QUESTION: I have been reading all the q & a's on the site lately and, once again, find your answers are the ones that make the most sense. When you said that with Jw's, its more about the organization than Christ, I found that to be true as well.It seems they spend more time focusing on defending their doctrine, than focusing on the worship of God. My nephew once told me that his wife gets an email once a month telling them what their door to door "topic" would be for that month,and it included exactly what to say in response to anticipated questions!!!! Who does this??? Do they not trust that their members know what to say and how to say it? How insulting. This is made evident when someone asks a question of them, and you get the same word to word answer from all of them. This is only one of the many reasons people consider them a cult. Its similar to a "stepford wife" scenario. The other thing I see repeatedly from them, is how they answer questions with very very long winded answers. Obviously, an attempt to obfuscate. (I am sure they are looking this word up now lol)This also resembles a "training" tactic. Anyhow, maybe one day they will see the reality of this and how it appears to most people. It actually greatly hinders their credibility, thus, putting themselves in a weaker position of authority without any real grasp of the truth. Thanks for listening.
ANSWER: Good afternoon, Rita. How are you today? Glad to see that you are reading the board, and also glad that you think my answers make sense and find them helpful. I have always tried to base my answers on the Scriptures, first and foremost, and then on plain ole' common sense.
Yes, I do believe that it is more about the Organization, than it is about Christ, to the average JW. I also realize that the JWs would take great exception to that statement, but when I see them start pointing people to Christ instead of promoting the Organization, then I will see things differently. Until then, they are just going to have to realize that they are the ones giving this impression to the readers by their own comments.
You wrote...."My nephew once told me that his wife gets an email once a month telling them what their door to door "topic" would be for that month,and it included exactly what to say in response to anticipated questions!!!! Who does this???"
You know, that is amazing. Basically, they are being prepped for what to say at the door, in case someone has a question about the religion, and no doubt, even to dispel an idea that the person has about the religion.
I would love to know what some of those "anticipated questions" are. Hmmm...hope I get a visit soon...:)
You said...."Do they not trust that their members know what to say and how to say it?"
Evidently not. You correctly brought out how you get the same word-for-word answer from just about any JW you talk to, about any given subject. Now, the JWs would call this "unity". Most thinking people would call it "programming"/"brainwashing". Unity is great, but people don't have to sound like tape recorders, in order to be united. If you asked any 10 people in my church how to explain the plan of salvation, we would all believe the same way the Scriptures lay out for us, but we would all have individual ways of explaining it. It wouldn't be the same exact wording from each person, making it obvious it was a programmed answer.
Let me just make some comments in this regard, Rita. I have, like you, been reading the comments on here over the past few weeks. I was in Florida for a week, but still tried to at least read the board while I was gone.
Some of the statements that are made by certain JWs here, are nothing short of mind-boggling. Aside from Eddie G thinking that born again Christians worship crosses, I saw from another JW expert, what I believe are some of the all-time most outlandish statements I have ever seen on this forum. I do not mean to be unkind to this person as a human, because I honestly love these people as ones for whom Christ gave His life, and shed His blood to save.
But the comments that they write, evidently with a straight face, illustrate perfectly what you are talking about, in regards to why people perceive them as a cult. When I first read this comment from the expert, I honestly had to read it several times, because I thought there was no possible way that they were intending it the way it sounded.
I am referring to this statement from a JW expert....
“First off, ask yourself this, did the Watchtower society know it was an error or did they really believe that it was wrong to do such?
They really believed it was wrong to do such. So then at that time it was not an error! So you can't say they had knowledge that their errors would result in death. That makes no sense!!
Mistakes and errors can only be mistakes and errors after the fact!! You do realize that don't you?”
When I read this, I honestly could not believe that anyone would write such a statement, that an error/mistake can only be an error/mistake after the fact, and if they believed at the time it was not an error, then it wasn't.
I thought..."Surely they didn't mean that". But the same expert removed all doubt in a later writing, by making the same comment AGAIN.
I quote from their later writing....
"As I said an error or mistake can only be an error or mistake after the fact.”
I mean, what do you even say to something like that? That's about like saying that arsenic is really not poisonous or dangerous, until at some later time, the person determines that arsenic is poisonous. OOOO-KAY!
