see this point of yours-because you write so much, I don’t read all of it. But when I saw that you claimed the Bible does not teach that belief in Christ is necessary for salvation, based on your false interpretation of his parable, then I began to believe that you just LIKE TO Argue. Even people who have never been Christians know that is what the Bible claims, as well more that 99% of those Christians that have existed throughout history. So, are you among the less than 1% of Christians or ex-Christians that never understood point or accepted that point, or do you just like to argue points?

          • dee2 says:

            Messenger,

            What does Isaiah 34:4 and the accompanying explanation which you gave have to do with my questions regarding living forever on a Paradise earth?:

            *** How does a person on earth achieve bodily perfection so that they will no longer age, get sick and die?

            Is there something which God does to their bodies to achieve this?

            *** Who are these many people who will be on earth? Where do they come from?

            Specially how does Isaiah 34:4 and your accompanying explanation pertain to the scientific fact that the earth and the sun will be no more one day?

          • dee2 says:

            Messenger,

            Please specifically show me where in the sheep and goat parable of Matthew 25 Jesus specifically stated that belief in him was necessary in order to be deemed a sheep so as to inherit the kingdom.

    • Ren says:

      fallenangel75
      Apostates are “bitter” and “resentful.” What normal human being who has had their friends and family psychologically taken from them would not be? I think bitter and resentful are somewhat benign reactions when one considers the reality of the lives stolen. Not just those we’ve lost because of shunning, but also our own lives.
      I was born a 3rd-gen witness. So naturally, there was no college, no friends outside the faith, not much in the way of social skills or the ability to think for myself. When I finally left in my 50’s, it was very apparent that I was severely handicapped when it came to functioning outside the JW’s. Coming to terms with this whilst mourning the loss of my daughter and grandchildren (I have not seen them in 3 years) was enough to make me consider seriously just ending it.
      I don’t remember researching how I would go about this, but I do vividly remember waking up for several years each morning panicked at the thought of having to live one more day.
      I personally know of five JW’s that have committed suicide, my own cousin among the five. FIVE. That can’t be a coincidence. If Jehovah is so loving, and JW’s are his loving organization, then why did these people feel they had no hope, because that’s what suicide is, no hope. I remember trying to talk to my daughter, who now shuns me, about what we (my ex-husband and other three children also left) were going through in our attempts to deal with what had happened. Her calloused response reminds me so much of @Mike’s comments above. I was crying my eyes out and she just sat there like I was reading her my grocery list.
      This kind of dis-compassionate response cannot possibly come from a nurturing environment. I thought of this when I read you say in your post, “Sure. Your husband gets a golden ticket to heaven, securing his everlasting future. And you get to come to terms with the death of all your dreams for life together in the new system.” They are so disconnected from how their belief systems affect those around them. It’s like all the empathy has just been sucked out of them.
      Ironically, it was paganism that helped me through my darkest hours. My other daughter had begun to explore it, and I freaked out about her choice to do this, so I researched it. I do not believe in deities myself, Jehovah included, but within this earth centered spiritual path I made my peace with the fact that, no, I don’t have to have all the answers, and saying “I don’t know,” is the most accurate and humble thing a person can do. Paganism also teaches that we are each fine just as we are. This was a bit tougher to accept, but I’m nearly there, and now the logic of it seems so obvious.
      Like our contributor of this fine article, I too have found peace after losing my religion. I went back to school and got a degree, now I work in education. I’ve met a wonderful man, and my three children, my ex, and myself are working hard to build a life. It can be done. But it’s not been easy. All of us have been through therapy, and although we are getting better as each year passes, we’re not out of the woods yet, as some of us are struggling.
      I’m so thankful for Apostates!!! Thank you, Apostates, for sharing your bitterness and resentment, and not pretending that walking out that kingdom hall door doesn’t result in serious losses. Thank you for calling a spade a spade and exposing the dangers of this cult and the psychological trauma of being a witness as well as leaving them. And thank you for sharing that there is indeed light outside of this cult, and for being there to help those who wish to find it.

    • messenger says:

      @fallingangel
      It’s good to talk to you again. So sorry for your pain. The consensus here is that the WT has misleads us, even though they’ve tried to brand us with the indelible ink of WT teachings. But their ink is not indelible, it can be washed off. Now that you know many of those teachings are not true, try not to let their teachings harm you more than they already have.

      Just because your husband says he has a heavenly calling, and WT says you don’t, does not mean you won’t be together. The idea you must be separated is one of those WT teachings. Its not Biblical. You can’t point to scriptures to make that point. The scriptures claim God will fulfill all desires in the future for those who love him. All desires!!! I pray you recover from your pain soon.

      From your story it appears you’re still with your husband. Did he ever tell you why he believes he has a heavenly calling? Did he renounce some of his WT beliefs to accept that, or did he have an experience that led him to that conclusion?

  12. Ted says:

    @Mike, So shunning is just “Tough Love”! That is an
    Oxymoron which which imposes conditions, in other
    words “I love you but”. — I will have little or no contact
    with you until you believe as I do, I am right, you are wrong.
    That is egotism, dictatorship and tyranny, not love.

    “Genuine Love” is unconditional and does not insist on its
    own way 1 Cor, 13:4, English Standard Version. And as you
    know, the Bible commands us to love even our enemies
    and to do good to those that hate us. Luke 6:27.
    Shunning defies and mocks Jesus instructions.

    Awake Jan 8 1947. describes excommunication as a weapon
    of ecclesiastical power and tyranny, used by the clergy, that
    finds no parallel in history . Why then is the wt org using that
    weapon against the flock today? The quotation says it all.

    • fallingangel75 says:

      Hi Caroline: I read your other post yesterday and replied to it, in my regular long-winded fashion.

      I appreciate your thoughts. I had already watched the interviews with the GB widows just to see how I felt about their sentiments.

      I have actually met a few of them and their husbands when they were alive, both through visits to Bethel and due to congregations I belonged to hosting visits for circuit and district assemblies. Felt privileged to eat meals with two of the couples many, many years ago.

      I belong to one of those families.

      I’ve known dozens of the anointed that I never doubted. (At the time.) And one thing that was different for many of the couples where one was chosen and the other was not is that the anointed spouse did already profess a heavenly hope before the marriage took place.

      I still knew that was a choice I would never make, but I feel like it is different to go into the marriage with an understanding that the marriage will end at death and for that reason.

      Again to be clear: I don’t believe it now, but I still feel like it is and will always be different for the true believers who do sign up for it at the beginning.

      If anything happens to me and my husband remarries a faithful sister, she will know that about him from the start and she will accept it before she marries him. I’m sure she won’t want him to die and will desire as much time with him as possible, but she will never know the pain of having a different expectation and having to adjust to the change.

      And because I always mention my husband, people tend to think that is the primary source of my personal pain. It is a huge component, but more than that, I mourn the loss of the individual future I thought I would have.

      I thought I would live forever. And get to know all of my descendants and resurrected ancestors. I thought I would see my mother and sister and grandparents again.

      I thought I would travel the world and learn skills and hobbies I don’t have time or money for now. I thought I would make friends all over the globe.

      In this life now, I’m broke. I have health problems. My marriage is in crisis and I’m about to have a child. I won’t get to do any of those things.

      It is not because of my will or desire or drive or commitment. I simply don’t have the circumstances to live an extraordinary life or the resources to change things very much.

      I grieve the loss of those dreams much more than the forever I won’t have with my husband. It’s the fact that I won’t get forever at all that hurts the most right now.

      I recognize the impracticality of paradise earth when I think about it hard, but for so long I was just in the ‘with God all things are possible’ mindset. Sure the earth would be a mess, but with faith and ingenuity we could fix it. Just because we can’t think of solutions now, doesn’t mean we couldn’t then – with perfect minds and Jehovah’s blessing and direction. I was taught that all my life and it didn’t seem far-fetched.

      Even now that it does seem far-fetched, I find it very hard to let go.

      You underestimate me because of my youth. I do know that the marriage vows used to be different AND I remember the teachings about replacements and old people who proved faithful over a lifetime being the only legitimate partakers.

