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vxj
Post  Post subject: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Sun Jan 03, 2016 10:56 pm
Nursery

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Hello everybody. First off, I hate to disappoint everyone, but I am not an ex-mormon. I just woke up from being a Jehovah's Witness about a year ago, after being completely immersed in it for 45 years. I was a true believer in every sense. Elder/Deacon for 25 years. Gave sermons to thousands. I find it fascinating to read ex-mormon sites. Both Ex-jws and ex-mormons are a messed up breed. Majority of Ex-jws become atheist. It has been a very difficult road. But I feel Mormons have a harder time to some degree. But I have learned so much in the last year! I have not gone the path of atheism. What makes it harder I believe, as a Mormon, is that Christianity in the Bible, including God himself, are so different from Mormonism. And so a mormon is left with no standard to gauge the truthfulness of his/her religion. Whereas a witness can examine the Bible and find truth of the actual writing compared to what the Watchtower teaches. The answers become a lot more apparent and it is easier to see what you perhaps need to do. I joined this forum with the same intent of joining Ex-jw sites. If I can share my thoughts, findings, and encouragment, that is what I want to do. When i read the stories of ex-mormons and Ex-jws, and the trauma it causes, it brings tears to my eyes, since I completely understand. I have been there. Still working on things. But I have so much to share and I feel driven by love to help the healing process.


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Rainfeather
Post  Post subject: Re: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Sun Jan 03, 2016 11:07 pm
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Hi vxj. We have had ex-JWs here in the past. It's always interesting to compares stories and see how similar it is for those of us who decide to leave. You're certainly welcome here.

The churches which were started in the 1800s all seem to have the same sort of controlling nature and brainwashing going on.

When I first left the Mormon Church, I didn't know what to believe. But somehow I couldn't stop studying. I thought, "So if the Book of Mormon is all bunk, then what about the Bible?"

So I studied the history of that book and eventually, after a few years, had to admit that I really had no particular belief in anything anymore. I basically search for truth, wherever I can find it. But I can't call something a belief without at least some credible evidence to support that belief.

_________________
"A mind stretched by a new idea can never go back to its original dimensions." - Oliver Wendell Holmes


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joseph's myth
Post  Post subject: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Mon Jan 04, 2016 1:37 am
God of Poly-Folly

Joined: Wed Mar 12, 2008 2:29 pm
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Hi vxj,
You are so right, giving light to Mormon recovery helps recovering-JW's, no doubt about it. And your old religion helps us as recovering Mormons. Even as a pro-Atheist recovery group, and as a pro-Christian recovery group we have the opportunity here to see some things we might never be able to view. I am a very strong and secure Christian and yet owe most of my great and painful journey to love. Love for Mormons, love for humans. Even though we all are really really stupid and incredibly insecurely-acting creatures. Heh, blame this, The Human Condition.

Thank you so much for speaking up. Welcome!

_________________
God of Poly-Folly Folly

{If you believe in things that you don't understand, then you suffer ~Stevie Wonder}
.................. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekkkD8HU944
........................ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekkkD8HU944
.................. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekkkD8HU944


God of Poly-Folly Folly


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Melanie
Post  Post subject: Re: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Mon Jan 04, 2016 5:23 am
myself

Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 4:34 pm
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Welcome.

''Both Ex-jws and ex-mormons are a messed up breed.''

I would tend to say that ex- Mormons are some of the best people you can find out there :) When one looks at all the issues and psychological areas one faces up to and moves through. I am sure the same can be said of ex-JW's. The journey maketh the woman/man. Awareness is an incredible asset.

I have heard that shunning is far worse in a JW context.

I am pleased to meet you.

(As an aside, the Board could discuss what exactly love is, that might be interesting!)

_________________
Why leave? http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... 989OOSOycw
How to heal? http://media.blubrry.com/mormonexpressi ... ion225.mp3


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teoma2
Post  Post subject: Re: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Mon Jan 04, 2016 9:35 am
God of Mythbusters

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Nice to read that others are 'driven by love' as you put it. There is a lot of good to be had when you're motivated in that manner, with wide open perspectives. Feel welcome here to share those as they come into your new life now.

_________________
"When authority masquerades as a power, a simple question will unmask it."

"Just because you think, feel, or believe something is true, doesn't make it true!"

"The doubt of your faith, is not God testing you, but truth trying to emerge and free you."


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productofchoice
Post  Post subject: Re: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Mon Jan 04, 2016 10:54 am
God

Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2011 12:49 pm
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Welcome VXJ!

My favorite story about JW's is from a friend who was contacted by them and they were proselyting him and he asked them how many got into heaven. I think the number was 144k and they JW membership was greater than that at the time so he said, "You'd better hope I don't join because if I do I'm going to work harder than you and take your place." They left him alone after that.

What you're noticing is the affects of Religion as a controlling cult and there is a lot of that out there. When religion is used to control people in the name of God, a resentment towards God is the result. Mormon Missionaries aren't out there to bring souls to Christ but rather to Mormonism ... they won't say it that way but that's the agenda. I suspect that JW's have much the same problem.

