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The Librarian

JW’s are now allowed to have beards and publicly preach....

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Yes and to think they let congregants smoke tobacco into the 1970's without a problem, even though they knew it was totally wrong in the late 1800's.  But no beards, just to prove they were the boss. It's called dictatorship, nothing else. 

 to quote TTH " Though nowhere forbidden by scripture or Bible principles, no "rule" was applied with more vigor than the "no beard" rule, "

Dictatorship Tom. Domineering at it's best. 

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15 hours ago, James Thomas Rook Jr. said:

To make a very long story very short, almost to the point of abbreviation .... and trying to stay on topic ....

In the past 57 years, I have been in the "little back room, Room 101", about 17 times, being "counseled" by Elders that did not like "something" about me ... that I worked a lot of overtime, that I rode a Honda 350 motorcycle to the Kingdom Hall, that I "refused" to provide a telephone for my wife,  ad nauseum ... and I REALLY HATE BULLIES! ... but I digress ... and about 8 or so of those times it was to get me to cut off my beard.  One time it was because of my mustache. During the 60's it was because my hair came down just perceptively below the collar.

In one congregation in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, I had no problem with the beard ... and even got a recommendation letter to go work at the Bethel Branch Office construction in Peru ... and in all others, I was castigated, and even forbidden to go out in Service until I shaved off my beard.

After eight discussions, and no valid scriptural reasoning, all joy in doing what I was doing was destroyed ... but it bothered me A LOT that stuff like this was being inflicted on the global Brotherhood, in almost EVERY congregation I had ever attended. 

If they could do it to me... they WERE doing it to other Brothers ... and things similar to this.

Based on all available real evidence, it seemed to me that in order to be a watchtower approved Elder you had to be qualified as follows:

1.) clueless

2.) petty

3.) irrational

4.be a "Company Man", through and through.

5.) and have no pangs of conscience whatsoever for being a bully.

To be fair, I have also run across Engineers and Doctors that shared these traits, but they did not operate in an environment that ENCOURAGED this behavior.

The other day I mentioned in a comment that I envied Anna, and she replied that she knew that ... because she still seems to have the joy in the Truth that has been systematically beaten out of me.

I miss the man I used to be.

A lot!

I did have a choice, however ... either "get with the program", or keep my self respect.

It has gotten better over the years, but only marginally, but I have endured things far, far worse that these things I have mentioned ... and I will endure things like this also.

When my Dad died, about ten years ago, he asked me to shave off my beard ...  he also never liked it .... and  I have been clean shaven since then.

I loved my Dad.

I HATE BULLIES!

I am 72 now, and in marginal health .... and can see the end of the "conveyor belt" on which I stand, and it bothers me.

I am too old and fragile to carry on my back bags of heavy stones for someone else's entertainment.

 

 

 

 

Luke 17 v 1&2. 

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2 hours ago, TrueTomHarley said:

Mature ones would not be stumbled by his eating meat that had been sacrificed to an idol.

With beards, the situation was the complete opposite. New ones and unbelievers generally had no problem with them, but mature ones would balk.

Good observation there TT

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3 hours ago, TrueTomHarley said:

Though nowhere forbidden by scripture or Bible principles, no "rule" was applied with more vigor than the "no beard" rule, and I am glad to see it go.

.... the hand of justice is slow but attainable ..... after cca 100 years. 

or ... God is Almighty and He decide how His People is finally ready to accept this big change in theocratic instruction matter

or ....Finally Heavenly Chariot made 180 degrees move and surprised JW Brotherhood because this news will strengthen their Unity  

:)) 

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8 hours ago, The Librarian said:

The first time I have heard this. Interesting thought.

The usual treatment of the subject follows the idea that it was just a natural part of the mid-to-late 19th century style for men.

*** g00 1/22 p. 24 A Close Shave ***
In ancient Greek society, beards were normally worn by all except the nobility, who were often clean-shaven. In Rome the habit of shaving seems to have started in the second century B.C.E., and for several centuries thereafter, a daily shave remained the custom.
With the fall of the Roman Empire, however, the beard once again prevailed, doing so for 1,000 years until the second half of the 17th century, when shaving became the vogue. The clean-shaven look continued through the 18th century. But then, by the mid-to-late 19th century, the pendulum began to swing the other way. Hence, photographs of C. T. Russell, the first president of the Watch Tower Society, and fellow Christian W. E. Van Amburgh show both men wearing stylish, well-trimmed beards that were dignified and appropriate for their time. In the early part of the 20th century, however, shaving enjoyed a resurgence of popularity that has endured in most countries to our day.

But here's is what those who were there at the time remembered about Russell and Rutherford. We already know that a cult had developed around Russell, and it included persons wanting to dress like him and look like him:

*** jv chap. 6 p. 65 A Time of Testing (1914-1918) ***
Others, on account of their deep respect for Brother Russell, seemed more concerned with trying to copy his qualities and develop a sort of cult around him.

