The must-read story of a ministerial servant and his wife who woke up in the last few months

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Daniel and Devon Genser are now enjoying their freedom after facing some huge dilemmas over the past few months

I will never forget the feeling of liberation I felt in November 2013 when I published the story of my awakening on JWsurvey, thus revealing my identity for anyone who knew me.

I knew the article would eventuate in my disassociation from the organization. In fact it took only two months for the inevitable phonecall from my congregation coordinator. But regardless of the ramifications, being open and honest about my authentic identity was absolutely the right decision – a decision I would make again and again if necessary.

It was with feelings of nostalgia for my own “outing” that I devoured the article published a few hours ago by Daniel Genser, only recently a ministerial servant in the North-Western corner of America. The article is titled “What I Believe to Be True – and How I Have Come to Believe It,” and I would urge all JWsurvey subscribers to read a superb treatise that brims with love, empathy, humanity, and above all, intellectual honesty.

What I Believe to Be True – and How I Have Come to Believe It
By Daniel Genser

I don’t want to rehash Daniel’s story because I want you to read it yourself, and I don’t think I could possibly do it justice. But it’s worth acknowledging how incredibly recently the events described in the above article transpired.

Daniel writes of still struggling to reconcile doubts over his faith as recently as the 2014 Annual Meeting at which JW Broadcasting was announced, and the now-notorious 2014 United States branch visit at which Tony Morris unleashed his ‘wisdom’ about certain types of clothing to 1 million bewildered American Witnesses.

Fast forward only a few months, and Daniel and his wife Devon find themselves in a remote part of Italy, completely free from their Witness indoctrination and, amazingly, with their relationship in tact having awoken simultaneously.

The journey of how they reached this realization, the insurmountable problems with Watchtower dogma they wrestled with, and the dilemmas they faced are all superbly and eloquently documented in Daniel’s article, which is why I feel it is so deserving of everyone’s attention.

Daniel’s thoughts on shunning are insightful and thought-provoking, and his writing on the 607 BCE controversy is one of the best concise treatments on this complicated subject I have ever read.

Apart from anything else, it is extremely heartening to see how quickly Jehovah’s Witnesses can shed their mindless loyalty to the Governing Body when they are intellectually honest and conscientious enough. And if that isn’t a happy-ever-after in itself, you have the fact that a husband and wife have pulled off this challenging feat side-by-side.

 

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83 thoughts on “The must-read story of a ministerial servant and his wife who woke up in the last few months

  • July 9, 2015 at 5:13 am
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    Very well told and some great points, 607. but also this was well put, and I would hope that many JW that viewed this JWTV with Tony Morris would come away with the same impression.

    “The next event was a special meeting for JW’s in the United States in early November. It was a live stream from world headquarters broadcasted to all congregations in the United States branch territory.

    Anthony Morris III, one of the seven members of the Governing Body gave this talk to about 1,000,000 JWs across the USA.

    This man, supposedly one of a select few chosen by Jesus Christ, chose on a historic occasion to talk all about the many spiritual dangers of tight pants. To guilt sisters who wear exercise pants — while jogging. To guilt trip brothers who wear close fitting suit pants. To call into question the reasonableness of fancy socks. To denigrate brothers over 23 years of age who are not in an appointed position. To assert that “tight pants” are an elaborate conspiracy by “homosexual fashion designers” because they want to see young JW men in them. It was embarrassing to listen to.

    The way the the talk was delivered was embarrassing, too. It sounded as if he wasn’t even prepared. It sounded like he just rolled out of bed, got in front of the camera, and just started spouting off on his pet peeves. I left that meeting feeling very small. The religion I was in was not expansive, not life-affirming. It was small. It was petty. And it was utterly controlling.

    • July 9, 2015 at 11:12 am
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      @Kat, I enjoyed that comment from his article the most too and nobody could have been said it better!

      This was an amazing article that he wrote and I am so glad that Lloyd posted it here for all of us to see.

    • July 9, 2015 at 4:35 pm
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      That’s one of my favorite topics of the article too. I think the research that Daniel did regarding his questions and concerns about the organization and the doctrines are all along the same lines of research we’ve all done to be where we are at today, on this website. But the fact that he meticulously documented his research and facts, it’s absolutely priceless for someone questioning the organization. When I first came out, I didn’t actually know where to start, I would have loved to read this article.

      But aside from that, I was thinking about how he felt when he saw Anthony Morris III give that talk. I came out before JW broadcasting, but up until then, I thought all the talks by the CO’s and DO’s were always so inspiring and affirming, and surely the GB would even be more so… but… they are clowns. I’m so glad Daniel and his wife could see that. I wonder if he would have delayed his decision to leave, or if his wife would have been as open to the discussion if it wasn’t for the “tight pants” talk.

  • July 9, 2015 at 5:16 am
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    Just read it….utterly fantastic blog post. Concise and to the point…

    I’ll be showing it to my still-in wife.

  • July 9, 2015 at 5:21 am
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    And I would like to thank you for your bravery in coming out and publishing this very must read article, I am sure you will help many.

    All the best to you and your lovely wife, and pleased you found a good home for your sweet cat!!