I've come to believe that religion, if it has a place, is like a marriage counselor. It's there to help and provide a perspective on "the thing", the relationship between you and God. If religion becomes the central thing, that's a problem. If it's becomes a forever crutch then it's another problem. When it dictates the relationship, that's more like a post divorce separation agreement than it is a loving relationship.

WRT Mormons leaving and becoming atheist, yes that's a common path and you will find that a higher percent of Ex-Mormons are atheist than you find in the general population. Mormons don't provide an easy path from Mormonism to any other faith. All others are corrupt in their teachings and if they, the best, are not right then nothing is (according to them). A Mormon bishop would not (likely) offer any assistance in finding another local denomination that would be a better match for someone who no longer wanted to be a member of his congregation ... and I see this as a second example of why I say they are about bringing souls to Mormonism and not Christ.

Anyway, lots can be said but I'll return to this, Welcome!

Peace

_________________
I resigned from the Church of THE Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints (Feb 2011)

"For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest; neither any thing hid, that shall not be known and come abroad." - Luke 8:17


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teoma2
Post  Post subject: Re: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Tue Jan 05, 2016 10:43 am
God of Mythbusters

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One other thought of mine here VXJ, to assist you on your way, know for yourself, that the only real authority TSCC has over you, is what your willing to give to it. The real authority lies within you and no one else.

_________________
"When authority masquerades as a power, a simple question will unmask it."

"Just because you think, feel, or believe something is true, doesn't make it true!"

"The doubt of your faith, is not God testing you, but truth trying to emerge and free you."


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Abinadi
Post  Post subject: Re: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Tue Jan 05, 2016 6:00 pm
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Welcome, Vxj. I appreciate your comments. I did go through an atheist phase. I'm leaning towards a sort of Natural Panentheism now, or belief in an unconditioned transcendant reality of some sort. :)

For some reasons, I like Jehovah's Witnesses. They sort of scared me, the first dozen or so I met. Then I went to their "Kingdom Hall," listened to them, had a couple of JW friends. Now I see them much like I see many Mormons - some very nice people, but bent away from their inherent natural ability by an imperfect set of teachings. My struggle is to relate to people directly, rather than to relate to them through their fog of religion. Maybe if an absolutely true religion were to come along, we would all relate to each other through that. But I'm not holding my breath. :)

_________________
"Prove it!" - Tarquinius Septem

"Everyone has to find his own path." - Ip-Man


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vxj
Post  Post subject: Re: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Wed Jan 06, 2016 8:03 am
Nursery

Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2016 10:25 pm
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As I brought up on another post, atheism is something I am not going to discuss. Not because I don't understand why people go that direction after leaving these organizations, but rather, I started going down that path. Examined Dawkin's books and others similar. We question EVERYTHING after leaving. But I strongly feel that an ex-mormon is at a greater disadvantage. Why so? Because once a Mormon finds out his church has lied, the next step is obviously to throw out the book of Mormon. It is like an ex-jw throwing out the Watchtower. You obviously will throw them out of the equation, due to them being exclusive to the church. The problem is, the Mormon church has always discredited the Bible. The Mormon's view of God's nature is in complete contrast to the Bible. Yahweh is not even considered God himself. At least that is what a mormon elder told me. So now you have two major hurtles. Your organization and the Bible. You have spent so much time, perhaps a lifetime studying the book of Mormon. Now it is a lie. So most don't even consider the Bible. It takes time and energy. In addition, all trust has been destroyed. For the Ex-jw, the problem is strictly the organization. Yes, the majority do turn to atheism. But if one doesn't, then the organization is the only problem, and now they can just really read the Bible without Watchtower glasses and clearly see where they have been mislead. The reason for this, is because the Bible is the most distributed book in earth. It contains the oldest written language of man. And the one thing that I learned after leaving the Watchtower, which I was surprised I wasn't taught, was that out of all so-called holy books, only the Bible actually claims to be God's word. I highlighted these things just to illustrate that the transition for a witness can be easier if he just allows the dust to settle, and not make any rash decisions. I went back and forth. Some abandon the Bible fairly quickly. But what I discovered on the internet, is that their are two sides to EVERY story! Some say that this or that has been completely proven or unproven. But you will find a hundred other things going in the opposite direction. That is why I came to this forum. If one is of the thought to not abandon the Bible, I believe that an Ex-jw, is in a good position to help. Because they are free of indoctrination from a religion, they can now understand the Bible as is. And the fact is, most know the Bible inside out. Most who teach the Bible, have an agenda or another dogma they want to teach, but most Ex-jws are an open book and are still learning, but the familiarity with the Bible can be of great assistance. Also too, what attracts people to the Watchtower (or should I say baits) , is the fact that they do teach a few ( and I emphasize few) Bible truths that can be backed up by history, scholars, and scripture. And so if anyone wants to pm me about scripture, I welcome that, because what you will find, is that the Bible clearly states what a person needs to do after having put a lifetme of trust in a man-made organization. As I said, I have learned so much. The main problem is that the Watchtower applied everything to itself and the application of scripture in our modern day. EVERYTHING was happening NOW. Once you see that is not true, everything come together a little easier.


