Friday, December 26, 2008

Anyone Can Give A Public Talk

It's easy!
Every public talk ever given goes like this:
Pick a subject, whether it's "God's Government or Man's?" or whatever...
Open by talking about how bad world conditions are,
Go on about how bad morals today are,
Run down Christendom and the governments for a while,
Then be sure and brag on the organization so that the witnesses will feel special and that they know something no one else does,
Read some scriptures about how God's kingdom is the answer, and finally...
Talk about how important it is to study, get baptized and preach because the end is near.
Be sure to use key Watchtower phrases like
Use key phrases, like ...
"Does it not warm your heart ..." (Tell your audience how they should feel)
"It is only logical ..." (We don't really know. We are just guessing)
"It is only reasonable ..." (We don't know. We are just guessing)
"Time is running out ..." (Be afraid. Be very afraid.)
Every article/talk has them.
Bang!
That's every public talk you will ever hear.
Now you don't have to drag your butt out of bed on Sunday.

21 comments:

W. Lockhart said...

The talks are all strangely similar... Whether it be about creationism or some obscure prophecy in Isaiah.

I've also noticed that they rely a lot on emotional response, even just from the tone of voice of the speaker. At conventions, the speaker would raise his tone slightly and the audience would start clapping (???).

As well as cringing from the falseness of this, I would get tired of the clapping. It's kinda like looking at a word for so long that it looks as though it's spelt incorrectly. If you clap long enough it is very difficult to carry on.

Sheeplike said...

Actually, the talks are supposed to be positive, and not negative. Our old circuit overseer always said from the platform that talks should be 'positive, positive, positive', since everyone already know how bad the world is.

I can't agree with W. Lockhart about the talks relying on an emotional response. I do not think they are 'emotional' enough. Many other church services are far more emotional in nature. The preacher rants, walks back and forth, etc. Witness meeting are in no way like that.

W. Lockhart said...

No, you can never eliminate enough emotion, if you want people to start thinking straight (and I'm sorry to say, you demonstrated well in another thread that your thinking ability is not there yet).

Even the bible, which is nothing more than a book, says that the heart is the enemy and is desperate. So which is it? Granted, a JW meeting is much better than a preacher rant, but it's still a long way from representing clarity and truth.

This is why they rely on bringing out people's emotions. They've already convinced you "how bad the world is" compared with the past when there is no basis for claiming this. For example, the society likes to talk about how many people were killed in wars during the 20th century, but seem utterly incapable of recogizing that the *relative* numbers dropped massively, owing to the world's massiveley bigger population. There are many other examples.

I have a direct question, "Sheeplike", and don't evade it this time (you never ever told me what research methods you used in your doctorate). What is God waiting for?

What do I mean, well, the witnesses say they are preaching the message worldwide, right? So someone may say, how can you possibly reach everyone on the planet going from door to door. But we know this argument is unnecessary, because the witnesses do not claim that everyone needs to be reached.

However, your response is no doubt that the work has to be done to "God's satisfaction". But I ask again, what is God waiting for? What is the level of satisfaction?

The reason I ask is because the world's population is increasing by 70 million people per year. That is more than the population of the United Kingdom, every year, added to the planet. Take my word for it, the JWs do NOT bring in this many people. Not even close. So, what is God waiting for?

Even if you were to postulate a level of satisfaction (say, 80% people reached), you are actually retreating from this figure. People are being born at a rate that far exceeds what the witnesses can keep up with.

And this is just one of the pillars of your religion. Like the other pillars it is fatally flawed. Even one considered alone is enough to make the whole thing look farcical. Still, if "emotion" is the driving force of your belief then nothing I say will make any difference. It may even induce a "Persecution Complex".

As the saying goes, "it is not possible to convince a believer of anything, for their belief is not based on evidence, it is based on a deep seated need to believe". (emotion). All you do is repeat the same stuff I used to repeat (do you realise what that looks like to an ex-JW? I've been there and done it. The lines from the society you regurgitate are not unfamilar to an ex-JW, by definition).