  • July 9, 2015 at 5:45 am
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    I can identify myself with his opinion almost on 100%.
    Anyway, after reading Franz’s books and checking some factographic sites like jwfacts, or explanatory sites like jwsurvey or meletivilon.com, I have an enormous bunch of arguments, why to leave.
    Happy to read about him. This story might help me to get out my wife, what is the only reason, why I’m also still in.
    But happy to tell, I finished to be an Elder, so now I’m in such a neutral state, 2-3 hours in the ministry a month, not inactive, not good enough to get any of the stupid privileges :)
    Actually beside the obligation to visit meetings from time to time, it’s not a burden to be still in. Just what happens me often, that I start to laugh on meetings. Now is th assembly in front of us, so let’s see, how I can survive that

    • July 9, 2015 at 10:33 am
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      Bobow, Lol about your comment about how you start to laugh in meetings now. I had exactly the same problem when I tried going back to appease my family. Once you are truly awakened you realize how silly it all sounds. I would also inadvertently click my tongue too, not realizing how loud it came out until I got the evil side eye from my sister. I knew then, it was no use trying to fake it. It was too hard!

  • July 9, 2015 at 5:48 am
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    This guy sounds like me and my recent experience, doubts, beliefs, etc., with a couple differences…

    1) He’s done a lot more research than I have. Just as I’ve never been good at memorizing Bible scriptures by number, I have a hard time breaking things down to specific details but go more by the big picture ideas.
    2) My wife and I haven’t left, but are inactive. We recently moved to a new state, which has given us a brief respite, but ultimately still have the burden of accounting to our friends and family who expect us to fall right in with a new congregation out here.

    I really appreciate this article, lots of food for thought.

  • July 9, 2015 at 6:02 am
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    Great piece of writing. It seems that the JW outfit becomes ever more dependent on cruel coercion in order to hold together. Perhaps this is in proportion to the bad publicity and its increasing availability.

    He mentioned that shunning was really beefed up from the 1980s, the years after the 1975 nonense sent several JWs to the Kingdom Hall exit.

    Having failed to steer its flock away from the internet, the Org is now having to compete with the oceans of ex and anti JW websites and vids available; so as well as making it ever harder to leave, JWdom is getting heavy on dunking the littluns before they have a chance to think for themselves.

    How many within the org., despite harbouring serious doubts, only remain to avoid losing all family and social contact is hard to tell, but this piece suggests that there must be many such.

  • July 9, 2015 at 6:28 am
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    Where we can read the story about 607 BCE – 1914CE?
    On Facebook is : Lollard Movement
    They want to replace the Governing Body and look for assist in the USA.

  • July 9, 2015 at 7:22 am
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    Kudos to both Daniel and Devon for their amazing journey, and for documenting it so well. Other than the decriminalizing of drugs, I agree wholeheartedly with every word of their conclusion.

    Hugs to you both, and “Welcome to the world!”

    • July 9, 2015 at 7:30 am
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      Hi Steve, though I would not speak on Daniel’s behalf, I think he was referring, not to cocaine, heroine, etc, but to drugs like cannabis (marijuana) which on closer inspection can hardly be classed as a drug at all. Marijuana doesn’t kill people, there is no known lethal dose, and it is abundantly less harmful to society than alcohol. And yet prisons in America are brimming with people whose ‘crime’ was to distribute it. I do understand your sentiments on this score, and I shared them myself until only recently, but it is remarkable what you uncover once you start expanding the remit of a critical mind to multiple aspects of society. The prohibition of marijuana is essentially religiously motivated. Religion doesn’t like competition in the area of experiencing bliss, euphoria and serenity.

      • July 9, 2015 at 10:07 am
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        Good points, Cedars. I would also add that part of the stigma of Marijuana/Cannabis, in the U.S. anyway, has to do with a long-standing political stance on it being classified as a Schedule I drug (which includes Heroin, LSD, etc.). Historically, it was President Nixon in the 1970’s that pushed on classifying it as such despite all scientific and medical evidence. Historical records showed that his main motivation was purely personal as he associated the use of Marijuana with “radical demonstrators”, which he was trying to squelch.

        This is similar to how the U.S. government associated atheism with communism in the 1950’s to push a theistic agenda and proceeded to add God in the pledge of allegiance, etc. Once they did, they made belief in God intricately associated with being an American. But that’s another discussion for another time…

        In any case, based on all available facts and studies it is a useful substance and has an innumerable number of benefits. Like all things, best in moderation but definitely better than many things that are legal (e.g. alcohol).

        Oh, and for full disclosure, I live in Colorado where it is perfectly legal. There are more Marijuana Shops that Starbucks. It’s all good.

    • July 10, 2015 at 5:53 am
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      Keep in mind that decriminalization does not mean legalisation. Decriminalization only means that you can’t be put in prison for possessing small amounts of drugs for personal use. The drugs are still illigal and you may have to pay a fine instead.

      • July 10, 2015 at 6:50 am
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        And to add to Maria’s comment, it still goes down on a person’s arrest record, making it harder to get a job, thus so many having been arrested or fined for possession of pot, being out of work and having to rely on the state for food and rent.

        One time when I was in service, I brought up the topic of not arresting people and putting them in prison for possession of pot since it because in the end makes it so hard for these people to get work, even if they haven’t been put in prison for being caught with marijuana and even those in the car group had to agree with me.

        Nobody in their right mind, can think that throwing people in prison for smoking pot and giving them a criminal record makes any sense and it doesn’t keep people from doing it anyway and it isn’t any more dangerous to smoke than cigarettes.