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teoma2
Post  Post subject: Re: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Wed Jan 06, 2016 9:40 am
God of Mythbusters

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Then vxj, could it be possible, even remotely possible, that the Bible, as we have come to know it, could be yet another such misleading, controlling, man inspired/created text, oft times, used to manipulate our ultimate fears of the unknown?

_________________
"When authority masquerades as a power, a simple question will unmask it."

"Just because you think, feel, or believe something is true, doesn't make it true!"

"The doubt of your faith, is not God testing you, but truth trying to emerge and free you."


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joseph's myth
Post  Post subject: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Wed Jan 06, 2016 11:24 am
God of Poly-Folly

Joined: Wed Mar 12, 2008 2:29 pm
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teoma2 wrote:
Then vxj, could it be possible, even remotely possible, that the Bible, as we have come to know it, could be yet another such misleading, controlling, man inspired/created text, oft times, used to manipulate our ultimate fears of the unknown?


If you could read the Bible, And, I understand if you cannot (because of Mormon abuse) you would maybe, just maybe, see.

The New Testament is strangely all about freedom from Mormonism and things that seek to try and return to the horrible years of The American Second Great (snoozing) Awakening.

_________________
God of Poly-Folly Folly

{If you believe in things that you don't understand, then you suffer ~Stevie Wonder}
.................. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekkkD8HU944
........................ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekkkD8HU944
.................. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekkkD8HU944


God of Poly-Folly Folly


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vxj
Post  Post subject: Re: Hello- New Here  |  Posted: Wed Jan 06, 2016 5:19 pm
Nursery

Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2016 10:25 pm
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joseph's myth:
"The New Testament is strangely all about freedom from Mormonism ."

Couldn't agree more. Except I would add Watchtower to the list. The New Testament is so much about freedom, that anyone coming from a high control group, almost finds it difficult to except. I know I am still working on that part of things. We are like children who were never allowed to leave, and now we are afraid of freedom.  The Bible helps us to train our conscience. Using it's wisdom, we will make good decisions. But those decisions are OURS.  As an example,  the Watchtower would try to dictate EVERYTHING you did, right down to wearing a beard. A movie may contain violence, but maybe it is an adult themed movie, and not just senseless violence. Maybe it is rated R for that reason. The Watchtower would condemn such a movie, but perhaps it wouldn't bother me. It is MY choice. I'm sure you can give many similar examples as well. While these two religions proclaimed they had the truth, they would give the impression that there was NOWHERE else to go. The Watchtower actually used those words. And so many who leave, fall into depression and some commit suicide. The word NOWHERE is embedded in our brain. In fact, so much, that you envisioned this thought in Jesus words to Peter:  John 6:67- Jesus said therefore to the twelve, "You don't also want to go away, do you?" 68. Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69. We have come to believe and know that you are the Christ, the Son of the living God."  First of all, it was not the one teaching that used fear, such as "where do you think you are going to go?" But rather, it was the believer, it was Peter who raised the thought. And the question was NOT Where, but TO WHOM. The answer is Jesus Christ.  Jesus condemned the religious leaders of that time. He said: Matthew: 23. 4. For they bind heavy burdens that are grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not lift a finger to help them."
The freedom Christ gives is simply this: Matthew: 11. 28. "Come to me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest. 29. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart; and you will find rest for your souls. 30. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."
But people wonder after leaving the Watchtower or Mormons, "What is truth?"  It took me awhile to understand that Christ is truth. Is it true that the LDS change doctrine or receive "new light"? I'm not sure on that one, but JW's do. In fact, the religious landscape doesn't even resemble what it was when I was a child. Yes, the basic doctrines such as who God is, what happens at death, God's purpose for the earth, stay the same, but everything else changed. What does that teach you? It tells you personally, that you don't need to understand every detail of the Bible. As you grow spiritually, you ( like your former religion) make adjustments in YOUR OWN thinking. But the basics of who Jesus is, who his Father is, God's purpose for man, remain the same. Is this just an opinion? No. Jesus said so himself: John: 17. 3. "This is eternal life, that they should know you, the only true God, and him whom you sent, Jesus Christ."  So the real purpose is to come to know God and Christ as persons. Christianity is not a religion like we understand it. It is not a place. We are still in the great apostasy and like people of the dark ages, we are striving to live as close to God's word as possible, until Christ straightens it out. As far as putting trust in the Bible and fearing being mislead, a person needs to study what makes it unique. I personally had to start over so to speak. A person may feel that they had faith in the Bible, but in reality, it was how the Bible was interpreted and seen as fulfilled by puny little men within that church. In other words, the faith was not based in the Bible but in the church. For those interested, here are some links that greatly helped me. In two of the links, just substitute Watchtower for Mormons and the message will be the same.
This was written in the late 1800's : http://www.biblebb.com/files/ryle/inspiration.htm

http://wernerbiblecommentary.org/?q=book/print/2
http://thewatchtowerfiles.com/ex-jws-atheists/
http://thewatchtowerfiles.com/ex-jws-atheists/


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