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  1. I recently stumbled across this Youtube channel belonging to Taylor Bjorndahl, a young, married, ex-Jehovah's Witness. Her story is equal parts horrifying as it is riveting. She discusses the abuse of her parents, the church, the elders, her and her sister's court battle to receive justice, getting married, and leaving the church, among other things. Seriously, she's an amazing hero. Thought you guys would appreciate this channel: https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCbSjUal56MUBb-w9uoj-Qzw
  2. feministxtian

    JWs and disfellowshipping

    https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2018/03/18/jehovahs-witnesses-murder-suicide-keego-harbor/409695002/ when will this shit end?
  3. More in link http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2018/02/15/leaked-anti-lgbtq-jehovas-witnesses-video-to-be-shown-to-7-million-people/
  4. lilwriter85

    Ex-JW does Reddit AMA

    Independent did an article on ex-JW's Reddit AMA. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/jehovahs-witnesses-religion-christianity-religious-group-what-is-it-like-a7214966.html https://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/4zzruz/iama_exjehovahs_witness_elder_now_an_activist_i/?sort=top
  5. Friendly Atheist posted this article which isn't surprising, in regards to people who have left certain religious denominations. . The stories are sad and the article is a bit long. http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2016/07/03/many-ex-jehovahs-witnesses-have-received-texts-from-loved-ones-ending-their-relationships-forever/
  6. video in link http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/jehovahs-witnesses-released-bizarre-disturbing-video-teaching-kids-homophobic/#gs.MqHXypM
  7. I thought some of you might be interested in this story of a 14 year old who chose to die because he was indoctrinated into the Jehovah's Witnesses by his aunt (who ended up becoming his legal guardian after a concerned person threatened to call CPS on his parents). It is one of the more detailed accounts I've seen of how these kinds of cases go and how it affects the survivors left behind when the JW view against blood transfusions causes a death: http://kuow.org/post/when-14-year-old-chooses-die-because-religion-can-anyone-stop-him I think it is very relevant to note that the kid in this case had become baptized into the JW religion at the age of 13, just a few months before he became sick. That's a big deal because JWs have a policy that once you have been baptized (even if you are a kid when you're baptized), you can be punished for breaking the rules of the JW faith through disfellowshipping (which essentially means that everyone in the JW religion is supposed to shun you unless you are able to show you are repentant and work your way back into their approval). Accepting a blood transfusion is definitely grounds for being shunned in this way. I do wonder if this poor kid, who had so much trouble finding stability in his life before his aunt took him in and introduced him to the JWs, might not have been so determined to die if it was not for the fear of being shunned by his JW community if he did accept the blood. I think the doctors made a HUGE mistake by not insisting that the JWs leave the room every time they talked to him about blood, because if he was scared about being shunned or having doubts, he certainly would not have admitted that in front of other JWs knowing the potential risk of punishment if he was seen as giving in to "the world". There is more background info on disfellowshipping and shunning here for those who want more context: http://www.jwfacts.com/watchtower/disfellowship-shunning.php
  8. The post here about the woman who prayed away a tornado that then went on to kill other people reminded me of recently seeing this gem from an old copy of Jehovahs Witness literature. In trying to convince their followers that they are actually better off refusing blood transfusions for themselves and their own children, I think they come across as outrageously insensitive to the families of children who unfortunately contracted HIV through blood transfusions in the days before HIV screening. But oh well, screw those "worldly" people. Jehovah was going to kill them in Armageddon anyway.
  9. Or did I get a *special* one? If I'm not busy I will sometimes chat with the door to door religion peddlers, and I had a couple on my porch this morning. Dude read me a couple of scriptures out of his funny Bible, and talked about how Satan rules the world. Then he went on a spiel about how the Jewish people persecuted Jesus Christ. To which I was like uh, what about all those Jewish people that followed him? He brushed me off. He told me the Jews put Jesus to death, I told him I was pretty sure the Romans did it. He told me to read my Bible. I began to get cranky. I told him what he was saying was anti-Semitic. He asked me if the Bible was anti-Semitic and I replied that it sounded like he was interpreting it that way and I thought it was ugly of him. All of a sudden he decides he "doesn't want to debate" with me. I informed him that he was on my porch, I wasn't on his. He asked me if I wouldn't come share "the truth" with him, I told him I wasn't arrogant enough to presume that I knew it. Then he skedaddled. So, all of that to ask, is that normal JW behavior? Or did I get a super nutty one?