        A few years ago, one of our elders was fighting cancer and going through chemo and I brought up medical marijuana and told him about it as it makes going through chemo so much easier and they can eat etc. and he listened to me as he was being made so sick by chemo. I told him that you can eat it in food and yes it’s a feel good drug but what is the difference between that feel good drug and any other prescription drug with cocaine or heroin in it. They are more addicting than marijuana and doctors prescribe them for pain. Why not marijuana which is less dangerous to use. He had to agree with me.

    • July 10, 2015 at 7:12 pm
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      I think many drugs should be completely legalized and regulated. There are some that are truly vile, but, at the very last, we should be treating abuse as a health issue, not a criminal issue.

  • July 9, 2015 at 8:02 am
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    Daniel Genser wrote, “I decided to stop going to meetings because my beliefs and values no longer align with the official policies of the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society and their affiliate corporations.”

    Witnesses are told that the laws of God do not change. I’m sure there are many more JWs who are finding it very difficult to keep their sights aligned with the continually-changing doctrines and policies of the Watchtower organization.

  • July 9, 2015 at 8:13 am
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    Thank you for this article!

  • July 9, 2015 at 8:36 am
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    Wow what a well written article.
    More and more people are leaving thanks to crazy rants from GB members. Please keep the ridiculous broadcasts coming!
    I

  • July 9, 2015 at 8:48 am
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    Daniel and Devon, “Welcome to the world of Humanity!” “Welcome to Freedom!”
    The only good thing that I got out of being raised as a witness was not to judge anyone. I used that as my belief in giving people a chance to be the best that they could be. When the organization went against that belief I knew it wasn’t right. They are not what they claim to be. When you get to the point in life that you don’t even recognize your own brother or sister,who is not a witness and disfellowshipped, something is definitely not right. This was a turning point for me in leaving. But as you know leaving your witness family is one of the hardest part of starting over. Your door maybe open to them, but chances are they will never use it unless they also come to the same conclusion, that being a Jehovah’s Witness is wrong.
    I never went into any scripture or belief that they were wrong, except that the thought of Jehovah and his angels killing over 7 billion people and then not letting those who died have any chance of starting over in a resurrection, and then the thought of myself and what I did or not do effect the life of one of those lost, blood guilt! No amount of reasoning can make that right! Having the world on your shoulders is really hard to do. Scriptures can be turned into whatever you want them to mean if you have the thought of controlling people. Doesn’t make it right!
    Enjoy your freedom, it has been hard fought for by countless people! Love dearly what you wrote!

  • July 9, 2015 at 9:46 am
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    I have found that people who are homophobic views have muted same sex desires. Interesting about the tight pants thing, to even come up with such a thought worries me as to where he got the idea from. Peraps in his own mind.

    Shame satan put the new hq on a contaminated site or is the real god trying to nobble the JW Bystanders

  • July 9, 2015 at 10:22 am
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    Also, I’m not surprised in the least when he says of JW Broadcasting:

    “Having the opportunity to see and examine Governing Body members in the flesh on a regular basis would have a huge impact on me in the following months.”

    I would like to concur that seeing these idiots broadcasting their craziness across the internet accelerated my awakening like a shot of radioactive espresso as well. In creating JW Broadcasting, the GB truly have loaded up an Uzi and pointed it cheerfully at their own feet. Even my devout JW parents have commented they they’re “not fond” of Steven Lett.

    • January 1, 2017 at 5:48 am
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      Steven Lett talks to us as if we are kindergarden children. And what is wrong with his face? Is it made of rubber? Sometimes he appears on parts of the meetings now, and I can’t stop myself saying out loud, “I can’t stand this guy.”

  • July 9, 2015 at 12:18 pm
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    Black Sabbath under the sun.

  • July 9, 2015 at 12:45 pm
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    Amazingly well written story. Everyone…please post this article to your Facebook pages.

  • July 9, 2015 at 1:06 pm
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    I’m an English man in new york

  • July 9, 2015 at 5:55 pm
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    Most of us that leave the JW religion can’t move away like Daniel and Devon did. Most of us have to live in the same community and either hide in our homes or run the chance of meeting our former friends from the Kingdom Hall when we are out and about. I am one of those people.

    Today when I went to the grocery store, one of the elder’s wives who I was good friends with for over 40 years had run into the store and as she passed me, I said hi to her an she smiled and said hi to me too and kept going. I am sure she was just as uncomfortable in running into me as I was uncomfortable running into her. That is how I feel every time I leave the house. I wonder if there is a car group driving past me and what they are saying about me and why I left. I feel uncomfortable every time I go out of the house. I hate that feeling but no matter how much I hate being in this position, I will not go back to the Kingdom Hall for anything once I found out what a sham religion it is.

    I am so happy for those who can move away like Daniel and Devon. That is the best way to escape that cult if you can do it.

    • July 11, 2015 at 12:06 am
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      I have the same situation. I live in a place where everyone knows me and used to love me.
      I meet them left and right. I realize how uncomfortable they feel by their fake smiles but I view them in a different way. The way I used to view Bible studies. People that need to be liberated because they are rotting in a prison cell with no windows.They have been denied all the happiness and beauty this world can bring. So I greet them cheerfully, warmly and I think they can FEEL how much I care for them. Several have already left and are grateful. Dear anonymous, try this new way of looking at things. Everyone secretly longs to be happy, to be free, no matter how brainwashed they are.