No, actually, error is error, and wrong is wrong, whether the person knows it or not. Does that even need to be explained?
You know, Rita, its really sad how they think. It really is. They are so programmed to defend the Society, at all costs, that they don't even mind making themselves look silly and off-the-wall in doing it.
Also, I've noticed they can believe 2 completely contradictory statements at the same time, and actually argue BOTH points of view. Consider this example, from the above-mentioned quote.
This expert, in 2 replies to the same person, both replies apparently coming on the SAME day, made 2 completely contradictory comments.
Comment #1- "“The important thing is that once an error was discovered it was corrected.”
Then, in the very next reply, we see the following....
Comment #2- "As I said an error or mistake can only be an error or mistake after the fact.”
Uhm, excuse me, but if an error/mistake is not an error/mistake until AFTER the fact, then how can statement #1 be true, since there is NO ERROR to discover until the determination is made that it is an error? How can you correct an error that isn't an error, or that only BECOMES an error when we say its an error? To "discover an error", wouldn't that necessarily imply that the error was ALREADY THERE??
Its enough to make your head spin.
At the bottom of that mumbo-jumbo, is the notion that "truth" is whatever the Society says it is at the time, and "truth" can change at the Society's whims. What has to happen to a person mentally, to get them to the point where they are trained to think like that?
You know what, Rita? After reading all that, I'm feeling kind of "obfuscated" myself! (I admit, I had to look that one up, too....:D)
Rita, you said...."Anyhow, maybe one day they will see the reality of this and how it appears to most people. It actually greatly hinders their credibility, thus, putting themselves in a weaker position of authority without any real grasp of the truth. Thanks for listening."
You're correct, of course. But here's the thing...Since they have been trained to see people like you and me as "goats" who are blinded by Satan, they can just dismiss our "lack of understanding" as being due to our inability and total cluelessness in regards to what is true. Therefore, they have become conditioned to not care how ridiculous they look, because they actually believe THEY are the ones "making sense" and being "logical", having no idea how it really looks. Ever read the story of the Emperor's New Clothes, with him prancing around thinking he is the best-dressed guy in town, having no clue how he REALLY looked? Enough said.
As always, Rita, it is great to hear from you, and I always enjoy reading your observations. Thanks for writing, and take care.
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: Hi Derrick, I saw that "answer" from that expert too. All I can say is "Wow",... I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. This poor person didn't have a clue. She was trying so hard, but repeatedly contradicted herself. I thought maybe she may be very young or maybe a newer member. She was extremely over zealous, and just did not provide any logic whatsoever. Maybe the organization should be more careful who is representing them on websites. She is the perfect example of how her answers just discredit her organization and everything they claim. Your example of the Emperors's New Clothes was spot on. I will keep in touch with my observations. I am sure there will plenty more to comment on. Take Care.
Yeah, "WOW" was my reaction, too. I can't say that I cried, but I do distinctly remember just shaking my head, and not believing what I had just read, and thinking there was no way that was what was intended. As I said before, I actually went back several times and re-read the comments, hoping that I was misunderstanding it. It seems I wasn't.
I have no idea how old she is, but I actually suspect she has been in for awhile. Sadly, the answers consist mostly of emotional rants, and accusations against the questioner, instead of actual Biblically sound points.
I don't think the Society actually has any control over who signs up here. I know there have been remarks made by some Witnesses about other Witnesses, to the effect of that they should not be answering questions about the religion. If they did have control over it, there would be certain ones not allowed to answer for them, that I am sure of.
I just honestly wish that Jehovah's Witnesses would learn that ad-hominem personal attacks against a person ("shooting" the messenger, instead of refuting the message), is one of the sorriest and most ineffective debate tactics that there is. It is even listed as a common debate FALLACY, yet seems to be the favorite approach of many of them. To be fair, there are a couple of JWs here who don't do that, but the majority of them do, and will even tell falsehoods about people, just to discredit them.
Makes me wonder if, deep down, they themselves know how their answer looks, but they have to defend the Society at all costs.
Please do keep in touch, because as you said, there will no doubt be many more observations to comment on. There certainly have been, for as long as I've been here. This is probably the most lively board on Allexperts, in my opinion. Take care, and God bless.