      And I remember the sideways glances people would get when younger ones first started to partake about 25 years ago.

      My husband did tell the elders and the circuit overseer before he told me because he sought their counsel on how to make it less painful for me.

      They did not treat him like he was crazy. They were loving and kind and respectful of his feelings. He had expected they would tell him he was wrong and crazy but they didn’t.

      Everyone I know has treated both of us like it is true and real. And it’s Jehovah’s will for us and it is my duty to support him and love him and focus on the time we have together now, not be upset that we may be separated in the future.

      I’m the odd man out. So, no, that won’t be the source of his wake-up call if it ever comes.

      • Caroline says:

        fallingangel75, my heart goes out to you in a huge way.

        When I got married in 1967, I loved my husband so much and wanted to live with him forever and I too expected Armageddon would come and the earth would be cleaned up and none of us would ever die.

        Within a month of my marriage, I came to realize I did not know the man I had married and he beat me with his fist every time he couldn’t find something or thought I didn’t show him the proper respect or whatever else made him mad and within a month of marriage I contemplated divorce but my parents had said that once I got married I could no longer come home and besides that, when you are a Witness, you can’t just get a divorce so I stuck it out for 49 years.

        My husband was good 99.99% of the time but there were many times that I really regretted my marriage and wished I had divorced him at the beginning of the marriage and not stuck it out all those years but all those years, I kept thinking Armageddon was going to come and Jehovah would destroy him and then people would know the monster I married but it never happened.

        Then after ten years of marriage I got pregnant and ended up having 3 children who I love more than life itself. They are my gift for having stuck it out all that time.

        My husband seemed like the greatest guy to the outside world and even to my kids because I was the bad guy that had to hit them with a wooden spoon to make them be quiet at the meetings (his orders) and so I was the one they hated, not him.

        He could never say no and only one time during all those years did he stick up for me and tell the kids to listen to me as their mother. All other times when they complained about something, he would take their side and so I had no control over them at all. It was a horrible marriage for me most of the time but I stuck it out, thinking Armageddon was going to come along and save me and I’d get to live the rest of my life, happy.

        It never happened and now I am 70 years old and all I have left are maybe a few years. I am all alone since the closest of my children is 45 miles away and she is a regular pioneer.

        She does come to see me sometimes and we email a lot so I am grateful for that and we go to the movies and out to eat some times.

        There is one sister who stops over to see me every couple of weeks because she’s not obeying the congregation’s talk about marking me.

        She has 3 living girls who don’t want anything to do with the “truth” and one is disfellowshipped and she ignores the disfellowshipping to visit with her so at least I am grateful to her for her coming over but she’s crazy too. As nice as she is, she’s crazy.

        My husband died in March and as much as I hated him at times, I miss him. At least I had somebody to come home to and to take care of and we did talk a lot, at least until I woke up from the Society’s lies.

        I thought that we were close enough that when I found out about all the lies, that he’d realize it too and wake up too but the more I told him, the more “in the truth” he became and the more he’d read his Bible.

        When I started waking up and tried to tell my oldest daughter, she also started regular pioneering again when she hadn’t pioneered for maybe 7 years. It made them go the other way. I don’t know why, but that’s what happened.

        My son was getting married in November last fall and when I first started waking up about 2 years ago, I told him that I didn’t believe in the Bible anymore and I tried telling him about the U.N. and other things and still when my husband was dying last winter, he said that after his dad died, I could come and live with him but then he got engaged after my husband died and I told his fiance in an email about my disbelief in the Bible and that I hated the Governing Body etc. and why and she went to their elders and they barred me from going to the wedding and my son can’t even email me anymore but I don’t hold it against him because I know how that religion works. I know he thinks he’s saving me by doing that to me.

        So, I have had my ups and downs but I am grateful for my children anyway, but I am basically alone on an island all by myself here.

        I don’t want to move where my other children live because they made a life for themselves and they don’t need me around to take care of. They have their own lives to live. So it’s quite lonely for me except I do have 4 cats to take care of.

        I wished I could tell you what to do but with having bad health etc. your situation is so much harder to know what to do. Will your parents take you in if you leave your husband?

        My youngest daughter is getting a divorce from her husband and she has twins. She was in a horrible marriage for 8 years and so many times, she wanted to get a divorce but she kept thinking it would improve and finally she just took the leap. In the United States, you can get a lot of help if you have to leave a bad marriage but I am helping her out a lot anyway. I am able to do that because my husband did have a decent job and I have his pension and social security but living on your own will make you scrounge for every penny. But you have to either live like that or live a lie. My daughter chose to take the hard way out and leave and she is surviving.

        Maybe you can go back to school after the baby is born. My daughter is getting a degree online and hopefully financial aid will help her with that but she is getting child support and help through the government with her apartment and other help and she has a part time job so she is busy every minute of every day but she’s much happier now then when she was married.

        I was so sick during my 20’s, that I was pretty sure that I would not make it to 30 but I did. I was fairly attractive and I am pretty sure that if I had left my husband that if I had wanted to remarry that I could have but I know I would have been considered a horrible person in the “truth” and I really did believe it then and I didn’t want to stop being a Witness so that was the biggest reason I stayed in the marriage.

        Now days, I see plenty of marriages breaking up in the “truth”. Women are just not sticking it out like they did when I was young but even then I saw plenty of marriages break up.

        My husband’s sister-in-law’s sister was married to a brother and they were special pioneers and they went to Gilead and to Japan and served there for several years and when they came back, the wife was writing to a man they had met in Japan and she ended up leaving her husband when the man moved to the U.S. from Japan to be with her and she wasn’t even publicly reproved. She married him, they had a boy who is now grown up and her Japanese husband is an elder and has been for a long time and she’s still a pioneer. Go figure.

        My hugs to you and my sympathy. You are in a horrible position unless you can somehow get through to your husband. It’s such a shame that your elders gave him such respect with what he told them.

        I am not a believer in the Bible anymore either and if the elders ever had the courage to talk to me at the Kingdom Hall to disfellowship me, I’d harp on the Bible passages that show that Jehovah is actually Molech (Acts 7:43). There are so many scriptures in the Bible that prove that the Israelites were worshipping Molech. I would not even say a word about all the lies of the Watchtower. I’d concentrate of the ridiculousness of the Bible instead. Even the Insight book under Baal, show that Baal is just another name for Jehovah.

        I feel that anybody who sticks up for the God Jehovah has no moral compass at all. That is just my humble opinion.

  13. Erik says:

    It’s a fine thing to say “I don’t know.” It may be arrogant to say we DO know. We can think we know, but we are so small, even the most confident of us, aren’t we? It feels great not to need to know everything for sure. Feels honest.

  14. Angela says:

    I left 15 years ago but still live with the consequenses daily.

    I came from a “spiritually strong” family. Father who was elder/pioneer, Mom – pioneer for many years and still going strong. 2 brothers who is elder/pioneers and still going strong.

    I was a pioneer too for many years and even moved to another country where the need was greater.

    I loved and still love my family. I loved and still love some of my former brothers and sisters, but I decided to leave. The reasons where many.

    I had to live through many years of contemt and severe emotional and psychological pressure. But I always showed my family that I would put up with it, no matter what. I let them punish and mistreat me.

    My father even spoke in affect at one occasion telling me that I deserved to die. I am a very sensitive person so these words actually made me sick for 3 days.

    My father left J.W some years ago and we have found back to each other. He was saddened and chocked at his own words when I told him what he had said. Of course he didn´t remember it and apologized deeply for what he had said. He is now making the best out of our newly found relationship. He is today more than happy to be a free man. And I am more than happy to have good contact with my father.

    My mother is still a very loyal J.W and has never, and will never accept that I left. She hates me with a fervor that has destroyed much of my life. It had made me sick on so many occasions. It took me many years to realize that.

    My husband has feared for my life so many times. Not because of me wanting to end my own life, but because he has seen me in such bad shape due to the situation. More than one time he thought that I had only days to live.