W. Lockhart said...
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W. Lockhart said...

I have some more questions in addition to the above (and this is not a green light to ignore the above - I've noticed people sometimes do that). Since you're quite willing to publicly post on this "apostate" site I'm going to be picky.

1/ Why do you indicate astrological signs on your profile page? Is this a relic of the past or a reflection of the same religious confusion which leads you to read a forbidden site?

2/ Related to '1', why do you read, never mind post, on an apostate site? I certainly don't mind and I think you should be exposed to new ideas, but the society most certainly do not share this view. You would be counselled for serious error for doing this. If you repeatedly visited apostate sites you would be difellowshipped from the very religion you seem to cherish

3/ My third point is somewhat lighthearted because it is relatively minor, and because I was guilty of it myself. Your profile also shows you are a "James Bond" fan. James Bond is a lethal assassin, sent to eliminate anything or anyone who might threaten the United Kingdom. According the Watchtower Society, Britain is a corrupt and powerful Western nation, allied with the United States to form the Anglo-American world power, identified as the "King of the South" soon to be destroyed along with all other "wordly" governments. Just a thought!

Don't take 3/ too seriously, but I think it's abundantly clear that you don't take 1/ or 2/ seriously either. Which makes me wonder whether I'm being deceived

chocolatepuddingeyes said...

Sheeplike said: "I can't agree with W. Lockhart about the talks relying on an emotional response. I do not think they are 'emotional' enough."

You won't hear it very often in public talks given at the Kingdom Hall. Go to a convention or assembly, and put on your "listening" ears. That's when you'll hear the carefully crafted talks that are delivered in a specific way to elicit a response from the audience. Make note of the key points that are being applauded and you'll see that more often than not the applause is being given on behalf of the FDS. The crowd is cheering the efforts of the Governing Body, making that small body of men their champion.

A person with the right heart condition is going to be appalled by this behavior because they are going to realize that praise, honor, and glory that rightfully belong to Jesus and Jehovah is being redirected to a group of men. It's a form of idolatry.

The next time you see praise, honor, and glory being directed to the FDS, ask yourself, "How does Jesus feel about this, when he made the biggest sacrifice in the universe, and now these men are trying to minimize the value of his sacrifice by telling the sheep that they MUST follow the FDS in order to have salvation.

That contradicts what Jesus told us. He said we must listen to HIS voice, not the FDS. So, how can this be reconciled with a scripture such as...

(Hebrews 13:17) Be obedient to those who are taking the lead among YOU and be submissive, for they are keeping watch over YOUR souls as those who will render an account; that they may do this with joy and not with sighing, for this would be damaging to YOU.

By going back a few verses and considering the context...

(Hebrews 13:7) . . .Remember those who are taking the lead among YOU, who have spoken the word of God to YOU, and as YOU contemplate how [their] conduct turns out imitate [their] faith.

Examine the history of the current teachings of the WTS, see how they evolved, then ask yourself if these men are being faithful or not. Truth be told, these men on the current GB know they are teaching a lie. Franz knew it, Knorr knew it. Rutherford knew it because he's one of the major players who played spin doctor to Russell's teachings when Russell's 1914 predictions failed to come true.

I highly recommend a study of 2 Thess. chapter 2, so you can understand the reasons behind the big lie.

Sheeplike said...

'What is God waiting for?'

Many or most Christians are waiting for Jesus to come.
The only answer is to leave things in God's hands.

I approach this with a belief in a creator already. A person who is an atheist cannot understand this answer.

I have a question of chocolatepuddingeyes post
"Truth be told, these men on the current GB know they are teaching a lie. Franz knew it, Knorr knew it. Rutherford knew it because he's one of the major players who played spin doctor..."

What lie are you referring to, and what source is it from? (I'm not being a wise guy- I do not believe in personal attacks. I'm wondering what your basis is here)

W. Lockhart said...
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W. Lockhart said...

"A person who is an atheist cannot understand this answer."

A cheap way of justifying your empty idea. I "understand" your "answer" perfectly. All you're saying is that if you don't understand something, well God must have done it!! If you can't predict the future, well, just leave it to God!! Utter Nonesense, and a cheap and dirty way of justifying any belief you like.