This  example is A H MacMillan telling about Rutherford's ideas in 1918/1919, wanting to crush all this worship of Russell, when MacMillan still did not believe he could do it. (From Faith on the March, 1957, p.106. Further excerpts are included from later chapters.)

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I threw in a few more excerpts than I needed to, because it gives the correct idea that the primary way to push the Russellites out was to get them used to more humble and mundane types of preaching, similar to the way that colporteurs had been distributing the books from door to door, rather than only preaching as elders who would dress up in long black frock coats and beards and imitate the manners of C.T.Russell.

*** yb74 pp. 97-98 Part 1—Germany ***
But more equipment was needed. For that reason Brother Balzereit asked Brother Rutherford for permission to buy a rotary press. Brother Rutherford saw the necessity and agreed, but on one condition. He had noticed that over the years Brother Balzereit had grown a beard very similar to the one that had been worn by Brother Russell. His example soon caught on, for there were others who also wanted to look like Brother Russell. This could give rise to a tendency toward creature worship, and Brother Rutherford wanted to prevent this. So during his next visit, within hearing of all the Bible House family, he told Brother Balzereit that he could buy the rotary press but only on the condition that he shave off his beard. Brother Balzereit sadly agreed and afterward went to the barber.

*** yb75 p. 148 Part 2—United States of America ***
He says: “Modification of viewpoints respecting scriptures and matters of procedure seemed to be constant during these years. For example, it was in 1927. . .  For that matter, the year before, during the London, England, convention of May 25-31, 1926, Brother Rutherford spoke from the platform while attired in a business suit, instead of the formal black frock coat that had long been worn by public speakers among Jehovah’s Christian witnesses. Another change in viewpoint involved the “cross and crown” symbol [popularized under Russell's presidency].

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3 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Brother Rutherford spoke from the platform while attired in a business suit,

Soon we will have to ditch the business suit since it is becoming fashion relegated to lawyers, courthouses etc...

The most common "business suit' now is Khakis ....

I won't even mention the IT world.

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@The Librarian @JW Insider The whole idea of you guys following other men as to what is "permissible" is repugnant to people who have been taught critical thinking skills.

Science has left religion and customs of desert nomads from 5,000 years ago literally in the dust.

Time to find newer books to spend your days on.

Have you considered learning a new skill in coding? Maybe medicine / health?

Much more productive than spending your time as a people wondering if beards are ok or why you are all forced to wear suits and ties for walking down the street.

 

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23 minutes ago, Jack Ryan said:

@The Librarian @JW Insider The whole idea of you guys following other men as to what is "permissible" is repugnant to people who have been taught critical thinking skills.

Science has left religion and customs of desert nomads from 5,000 years ago literally in the dust.

Time to find newer books to spend your days on.

Have you considered learning a new skill in coding? Maybe medicine / health?

Much more productive than spending your time as a people wondering if beards are ok or why you are all forced to wear suits and ties for walking down the street.

 

I also asking myself, more and more, why spending time here on arguing with people about JW Issues :)) 

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1 hour ago, Jack Ryan said:

@The Librarian @JW Insider The whole idea of you guys following other men as to what is "permissible" is repugnant to people who have been taught critical thinking skills.

Science has left religion and customs of desert nomads from 5,000 years ago literally in the dust.

Time to find newer books to spend your days on.

Have you considered learning a new skill in coding? Maybe medicine / health?

Much more productive than spending your time as a people wondering if beards are ok or why you are all forced to wear suits and ties for walking down the street.

 

Hey critical thinker, why are you on here?

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@Anna 

8 minutes ago, Anna said:

Hey critical thinker, why are you on here? 

You got me!

Really it's because I have issues stemming from decades of mind control from the JW's.... So I am not a good example.

Other people should save themselves and future generations from this radioactive titanic religious cult if they don't want their children discussing whether they are allowed to wear beards in 50 years from now.

I would rather they study science, medicine or technology and actually do something to help mankind rather than spread hate toward apostates who don't agree with their version / translation of some 5,000 year old camel riding desert sands God's words to an extinct people.

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3 minutes ago, Jack Ryan said:

@Anna 

You got me!

Really it's because I have issues stemming from decades of mind control from the JW's.... So I am not a good example.

Other people should save themselves and future generations from this radioactive titanic religious cult if they don't want their children discussing whether they are allowed to wear beards in 50 years from now.

I would rather they study science, medicine or technology and actually do something to help mankind rather than spread hate toward apostates who don't agree with their version / translation of some 5,000 year old camel riding desert sands God's words to an extinct people.