    He is a good husband. He has helped me so much and is doing everything in his power to help me continue alive. We have 2 small children together and they need their mother alive and well.

    He is also a good terapaut and has been doing many treatments to help me. At one occasion a new client was sent to him. It was a ex-J.W since 20 years back and she was a licensed psychologist. Her education had helped her to overcome her indoctrination when she realized how the cult mind works.

    Anyway, she had much of the same health issues as I had. She also told us of a good friend of hers, also an ex-J.W who was in even worse health shape than us. She also came from a very “spiritually strong” family with titels.

    It made us realize that the stronger the fervor persons has for the religion, the more destructive is the energy sent at those who leave. And that energy is so filled with toxicity, it can actually make you sick, depressive or even make you go out of your mind, wanting to commit suicide.

    In my case I had to protect myself and my family as we all suffered a lot. I had to end the contact with my mother wich was a very hard thing to do. I still love her even though she hates me.

    She really wanted to have contact with her grandchildren with the excuse that they are not disfellowshipped.

    So I said, so you will treat them normal and with dignity while you will let them witness how I as their mother is humiliated due to your religious views. How could that be sound for any child to see? It would be very unhealthy and confusing.

    The sad part is that she would be a brilliant grandmother and I really would need her and my children is missing out on an important relationship. But due to a pathologic religion it is impossible to make it work.

    For many years I contemplated to go back to the org just to get my family back.

    But I knocked that thought out of my head long time ago. What kind of family would I get back to? A family who chose to show me conditional love. Who emotionally blackmailed me. How could I live with that falsity? And my own falsity of going back to a religion without believing in it just to have a “normal” contact with my own family.

    I live with a lot of sadness of the loss of my family, and miss them every day. I can never see the loving and forgiving spirit of Christ amongst people with this kind of ideology. I feel as if I have been slaughtered on the altar of religious ideology. Not physically as some have been, but on other levels.

    And to dear Mike I would like to remind you something from the bible that is easily overlooked.

    This is about the Gods true love and forgiving nature.

    It is about when Jesus told his followers about 2 men who entered into the temple to pray and make offerings.

    One man entered with a lot of confidence. He knew he did everything by the book. He was very self-righteous in his own eyes and was content with his spiritual accomplishment. He was happy he wasn´t like that sinner in the back of the temple.

    The other man was downstruck with guilt and didn´t even want to enter the temple. He was a repentent sinner.

    Due to his attitude he was the one who was considered righteous in the eyes of God.

    It is also written that anyone who judges his brother is judging Gods law and is thus putting himself above God.

    So with this in mind, with what right has anyone to judge his fellow man?

    I recognize the self-righteous attitue “It is a fact” – kind of reasoning. I myself had it stucked down my throat many times.

    The only thing that comment serves is spiritual powerplay, exalting in ones own understanding, pride and ego, a judging attitude. Nothing else.

    • fallingangel75 says:

      @Angela, this is such a sad story. I have commented elsewhere that I no longer believe in God as a result of my own experiences with the Witnesses. Aside from what it means for me if there is no God, I feel deep pain and sorrow for everyone like yourself.

      I read this and I can’t imagine how many times this tragedy has been multiplied and played out in other families. It hurts me deeply.

      And if there is no God, there is no one to make this right. Ever. All of the missed opportunities for your children to know their mother – it breaks my heart.

      And no one to punish those who perpetuated this abuse and told us it was God’s will.

      That’s why I find myself faced with the dilemma of fence-straddling or clean break. In theory I hate the idea of pretending to be just spiritually weak and inactive when really I have rejected all of it, but my entire immediate family are active JWs.

      So I feel like I cannot deal with the consequences of losing everyone. And yet, I hate, hate, HATE the practice itself. It is exactly as you say: how can they claim to be loving and Christlike when they encourage family members to be so cruel?

      And I always think: if you believe that your unbelieving loved ones will not live forever and you will, wouldn’t – shouldn’t – you want to spend more time with them, loving them and making memories, not less?

      Wouldn’t it be more effective to get them to return to Jehovah and the congregation by showing them love?

      • outandabout says:

        Don’t you fret, fallenangel. The worldly world is going to hold those ones accountable for the worst they have done. The so called wicked world cares.

        As for showing love to get them to return…apparently that’s what those supposedly horrible Catholics do now…. they are encouraged to connect with those who fall away….not that I agree with ‘love bombing’ but it’s at least better than shunning.

        • Winston Smith says:

          @fallingangel75
          A couple thoughts:
          “And if there is no God, there is no one to make this right…And no one to punish those who perpetuated this abuse”

          If there IS a God, who says it’s his/her job to make it right? I personally believe in a higher power, God if you will, but I don’t believe it is the purpose of this power to fix everything in our lives. I believe that all the necessary tools have been supplied to humanity and it’s on us to make the changes necessary to help those around us. Yes, there have been many atrocities perpetrated by humans, but there are also many good, kind, and selfless acts too. It’s easy (and certainly drilled into us by JW conditioning) to only focus on the bad and to fail to see the good.

          To quote Thomas Paine: “I believe in the equality of man and I believe that religious duties consist in doing justice, loving mercy, and endeavoring to make our fellow-creatures happy.”

          Or to quote the fictitious Samwise Gamgee of the LOTR movies: “There’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo. And it’s worth fighting for.”

          WS

          • dee2 says:

            That is to say, God is not interventionist – he does not interfere in the day-to-day workings of the universe, he does not concern himself with humans and our affairs: WE HAVE TO FIGURE THINGS OUT FOR OURSELVES.

            This being the case, there is very little point in praying to God – WE HAVE TO FIGURE THINGS OUT FOR OURSELVES.

    • dee2 says:

      Angela,

      You articulated your experience quite well.

      Being able to articulate our experiences, “putting our fingers” on what is happening to us, so to speak, plays a big part in the mental processing that is needed to help us make sense of what is happening to us and what we need to do about it.

      Not being able to articulate/verbalize and process our experiences can lead to these issues ballooning into mental health problems. Then such persons may end up being misdiagnosed or undiagnosed because they are not able to articulate/verbalize/”put their finger on” what is happening to them – their mental health issues become trivialized/minimized as a result.

      Family is certainly an important part of our support system, so it is unfortunate the stance which your mother has taken. It may however have been a good thing to deny your mother contact with her grandchildren as more than likely, she would have ceased upon the opportunity to indoctrinate them.

    • dee2 says:

      Religious fervor? – what causes religious fervour?

      Fear of God’s punishment and attack by demons?

  15. WTCritic says:

    That’s what scammers do when the press comes around. They run away

  16. JeHoB0 says:

    It saddens me to see the suffering that the false teachings of the WBTS still produce. Kudos to you for your strength and ability to overcome and also for sharing your story. The JW’s will fall. The time is short indeed, for them…

    • outandabout says:

      I may not fail completely, jehobo.

      If 22% of JW’s surveyed said they would still stick with WT even if it was proven to be totally false, that means the GB would be blessed with close to 2 million totally deluded and compliant fools which they can, using scripture and ‘new light’, tithe the pants off.

      Forget the old “we don’t tithe” stuff when you’ve got 2 million fools eager for a spot in paradise and the more you charge them for that privilege, the more devout they will be.

      And they may even find new light and say the world has become too dangerous to go door to door and become a closed group with the GB secreted away behind locked gates at Warwick, broadcasting their propaganda from there.

      Best to get in there now and sue them to dust.

      • Ricardo says:

        Outandabout,I think it would be hard for the GB to look after 2 million witnesses. The witnesses would be quite spread out compared to now, and so have to drive further to the Kingdom Hall. I doubt they would have the motivation to do much preaching, due to: their preaching area becoming so much bigger; the psychological effect of seeing so many brothers leave the truth; and facing so much opposition as well as the current apathy. The current apathy is having an incredible effect on the witnesses’ motivation to preach. What more when every time they go out they meet a brother who doesn’t take the truth seriously anymore?

        I believe that when Kingdom Hall after Kingdom Hall is shut down due to lack of membership, you can kiss goodbye to any meaningful representation of witnesses.

