Saturday, October 18, 2014

Testimonies of a Jehovah's Witness Show Cynthia When to Leave, published by Karama Sadaka

Thursday, April 10, 2014

How do you start a story without remembering the 
beginning and without having an ending?  
Contributed by Christian Sparlock Freedom
My life as a Jehovah’s Witness began in my mother’s womb.  I was born into the Jehovah’s Witness religion because my mother started studying and was baptized when she was pregnant with me.  This easily explains why I did not have a birthday cake or party, never celebrated Halloween or Christmas, and everything I did, every single person I knew was a Jehovah’s Witness.  
I do not have many memories of anything, just a few passing memories of district conventions being a week long and the Circuit Assemblies were three long days.  The only good thing about those gatherings?  The food.  I remember lunch time at these gatherings almost as a feast, since back then, during the seventies, they had kitchens in which volunteers cooked for hours on end for big crowds of people.  

As a child, I kept expecting Armageddon to come at any time.  My father passed away when I was nine years old and I remember asking my sister, “Paradise is coming soon right?”  One book I remember perfectly was "Paradise Lost, Paradise Regained," and that awful drawing of people, including a little girl and a small dog falling through a crack in the open earth.  That became embedded in my mind, therefore the fear of Armageddon and not doing the right thing.  You see, this is my issue, I blanked out many things from my memories.  For some this may be a good thing, but not for me, because I would like to pinpoint when exactly I felt I didn’t belong there.  Most of my childhood is pretty much in a “flash drive” lost in my deep subconscious, waiting to be explored once again. 

Looking forward to my teenage years, I remember having “fun” with my peers.  I was born in Puerto Rico, so the beach was the favorite place of gathering.  Back then, I remember that once a month, the congregation would come together at the beach, on a Sunday, if you can believe that.  We would all arrive early in the morning, have a 45 minute consideration of the Watchtower study and then just fun all day.  As you can see, not all was bad, at least up until that time, then things started to change and got stricter. 

If anything, what got me starting to consider my place in this religion was the fact that we were discouraged from going to College.  At seventeen years of age, that wasn’t even a choice for me, because I was taught that College was inappropriate.  You see, they coerce you into believing that anytime you spent in College or University, was time that you could have used in preaching God’s Kingdom and formal education is a waste of time, since the world is going to end “soon."  Any dreams to have an education to provide a decent way of living for you or your family are shattered by fear of God and impending doom. 
Contributed by Christian Sparlock Freedom
I have always felt out of place, unable to make decisions on my own without having to consult with someone else, my mother, the elders, etc.  I remember that I always liked what was not approved by the Watchtower Society as “appropriate," such as, horror movies, the holidays, dancing and parties.  I always looked up to others who were used as examples in the congregation.  I was never a leader, always a follower.  Which is why I “had” to get baptized.  If I didn’t get baptized, I was not going to be able to give that “excellent” demonstration in the platform or even have the chance to be part of a convention drama.  I loved acting too, and by the way, I never did appear in one of their dramas.

First baptism, then pioneering. Once you were baptized, as a young person, you were expected to have the goal to become a "pioneer," (special title for someone who works many hours in the field ministry).  Again, all the pioneers having parts in the meeting, demonstrations, and there I was, sitting in the back of the line, waiting to be recognized.   The solution?  Become a pioneer, what else?  I hated knocking at strangers’ doors, selling magazines.  Yes, for those of you who are new, back in those days, magazines were sold, for $.25 each. 

I asked myself, if Jesus said, “don’t let your right hand know what your left hand does,” why do we need to turn in a service report?  Oh, I remember, it was so that all those who made 20 and 30 hours a month in field service, selling dozens of magazines and books would get recognized during a meeting.  Have you ever felt you are out of place, that you don’t feel you belong somewhere?  That’s me, during all of the years I spent being a Jehovah's Witness.  