  10. Ran across a blogger who appears to be a former Jehovah's Witness who wrote a very powerful account of what it was like for her when she was caught having premarital sex and ended up disfellowshipped. "Disfellowshipping" is what they call it when a JW has broken the rules and must be shunned by all of their JW friends and family as punishment. In some cases people can eventually work their way back into the good graces of the elders and are reinstated, but if the disfellowshipping is for something that is considered especially serious like "apostasy" and you remain unrepentant, being DF'ed will likely mean you never speak to your JW friends and family ever again, since the JWs are taught to avoid "bad association" with non-believers. I suspect that a lot of the young fundies we follow probably secretly can relate to the kinds of feelings she talks about here, even if the discipline process is not exactly the same in other branches of fundiedom. You can read the whole story here (link not broken because she is clearly no longer a fundie as the story makes clear) : https://alaskanaomi.wordpress.com/2015/12/03/kicked-out-of-the-church/
  11. Last Thursday was UN Human Rights Day, and oh what a coincidence, the official Jehovah's Witness website decided to feature on their main webpage an article going on about how the UN is clearly what Revelation Ch 17 is describing as the "Scarlet colored Beast": Full text here but not direct linking since it is their official site: jw.org/en/bible-teachings/questions/scarlet-beast-of-revelation-17/ The problem for JWs is that, in a show of incredibly blatant hypocrisy, the JW religion was actually an NGO with the UN for a number of years until The Guardian newspaper revealed their ties and the organization had no choice but to leave the UN: http://www.jwfacts.com/watchtower/united-nations-association.php (fully linked because it is an ex-JW site that criticizes the religion) If you ever get the chance to chat with JWs, please do ask them about the UN and see how they react if you tell them that their own religion was affiliated with the UN for a while. Most of them have no idea this ever happened, and if they do know anything about it, they usually will use the excuse that the JWs had no choice but to join in order to get access to the UN's libraries. Really? You would essentially make a deal with the devil just to get library access? Does that make any sense?
  12. Some of you may recall that a few months ago the Australian Royal Commission that has been investigating child abuse took a hard look at the Jehovah's Witnesses, which have had a very serious problem within their religion of covering up instances of child sexual abuse within their congregation instead of reporting it to the police. A report has now been released summarizing the evidence discussed in the investigation if you are interested. It is a PDF file to download: Submissions of Senior Counsel Assisting the Royal Commission Into Child Sexual Abuse contain damning summation of evidence against Watchtower Society. It is a long read but it gives a lot of insight into how this religion operates that I don't think most non-JWs find out about. In addition to pointing out some of the really twisted policies this religion has about sexual abuse (such as forcing children who have been molested to face their accusers, and requiring the presence of two witnesses to even take any action within their religion against the abuser, never mind that they don't want to get the police involved) the document also goes into the JW practice of shunning former members. If you ever ask a JW point blank if they shun their former members, they will usually try to lie or downplay it rather than admitting they do it, but it does happen. If you do know any JWs that you feel comfortable talking to about this report, I think you will find their reactions to it very interesting. Most JWs cannot even face the possibility their religion is flawed and will insist that it must be "lies" from "apostates" if they are willing to talk about it at all.