      • July 11, 2015 at 6:06 am
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        @Gameisover, I so desperately want to go over to their houses (the ones that I can trust) and tell them the whole truth but I am so scared to do to do it.

        So many of them, I think are depressed because of the demands of the Watchtower. The young woman that is the mother of the girl I studied with (hates it) told me that if I really loved them, I’d tell them the truth about the “truth” but the only thing is though, is that since she didn’t get involved strongly like most are, she doesn’t understand the uphill climb that it takes to get through to them and in the meantime, we have to realize that they probably think we are demonized.

        Believe me when I say that I do want to so much tell them what a trap they are in and to get out but I don’t know how to do it. I know how I was and I thought it was the truth too and that Satan was out to get us away so we’d all die at Armageddon. I thought the Society was run by God and I thought that right up until about a year ago and even then, it took me several months of intense research before I realized what a sham it was and that I had wasted my entire life on a sham.

        That is what makes it so difficult to warn them is that when it sets in that we have been taken advantage of by a very clever organization, we were hurt, angry and depressed because it is then that we realize that we have wasted all our life on it and we can’t get that time back. They might be like me and even lose faith in the resurrection hope which is really depressing too.

        It is such a double-edged sword. On the one hand, you are freed of the emotional blackmail of having the deaths of all your neighbors and relatives not in the “truth” on your head because you didn’t preach to them when you think you should have and then when they die at Armageddon you will feel like it’s your fault or else you will be afraid God is going to kill you at Armageddon because you didn’t preach to them every time you could have etc.

        It is such a double-edged sword because when you realize it’s all a scam, you don’t feel guilty about not having to sit through all those boring meetings and having to go to assemblies and out in service anymore too and that’s like getting out of prison when you are free to live your life and enjoy your free time doing things you always wanted to do but didn’t have time.

        It is so very complicated to be in our situations. What I keep hoping for is that the great “majority” wake up and stop supporting it and it dies.

    • September 29, 2015 at 9:10 am
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      @anonymous my heart grieves for you. Enjoy your freedom and make new friends. Find a new place to worship if that is your desire. The more you get out there and make yourself available for others to get to know you the less uncomfortable you will feel when running into the JW’s. You will start to feel sorry for them but you will be free. Sending you love and light.

  • July 9, 2015 at 7:44 pm
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    Anonymous, you just described my life. I often wondered how many ex-jw’s are walking around like me not wanting to be noticed. I remember an elder saying out in field service one day a few years back that they could form 2 more congregations of ex’s/inactive ones in our territory.

    It frustrates me that I let these people make my world so small. I have to really mentally prepare myself sometimes when I go out so that if I do run into someone, I will hold myself & smile & be friendly because I don’t want to be self-righteous like they are.

    As for the article, I love the fact that he addresses each of the doubts that he has. Most of us have had it whirling around our heads like a washing machine but we were too afraid to address each one thoroughly while we were in. It takes so long to do it because the emotional upheaval that takes first place & dealing with that seemed to be priority for me, at least.

    I went through almost a post-traumatic state for a few months, crying at the drop of a hat over my daughter. Reliving the day she died until I finally was able to come to terms with what I had put aside 20 years ago when she died. I basically had to go through the grieving process this last year & half all over again because my mind had put the fantasy of the new system in place to deal with it.
    Now, I can say that facing those flashbacks & allowing myself to cry has made me stronger. I can only say to others that are new out…Don’t be afraid of your emotions & let yourself cry until it’s out of your system because it is a form of grief & the body has emotions & tears for a reason.

    Love to all.

    • July 10, 2015 at 3:44 am
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      @Grace, what you were saying about the grief of realizing we won’t see our dead loved ones is the worst part of my process of letting go of the JW religion too. Even though I had doubts about Armageddon for a long time, I still clung to the hope of seeing my parents and aunts and uncles and grandparents in the resurrection and the hope that my children wouldn’t face death.

      So much, I want to tell my former “friends” from the hall that they should enjoy their precious lives now instead of wasting them away trying to please men of the Watchtower but I can’t say anything to them. I have to let them think the worst of me and go on with my own life. I have tried with my son and oldest daughter but they refuse to listen and so I have to let them find out on their own.

      Over the week-end a really wonderful man from my first congregation died from loss of blood during a routine operation and another two really nice people from my first congregation are dying, one from leukemia and the other from cancer. A couple months ago another really good friend from my oldest daughter’s congregation died from cancer. It seems that these older people that I first knew when I was snared into the religion are dying like flies now that I am old too and we were all promised that Armageddon was coming in 1975 when we were all young and we believed the lie.

      Every single person that I knew then when I was young that were 30 or 40 then are now dead or in the 90’s if they have lived that long. We were all fooled into believing the lie, just like Eve was fooled by the devil.

      It’s the same devilish lie and it’s fooling people every day in all religions. Every day, JW people are still believing the lie and giving up their lives that they could enjoy right now but they are wasting it away on a man made religion. It is so easy to fool people if you can make them believe that the Bible is from God because facing the fact of our death is so hard to deal with and nobody wants to die or see their loved ones die.

      The only difference between the JW religion and other religions is that other religions teach that if you follow it’s teachings, they will go to heaven to be with their dead loved ones. The Watchtower takes it one step further and promises it’s followers that they won’t even die, which is the same words the Devil used when it tricked Eve.