  17. Darth Fader says:

    Mr Fade’s article serves as a timely reminder of the many perils awaiting those who seek life outside of the organization.

    Whilst tales of ex-Witnesses having suicidal feelings may have become something of a cliché, I can certainly relate to the absolute despair of those who have sought consolation in the apostate community-and it seems no-one is immune.

    Even leading lights in the ex-JW community are not immune to feelings of vulnerability and will occasionally succumb to self-doubt and then potentially the black dog of depression. Only recently I was informed about the plight of one such individual…

    I refer to someone who has spent many years making multiple videos and articles, producing endless amounts of tabloid style propaganda against the Watchtower.

    This individual’s crowning achievement was the completion of a book-a veritable tome of highly derivative populist anti-Christian tirades, interspersed with tedious personal anecdotes about a somewhat uneventful life, and interminable and unoriginal sensationalist ramblings about the supposed multiple injustices perpetuated by the WBTS.

    Despite having a high profile, and a massive sense of entitlement concerning the book’s likely popularity, the actual launch turned out to be something of a flop: no queues, no media interest, just piles of unsold books.

    Faced with such appalling ingratitude, it would be easy to imagine the author’s sense of disappointment, if not outright anger. Had he not produced ‘the’ definitive work on the Society, eclipsing even the great Raymond Franz’? Perhaps not.

    Here lies a cautionary tale.

    We all know that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side, not even for those who have experienced a degree of fame and fortune from the apostate community. As Bono once put it, “I still haven’t found what I’m looking for”.

    In or out of the Society, there’s no guarantee you will either.

    • Caroline says:

      @Darth Fader, you obviously haven’t even read that book have you? I have read that book and it’s nothing at all like what you describe and it is a really good book and if anybody hasn’t read it yet, I highly recommend it especially since Ray Franz’s book doesn’t look like it’s ever going to be printed again and I do believe that that book will take Ray Franz’s book’s place in helping people to wake up or not get involved in the Watchtower once they read his book and see what Watchtower is all about. Plus it’s really interesting too, which is a real plus. Take my word for it. I didn’t want to miss a page of this book and for me, that’s something since I don’t normally love any book that much! You will especially get a kick out of the “blue balls” story and the letter he wrote to his mom will make you cry.

      Why not come out and say who you are? Why be such a cowardly snake in the grass about what you are saying?

      Do you have it in you to write a book to try and warn people about getting involved in JW land like what that “guy” did?

      It takes a lot of work and determination and time away from your family and time away from your job. Give the guy credit where it’s due okay? Why not come out and say who you are talking about?

      We don’t know what all happened between you and that guy but why do you expect those on this website to take sides against him when you won’t even come out and say who you are talking about?

      You may not like him but he came up with a great idea for a forum like this and it has helped a lot of us be able to talk about our experiences and by the comments expressed here and his web site, he’s helped a lot of people walk away from Watchtower and enjoy the rest of their lives by doing so and you should give him credit for what this site has accomplished even if you don’t like that guy (whoever you are talking about but of course we know who you are talking about, don’t we?).

      Can’t you live and let live? We aren’t going to stop liking that guy who wrote that book by your snide remarks so can’t you find a way to heal and let it go and be in peace?

      Make peace with the guy so you can stop obsessing about him okay?

    • Ricardo says:

      @Darth Fader, do you mean to say that life in the organization is a bed of roses? Tell me about it…tell me about how it feels when your name is dragged through the mud when it is announced to the congregation you are judicially disciplined, but to find on appeal that the elders messed things up because they were biased against you. They get to give a private apology. Meanwhile, our reputation is shredded.

      So many times I would like to immolate myself (like the Buddhists do) in front of the local branch office in protest to the relentless bullying and bad treatment I receive from the hands of the elders.

      In fact, I heard the case in Japan where the brother was wrongly disciplined similarly to me, and he jumped in front of a train.

      What a shining testimony to staying in the organization. But like a silly fool I stay. Why? So I can give an answer to smart alecs like you, who like to tell us how lovely it is in the spiritual paradise, but ignore the plight of the many victims of abuse.

    • Cappytan says:

      Which book are you referring to? The only one I can think of that you’re referring to and that I would like to purchase is currently sold out of its initial printing.

      I am eagerly awaiting its release on Amazon.

      • Gwen Little says:

        Darth Fader,

        You sound like a Scientologist. I can see why people seem to compare JW’s to Scientology.

    • messenger says:

      People here were just looking for truth. But did they find it? And there’s one thing about truth, that is if the word is not merely an applied title or name. The truth about truth is that it does not change. What was true will always be true. Seems to me the Bible says to speak truth with your neighbor, and if that applies to general conversation my guess it applies to teaching scripture even more so, from Christ’s point of view.

  18. Ted says:

    Whats your problem DF? Are you not getting the recognition
    you think you’re entitled to, is someone else getting what you
    are not ?

    You come across as someone who is consumed with spiteful
    jealousy. Calm down man, it’s not good for your health, it
    causes depression.

    Credit where it’s due ! You’ve come up with some well thought
    out phrases, intended to sting, a bit like hailstones really,
    but they bounce straight off and make little lasting impression,
    at least they’re wasted on me. T

  19. Litsu says:

    Strange how a religion or belief can bring somebody to such thoughts…
    I had the same reasoning as Sean McGee a few years ago…about killing myself…
    Since i was a kid I never felt good enough to make it to paradise…(I won’t tell my hole story life)..
    As a young adult I thought to myself:
    “If you commit suicide you will wake up in paradise as all your sins would be forgiven. ”
    That’s the point when you need help…professional help!
    False reasoning since childhood can bring you a false way of thinking your entire life…
    I’m not a Jw anymore..but it’s still hard to keep away from a thinking shema you had your hole life…
    Thanks Sean for your video

  20. M Saurus says:

    @Mike – I have several issues with your posts.

    1) JWs are supposed to “Shun Unrepentant Wrongdoers”. That includes UNBAPTISED relatives who know the truth but choose not to become a witness. According to JW doctrine, your daughter is in this category. Why aren’t you shunning her?

    2) Reading and commenting on this site is grounds for disfellowshipping. Even if you are defending what you believe, you would be in big trouble for coming here if your elders found out. Just because they don’t know, doesn’t mean you haven’t broken the rule.

  21. David says:

    Regarding Darth Fader’s comments, I do have some sympathy.

    Take a look at Mr Cdars latest YouTube video and you’ll see him driving an expensive BMW around Europe-who paid for that I wonder?

    Doesn’t matter if it’s hired or not, or if it’s being used exclusively for his book tour, the question is why did he have to go for such a prestigious vehicle. You’ll also see him staying at a rather plush looking bungalow in Wales. Again, I imagine it would have been quite expensive.

    Remember, this guy doesn’t work and has been using the apostate community as a cash cow for quite some time. It would appear that the quite substantial sum that has been donated for the book is funding some expensive tastes, rather than just the functional aspect of getting the books out and doing a simple tour. Why doesn’t he keep costs to a minimum, and respect the spirit in which the money was donated?

    Can you imagine his outcry if it was discovered that members of the GB were swanning around in BMW’s, or staying at expensive apartments, all on the back of donations to the Society? It’s nothing but rank hypocrisy for him to expect ex-Witnesses to fund what is really an extended vanity project (who else would fill a front book cover with their own picture?)

    I feel sorry for all of you who have been taken in by this guy. Really. If you really knew Cedrs, or had been badly treated by him-as so many have in the past-you would think a lot differently. Did you know, for example, that he once called a woman a c**t on Facebook, for no other reason than that she had entered an atheist forum? That’s just the tip of very jagged iceberg of hurt that he’s been responsible for.

    Take a look at the YouTube video Con Cdars (and the comments) and you’ll get an insight into what I’m talking about.

    I’m not bitter about this guy, but it is frustrating to realise just how many are taken in by his phony persona. Scratch the surface and you’ll see one nasty individual and a total egomaniac.

