News And Links For Ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses: Witnesses in Russia exhaust domestic options

Witnesses in Russia exhaust domestic options

Arson attack on house of worship in Russia

Awake in the Watchtower, Part 1

My name is Kay, I’m 33 years old and I am a Jehovah’s Witness — well, technically anyway. I am part of the growing number of JWs that some like to refer to as the “conscious class”.

Transcript From NBC Dateline

LARSON: (Voiceover) Both Erica and her molester were members of the same church, Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Before your next Judicial meeting…

Dear Brothers,

The purpose of this letter is to clarify certain matters and to secure and protect what we, Xxxxx and Xxxxxxxx, consider basic human rights in dealing with agents of the multinational Watchtower corporations.

Since you have asked us to respond to charges in what could escalate into a judicial committee, there are a few things that we must ask for and which we feel must be clarified before we consider meeting with the elders, judicially or otherwise:

Combat That Cult

Priest, Jehovah’s Witness Not Loving Thy Neighbor

Jehovah’s Witness/Offender Wants to Go Door-to-Door

News And Links For Atheists: The Creationist in Charge of Education in Texas

VIDEO: Don McLeroy: The Creationist in Charge of Education in Texas

VIDEO: ‘Richard Dawkins in conversation with Robyn Williams ‘

VIDEO: Richard Dawkins Interviewed on SBS Dateline

VIDEO: ‘Richard Dawkins on Why Evolution Trumps Creationism’ by Big Ideas

This is a public talk by Dawkins that runs for nearly 45 minutes.

VIDEO: Wild times with the laughing godless

This one comes courtesy of P.Z. Myers. It’s a little long, but pretty good if you don’t mind the bad flash animation.

Pope under fire for transfer, letter on sex abuse

Germany’s sex abuse scandal has now reached Pope Benedict XVI: His former archdiocese acknowledged it transferred a suspected pedophile priest while Benedict was in charge and criticism is mounting over a 2001 Vatican directive he penned instructing bishops to keep abuse cases secret.

Court Rules That “Under God” Can Remain in the Pledge Maryland Teacher Sends Police After Student Not Saying Pledge

In Montgomery County, Maryland, a teacher at the Roberto Clemente Middle School in Germantown had police escort a student from the classroom — simply for refusing to recite the Pledge of Allegiance, as was the student’s right. The teacher’s illegal and unconstitutional actions found fertile ground among other students who subsequently mocked and teased the student, causing enough trauma that they wouldn’t return to the school.

Further Thoughts on Atheism

Even before I started writing Evolution: How We and All Living Things Came to Be I knew that it would very briefly mention religion, make a mild assertion that religious questions are out of scope for science, and move on. I knew this was likely to provoke blow-back from some in the atheist community, and I knew mentioning that blow-back in my recent post “The Standard Pablum — Science and Atheism” would generate more. And, I should have realized that I was muddying the water by packaging multiple related issues together in one post: the specific wording of a passage in my book; the question of whether that passage should have been included; and, the wider question of how science and skepticism relate to atheism.

Still, I was surprised by the quantity of the responses to the blog post (208 comments as of this moment, many of them substantial letters), and also by the fierceness of some of those responses. For example, according to one poster, “you not only pandered, you lied. And even if you weren’t lying, you lied.” (Several took up this “lying” theme.) Another, disappointed that my children’s book does not tell a general youth audience to look to “secular humanism for guidance,” declared  that “I’d have to tear out that page if I bought the book.”

Ask Richard: Atheist Isolating to Avoid Superstitious People

Dear Richard,

I recently “came out” as an atheist and it has been somewhat difficult on a number of fronts. Although I have been skeptical of religion for many years both as gut instinct that it was self-serving, and rational analysis that what they teach is nearly impossible, when I finally decided to officially tell people that I did not believe in a god rather than hiding behind “I’m spiritual not religious” things have gotten strange.

Ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses may also want to read this article. Not unlike a few of my own articles, the Friendly Atheists is offering advice to an atheist who came out as a non-believer to his religious friends. And they’re not buying it, unfortunately. Sound familiar to anyone?

Uh-oh…we aren’t being nice and respectful of the faithful

I’m afraid I won’t be doing much posting live from the Global Atheist Convention; I’m busy, I’m having fun, my dancecard is full, and whenever things slow down a little bit some new person comes up to say hello. But have no fear, I’ll put up some comments afterwards, and also, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation has dispatched a crack team of ace believers to cover the convention and scowl primly at us all. You can get the fun-house mirror version of the conference from those weirdos…and much amusement.

Leading Intelligent Design Advocate Challenges Former President of American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) to Debate

Spiritual Experiences are Just Emotions

Spiritual experiences are just intense emotional experiences. Most atheists and many religious folks (of the not blinded by their beliefs and taking everything literally kind) recognize that those experiences are biological/psychological in nature. Emotional situations give us a particular sort of high which those so inclined interpret as supernatural phenomena. In fact, there’s nothing supernatural about them.