      The Watchtower’s lie is crueler than the other religions because followers of the Watchtower are taught that they should not even enjoy their life right now but have to wait to enjoy life in the new world and spend every minute working for the Watchtower. They use emotional blackmail into making followers think that every person that they don’t convert to the JW religion is going to be killed at Armageddon. At least other so-called Christian religions don’t use emotional blackmail on their followers the way the Society does. They don’t resort to emotional blackmail to make them preach and they don’t use the emotional blackmail of disfellowshipping them if they don’t keep doing it and decide to quit.

      All religions fool their followers into believing they won’t die and if they believe it themselves, they can convince others they won’t die too. It happened to me and I thought I was smarter than that.

      There was a lot of truth in the Bible when Jesus said that many people would perform all these things in his name but they never knew him.

      • July 10, 2015 at 6:50 am
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        Grace and Anonymous, both of your comments have touched me.
        Grace, I remember my Pharisitical father-in-law saying the very same thing about his territory; if all the inactive ones came back to the Kindom Hall then they could form another congregation. It did go through my brain at the time, why all of these people stopped attending the JW meetings. They were disillusioned of course, with the lies and the problems in the congregations.
        Yes, the JW’s make the world small for you when you leave! They act most unChristian and if they are in a group, they do their best to make you feel like a piece of dog-poop to be avoided.
        When you don’t believe that you will never grow old or die, of that all of your loved ones will live forever, you do yourself a great diservice. As distasteful as it is, you might as well prepare yourself for the inevitable.
        Anonymous, I often wonder at all of the old people in the congregations now. Like you said, “they are all dying like flies”. I remember when these elderly people were the young to middle aged JW’s that were ‘running the show’, giving the pompous talks and hunting down the ‘sinners’ to administer harsh discipline. I wonder what goes through their minds as they sit there, old, decrepit and broke. I guess they can’t leave or get too bitter or they will lose out on their funeral and the announcement of how “faithful” they were for their whole lives.

        • July 10, 2015 at 7:11 am
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          @JJ and the saddest thing about the resurrection hope is that when Witnesses are wasting their lives trying to convert strangers, their own families and former friends are dying off too and once they are gone, they are gone. We won’t have a chance in the new world to make up for all the lost time that we did not spend with them now.

          If we hadn’t spent all that time trying to convert strangers, we would have had more time for our parents and brothers and sisters.

          The saddest of all is those who are wasting their lives away trying to convert strangers and at the same time, shunning their own brothers and sisters and mothers and fathers and sons and daughters. When those people who are shunning are old and on their death beds, those that they had shunned all their lives are nothing to them, even their own children. That is the worst of all. Those people will have given up their families for a religious fantasy.

          Now that my parents are gone, I’d give anything to explain to them why I didn’t have more time for them but it isn’t going to happen. I won’t have a chance in the “resurrection” to explain it to them and it about kills me.

          I’d give anything to go back and know then what I know now but all we can do is try and help those still trapped in the religion to make the most of every day and cherish every day we have with our parents and children and not let a day go by without telling them that. Once they are dead and gone, we won’t get another chance like the Watchtower would like us to believe.

          The Watchtower wants to stand in the way of family relations by putting itself above our families by making us believe that the Watchtower was appointed by God.

          The Watchtower was never appointed by God and has no right to come between families.

      • July 11, 2015 at 1:17 pm
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        @anonymous: “Over the week-end a really wonderful man from my first congregation died from loss of blood during a routine operation”

        I’m sorry to hear about the deaths and sickness of your friends. I am collecting articles about those who have died from refusing blood transfusions. Is there an article on the web or in a paper that you can share about your late friend?

        Thanks.

  • July 9, 2015 at 8:37 pm
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    Can I translate it to Spanish? And make it available in our Spanish channels?

  • July 10, 2015 at 2:05 am
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    I thought Daniel was spot on with his words here.

    “They are just men. Men who are captive to the most dangerous concept of all — that they are chosen by God.”

  • July 10, 2015 at 8:40 am
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    Even if this God that we all once served at one point does exist. I believe what Raymomd Franz felt. Gods existence is still possible but the use of a central organization cannot make sense. It only cause more dilusions and divisions. If there exist a divine being that is aware of this destructive cult corporation whatever you want to call it.. I believe that oneday the almighty himself will destroy it. Or it will destroy itself because of what’s happening. But time will tell. At the mean time we all have recover and move one.

  • July 10, 2015 at 9:32 am
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    Absolutely brilliant article! I have to take time to re-read. All the best to Devon and Daniel <3<3
    It gives me hope to see many people waking up so recently. I'm working on my mother these days, saying a few things here and there and picking her curiosity. The other day she started the conversation herself and said something like: Our family has been ruined by the JWs… I thought I was hearing things (lol). You just never know…

    • July 10, 2015 at 2:17 pm
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      Itfeelsgoodtobefree, That is a BIG sign. I said that very same thing to my husband when I started to wake up because I had pushed my worldly family away for the cult family.

      Just make sure that you are gentle with your reasoning with her. She will become very fragile when she the penny does drop.