    There’s a very revealing moment in his latest video where he looks totally entranced by the front cover of his book; just like Narcissus looking at his own reflection in the pool. That’s what he’s about-the activism is just a vehicle for recognition and to fund his lifestyle. Who wants to work in a crappy job (as he once did) when you can leech off a community of easily manipulated people and become a high profile figure.

    Who knows, unlike the majority of his followers, he may never have to work again.

    • Covert Fade says:

      It would appear that “David” has been using sock puppets to post multiple comments under different names from the same IP address.
      We don’t tolerate sock puppet behaviour on JW Survey, so “David” and his alter-egos have been blocked.

    • dee2 says:

      David,

      Do you have a blog or forum for JW issues?
      Please let me know – I am ready to comment there if you do.

      • outandabout says:

        I couldn’t give a rats how lavish Cedars lifestyle is or what sort of guy he is to work with. At the end of the day, he’s performing a social service free of charge and neither demands nor expects anything from me.

        He deserves tax free funding for helping to undo some of the damage done by WT who, incidentally, received tax free funding while inflicting that damage in the first place.

    • Rodger Goode says:

      @David – You too can drive a fancy BMW, it is called freedom to act as you wish – this is something that the WTBS and GB denied most people on this forum. The GB have been living off the massive proceeds of property built with free labour and donations for years, so I don’t buy your reasoning. You are obviously smitten with jealously of the impact of what one man and a small team can do when they apply their minds and work hard. Grow up mate, interact with more people, do something positive, get a life – you may find it a refreshing experience.

    • messenger says:

      @David,
      you must not have much respect for any of us if you feel we’re commenting on this site because of Cedars. The only reason it has to do with him is that Cedars is the one who started the site.

      Speaking for myself, I’m not the type of person that hero worships or kissed up to people irrespective of who they are or what their title. I find that repulsive. Chances are there are others like me that read and comment on this site.

      Initially I did come to watch Cedars’ videos for two reasons: I thought his videos were entertaining, and I looked to see what new information he had discovered about the JW child molestation problem. I don’t remember reading much of the blogs if any at first. But more recently I read what you guys are writing as much, no really more, than the articles. And since I’ve been participating I haven’t even seen Cedars comment on the blogs but once, and he only wrote one article.

      So, my question to you is, why is it that you feel inclined to insult not just Cedars but also us, the commenters, by implying that we’re such pansies we’re into the hero worship of Cedars?

      Also, most here either presently are or were JWs, and if we were not so inclined before becoming a JW, then who taught us to tear into organizations that do not share our beliefs? Was it he same group that taught you? And are you now taking that learned behavior to a personal level, maybe because of the type of comments you’ve heard at the kingdom hall attacking those in other denominations?

      Could it be that people on this site that defend Cedars are actually defending their desire for free expression, and his site is one vehicle that provides that? If so, why do you make it personal? Who cares about Cedars money or where he gets it from?

      • Ricardo says:

        I almost bought a BMW the other day. It was in the car yard for about US$2,000. If I had bought it David might think I am materialistic. Tut tut.

        Messenger, sorry for following with a comment after your comments, but I enjoy your comments so much I just want to say something. I find myself almost always agreeing 100% with what you say.

  22. Ted says:

    The longer one has spent in the religion the more likely
    they are to be affected by the shunning.

    Someone who has been it for 50 years could have children
    and even grandchildren who have married “Only in the Org”.
    And so they have a large extended family in this high control
    religion.

    The odds are high that not all are going to tolerate the control
    and some will wake up intellectually, this was my experience
    with my family.

    My son in his late teens got a liking for a few pints of beer
    and was coming home after midnight. Other elders got wind
    of this and gave me some flak about it. ( I personally witnessed
    one of the elders who was most vociferous about it. knocking
    back shots of whiskey in one go and ending up stoned)

    The wt at the time said elders who had older disruptive children
    should remove them from the family home, if they wanted to
    remain in their position. To my shame I followed that directive
    I made my own son leave home. I was unreasonable, I had
    become hard. I had forgotten that when I was youth I did
    exactly the same things that he was doing

    My son is now 62 and we are fully reconciled, he is a good
    man and a wonderful help to his mother and I in our old age.

    The point I am trying to make is do not cast off your own
    flesh and blood, families need each other. Any help from the
    congregation will only be limited, each has their own set of
    problems, There certainly will be no support from the gb
    (They don’t know you exist) and help won’t come from above
    either. Family bonds are naturally strong, don’t be influenced
    by others to break those bonds. As I once was.

    • Big B says:

      Excellent thoughts Ted.

      Yes, as you need help, financially and materially, during your ‘golden’ years cutting off family members because they don’t care to uphold a religion that you personally taught them would be tantamount to ‘cutting off your nose to spite your face’.

      I’m glad you and your son have reconciled as life is too short to waste on differences of religious opinion.
      After all, you can’t expect the WATCHTOWER to take care of you as so many branch workers did. I wonder how they felt about their ‘pink slips’ (due to downsizing your services are no longer required). They can be useful in the full time pioneer work though. 🙂

  23. Ted says:

    The directive to remove unruly older children from the
    family home if one wished to remain an elder, was changed
    later on. An account was given of an elder who was having
    problems with his son, so he stood down in order to give
    the boy spiritual help. The elder was commended for it.

    Thats when I started to use my own judgement, instead
    of being blown about like a feather in the wind.

  24. Ted says:

    David, Ad hominem attacks, the last resort when one
    has nothing else to offer in the debate.

    Don’t worry I won’t call you a c–t even though you
    implied I’m a gullible twat. “Easily Manipulated”
    I think was the phrase.

  25. Eyes opened says:

    Hi fallenangel, if I read the post correctly, you are expecting a baby…congratulations and best wishes. I realize things are less than ideal but I truly believe children are a blessing, a gift, an inheritance from God. May you find love, joy and peace with your little one. All the best…

  26. Caroline says:

    Greg Jones/David, do you remember how Ray Franz was able to write his two books? It was because he had a benefactor who supported him and his wife for 2 years or more so he could devote his time to writing his books.

    If it wasn’t for that support, we would not have ever heard of Crisis of Conscience or Christian Freedom.

    Don’t accuse Lloyd of being lazy because he had the time to write his book or greedy because he has a donate button on this web site. Many, many sites such as this, which take a lot of time to put together have donate buttons. Lloyd has at least one benefactor/friend who has made it possible for him to write and do this website but he also does have a job.

    There is nobody looking at me or judging me if I don’t donate, unlike at the Kingdom Hall and nobody guilting me to donate like what the Society does in making me think that people are going to die at Armageddon if I don’t support the “Kingdom” work.

    Anybody can benefit from all the expense and work that goes into jwsurvey and we don’t have to donate a dime if we don’t want to but if we want to, we can.

    Jwsurvey deserves every penny they can get because they need benefactors just as Ray Franz did so he could write his books. If they didn’t have benefactors, they could not spend all the time and work and expense it takes in bringing us all the articles that they work on so that we can learn what is going on in the Society, so we can unload all our thoughts about what is going on in the Society with our comments about our experiences and it helps us all emotionally to put it down in writing and it just might help people who aren’t yet baptized not get baptized into that horrible religion. This site is our therapy and I am very grateful for it.

    If jwsurvey can bring down Watchtower, then jwsurvey would be gone too and so would the donations and that is the goal here. That is jwsurvey’s goal.

    We don’t care about your grudge against Lloyd and you coming on here and trying to convince us what a terrible person he is because he said something he should not have said does not negate all the work that goes into this site or his book.

    It does not make us turn against him so you coming on here complaining about him is a worthless endeavor.

    My son drives a very beautiful Saab 9-5 and it looks like a new car but it’s 10 years old and when people see him and his car, they just assume he’s either got money or he’s foolish with his money since he doesn’t make all that much money in his job.

    People assume a lot when they see somebody driving a nice car but you don’t know if he owns that car or borrowed it or rented it or how old it is or how much it cost.

    They were making a very long trip across Europe and they needed a reliable car. If you think that Lloyd can afford a nice new BMW, then you really do need to read his book to see how he traveled across Europe in his car, not the car you see in the video.