I would try very hard to do what a “good” Jehovah's Witness should do; go in service, prepare for the meetings, highlighting the magazines and the Apocalypse book with all kinds of beautiful markers and writing the uncited scriptures on the side of the page, and looking up additional information in the Aid book, now replaced by the "Insight on the Scriptures" 'encyclopedia.'  I was so proud of myself, and by the way, I gave excellent demonstrations.  But I recognized everything I did was automatic, sort of a ritual without meaning.  I only did these things, because I had to.  That’s all I knew.  I was reproved, disfellowshipped, cried my way back in, repented, but nothing seemed to be enough for anyone in the congregation and because of them, nothing I did felt like it was enough for God, either.  

“Why do you do this to yourself?” I asked myself many times.  

"Do you really believe this is the true religion? What would you do if your child gets sick or in an accident and bleeds out? Would you let her die because you cannot accept a blood transfusion?" NO!  I could not.

That was the beginning of the end for me. I think I just had to take a hard look into many of this religion’s teachings to be able to finally say, enough is enough.  Either I believe 100% or I do not.  It took me, well, most of my life to finally say, "To Hell with this."  I was not happy there,  I was miserable, and I went through a lot of depression, thinking that my husband would be destroyed in Armageddon, and I wasn’t getting through to him.  I was just depressed all of the time and angry. 

In 2006, I decided not to set foot in another Kingdom Hall again.  I was just bored and tired of trying for something I felt was not right.  Many things began to not make sense anymore, such as, the changes in doctrines, like the generation that will see the end of the system of things.  The fact that many of the talks focused on how much we need to do in favor of the organization and to push harder.  If someone else could do it, why could we not do it?  Most of the talks were fear-based or with the intent to make you go “hmmmmm."  I will briefly tell you what made me finally say, this is it, this cannot be God’s chosen people. 

As all of you know, all circuit assemblies have talks based on testimonies or experience from chosen people.  The last assembly I attended featured a talk with an experience that made me decide once and for all not to go anymore.  For the new ones, PLEASE PAY ATTENTION.  "Experiences" are made to be examples when they are presented in front of hundreds of people.  They are given to make you question your conscience and your personal choices.  This one, in particular, began as an experience, in which a married couple faced the dilemma of the blood issue.  They explained how terrible they felt, when they received the news that her twelve-year-old daughter had leukemia, their hospital trips, (violins playing at this point), etc.  The hardest news they could get was, if their daughter was going to survive this illness, she had to get a bone marrow transplant.  To make a long and tedious story short, the transplant was forbidden by the Watchtower Society and the daughter died.  

“Holy shit!  What the hell did I just hear?” I said to myself.
Contributed by Debbie Kotte

In the silence of the assembly hall, I could hear the low voices of the ones I know, who did not agree with this doctrine either.   That was the last time I ever went to a convention and the point of no return for me.  

Another assembly talk featured a lady that got caught on the bridge that collapsed in Mississippi a few years ago.  After relating what happened to her and praising her “brothers and sisters” in the congregation for how much they helped her deal with her injuries and the press, the man presiding over the talk asked her, 

“Tell me sister, why were you on the bridge that day”?  

She responded that she had made arrangements with the pioneers to go in service that day, but cancelled to do a few errands.  

The idiot then asked, “What does that teach you, sister”? 

She said: “That we should never cancel any arrangements we make for service with the pioneers."  

I was so mad, after listening to that talk, I could vomit.  But that goes on to show the kind of mind-control religion this religion practices.
Contributed by Christian Sparlock Freedom
If I can save a few from making the decision to get baptized, even starting a Bible study with these people, I will talk.  I will even start a campaign of going to each and every person I see close to accepting their magazines and tell them, 

Don't pass up The Truth About The Truth (TTATT) in favor of the lie.

Now my family shuns me, because I made the decision to write a letter of dissociation in 2013.  I have not spoken to my mother since November 2013.  Am I bitter?  Yes, I am.  Am I a disgruntled apostate?  You bet, because what these people do to others goes unnoticed and our families are in there, still acting like robots and accepting everything that comes from the Governing Body, self-proclaimed to be the “faithful and discreet slave,” who are none other than seven old cranky men, sitting at a round table, making decisions, based on what they call “light” from God, or “holy spirit” inspiration.  

I hope this open letter serves as the starting point of my calling to stop others from joining this organization, and helps those that are new or ready to be baptized to stop and think before they jump in that dirty puddle of muddy water.

Thanks for reading.