I am truly sorry you had that experience. I can see it has damaged you. You must realize though that most Jehovah's Witnesses have not had those kind of negative experiences and are well balanced and useful members of society. Also, most of them do not discuss these "issues" on forums like this, (notice there are only a handful on here) if they discuss them at all. Neither do they spread hate for apostates. 

Each human being is entitled to live the kind of life they believe is right, this includes Jehovah's Witnesses. And since they believe there is a creator who has given instructions on the best possible way to live, (since he IS the creator) they want to show him gratitude, and follow his advice. 

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On 7/20/2019 at 1:31 PM, JOHN BUTLER said:

Dictatorship Tom. Domineering at it's best. 

Is it? One could make that case. It certainly could be annoying at times. Still, not every whim in life goes your way. I never wanted a beard anyway. It did sometimes cause some trouble however, when they grew one for non-standard reasons. They could always do it, but they might come in for counsel and be kept from what Witnesses call “privileges”—MS, elder, pioneer, and so forth.

Yet, isn’t this another case of the non-doers saying that the doers are doing it wrong? Witnesses are a close-knit group, organized that way for the sake of preaching the good news. They rub shoulders will people of all dispositions and backgrounds that they otherwise wouldn’t rub shoulders with. The past circuit overseer said that Jehovah has molded his people into “large, united, happy, somewhat dysfunctional family.” Idiosyncrasies will pop up in a dysfunctional family, and this was one of them.

On 7/20/2019 at 3:28 PM, Srecko Sostar said:

the hand of justice is slow but attainable ..... after cca 100 years. 

Not really.  It has been a issue only for the last 30 years, which is still not nothing, but neither is it 100. In the days of beatniks and hippies, Anna’s application of verse would have been spot-on. A beard during that time, suggesting affiliation with those characters, did indeed have a high chance of stumbling new ones or unbelievers

Neither of you are in any position to lecture. Both of you have put yourself in places where you have no need to get along with people—if anyone annoys you, simply write him or her out of the picture. Inevitably, you surround yourselves with people who are pretty much like yourself. I don’t know it for sure, of course, with you as individuals, but it is the typical pattern that you have probably fallen into.

If I were not a Witness, my friends would almost certainly be persons just like me, with little variety. Instead, I have friends of every age, nationality, ethnicity, social class, educational and economic level. I have a whole circuitful of real people who like me, and I like them. It is not for the sake of making friends that I come online—I have more friends than I can handle. The only common feature that they have is that they are on the same page spiritually, which I regard as a good thing, not a bad thing. I am grateful to Jehovah for it, and to his organization, because it would not happen otherwise. 

There is a price to pay for such close interaction, however. You don’t always get your way. Sometimes you have to yield. Sometimes you yield on things that you think you really shouldn’t have to yield on, but you know that keeping the peace is better than getting your way on every thing. 

Nations have cultures. They all have their own unique ways of thinking, their own quirks, some of which will seem nuts to another nation. Witnesses have their own culture, too, and their own quirks. It is the price to pay for working in close proximity with many different people. I wouldn’t get too hung up on it.

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11 hours ago, Jack Ryan said:

Science has left religion and customs of desert nomads from 5,000 years ago literally in the dust.

Obviously, if you have outgrown the cause, the sacrifices involved in cooperating with the cause will seem oppressive to you. This is a no-brainer.

If one is still true to it, one puts up without too much fuss the inconveniences that being organized for the cause can bring about. The cause entails both pluses and minuses, and those true to it generally think that the minuses are relatively insignificant. 

But if you leave the cause, then the pluses become non-factors at best, minuses at worst, and what were already minuses becomes draconian “mind-control.”

This is also not especially difficult to figure out.

Still, you don’t actually disappear, do you, Jack? Aren’t you the one who has started up to a dozen threads in a single day designed to stumble your ex-brothers? If Science is the true God, then go on following Him.

 

 

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On 7/20/2019 at 3:13 PM, JOHN BUTLER said:
On 7/20/2019 at 3:10 PM, Anna said:

You have evidence for that?

Yes probably. In the same book that said they knew Christmas was wrong but kept on celebrating it at Bethal until 1926 ish. 

So, what book is that?

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If "Tight Pants" are so risque, and get certain Brothers all hot and bothered, and  distracting them from their Theocratic duties,  Tight Pants Tony would have an absolute stroke over THIS outfit!

Perhaps there should be a Watchtower Policy Statement that Kilts have to go down to the ANKLE!, and not have Mylar pillows or spherical orb designs bouncing around on the genital area as the brother walks along.

If you ask me, if you are going to wear that outfit outside of Scotland, you better damn well have a sword!

Forget the Badges at the Restaurants! 

We have a full scale "TPT" CRISIS here!

By the way... that pillow thingey in front, the Sister is pointing to with astonishment, is called a "TPT Conundrum".

 

tpt conundrum .jpg

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