    If he can afford a nice car now, then I am glad for him. Do you think if he owns that car, that he paid for it with cash or monthly? When I see somebody driving a nice car, I don’t usually go up to them and ask them if they can afford that car or how they are paying for it and anybody who does that is nuts. Just saying.

    Lloyd has over 11,000 subscribers. If each of those subscribers gave me just $1 a month, he and his family would not have to live in his wife’s parent’s attic unfinished apartment.

    Lloyd deserves to make money off of his book just as Ray Franz deserved to make money off of his book just as the Witness who works on your car deserves to make money fixing up your car. Many Witnesses seem to think that Witnesses are supposed to work for free when it comes to another Witness, but it costs money to survive and when you work, you deserve to get paid for it, plain and simple and you are wrong about his book. You obviously haven’t read it. You should read it and give credit for where credit is due, no matter how much you dislike him and no matter if he has made mistakes in the past.

    We on this website aren’t a bunch of Cedar worshipers like what you think. He makes mistakes just as you make mistakes and we all make mistakes. I am always willing to forgive people of their mistakes as I am hopeful that they forgive me of my mistakes. I don’t hold it against them for the rest of their lives and I wish that for you.

    Have you never said something you regret?

    • outandabout says:

      I see you’re attracting fans on another site, Caroline. That’s ok so long as you’re not trying to drag people away from the one true site.

      Watching you!

      • Caroline says:

        @outandabout, what are you talking about? I have no idea.

        • outandabout says:

          Ok. I noticed a Caroline commenting somewhere else and sounding just like you and also someone thanking her and remarking how eloquent her remarks were. Pretty much what happens here. How many Caroline’s are there commenting on JW affairs and sounding like you, I thought.
          Not to worry.
          Feel free to question me more if you need.

          • Caroline says:

            Hi outandabout. Where were those other comments that you found? I am curious and would like to see what she wrote. Thanks

  27. Cherie says:

    Beautiful, simple, powerful. Bravo, Sean. Therapy was instrumental in my recovery, too. In fact, it was my therapist who encouraged me to do research. That’s when I read “In Search of Christian Freedom.”

  28. Ted says:

    Caroline, If Armageddon was coming (and it ain’t) I’d want you
    in that bunker with me. Great post.

    • Caroline says:

      Thank you Ted for saying that and weren’t those bunker videos really cringeworthy? It smacks of all those preppers who are digging holes in the ground expecting the earth to be blown up and stocking up on water and food etc. but unless they have some kind of well down there they will be running out of food and water and they will be drinking their own pee and eating their dead dogs and cats for a long time until they can come up and the great tribulation will be over unless the great tribulation is over real fast, but don’t they remember that the Bible says that not even the mountains will be able to hide them during the Great Tribulation? Isn’t that what the Revelation book said? But oh yeah, that books is out of print now and old light. My bad.

      I am so glad I don’t believe that anymore.

  29. Eyes opened says:

    David if you’re still here, we’ve all seen the nice cars the CO’s are assigned, we’ve all seen the lovely accommodations at bethel, assembly halls, etc. We’ve heard Sam Herd talk about their luxurious accommodations at Warwick and how wonderful life is there. Are you really concerned with how people live? Is that really the issue? Are you more concerned with lifestyle than with teachings? That would be rather shallow don’t you think. Let’s put that aside and be more concerned with truth, just plain old truth and honesty of teachings.

    Regards

  30. Doc Obvious says:

    Steven Hassan appeared last night on the Leah Remini Scientology show. He discussed how Scientologists harassed him when trying to help Scientologists get out of their indoctrination into a thinking independent individual. There are so many similarities between the Jehovah’s Witnesses and Scientology.

  31. Sarah says:

    Can someone please explain to me HOW and WHY the JW WTBTS still has a 503.1c tax-free status when they are NOT a charity, they have thousands of child abuse scandals ongoing, it has literally millions of ex-members who will testify to it being a CULT which destroys families and has caused the suicides of many members not to mention the needless deaths of those who refused BLOOD on the basis of a bunch of ignorant men?

    Everything the JW cult has done is not because it is BIBLE based as they claim but to make themselves AS DIFFERENT from other “Christian” religions. That’s the reasons for their, NO BLOOD policy, the NO HOLIDAYS policy, the NO VOTING policy, the NO SMOKING policy etc etc etc.

    Someone needs to get a real sharp lawyer and go after the jugular of this cult and take it down once and for all!

    REMOVE THEIR 501.3c TAX STATUS NOW!

    • Rodger Goode says:

      Well said Sarah! This is the next step to stop these jokers.

      • twistedsister69 says:

        Hey, maybe Donald Trump will do it. Oops, forgot, he’s a “Christian” too. LMFAO

        • twistedsister69 says:

          …still trying to recall the scriptural passage that tells us about Jesus’ string of casinos…hmmm…LOL

          • outandabout says:

            Don’t worry about Donald, sister. He’s made a lot of promises to a lot of unreasonable people but most people are reasonable.
            He’ll have to face reality…..hmmm… whatever that is……

    • outandabout says:

      Hmm, if only it were that easy, Sarah. The right to preach and pray as you wish is enshrined in law. I think singling out the WT or any other group would be setting a precedent and maybe nobody wants to go down that path. I not a whizz on these matters, so….

      Obama couldn’t even scratch the gun laws so imagine the hew and cry if someone tried to mess with religion.

      But I feel amendments are well overdue. Take gun laws for example…..at the time when those laws were first written, imagine a disgruntled citizen armed with a musket entering an office intent on killing as many people as possible. He’d get one shot off, possibly miss, and while he was busy trying to ram some more powder, half a dozen people would be onto him.

      But today we have assault rifles and I daresay, nobody at the time could foresee that, just as nobody could foresee the ‘right to preach and pray’ being used by charlatans and nutcases to hold people captive for their own ends.

      America is a Democracy and change is in the hands of the people.

      The squeaky wheel gets the oil.

  32. James Dilly says:

    Look David, Lloyd isn’t perfect and he makes mistakes. Who hasn’t?

    I’ll admit he’s even been a bit sharp with me in the past, but it never bothered me. It’s just his way. I think most of us on this forum will make exceptions for Lloyd, because of the great things he’s done- and because he is a genius. A flawed genius perhaps, but a genius nonetheless.

    It really doesn’t surprise me that he chose a nice car for his book tour.

    Look, the guy’s been working his socks off over the last few years putting the book together. He deserves a decent motor for this major breakthrough in his life. I don’t think any of the donors would begrudge him that; nor would they begrudge decent accommodation, restaurant food, or whatever else will make his life more comfortable. Give him a break. The donors who gave him that money must realize that it’s Lloyd’s money now. It’s no big deal.

    Regarding him staying at his wife’s parents house. Yes, he probably could have made a financial contribution through working, but there was a much greater cause that needed his attention, namely, the book and this forum. (I suppose there’s a certain irony in him accepting accommodation from his in-laws, both active Witnesses, especially as he wrote the book at their house. Still, that’s neither here nor there now.)

    As for the future, hopefully Lloyd will make a few quid from the book and will eventually be in a position to move away and provide for his own family.

    As for Lloyd’s supposed Narcissus moment, why wouldn’t he be immensely proud of his achievement? He has produced a book of over 600 pages. That takes some doing.

    Okay, he may have only been an elder for a year, but he has immense experience in dealing with the Society, as well as having an extensive library of their books. Many people enjoy his combative style of writing. It may not be academic, but it is easily to follow and very punchy. Just ask the folks here if they appreciate his work.

    Lloyd has his fans and his detractors, which is only to be expected given his high-profile position. My hunch is that he’s destined for greater things, especially with the fame that is sure to follow from the book. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he doesn’t become a recognized and renowned expert on undue influence, cults, and of course the WBTS.

    Mark my words, Lloyd’s name will be known in the mainstream media before too long. I expect you’re just jealous of his achievements, and will probably become more bitter as his popularity increases.

    I suggest you move on with your own life and leave Lloyd to what I’m sure will be a remarkable destiny. In any case, there’s no point coming to JW Survey with your gripes about Lloyd. People here tend to be very protective of him and it’s easy to stir up a hornet’s nest if you say the wrong thing. I guess you know that by now!