  • July 10, 2015 at 12:29 pm
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    I must join in on this. My mother died when I was only
    In my mid twenties. She was a very zealous person, full
    Of love and compassion towards all. However, after she
    Became divorced from my father, who was a cheater, etc
    She became responsible for four children who were teens
    And up. her stress was too much, even though she was
    Mother of very good, helpful kids. I loved her and respected her with all my heart as did my brother and
    Sister.
    With that, I. Remember these self righteous sisters coming over and critizing her because her hours and meeting attendance was faultering somewhat. ?????
    really??? They had worldly husbands who took care of
    Them and had no worries. Did I mention that she was
    Gorgeous and half of them were so jealous they couldn’t
    See straight??? Mom woke up to a lot of things even then.
    One sister who actually studied with her had a bi-racial
    Kid who is grown now and it’s just obvious he isn’t white.
    She even took mom out to clubs where this guy performed
    And she more than knew what went on. This sis also
    Would get up at circuit assemblies in her pink furs and
    Brag about how she brought in entire congregations (by
    Numbers) into the truth. Now excuse me while I go
    Puke. I always thought Jehovah called his sheep.

  • July 10, 2015 at 5:46 pm
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    anonymous –
    I really like your posts, you say so much about how many of us feel.
    I became a JW from the ‘world’. My fleshly family, although against it, lovingly put up with my ‘religious mania’.
    My sadness is, now that ‘I am out’, I cannot apologise to my mother and two brothers for the grief I caused them as they died whilst I was a witness.
    Although I no longer believe Watchtower lies I have not lost my faith in Jesus Christ. Why should I let evil men take away that love. Jesus himself promised that the resurrection would take place. OK, we don’t know when, but I prefer to believe it will happen one day.
    There is much evil manifest in this world, especially when it comes to religious fanaticism, in all its forms.
    I can only hope that there will be a balancing factor of ‘good’ eventually conquering that evil.

  • July 10, 2015 at 9:50 pm
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    all these posts are so sad yet encouraging. Many years wasted preaching to others while ignoring our loved ones, family that were not JW, but tolerated our beliefs, the WT says that worldly families are dangerous and abusive towards JW, I disagree, my family tolerated and always were loving and although did not hold any of my beliefs would listen to me as I ranted on about the kingdom hope, the resurrection.

    When my mom was sick and dying of cancer the elders said she has the resurrection hope, put all your effort into preaching more, this will sustain you, if you draw back you may never see your mother again.

    I regret not spending more time with my mother, and just saying well she will be resurrected better she died before Armageddon where she would have been destroyed as she was in a privileged position having family as JW and had the chance of changing.

    Now that I look back I have so many regrets, and I see the cruelty and judgmental bias of this org, its unloving.

    Spend as much time as you can with your loved ones, its now that what counts, if we can’t love our own then what hope is there.

    We cant turn back the clock. But we can now help others and make a difference so they don’t have to go through what we did, and in turn hurt the very ones we now are sorry we listened to this controlling unbalanced and delusional men.

  • July 10, 2015 at 11:02 pm
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    anonymous and Kat
    On the point of not wanting to bump into JWs. I don’t care anymore. I hold my head up high, knowing that I stood up for truth. If they prefer to believe lies its their prerogative. My conscience is clear. Don’t let the b……s grind you down!

  • July 11, 2015 at 2:28 am
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    Bad Penny what you say is true, standing up for truth has its repercussions with the org, as sad as they are still one can know that they have stood by truth. Thanks

    • July 11, 2015 at 2:59 am
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      @Bad Penny and Kat, thanks for the encouragement. I feel the same as you do because I know that we are the ones that know the real truth and the ones from the Hall are wasting their lives on nothing but as much as I know that and pity those people now, I still feel a little uncomfortable every time I walk out of the house but I do hold my head up high.

      The best way we can “help” our former “friends” is to let them know that we aren’t walking around in a blue “funk”.

      When I first left, my cousin emailed me and suggested I was “isolating” myself and I emailed her back and told her I wasn’t “isolating” myself.

      That is what they think. They think that when we leave we are depressed and laying in bed all day long or something. That is what the Watchtower has programmed them into thinking is what happens when you walk away and it couldn’t be further from the truth. I am happier now than I have been in 50 years.

      • July 11, 2015 at 6:29 am
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        The JWs are told they are Gods happy people, seriously if an independent study were made I would not be surprised that there is more depression and anti-depressants being used by JWs than the general population. In my old Kingdom hall and those around, were full of depression and people who suffered from high levels of anxiety.

        • July 11, 2015 at 7:30 am
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          I forget where I heard or read it, and from what source, but I remember learning that you cannot keep people living on Red Alert. People cannot sustain that kind of vigilance, expectation or fear for very long. You must let them ‘come down’ and normalize.
          The JW/GB makes it there #1 priority to keep their followers on Red Alert every minute of the day, every day of their lives. (I am convinced many of the more stern jerks in that Organziation do not believe it so they can manage just fine by simply pretending that they expect The End of the System or that Jehovah is watching/judging them). The rest of the people are stressed out, totally anxious that they have a secret sin, that they’ve screwed up somehow or maybe not done enough to help others or their family. Hence the need for antidepressants or some drug to level off at the end of the day. Or if they don’t feel the joy they are told that they have they must use pharmaceuticals to get that happiness.
          They are a miserable bunch aren’t they?!?
          My wife is at the Convention today and she asked me not to come. She said that she needs to go and get some of her joy back, hinting that because I don’t believe that garbage I’m responsible for the way sherman feels. Nice, eh?