The fact that you have a belief in God as a starting point, and then proceed to try to bend reality around this dodgy premise, shows that you are thinking (literally) backwards. It worries me that you teach children.

By the way, you didn't answer my question (or any of them for that matter). I'm quite aware that most christians are waiting for christ. I didn't ask that. I asked what God is waiting for, in the JW view (I pointed out that the world's population growth is far exceeding what the witnesses can keep up with, remember?). Are you sure you're a teacher?

I also dislike the way you ignore 90% of my post content. If you did a history doctorate, then you've written a vast dissertation, and have read literally hundreds of papers, so I'm sure you can at least respond to the points I make.

Why am I so bothered by this? Because each individual point I make is not something trivial, something which can just be brushed under the carpet. Each one alone threatens your entire belief system if left unchallenged. Yet the best you can come up with is "I have a belief in a creator already". But why, and how?

I think you're deceitful, which is why you blocked you profile after I mentioned the astrology hypocrisy, and which is why you appear to be incapable of reasoning despite the fact that you supposedly did an advanced research degree. It would also explain why you're not bothered about posting on an apostate site (yet another question that I asked you but you ignored. Is that your strategy - just ignore questions which make you uncomfortable and move on?).

What lie is the other poster referring to? Isn't it obvious she means the inspiration of the governing body? They make out that they are directed by God but the bible does not indicate that, so it's a lie.

If you're still confused by what I mean, go pick up your bible. The NWT will do fine. Turn up the FDS scripture and read it. An honest person sees the following things when reading it:

1/ It is a parable

2/ It is a parable in which Jesus asks a question, "who really is the FDS, who brings food at the etc.

3/ It sounds like a rhetorical question - the reader is not required to speculate on who the FDS is.

4/ Jesus identifies other slaves, including an evil slave

Only a heavily indoctrinated person would conclude that this scripture is referring to a bunch of very elderly Jehovah's Witnesses in the 20th century (who self declared themselves to be the voice of God and needed a scripture to "back it up"). And remember, it was just a parable!!

And then when a person finally realises that the inspiration of the bible is in question (which again comes from the same ingredients - honest reading and healthy skepticism), the basis for believing that those men are anyone's legitimate leaders melts away entirely

Sheeplike said...

Wow! W., Lockhart seems so angry and sad.

The reason I do not answer every one of your numerous points is that you are set in your ways. There is no sense in arguing, especially as it seems that it works you up so much.

All Americans are free to have their own opinion.

My opinion is that God is real, and the Bible must have been inspired. I see proof of God in creation itself.

W. Lockhart said...

You have no place accusing anyone of being set in their ways!! I nearly fell of my large leather chair when you said that. You are so fused onto this belief system that you ignore every single argument I make against it, as though the problems will just go away.

You can't even help repeating that empty statement that you "see God in creation". Well, how so? This is one of the very first things I tackled, yet here you are again pretending that your belief is unharmed. Sorry, but you're gonna have to do better than that. Rewind the clock a whole week and at least take a look at the arguments I presented.

I don't respect your "opinion" on God and the bible because opinions should be based on facts, but you seen intent on ignoring the facts. You see things in nature that contradict your view but you just engage into denial.

And by the way, I'm British not American. You make it sound like only Americans have the right to express their views. This is just another example of your narrow-mindedness and inability to see beyond your own small box. Do you think that only Americans have an internet connection? I'll say it again - I doubt you're a teacher, and I hope you're not, for the sake of the next generation of children.

Now why don't you go back over my last post(s) and at least try to refute some of the very damaging allegations against your religion. The other alternative is less pleasant - it involves going to the elders and confessing the fact that you've been reading apostate material. If you can't be bothered refuting my posts then why are you here at all?

Ringwielder said...
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Ringwielder said...

Excellent questions W. Lockhart. I myself would like to know why God is waiting to bring Armageddon. He knows that every day more people are being condemned to death than are being saved. (If the JW belief is correct) Why?