A bit of electromagnetism hovered over the right part of the brain, a few puffs of cannabis smoke, or a temporal lobe seizure can produce the same effect.

News and Links for Ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses: ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses for Haiti

NOTE: After a couple of blizzards during the move, we have finally gotten out of our old place. Thankfully, none of my in-laws came right out and suggested that Jehovah was against the move. (That would not have gone over well with me.) The computer is running now, so off we go!

ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses for Haiti

The recent and devastating earthquake in Haiti needs no introduction. We have all seen the heartbreaking and almost incomprehensible images in the news. I am here to tell you about a movement that is being organized by a number of former Jehovah’s Witnesses from around the world.

RUSSIA: Back to the future for Jehovah’s Witnesses?

Just weeks after Russia’s Supreme Court outlawed their literature as extremist, Jehovah’s Witnesses are encountering at least ten times the level of state harassment across the country as before the ban, their press secretary has estimated to Forum 18 News Service.

Faith complicates mom’s life-or-death decision

Jehovah’s Witnesses Watchtower Leaving Brooklyn Heights

After 100 years, the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society is moving its headquarters out of Brooklyn Heights and up to Warwick, N.Y. “We have submitted a proposal to the Town of Warwick to build a complex there that we’re calling the World Headquarters of Jehovah’s Witnesses,” Richard Devine told the Brooklyn Eagle Tuesday. “We have started the land use process there.”

Jehovah’s Witnesses and birthdays

This one might be of particular interest to less secular readers, but atheists can get something from it as well. The author is arguing against the Society’s reasoning on avoidance of birthday celebrations. If you don’t want to read the whole thing, this quote might be worth a look:

Without I as an outsider insisting that Jehovah’s Witnesses practise inflexible consistency, I wish they would present the whole context of the ancient statements before damning the innocent and community-building gatherings of others.

Has the Watchtower “Jumped The Shark”?

Hey, no giggling back there!

For those who need a refresher, here is the latest redefinition of “generation” from the 4/15/2010 WT:


News and Links for Ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses: A Witness account

Tom Blackwell: A Witness account – Holy Post

The boy was just five years old and desperately ill, but as he crouched in the back seat of Donna Ryder's car, he became more fugitive than cancer patient.

Police in New Brunswick were already out looking for the child when, according to Ms. Ryder, she hid him and his mother in her Dodge Omni and drove them to Fredericton, away from children's aid officials who might have forced the son of Jehovah's Witnesses to accept a blood transfusion.

Jehovah's Witness please answer.? – Yahoo! Answers

This is about a question asked on Yahoo! Answers by someone studying to become a Witness. A young woman is living with her boy friend because they want to get married. But he isn't a Witness, and she wants to know if this will be a problem. I'm posting it because I thought some of you might want to contribute to the conversation. And because this response was too effed up to overlook:

I think that you know what the Bible says about marrying only in the Lord. Jehovah is going to kill you, but what good can come from marrying a non-believer?

My suggestion would be to ask him to go and request a free home Bible study. Even if he is an unassigned territory someone will figure out a way to get there to study with him.


It's a gateway drug to a lifetime of depravity!

This one's a little old, but you know I gotta mention it when P.Z. Myers talks about Jehovah's Witnesses. (Well, the atheists among you probably should at any rate.)

I was sent this scan of a delightful article from Watchtower Magazine — you know, that bizarre piece of pulp from the Jehovah's Witnesses. Look at their list of wicked temptations that might lead a faithful person into a life of sin. Take special note of #2.

Check it out. Caught the link from this page.

How We Know We Are in "the Last Days" – Jehovah's Witnesses Official Web Site

The Society was pimping this one on the front of their web page. See how many holes you can poke in it. It ain't hard. Go nuts.

JURIST – Paper Chase: Russia Supreme Court bans Jehovah's Witness congregation

The Russian Supreme Court [official website, in Russian] upheld a lower court decision [press release, in Russian] to shut down the Taganrog Jehovah's Witness congregation and ban the distribution of 34 Jehovah's Witness publications on Tuesday. Both the Jehovah's Witness congregation and the publications are "extremist," the Supreme Court said [Forum 18 report] in its decision. In response to the Supreme Court's decision, Chairman of the Presiding Committee of the Administrative Center of Jehovah's Witnesses in Russia, Vasily Kalin, said [press release]:

Apparently Jehovah's Witnesses aren't the only ones affected by this ruling.

On a more personal note, I hope to be moving soon. Finally. That's one of the reasons my posts have been so light this month. That may continue for a little bit longer. Hopefully, I'll be posting more goodies soon.