  13. I recently ran across this very brave blog post from a mom blogger/craft blogger who has chosen to leave the Jehovah's Witness faith. I know a lot of us have been affected by the tragic stories of JW moms who have died from refusing blood transfusions after bleeding heavily during childbirth, so I thought this story was especially interesting because this particular woman DID come very close to losing her life because she refused blood. She now feels that it was wrong that her religion almost cause her to lose her life over the issue: The full story is here if you want to read it. She goes into great detail about why she stopped believing and how her family reacted: sweetpotatopeachtree.blogspot.com/2015/10/the-truth-is.html The reason I say her post is brave is because, once you have been baptized into the JW religion, there is NO way to leave on good terms. You either have to keep pretending you believe in it, or you are at risk of being shunned by any JW family or friends you have. For many ex-JWs, this means they can't even talk to their own parents or children.
  14. I think most know Jehovah's Witnesses aren't supposed to take blood transfusions or celebrate holidays, but I thought some of you might find this video summarizing all the other "worldly" or Satanic things that the Dubs aren't supposed to do amusing: (link not broken because it is from a Youtube account that is meant to poke fun at the Dubs) The ending part might seem weird if you've never actually gotten to know Dubs before, but a BIG part of their worldview is the idea that Armageddon is coming "soon" and then everyone who isn't a 100% faithful JW will be brutally slaughtered. They believe the good Dubs will of course be protected from God's wrath and will just kind of step over the dead bodies after it's over.
  15. A short film picturing the life of a kid growing up as a jehovas witness
  16. The Friendly Atheist has covered the creepy, patronizing way that one JW leader is asking for donations. To me, Stephen Lett (the leader in the video, one of the JW's "governing body" who they believe is one of Jehovah's chosen representatives on earth) really does sound like he is talking to a slow witted child when he speaks. It's almost as if the leaders themselves think that only a stupid person would follow them. The JWs like to think of themselves as being separate and better than other Christians, but does anyone who watched the video actually think that this guy's plea for donation is ANY different than when other religious leaders ask for money? JWs are actively discouraged from donating to "worldly" charities and have been told for a long time to give all their money to the Watchtower (the JW organization). However, it seems to me like they are becoming more desperate in their pleas for money. I think it is possibly because they are currently in the middle of A LOT of litigation over childhood sex abuse being covered up by their organization. I think when you boil it down, almost all organized religions are ultimately about grabbing money from gullible people sadly (not to say all of them are, but it seems like so many are focused on money)
  17. http://www.inquisitr.com/2097904/accuse ... ansfusion/
  18. This video is going viral now, so some of you may have seen it already, but if not, I thought some of you might enjoy seeing this strong and articulate young woman talk about being raised Jehovah's Witness - and why she left : http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyat ... n-youtube/ Some people may not see what the big deal is about giving this type of speech. Sadly, by speaking out like this, she is risking a lot, as she acknowledges in this heart-wrenching statement:
  19. Coldwinterskies

    Cult expert Steven Hassan interviewed on Podcast

    Cult Expert Steven Hassan was interviewed on a podcast run by ex-Jehovah's Witnesses recently For those who are not familiar with Hassan's work, he used to be involved in the Moonies (explained here for younguns/non-Americans) and was a "model member" for a while. Eventually, his family staged an intervention to get him out of the cult. Since then, he has worked on educating the public about how cults brainwash people and how to help loved ones who are trapped inside cults. While obviously the focus of JW Podcast is on the Jehovah's Witnesses, his comments apply to a lot of groups. Since a lot of the fundies we follow have a lot of cult-like tendencies (I literally do consider Steve Maxwell to be using cult mind control techniques on his family, as you can see from this page that explains more about cult criteria), I thought some of you might find what he has to say interesting. It helps explain how people get mixed up in these groups, why they find it hard to leave, and how we can help people escape. His comments around 28 minutes in about how cults expect children to behave like little adults and use fear/violence to control them definitely rings true of the "blanket training" stuff I think.