          • July 11, 2015 at 7:39 am
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            Don’t know where that word ‘sherman’ came from. Silly autocorrect!
            It was just supposed to be ‘she’.

  • July 11, 2015 at 7:30 am
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    Daniel had many nagging doubts, while still carrying on in
    the religion. I think this is the case for many of us, but we push
    such thoughts to the back of our mind. Still being in the grip of
    the monolithic org.

    The Genocide in the Bible was an issue that kept resurfacing
    for me. The WT, rationalisation, that the people were immoral
    and we’re polluting the land, seemed weak to me.
    What could be more immoral than armed warriors slaughtering
    every living thing, including unarmed women and babies?
    I had to agree with a comment in our local newspaper. That,
    “Such things happening today, would be classed as. War crimes”.

    Another puzzling question to me, was. The Origin of Evil.
    God we were told was omnibenevolent, ( Good in the absolute
    sense,) Also, originally he was alone in the universe, so evil did
    not exist. Then he started creating other beings, with the
    potential to do evil. So the concept of evil could only have come
    from God. Being omniscient, he would be aware of the pain and
    distress that evil would bring, to the living, feeling, creatures that
    he had made. Evil from a source of absolute goodness, was very
    hard to reconcile!

    Despite some misgivings, I kept on for 24 years. The last straw
    came in 1982 at a WT, study, where they said, we were not
    allowed to question the F&DS. In other words thinking was not
    necessary, it would be done for us.

    Daniel says “Research, Research, Research.! It requires effort
    but pays off in enabling us to separate “Fact from Fantasy”,
    and break free from mind control.

    • July 11, 2015 at 11:58 am
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      @Ted, I always thought about evil too. My thinking was that according to the book of James, anyone can sin if they think about it long enough and of course the perfect angels “sinned” so what was to say that if Adam and Eve hadn’t eaten of that fruit, that they might have sinned some other way. Why was the only way they could sin was to eat the fruit? What about if Adam had beat on Eve or killed Eve? What about if he had been cruel to his kids or the animals? Why was the only “sin” that they could do was to eat some fruit? I forget where it was but it was in Watchtower publications that God first waited to see if any animals would be a mate for Adam but when he saw that no animal would be a suitable mate, then he made Eve. So, then why would having sex be a sin if God hadn’t made up his mind yet when he made Adam?

      Then what about their offspring? What makes us think that they wouldn’t have sinned even if Adam and Eve hadn’t? What makes JW’s think that once they make it into the “new world” that they wouldn’t sin? They think that because Satan wouldn’t be around that they wouldn’t be prone to sin but Satan and all those angels with him sinned and he and all those angels were also created perfect, as was Adam and Eve.

      All the years I was in the “truth” those thoughts went through my mind and I kept pushing them away but in the back of my mind, it never did make sense to me.

    • July 11, 2015 at 1:33 pm
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      Ted:

      About the biblical stories of genocide and mass murder in the name of Jehovah: We are indoctrinated as infants into believing that is what is good in God’s eyes. For me, it all started with the “My Book of Bible Stories.” Also, some may not remember this but the WTS also had a collection of cassette tapes for children that were dramatized narrations of bible story accounts, including those stories where people were dying at Jehovah’s hand. Like many JW children I suspect, I basically memorized the “My Book of Bible Stories” and I could recite the cassette tapes word-for-word. For several of my most impressionable years I went to bed every night with those tapes playing in the background. I can still hear Miriam–Aaron’s wife–scream when she was struck with leprosy. I used to entertain my parents on long car trips with my re-enactments and imitations of the various voices–some of which were screaming as they were being tormented in the stories. Looking back on all that is truly surreal.

      My point is, born-in JWs may not think about the genocide and other types of violence because we are taught from infancy that it was righteous. This understanding makes it easier to then accept that all those who are not JWs will die by Jehovah’s hand in the future. However, if you are a JW parent that is “un-plugged” (thanks Cedars for the term) the WTS literature for children really stands out in stark contrast to other children’s stories that are simply wholesome and innocent. That small detail is one of the many things that prevented me from indoctrinating my children–I could not in good conscience read bible stories to them that glorified and praised violent acts of genocide.

      • July 13, 2015 at 11:59 am
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        You should see the new videos they’re coming out with. The word melodramatic comes to mind but maybe I’m being to nice.

  • July 11, 2015 at 10:45 am
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    Cedars,
    This was a great post… I just read his story. It’s incredible. It saddens me that some of us are so pushed into a corner with our beliefs that once we come out of the org we decide to not believe anything for a time. Glad he and his wife are happy. And I’m glad all you other guys and gals who make it out are finding happiness wherever or whatever it may be. I’m still working on my research and figuring out with my husband who is an “unbelieving mate” what my best strategy is…. Good luck to you all…

  • July 11, 2015 at 3:02 pm
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    @Anonymous, ” What makes JW’s think that once they make it into the “new world” that they wouldn’t sin?”

    That’s a very interesting question. WT, 00, 4/15, carries an article entitled.
    “The New World, Will You Be There”. The article is based on Isa 65, and
    Rev, 21, It concedes that there may be rebels in the new world, but says
    “They will not be allowed to live to disturb the tranquility”. Then on the very
    same page, they cite Rev 21: 1-5, that says “Death will be no more”.

    So we extrapolate from that, that people will still have free will, and
    can choose to steal, rape, or kill. The Earth too has to be filled with more
    millions, to fulfil God’s original plan. So much more than the odd rebel
    is more than likely. It’s all so contradictory and unbelievable !