How could a 'loving' being stand to see millions of people suffering pain, agony, starvation, abuse, every single day? Any person who considers themselves a loving, sensitive, caring soul, who had the power, would have ended this long ago.

Proverbs 13:12 states, 'Expectation postponed makes the heart SICK.' If God is using the JW Organization then He is the master of making the 'heart sick.' Its no wonder there is such unhappiness among JWs.

Answer the question Sheeplike. We are waiting.

chocolatepuddingeyes said...

Sheeplike asked:

What lie are you referring to, and what source is it from? (I'm not being a wise guy- I do not believe in personal attacks. I'm wondering what your basis is here)

Is there any religion other than Jehovah's Witnesses that is known for its worldwide preaching that Jesus' presence has already taken place?

If you agree that Jehovah's Witnesses are the only religion that preaches this worldwide, then we can continue the discussion.

W. Lockhart said...

I wouldn't count on a specific response. There seems to be this unwritten rule that if you can just... somehow... claim that your opponent is "set in their ways", then no response is required.

You've also gotta love the oft' repeated "leave it in Jehovah's hands" saying. If we don't know how the tiger developed its killing claws and powerful jaws, well, don't panic!!! Just sweep it under the carpet. After all, it's only a minor objection. It's not like it threatens the person's entire belief system, or anything like that.

In fact, if "sheeplike" waits long enough, the objection ends up being several days old. Then, the time is ripe to pretend the objection never existed!! "I believe in God because I see it in nature". Ok. Well, guess what? I observe nature too, and my objection to the God idea is legitimate and genuine. It cannot be brushed under the carpet, it is serious.

This is not the only objection of course, and the other religious posters who share my views on JW doctrine twisting also deserve an answer. Not cheap and circular arguments such as "only a witness can understand" (oh, how convenient!! And how circular...).

Southern said...

I understand what sheeplike is saying.

Lockhart should sit in his garden drinking his tea and think about the carbon cycle, the nitrogen cycle, and the hydrologic cycle. How could that just happen by chance?

The limey should also realize that more than 90% of the earth believe in a creator. So, he thinks that almost everyone is stupid except for him.

It is funny that Lockhart and sheeplike are both going to the same place- hell.

W. Lockhart said...

"The limey should also realize that more than 90% of the earth believe in a creator. So, he thinks that almost everyone is stupid except for him."

So, here we have a racial insult and a logical fallacy all bundled into one! Just because most of the planet believes something doesn't make it true. I'm not concerned with what this means about the rest of the human race. I don't think they're stupid, just mistaken.

"Lockhart should sit in his garden drinking his tea and think about the carbon cycle, the nitrogen cycle, and the hydrologic cycle. How could that just happen by chance?"

You imply that I haven't thought about it, but my undergraduate degree was chemistry. First of all, how embarrassing for you that you should put forth the chance argument. No geologist or evolutionist claims that selection is a chance process. Do you know what the word "selection" means? Look it up in a dictionary.

The Earth's natural cycles are examples of equilibria. An equilibrum forms without outside intervention, by definition. It is ignorance that leads a person to attribute everything to God.

"It is funny that Lockhart and sheeplike are both going to the same place- hell."

Even if it were true, it would not be "funny" as you put it. I find it disgusting that people genuinely find joy in the idea that people who don't share their beliefs are going to a burning hell. Not a great advert for your religion.

Fortunately I don't believe in that ridiculous and violent book any more than I believe in the Witnesses' warped doctrines.

And what's this tea drinking stuff about? I don't drink tea. You're just an ignorant, prejudiced ignoramus, that much is evident. It explains why you had nothing to add, except for some ill thought out and weak "argument" about the carbon and nitrogen cycles. Sorry, just like the ignoramus sheeplike, who falls for the "creation" optical illusion - you're gonna have to do better than that.

realchristian said...

To Southern: England was our mother country and is our best ally. lay of the racial stuff.

W. Lockhart: The carbon cycle, the nitrogen cycle, and the hydrologic cycle prove design. Where there is design, there must be a creator. I doubt that you are an undergrad if you can't see that.

