In an attempt to force abandonment of the cruel practice of shunning, we’ve seen countless impassioned pleas from ex-JW members who point out how cruel and emotionally-painful it is for THEM, the targets of shunning. Although these painful accounts are absolutely heart-felt, they often are quite ineffective; the shunning continues, partly because the cries paradoxically CONFIRM the message that the WT delivers to their members, telling them shunning HAS to be uncomfortable for the shunned since it’s done “for their own good”! The Society claims that shunning WON’T be effective UNLESS it causes pain in the shunned!
This is a picture of my dad eating. He had just made lunch for me, but he couldn’t eat it with me. I had to eat it at another table with my four-year-old son while he sat there away from me.
Why? Because that’s what the Watch Tower Society tells him to do.
Finally, I am not dead. But posts will be far fewer during the college semester. Also, as happens every other month it seems like, updates continue to wreck the editor on my WordPress install. One minute it’s there, the next it isn’t. Grrr…
I’ve never seen a yellow Kingdom Hall in real life before. It just goes to show you that all Kingdom Halls are not alike.
Some Jehovah’s Witnesses assume that former Witnesses like me are lying when we talk about our old Kingdom Halls. If you’re one of Jehovah’s Witnesses who has read an experience at Atheist Geek News (or any other ex-Witness site) that doesn’t agree with your experiences at your own Kingdom Hall, please try to remember the following:
Our experiences at our Kingdom Halls have nothing to do with your experiences at your Kingdom Halls. And no, believe it or not, we aren’t lying about our experiences. We don’t have to.
If it’s hard for you to believe that our bad experiences with “the truth” really happened, then consider this: some ex-Witnesses suspect that you guys are the ones who are really lying to us. That’s because many of us had it so bad at our old Hall that we can’t believe you had it so good.
When one of Jehovah’s Witnesses decides to “come out” as a nonbeliever to members of his family, he knows that they will cut him off for good. Yet many ex-Witnesses come out anyway because they can’t stand living a lie. (For the record, I really do think that coming out is almost always better than fading in the long run.) Some ex-Witnesses make serious mistakes when revealing their lack of faith in the Society to their families, mistakes that create needless complications for everyone involved. I have some tips on how these can be avoided below.
Note, in this case, I’m referring to Jehovah’s Witnesses who are “nonbelievers” because they don’t believe in the Society’s truth anymore. Nonbelieving ex-Witnesses may still believe in God or favor another religion, so they aren’t necessarily atheists as I’m using the word here.
So what’s the best way to come out as a nonbeliever to your relatives? And why should you consider coming out instead of fading?
Meg Myers is a musician and an ex-Jehovah’s Witness. Before you do anything else, listen to the song above and you’ll see that this is very obvious in her lyrics. (There are some naughty words, but if you’re here, that shouldn’t really be a problem.) The clip probably tells you everything you need to know, really.
If you want more, the about page on her website says the following:
I USED TO LIVE IN THE SMOKEY MOUNTAINS OF TENNESSEE / NOW I LIVE IN LOS ANGELES
I USED TO BE A JEHOVAH’S WITNESS / NOW I CELEBRATE MY BIRTHDAY
I DIDN’T GO TO HIGH SCHOOL / INSTEAD I BUILT FORTS
I SING / I PLAY GUITAR PIANO AND BASS
I WILL ALWAYS MAKE MUSIC
If that isn’t awesome enough, you can get her album for FREE. It includes the music in the YouTube clip above. Get it and cram it on your MP3 player! If you’ve been disfellowshipped, or treated like a bad associate, or judged by Witnesses who used to be your friends, this might be your album. Or at least your song. I haven’t listened to all the music yet, but I will.
The song is angry, but Meg Myers is encouraging. It’s always cool to see a former Jehovah’s Witness do something with his or her life. Way to go, Meg. Good luck with everything.
Only by becoming an atheist was I able to fully realize that we personally have a responsibility to be kind to each other – because there is no god, there is no prayer, there is only ourselves. It’s the reason I’m not “agnostic.” I am proud to be an atheist.