    • July 12, 2015 at 3:18 am
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      @Ted, I remember the Society has taught that for as long as I can remember that those who sin in the “new world” will be done away with but it doesn’t add up with Rev. 20:7-15 where it describes a 2nd Armageddon after Satan has been abyssed for 1,000 years and he’s let out of the abyss and he goes again to mislead the “nations” and all those that follow him will be thrown into the lake of fire. So, if all these people end up following Satan again, why aren’t they all just killed off before the 2nd Armageddon? And how long would these people that follow Satan again, be allowed to be misled before being burnt with the fire that comes down from heaven to kill them? Here it doesn’t say in the 2nd Armageddon that Jesus/Michael and his angels are going to kill them, but it’s going to be fire from heaven.

      When I was a Witness, I never gave any of those scriptures a 2nd thought. How dumb was I???? I should have figured it out a long time ago, but I listened to that nonsense for 50 years but it took Youtube videos and jwsurvey and jwfacts to make me come to my senses but it’s better to learn late than not learn at all. That’s my motto.

  • July 11, 2015 at 4:02 pm
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    How many times
    Can they fill me with lies
    And I listen again
    Twisting the truth
    And they’re playin’ around with my head, O.K.
    The things they will do and the things they will say
    But they don’t really understand
    Tears fill my eyes when I hear all the cries
    For the reason today

    And they don’t really know even what they’re talkin’ about
    And I can’t image what empty heads can achieve
    Leave me alone, don’t want your promises no more
    ‘Cos rock & roll is my religion and my law
    Won’t ever change, may think it’s strange
    You can’t kill rock & roll, it’s here to stay

  • July 11, 2015 at 4:38 pm
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    Hi Finn, I agree with you. The way the org, teaches the Bible,
    ( Using it like a blunt instrument to cow people into compliance,)
    is not wholesome for impressionable children. In fact it disturbs
    many adults.

    Thomas Paine said. “Any system of religion that has anything in
    it that shocks the mind of a child, cannot be true”.

    A man I studied with cancelled any further lessons, when we got
    to a part containing a picture of Abraham, arm raised with a knife
    in it, ready to kill Isaac. He said, “That’s not from God, it’s from
    men”, then he added, “I wouldn’t let my son see that”.

    My own little daughter, now aged 57 but when about 5 or 6,
    if she fell out with other kids in the street , would shout to them,
    “You’ll get destroyed at Armageddon” it definitely did not help
    neighbourly harmony. Oh for the benefit of hindsight eh.

  • July 12, 2015 at 5:10 am
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    Anonymous.

    If all JWs, would scrutinise WT, publications and the Bible,
    and apply logic the way that you do. The org, would be
    out of business in no time. Thanks for all your,
    “Research, Research, Research.”

    • July 12, 2015 at 3:29 pm
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      @Ted, thank you.

  • July 12, 2015 at 6:00 am
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    I served as a regular pioneer for 5years the became a Ministerial servant at 18 i served in a isolated island here its a US territory. I did a public talk every month eventually i burned out. Then i decided to give the bethel here a try. It even killed me until i was depressed. I am the last of my family left. Everyelse left, my mother dissassciated herself. But i was wondering all of us here regardless of being Atheist or believer in Christ. have so much gifts and talents like Daniel did. Isn’t there any way we as faders and help take down the borg.??? Does any one have suggestions???

  • July 12, 2015 at 12:30 pm
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    That was an amazing article and I enjoyed reading it very much. Thank you Cedar.

  • July 13, 2015 at 2:38 am
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    Finn,

    Check out a book titled:

    Jehovah’s Witnesses hide a tragedy worse than Waco.

  • July 13, 2015 at 11:53 am
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    I wish I knew Daniel. I’m trying to become a software developer myself. It’s hard to make the right business connections when you lack the social skills to do so.

  • July 13, 2015 at 3:33 pm
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    Daniel – Just finished reading your story. Your research is excellent!
    I too, when I first started to wake up, and before I read any other 607 research, decided to embark on this for myself, I had to know the truth. It took me many hours of extensive research to find the answers, but I’m so glad that I did it. I was like a dog with a bone, I could not leave it alone. The way the Society has manipulated all the relevant dates in that time period to fit in with 607 is truly amazing. The Insight books are full of misleading dates which have been so well integrated into the commentary they become believable!
    My research came from the standpoint that the Bible chronology was true and therefore if we use the correct date for the destruction of Jerusalem, 586 BCE, everything should fit in to God’s timetable perfectly.
    I eventually managed to reconcile both 70 years of exile and 70 years of desolation to fit both scripture and history. No controversy, no argument. Six pages of typing later …I now understood why everything was written down in such detail, so that we could indeed find the truth. This of course meant that my ‘faith’ in the GB as God’s chosen channel, evaporated.
    The realisation that I had been duped took its toll in many ways, it was like losing someone in death. Everything I had believed and trusted was now in doubt.
    I have now researched so many things that I too feel I could write a book! Maybe I will one day.

  • July 14, 2015 at 6:45 am
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    Well done to Daniel and Devon Genser. Brave article, brilliant read. Enjoy your new-found scintillating, sometimes-tremulous freedom!

    Thanks to Lloyd for bringing Daniel’s inspirational article to our attention here.

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