The message of real born-again christians not the kingdom and paradise of happiness of Jehovah's Witnesses. It is a message of either heaven or hellfire.

You better wise up or you'll end up with the rest of the pseudo-intellectuals.

W. Lockhart said...

"W. Lockhart: The carbon cycle, the nitrogen cycle, and the hydrologic cycle prove design. Where there is design, there must be a creator. I doubt that you are an undergrad if you can't see that."

When you say they "prove design", I don't see how. You haven't really proved that. The logical problem is not design ---> creator (that's fine I can see why you say that), my issue is carbon cycle ---> design. All I see is an equilibrium which has become established much like a mindless chemical reaction - it has inputs and outputs but no external driving force.

"The message of real born-again christians not the kingdom and paradise of happiness of Jehovah's Witnesses. It is a message of either heaven or hellfire."

I reject both the JW and the born again messages because I reject the bible. I've expressed clearly on a number of occasions why I reject the bible. It contains islands of wisdom amid an ocean of irrelevance, absurdity and, in some places, stomach churning violence. It is not from God. It is just a book.

Although it has not bearing on much, I'd just like to correct you about me being an undergrad. I'm not, I'm a postgrad now. In any case, years of studying natural phenomena in chemistry and physics have not strengthened the case for creationism.

Also, and I repeat this often, all other things considered, one look at a deadly predator should be enough to convince any thinking person that the creation idea is flawed. The only way you can proceed is by actually defining everything youy see as "design" and then taking the next logical step. God did not design the system of suffering and competition we see in nature, mainly because he does not exist.

Nobody has given a satisfactory rebuttal of these observations of mine, because none exists. When I say that predator and prey are highly adapted to outcompete each other due to evolution, or that a blood sucking leech was not part of any planned design, this is not rocket science. It is very simple, and yet it is fundamentally at odds with the idea of there being a creator.

Rover said...

W. Lockhart said "one look at a deadly predator should be enough to convince any thinking person that the creation idea is flawed...Nobody has given a satisfactory rebuttal of these observations of mine, because none exists."

I do not know the answer, but here is a response. My grandfather- the kindest and most loving person I ever knew- was a Jehovah's Witness.

He said that man became imperfect, and this affected the animal kingdom also. Predators were probably meant to be scavengers. Basically, humans, animals, the earth we know- everything is imperfect because this is 'Satan's world.' This world is removed from God, so what happens is not his will.

I wish there were a time machine so we could go back and see what happened for ourselves. Maybe you could invent one- lol.

W. Lockhart said...

I'd love to invent a time machine! Seriously though, it's not actually necessary.

What you are proposing is what I call "evolution on steroids". You are proposing a change bigger, and orders of magnitude faster, than anything suggested by an evolutionist. Cheetahs and gazelles did not become adapted to outwit each other through a few thousand years of evolution, it happened over millions of years.

Do you realise that that vast majority of species are actually parasites? The natural world is defined by competition and immense suffereing, and it is going on right now. This system was not created. A tiger is called an "obligate carnivore" because it cannot eat anything else. Why would God design a being with the strength to kill a Buffalo and pencil-long killing canines?

It has these features because the features evolved. It was never a scavenger at the time of Eden and was certainly never a herbivore. Even to scavenge, this would rely on death occurring elsewhere. Did God design animals to die? Animals experience grief at this loss too, often profound. If anything, aging is proof that God doesn't exist. Even yeast cells age.

Why would God design yeast cells to age? Biologists don't ask this question, because they don't believe in creation, and neither do I.

I've heard the "fall" argument many times and it is utterly unconvincing. Genetic imperfections are evidence that evolution does not favour fitness per se but favours reproductive success. So here we have it, a world filled with much beauty and much horror.

I'm convinced your grandfather was a kind and loving person in spite of the religion and not because of it. Why do I say this? Because our morals certainly don't come from the bible. If you read the bible you will see why. We all have the capacity for great good and this comes from within. Religion can artifially kick start this potential (so long as the practitioner is careful not to read his holy book in any detail), but the source of good is not external, it is internal.