  20. In a recent edition of the Jehovah's Witness magazine "Awake", they used an out of context quote from a biology professor to make it sound like the professor was saying that there is an educated and non-religious argument against evolution. In reality, once some ex-JWs contacted the professor, he made it clear that the JWs totally twisted the meaning of his quote. This should not be any sort of surprise, since the JWs have a an extremely long history of using quotes deceptively or outright lying in their magazines. Since, of course, a biologist of all people understands how nothing in biology makes sense without the context of evolution, the good Professor Singh wrote an open letter to the JWs asking for the quote to be removed and requesting an apology to undo the damage to his professional reputation that they had caused by making it look like he agrees with creationists. Well, it looks like the JWs finally were scared enough of being sued that they did some editing. They have now quietly removed that quote without offering any sort of apology or correction, of course. I wonder if Prof. Singh can sue them for not issuing a formal correction.
  21. http://theage.com.au/nsw/pregnant-jehov ... mf570.html Tragedy for the mother, child and her family, but my heart feels most for the staff. How harrowing and pointless this would have been, especially knowing the high rate of success in the standard treatment....
  22. One of the core teachings of the Jehovah's Witnesses is that we are in the End Times and that any day now, Jehovah will destroy everyone who is not a Jehovah's Witness, leaving only JWs to enjoy paradise earth (they currently believe "the 144,000" refers to the JWs who will actually live in Heaven with God, but most JWs expect to get to live on earth in paradise, not in heaven). Apparently, one JW decided to make a video fantasizing about what it will be like when Armageddon has come. Warning: there are a few pictures of dead bodies on the ground in the video, so don't watch if you are the type of person who would be too squeamish to watch The Walking Dead - but the majority of the video is just "WTF?" Check it out here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0NNHjBdgiuY (link isn't broken since it's just Youtube)
  23. Thought some of you might want to read this article by an ex-JW about how his affiliation with the Jehovah's Witnesses taught him from an early age that it was wrong to have any ambitions : Fundies, being prone to black and white thinking, seem to be incapable of seeing that there is a huge difference between a narcissist who doesn't care about anyone else vs. loving yourself and valuing yourself enough to follow your own path in life while still trying to show concern for others. It really makes me upset when I think about the lives that are WASTED in fundie cults like Gothard and the JWs. For all we know, the Duggar kids may very well have extremely unique talents in things such as science or other logic-based areas that they will never get to cultivate. One thing I would say about the Duggars is that I don't think any of them are stupid - they just are intelligent people who are very poorly educated/informed.
  24. After seeing several bombshell reports on this problem just in the last couple of days, I feel like the media is finally starting to pay attention to the problem of child rapists being allowed access to children in the Jehovah's Witness religion without parents in the congregation being warned or the police being notified. I am hoping to collect all the media sources here so that I can thank the organizations for taking the time to bring awareness of this horrible problem that has gone unnoticed by most of society for so many years. If you have seen any other reports please post them here so I can keep tabs on them. Reveal News: Jehovah’s Witnesses use 1st Amendment to hide child sex abuse claims Jezebel: Jehovah's Witness Leaders Accused of Covering Up Child Sexual Abuse JWSurvey (ex-JW site so of course they're covering it!) Anything else you've seen? I am also interested if you see local news reports or anything like that that might not make it on the internet. Have any of you had the chance to ask JWs in your life (or on your doorstep) about these allegations? I would LOVE to hear what the JWs you know are saying about this, because I think most of them have been kept completely in the dark and have no idea this has been a problem.
  25. Jehovah's Witnesses video slammed for threatening kids with death for not paying attention in church As some of you may know I am extremely opposed to the methods that JWs use to control their followers because I feel they are psychologically abusive. I have seen a few commenters on this video say things about this like "Well, that's no worse than any other religion that believes you will go to hell if you don't believe" but to me this goes a step beyond. They are not just trying to tell you that you should believe in them, but they're trying to scare kids into hanging onto every word at the meetings. Quite frankly, I consider the meetings to be brainwashing sessions, so I can see why they want to force kids to listen to them, but I don't think it is reasonable. I do not feel that it is reasonable to expect that every kid will be able to sit there quietly in rapt attention at meetings - especially when you consider that some kids out there do have ADHD or autism or other issues that could make it hard to pay attention no matter how much their parents might want them to. This makes me think of the fundies who are into "blanket training" - they are expecting things from their kids that are not appropriate, because of their ignorance about normal child development.
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