    • Ricardo says:

      I think that Lloyd is a gifted genius who also has the charisma to carry people along with him. Imagine the asset he would be as a brother! Imagine what it would be like if he gave a convention talk! How great he would be as an awakened elder. How much we lost when Lloyd left.

      But how much we have gained through this site, his Youtube videos and his book.

      The awakened witnesses thank Lloyd for his efforts. You have taught us things we never knew.

  33. Doc Obvious says:

    A religion becomes a cult when their policies contain characteristics of a mind control cult. If you take Jesus Christ’s life alone from the religion, you will see a totally opposite view of life. Is is only when religion’s use their holy writings to justify the religion’s policies.

    This is where a religion’s legal department points to a religion’s holy writing as a basis for their policies. Then, this argument is used as a basis for their First Amendment rights as being violated.

    During the royal commission in Australia, we saw how a counselor took another verse from the holy writings to justify making a change to Watchtower Bible and Tract Society’s policies. The Watchtower were caught off guard and were frazzled by the legal counselor’s use of a holy writing found in their Bible.

    This caused a huge unraveling of decades of policies to fall short of what God stated in the Bible.

  34. twistedsister69 says:

    Not sure how appropriate this is, but here is an offering I recently discovered on YouTube. Those of you who are still serving as covert “operatives” within the Borg may find this useful, as well as those experiencing persecution from “loving” friends and family members. It’s an interesting and somewhat amusing piece with handy points about conducting “psychological warfare” against an enemy/captor, and coming out on top! Coincidentally, the speaker is another “Tony M.” 😉 , sharing his experience as a Prisoner-of-War for 9 months, toward the end of the Vietnam conflict.
    PS To spare you the bit of confusion I experienced initially, the gentleman is indeed a retired Air Force pilot (currently an airline pilot) – however, he talks about taking photographs DURING battles. I thought that was rather unusual behavior for a combat pilot, till he explains later that at the time he was a RIO (Radar Intercept Officer – also jokingly known as GIBS – Guy In Back Seat 😀 ). I recommend with a cup of cocoa. He’s a very relaxed, easygoing speaker.

  35. Ted says:

    @Darth F, David, Come back when Lloyd gets a 10 room
    mansion in sunny California along with 2 chauffeur driven
    Cadillacs. Then you might give us pause.

    Until then do some research on the pseudo religion you
    appear to support. Or at least put your brain in gear before
    you comment.

    • dee2 says:

      Rutherford’s Beth Sarim mansion, built in California to welcome the resurrected Old Testament faithfuls is certainly a talking point.

      • twistedsister69 says:

        ha ha ha
        BTW for anyone who didn’t already know this (like me), I just Googled it – Beth Sarim means House of the Princes. Ohhh boy (rolling eyes).

  36. outandabout says:

    Caroline….go back to the short animated film about the WT’s two witness rule, get it going, click on the Youtube logo and then scroll down the comments. Cheers.

    • Caroline says:

      Hi outandabout, thanks for telling me and it’s a different Caroline.

      • messenger says:

        @ Caroline
        Hi, I like this comment you made to Mike a couple days ago about the gb, here it is:
        (parenthesis mine)
        If “Spirit is directing them to do(improve conditions like policies about child molestation) in which case they are disregarding God’s Holy Spirit (because they don’t) and are the evil slave, which you just might be worshipping out of ignorance.”

        And Caroline, if all other Christians aren’t rejected by Christ then could they ( the gb) be beating their fellow slaves? Russell didn’t start out to form his own new and distinctly different religion, separated from other denominations. In the beginning he considered them his Christian brothers. But as Christ return delayed in their minds the Bible students began to beat other Christian groups and their parishioners- a similar description to what the evil slave did in the parable. But the WT in their spin applies that beating as if WT is a recipient of it rather than a giver of it. They are the only ones on Earth above criticism in their own mind, especially criticism deliver by members or EXs.

        I also liked the comment you made about the Ethiopian not having to answer a bunch of questions before baptism. The WT said he qualified for baptism quickly because he was a Jewish proselyte. But many sects existed in ancient Judaism, so how could Philip determine in a short visit just how much ‘truth’ that guy knew? The fact is he just had to believe in and accept Christ as his savior which is the same thing most Christian churches that are not JWs believe, and those are the same churches the WT beats with their condemnation and insults. Years back they even put out a tan book denouncing Christendom. They claimed the reason they made it tan is that they were giving Christendom a tanning (beating).

    • ruthlee says:

      outand about does the other caroline have a sirname? just curious cheers Ruthlee

    • ruthlee says:

      Oh dear do i come clean .? Of course I do!! Outand about, caroline graystone is the name I use on utube because I give my religious opinion which I cannot do here. And for thecurious both names I use are not my real names. Cheers Ruthlee

  37. Caroline says:

    @messenger, your comment: “Russell didn’t start out to form his own new and distinctly different religion, separated from other denominations. In the beginning he considered them his Christian brothers” is really interesting and most Witnesses today probably think that but that is not at all what happened in Russell’s day.

    I have a Watchtower 1955 bound volume and on page 47 and 48 January 15 article: Modern History of Jehovah’s Witnesses part 2 it said:

    “Russell, still under thirty years of age, and his enthusiastic associates were eager to get their message spread broadcast as quickly as possible. This is manifest in the following 1881 Watch Tower announcement, especially so when one recalls that then there were only about a hundred active associates with the movement:

    “Wanted 1,000 Preachers. A vast field is open for the employment of the time and talent of every consecrated man and woman to whom the Lord has committed a knowledge of His truth…To those so situated that they can give one-half or more of their time exclusively to the work of the Lord, we have a plan to suggest…viz: That you go forth into large or small cities, according to your ability, as Colporteurs or Evangelists, seek to find in every place the earnest Christians…As few could afford to travel, pay their board and clothe themselves without some income, we propose to furnish the tracts and day dawns (bound books) free, and to allow any such person to take subscriptions for the Watch Tower, using the money obtained from both of these sources, …in defraying necessary expenses.”
    Eventually by 1888 fifty had volunteered for this full-time service toward the “1,000” eagerly desired. They were requested to submit weekly field reports to the Pittsburgh office. So here we have the beginning of the full-time pioneer (colporteur) service…An effort also was made to get all Watch Tower readers and especially all congregation-meeting attenders to commence a share in the field witness work by distributing tracts to their friends and neighbors….Additionally, for this far-flung task “from an apparently small beginning, the tract work has spread to the immense proportions of 1,200,000 copies…employed hundreds of men, women and boys in preparation and distribution, nearly 500 boys being employed to distribute in London (England), and about 300 in New York-other cities in proportion. The distribution was made in the larger cities at the church doors on Sundays.”…Also in 1881 two brothers were sent to Britain to augment spreading the work to Europe and they reported the distribution of 100,000 pamphlets in London and 65,000 in Scotland’s Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee and Aberdeen.” ”

    So, @messenger, Russell “employed” all those people to distribute tracts and pamphlets and the goal was to get those people to get as subscribers to the Watch Tower magazine as they could and then those magazine subscribers were encouraged to form congregations and then those people in those new congregations were employed to distribute free tracts and pamphlets in the goal of more and more subscriptions to the Watch Tower magazine.

    It started out as a magazine company and is still a magazine company today.

    In those early days, the pioneers got their magazines free to defray their expenses and then they kept the money they got for the magazines and even today, pioneers got their magazines much cheaper than the publishers had to pay for them (when we had to pay a set charge for the magazines), when we were charging the householder but us publishers were expected to pay for those magazines at the magazine counter and then when the householder gave us a “contribution” for them, we were expected to put that money into the contribution box at the hall.

    In other words, the Society got paid two times for those magazines from the publishers. That is how they were able to build themselves into such a huge real estate empire. The pioneers were the desired ones though because of their being in service so much longer, they were the ones most likely to bring in new converts and new magazine subscribers.

    Russell’s, “brothers” were employees and nothing else.

