I've been reading the latest publications from the Jehovah Witnesses, delivered to my door of course so I don't have to waste time trying to get them, which would be a waste of time.
Now they are using the Bible to explain all the wrongs of the modern world, including the use of modern technology.
This is what Christopher Hitchens called "Retrospective Evidentialism" or seeking to find anything in scripture that somehow could be related to the phenomenon they are considering and then making the scripture fit as a solution.
Christianity have been doing this ever since knowledge made the Bible redundant, which as been for the last 400 years.
Yet Jehovah Witness teachings are nothing more than this, making scripture somehow fit things the writers would have considered themselves as miracles, like mobile phone use.
The writers never intended the fit, it is the retrospective twisting of their work to make it fit is where the Fallacy lies.
So essentially Retrospective Evidentialism is in itself a Fallacy and should be listed as a Logic Fallacy!
It's like saying that Darwin's Theory of Evolution was intended for the evolution of the motor vehicle.
Anything can be twisted to fit something else, if you try hard enough.
The Jehovah Witnesses have spent years perfecting their "Retrospective Evidentialism".
I couldn't help but think you had every word of this correct. LMAO a little also, but it fits. My grandfather was a Baptist and he became JW, so I am very familiar with them. Maybe it's because of this that the JW's, when they first heard me speak about religion, thought that I was one of them. I ended up going the Pentecostal route by way of Finis Jennings Dake eventually. I love to point out the fallacy in religion, but give it enough time and the fallacy becomes a part of the facts. This is all very clear for the JW's as well as Evangelicals today. Consider these things:
144,000 only for heaven, yet some JW's have been told they are in that number. How so?
When you die you are instantly in heaven or hell. According to what book?
Only your "soul" is going to heaven and not your body. Why does the bible speak of bodily resurrection?
Heaven is such a wonderful place but the bible says almost nothing at all about it. Why?
I could list many more, of course. It's the fallacy applied to modern thinking and technology that allows old writings to be perfected all over again. In essence your holy book becomes anything you want it to be and it says what you want it to say. All it takes is time and some cherry picking.
I don't know how many hours I've spent talking to Jehovah Witnesses that come to my house. I don't mind most of the time, and will try to have a friendly conversation with them -- maybe one of us will learn something. A common assertion is, "Jesus was the only perfect man, and the Bible is the only perfect book." I point out some, um, imperfections in their bible and they reply that if it seems imperfect to us that just means that we imperfect men misunderstand it. And around and around.
They'll stop by every couple of weeks for a six months or a year and then give up. A couple of years later a fresh batch will repeat the process. I know that they keep records of this stuff because they sit in the car and write in notebooks for several minutes before leaving, but maybe they don't fully research their own database before going out to evangelize. Or more likely, what they wrote down had a tenuous connection to reality.
Just once, one of the young neophytes responded to one of my comments with a shocked, wide-eyed stare and what seemed to be a glimmer of understanding. She may have gone back and questioned what she'd been told. Maybe that's why they eventually, if temporarily, stop coming by.
Ted, when they come around my house they do the same. I also knew that my Kenyan wife was the prize more so than me, so they come by less these days. When they set in the car and write things I'm believing it to be "he says the same old things." If I'm correct that would apply equally to them as well.
It's interresting to note that in my lifetime Jesus was simply the "only perfect man" years ago, but with doctrinal changes today in major religions, Jesus is now the son of god. They do not mean this the way Evangelicals do, but it's a change in how they want to deal with them and convert them. In their theology Jesus was "Michael the Archangel." This is because of the many scriptures saying Jesus existed with god in the beginning, and it fits in with god saying "let us make man in our image." Either this angel assisted in creation or he had to be god. Also note that there is only god the father and Michael his son. The holy goat didn't come along until the books were written and then it was "the holy goat herder." LOL
As usual none of it makes any sense. In popular religions the Witlesses come in second to Scientology, but they are hated by the main church world because only the Witlesses have death and dying right. Their views cheat the church world out of being instantly in another realm when you die. Quite simply, the dead really are dead. Even the bibble says so.
Yes Ted, there appears to be hope for some, but they are few and far between.
We call them the Obituary Vultures here because they prey on the bereaved and desperate.
They also hang out at Alcoholics Anonymous as well as drug rehab facilities.
If they appear in our streets, we know somebody in the street has suffered the loss of a partner, parent or child within the previous week.
They blanket the entire street so that their target is not obvious, but it is more than obvious.
One time the woman over the road from us lost her dad.
The following day, they were in force, a family with children in tow and two pastors.
They docked at our house as I had great rapport with them as I would read all their literature (for free).
I invited them but they stood on our front porch, continually watching across the road, as I was aware that they were targeting her the moment they arrived and were waiting for her to arrive home from her work.
She arrived and the adults made a beeline across the road to engage her, leaving the children in my company, they must have thought I was harmless and almost a member.
So I started filling the children in with faults I found in their literature and things I noticed about the way their parent's and pastor's behave.
The children were like willing sponges, we were all laughing at their church and even their parents with the children continually agreeing with me. We had fun!
Though I think I sunk my rapport with their elders.
A couple of weeks later I noticed two of the children walking towards me with their father and they saw me as well. They both called out my name and started to wave, to which their father grabbed them by their collars and physically dragged them away, across the road.
They never stopped at my doorstep after that day.
I think I heard them hissing as they went past.
They are that childish.
Now I have moved and they are darkening my doorstep again.
A new batch, and I'm building rapport with them again.
Maybe I can do it all again!
I have met one of those children, he has definitely left the faith and works at the local supermarket, where he still remembers me and we have fun as I go though his checkout.
Lots of people make the break. I (raised in the cult) offically broke off back in the earlly 80s, as did my brother and my wife at the time. Internally I had actually broken away before that, the logical flimflam was just painfully obvious.
Strangely, however, many leave that and go into some other religion; sometimes mainstream Protestant, sometimes another cult. That I do not understand.
I went from Christendom Anglican conventional Christianity into a Pentecostal, tongue speaking group. Only because I became a heavy smoker and wanted to give it away, so a friend suggested the Pentecostal group, where I performed some street preaching, and became popular as I was attracting girls into the sect, but I eventually after studying the Bible, as well as setting up a sting to prove their tongue speaking was nonsense, gave it away as a bad joke and a waste of a couple of years of my life.
I also discovered that those claiming to have stopped smoking due to the holy spirit, were still smoking at home in secret, as their children gave them away, saying that they would race around with air freshener to conceal their deception.
This is why I set up the sting and found the sect's deception out.
Yes, speaking in tongues. Ho see con didli eye. Honda la seka. Then other words that sound like Hezikiah, Zackeriah, make me some home pie ah. They get on that kick and I think go through the whole bible.
In the beginning it's fa la la la la da da da da dit. Saying this repeatedly gets you confused and you get into it like in the above. Church members there say "that's it. You have to stammer before you can talk."
Then they all pretend they know what this gibbrish means.
I don't understand it either Jay. I spent 2 or 3 years on the Life After Mormonism site, but finally left it because I got tired of some of the ex-mormons preaching some other religion or woo.