Jehovah Is Not Ending This World, But I Am Ending This Blog
It took me some time to finally accept that I would no longer be adding to this site, and moreover that I would be removing the material from it. But before the faithful rejoice or the fans lament, I want to first set things straight, explain why I’ll be disappearing for good and what it means for my own opinions and if anything will be heard from me on other sites…
- I consider the Watchtower Society to be one of the most dangerous, insidious religious organisations the modern world has ever seen. Its ability to shape doctrine at will, to begin a systematic form of idolatry (“JW.org”) which would be condemned by anyone before the internet as the Satanic child of the Ad Man, and to create and remove policies at will that destroy lives both psychologically and physically, is abhorrent to me in every way. My view has only become stronger as the years have gone since writing on this blog and I do not see it diminishing, as every time I hear of the WS’s most recent activity, I feel a mix of shame, pity and anger.
- I know why I called the blog “Deluded Students,” it was a play on the old name ‘International Bible Students,’ a little on vowel rhyme, and a little effort at not criminalising those who are duped into believing these lies. However, I have not been keen on it for almost as long as the blog has been online. Also, I’ve mentioned this before, the URL to this blog was coined from work by a man who does not believe the man upon which the myth is based, Jesus, existed at all – I disagree with that claim now. From the evidence I have seen, and having read various arguments, I feel it is the most academic position to say the evidence suggests that a man named Jesus, who had followers and was likely a Rabbi, did exist.
The book that finally won me over was Bart Ehrman’s, “Did Jesus Exist?” He himself is an agnostic atheist and so you have to admit, he has very little to gain spiritually in proving the man, not the myth, existed.
- Some time ago, my profile as a writer became a lot better, what I write in my spare time now has a potential audience far larger than this blog has ever afforded me – so will I be posting about the Jehovah’s Witness religion on those sites? It is very likely, yes. However, whilst on here I could be somewhat antagonistic or highly vocal in my defence of certain positions, on these other platforms such topics are rarely considered good form, so if or when I write about the Org, I will find more intelligent, more audience friendly approaches. Because I do feel much of what has happened on here has been largely preaching to the choir.
- My personal circumstances have changed, as have those of my believing family, and I no longer feel it appropriate to publish what I want to, and what I have done, on a blog like this any more. I don’t need to go further into the matter, but what I will say is that sometimes everyone has to be diplomatic and find alternatives to their own activism.
- A note on internet trolling, on hate mail, on criticism and on comments. It’s not been too bad. Yes there has been some strongly incoherent criticism, it was expected and largely dealt with. The blog has attracted all sorts of people, many who, rather than sharing my own non-belief, were often promoting their own faith – these people were almost exclusively deleted and their marketing never made it into the comments. But in knowing how to criticise a religion, it’s important to know how not to…in a sense: I can probably recall only two or three definite Jehovah’s Witnesses ever coming after me, which is a remarkably low number, considering the blog has been read more than 30’000 times since it was created (which is pretty cool for a blog I never promote). The fact is that you can’t pin any vitriolic hate on them here, it didn’t happen. It was wild denial, often furious, but still just denial, when I did get attacked for my views – and they were young. I remember being a kid on the internet with a belief, I don’t need to say more. Of course, that I didn’t get attacked by the baptised doesn’t mean they’re not capable of it, no, I met a huge amount of cruel Witnesses growing up, but the fact is: there’s a rule against reading this stuff. So really, whilst I can measure it out that the main abuse came from other Christians, not from Witnesses, this just means that the policies are working. Well, they’re only working on the surface, of course, because the fact that the blog gets Googled so often, so many articles get read, means that maybe, just maybe in those 30’000 there may have been the faithful who were made to doubt. Doubt sets you free, in my experience, though reasoning and the understanding of bias, are of course, the next step. I’m reminded of the Sagan quote about being so open minded your brain falls out.
So that’s it. I won’t make the promise that I won’t be back, but I’m tired of reading the literature, of reminding myself of the pain that it caused, and so I see it unlikely. If I’m back, it won’t be on this blog, I’ll find a new home for it. But for now, if you’re in, you have my sympathy and my strong plea to research your organisation using the information on the Resources page of this blog (if you refuse to research, merely accepting Watchtower printed claims, your preaching is wilfully dishonest and not done out of any sort of love for humans). If you’re out, I’m pleased for you. You may not share my atheism, that’s fine, but don’t allow yourselves to be mind-controlled, by any group of people, whether they lead a church or a government – go and enjoy life.
Thanks for the ride, readers, it’s been an incredible experience.