    • twistedsister69 says:

      …Kinda like paper boys. 😀

    • messenger says:

      Hi Caroline,
      That comment of mine had to do with his mindset concerning other denominations, did he consider their members to be Christians? not about his success in building his corporation, or spreading his message. I don’t spend my time today reading about him, but I’ll go with what I’ve read in the past. I believe, so don’t quote me on this, but I believe it was later, closer to the end of his ministry, or at least the middle of it, that he began to view other Christians as false-apostates if you will-the attitude the current WT has towards them. I don’t think Russell thought that way in the beginning.

      As your quote shows he was a very successful preacher in his day, when success is measured by how extensive a population his message reached. But I wasn’t referring to that. And I agree he solicited helpers to spread his message.

    • messenger says:

      Caroline I believe the opening comment from the 2nd paragraph of your quote suggested Russell considered others as Christian, those he was soliciting he believed had received truth from God…in that case he considered them true Christians already, before joining his organization.

      your quote:
      “Wanted 1,000 Preachers. A vast field is open for the employment of the time and talent of every consecrated man and woman to whom the Lord has committed a knowledge of His truth…”

      best wishes!

      • Caroline says:

        Hi messenger. You are right about the early Bible Students were of different religions and still belonged to Russell’s movement too. I saw it in one of those 1955 Watchtower articles about their early history and then lost the page but I will spend some time to find it again.

  38. Suzy cyr says:

    Well im glad to hear that some are happy
    And not wanting to kill themselves

    I remember sitting in the meetings wondering who i can trust to confess to..
    While years go by..

    While people are avoiding me because i have health problems or sins from my past.
    My repentance was not believed..
    They treated me like i had not repented
    nor returned at all…
    .
    The wt brought out how some feel unworthy..
    Nope.
    Not me.
    I love Jehovah with everything i got.
    I felt hurt at my heart when i found mysekf where i did not want to be.
    So i returned home.
    He comforts me
    He forgives me.
    I have joy..like the angels in heaven did when i repented.
    But too many treat me like the brothers of the prodigal son…
    They send me back to sin city.
    There is no sharing of joy..
    They are lying about me..
    The wt says that this will make me miss the love of the brothers.
    Nope
    It makes me not want to trust and confess again or even ask again for forgiveness.
    They was not listening to what i was saying.
    They were misquoting me.
    They were mocking me.
    Hiw many have read the bible and misunderstood it
    Billions. .
    I cant go back to sin city
    And
    I cant go on the property of home.
    My brothers are mad at me..
    But God has called me to peace and i have written the word of God on my heart..
    I still please God and he answers my prayer everyday while helping my neighbors.
    .

    • Ricardo says:

      @Suzy, you can see that being a good Christian is more important than being a good Witness. Good Witnesses at times act in very unChristian ways.

      Your love for Jehovah is the most important thing, and be aware there are plenty of other victims just like yourself, who are grouping together for comfort and understanding.

      I strongly suggest you look for comfort and understanding from other victims in the congregation, those who see things in a different way than the typical zombie witness.

      And please NEVER think the problem is you. There are huge problems with the way things are done in congregations, because they are full of good witnesses who are not necessarily good Christians. Good witnesses blame you, good Christians sympathize with you.

  39. Mike says:

    Sorry for all your sadness, but you are right about one thing. Billions have read the bible and misunderstand it especially in this site.

    Mike

    • Ricardo says:

      Being a good Christian is more important than being a good Witness, Mike. Not that I’m saying you aren’t a good Christian. But from the abuse some of us have received from our organization, it is hardly worth understanding the truth, if in response you are going to mentally, emotionally and sexually abuse your spiritual brothers.

      Sometimes we need to look at ourselves, at our own religion, and wonder what on earth is going on.

      When good sheep who love Jehovah are not being appreciated, but instead treated like dirt, there is something seriously wrong with our organization.

      Knowing the truth is not enough. Living the truth is essential.

      • Mike says:

        @Ricardo

        Your statement has some truth in it. However, I am reminded, of the countless articles written about how imperfect we are and how at times we might hurt each others feelings or perhaps respond in a way that perhaps might not be so Christian like.

        The problem with some is that they believe, that because Jehovah is perfect, so should be his organization. But that has never been the case since the beginning of bible times.

        Another thing, (setting love aside) we do not truly know what any of these people have gone through, what they have done, how remorseful they are, or if it is even true. (Not everyone gets disfellowshipped) For sure we have not heard both sides.

        Everything is not like they say here. Other than those who I believe are to young to decide and parents will them, which I think is wrong, these people knew what to expect and what they are getting themselves into.

        This organization does not try to force people to stay in it, you want to leave, leave! That being said, the organization as do I believe that this is the only way to salvation. People here do not have to believe it and those who leave do not have to believe it.

        Now they want some type of understanding when it comes to being disfellowshipped,how it should work, and it is not a bible teaching, I, just like these folks here say, have researched it and I believe it is bible based. At the end of the day it does not matter what we think, it only matters what the family member things, if they believe in disfellowshipping they have that right, just like those who left have that right. it does not matter if the rest of the world things they are wrong. Look how many people even today thing Jesus is wrong.

        Most of the people leave for mostly 3 reason (There could be more reasons, I said mostly) 1) They have their own desires of some type. 2) They found what they believe to be the truth. 3) They could never make the truth their own. (For whatever their reason is)

        Sometime people just think things should be their way, or on their time table, or according to their feelings or beliefs. (I know some of you are going to mention the GB. So go for it I do not care.) We agreed to follow the organization and their way if not just leave. But the freedom you want do not take away from others. Believe what you want to believe and let others believe what they want.

        I have said these several times. If the JW’s are wrong they have nothing to worry about. but if they are right, it is not the JW’s they have to worry about.

        Thank you Mike

        • dee2 says:

          Mike,

          You stated:

          “That being said, the organization as do I believe that this is the only way to salvation.”

          I note that according to WT theology, the 144,000 who go to heaven do NOT have to go through 1000 years of refinement in order to become perfect, they become perfect instantly upon being resurrected. Yet the people who will survive Armageddon and those who will be resurrected on earth will have to go through 1000 years of refinement in order to become perfect.

          Why is this the case? Why the inequity between the two groups? Shouldn’t the Armageddon survivors and persons resurrected on earth be granted INSTANT perfection just like the 144,000 who go to heaven? Why do they have to wait 1000 years in order to achieve perfection?

        • Ricardo says:

          Thanks, Mike. I like the way you brush aside the mental and emotional abuse that we victims have received from the leadership of our organization as simply being imperfection, imperfection which we have been told to expect.

          Are you unaware that the bullying has become a culture in our organization? If it was just the random elder here and there it would be imperfection. When it is the majority of the elders, it becomes a culture. I have been to various congregations, in various countries, and the elders are all the same: bullies.

          You may like to refute this. Please take the example of where the three elders in one congregation produced a forged letter from the Governing Body so as to stop the investigation into one of them lying.

          If this is not bullying, can you please give me a legitimate reason why elders would fake a letter from the GB?

          One of the elders was from Australia, one from Canada, and one from the local Asian country. Did the Aussie elder say:’No, no, we can’t do this. This is lording it over the brother and dishonest’? Did the Canadian? Did the Asian? No, none of them did. Because it is the general practice everywhere to bully the sheep.

          How come these mongrels can get away with so much, yet come down so heavy on us sheep? If we don’t get our pioneer hours by one hour, kaboom! They come down on us like a tonne of bricks and want us to step down, yelling at us when we refuse. Yet they can do anything.

          Mike, is this love? Is it love for the elders to treat good sheep who love Jehovah as if they are trash? Have we been told anywhere to expect not just imperfection but actually bullying, bullying that leads on to ruining our life?

          Does this make you proud to be a witness, Mike?

          So the question I ask you, Mike, is why doesn’t the GB fix it up?

          In the matter of leaving, I don’t want to leave. I want to see these monsters who are called shepherds reap what they sow. But even if I did want to leave, how to do so without getting shunned? Without disassociating myself or getting disfellowshipped? How do I freely leave?