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Watchtower's 1914 Chronology - Ad Nauseum


JW Insider

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This topic was created from posts moved from https://www.theworldnewsmedia.org/topic/90947-forum-participants-we-have-known/

When the topic of proofreading and mistakes and typos came up, I posted the following statement, which triggered a longer discussion about Russell/1914/Chronology and the like. 

 

On 6/6/2024 at 11:46 PM, BTK59 said:

any typos encountered should be corrected. On the other hand, if one decides to contact the Watchtower to suggest an interpretation of a particular passage,

Mostly true. But what if Reverend E. B. Elliott made use of Reverend Christopher Bowen's chronology typo and it happened to fit Nelson Barbour's 1874 to 1914 chronology, and Russell, and Rutherford and Fred Franz all accepted it, not realizing it was based on a typo? Should anyone have pointed out to them that it started with a typo?

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4 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

Maybe we are looking at the word criticize differently. When an artist is asked to provide 3 different pieces of art for an article, one of the jobs was to sit around and criticize at least two of them so that one would be chosen. You don't just say "I like this one the best" or "I don't like this one" without giving a reason. That reason is your "critique."

Yes, there is such a thing as positive criticism. However, my experience here has been limited to receiving only negative criticism. It makes me wonder, how does negative criticism truly benefit anyone?

Do you believe that the Pharisees' criticism of Christ was beneficial for others to consider?

Then the word, "benefit" should come into play.

10 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

Mostly true. But what if Reverend E. B. Elliott made use of Reverend Christopher Bowen's chronology typo and it happened to fit Nelson Barbour's 1874 to 1914 chronology, and Russell, and Rutherford and Fred Franz all accepted it, not realizing it was based on a typo? Should anyone have pointed out to them that it started with a typo?

Do you want to go there? Why has the Watchtower been revised under the control of Jehovah's Witnesses? Why do you insist on bringing up topics from the Bible Student era when you are well aware that Pastor Russell was still learning and challenging the beliefs he deemed false from Christendom? Furthermore, there came a point when Barbour returned to his Adventist views, leading to a public fallout through their print publications. However, these disagreements do not diminish what Russell felt in 1874 - his personal experience of Christ's presence. With Russell's determination, he brought unique insights and blessings to the Bible students. Nevertheless, Russell also understood that the end of the Gentile times would occur in 1914, not the end of the world as claimed by former members.? Can you refute WW1?

That is the issue, JWI. A defiant attitude nullifies all your previous arguments, leaving people hesitant to follow anyone as a proofreader. There claim to possess proofreading skills, it is difficult to accept this when they consistently refuse to be corrected or proven wrong. This mindset distorts any logical understanding. Remember, it is impossible to be simultaneously right and wrong.
 

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1 hour ago, BTK59 said:

It makes me wonder, how does negative criticism truly benefit anyone?

Do you believe that the Pharisees' criticism of Christ was beneficial for others to consider?

I think Christ's negative criticism of the Pharisees was beneficial for others to consider.

1 hour ago, BTK59 said:

Do you want to go there? Why has the Watchtower been revised under the control of Jehovah's Witnesses? Why do you insist on bringing up topics from the Bible Student era when you are well aware that Pastor Russell was still learning and challenging the beliefs he deemed false from Christendom?

Sure. The answer to your question would be that Russell never really challenged this particular belief derived in large part from these "reverends" of Christendom. He claimed not to have had for himself a very good understanding of the chronology and admitted that he had just pretty much accepted Barbour's numbers that Barbour had partially derived from other leaders of Christendom. But we have no choice but to bring up some of the Bible Student issues that were still accepted long after many Bible Student individuals and groups began to go by the new name, Jehovah's Witnesses. Some of these doctrines partly derived from Christendom are still accepted today by most of us. 

1 hour ago, BTK59 said:

Furthermore, there came a point when Barbour returned to his Adventist views, leading to a public fallout through their print publications.

Some see it as Barbour refusing to return to his Adventist views, and ultimately giving up on any version of Adventist chronology while Russell went on to state that the Adventists were instrumental (from God) in giving us a workable God-ordained chronology but that persons like Barbour were like the foolish virgins who let their lamps go out just because the advent appeared to be delayed. Russell specifically accused those who stopped believing in Barbour's 1874 date as "foolish virgins."

1 hour ago, BTK59 said:

Nevertheless, Russell also understood that the end of the Gentile times would occur in 1914, not the end of the world as claimed by former members.? Can you refute WW1?

Russell many times claimed that the end of the world would occur in 1914, and then later offered a possibility of 1915, and later he said it could be within a few months, or even maybe a few years of 1914. What he didn't believe in was the burning of the world, one of the original Adventist views he rejected. But for many years he preached that 1914 would see the complete and final end of this world, meaning all the world's systems and governments and institutions. I don't refute WW1, but WW1 certainly refutes Russell.

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8 hours ago, JW Insider said:

I think Christ's negative criticism of the Pharisees was beneficial for others to consider.

You seem to have a different perspective on the concepts of harassment and torment, but it is important to consider that these experiences do not always bring immediate benefits to the masses. While we now enjoy the rewards of Christ's sacrifice, it is unlikely that any sincere Christian during those tumultuous times would have perceived themselves as directly benefiting from the persecution Jesus faced at the hands of the Pharisees. If your hypothesis were true, Peter would not have famously denied Christ three times. Let us not overlook the entirety of scripture. Therefore, it is crucial to reflect on the benefits not encountered by the apostles and early Christians may have perceived such as "fear" while enduring persecution from both the Pharisees and the Roman Empire.
8 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Sure. The answer to your question would be that Russell never really challenged this particular belief derived in large part from these "reverends" of Christendom. He claimed not to have had for himself a very good understanding of the chronology and admitted that he had just pretty much accepted Barbour's numbers that Barbour had partially derived from other leaders of Christendom. But we have no choice but to bring up some of the Bible Student issues that were still accepted long after many Bible Student individuals and groups began to go by the new name, Jehovah's Witnesses. Some of these doctrines partly derived from Christendom are still accepted today by most of us.

It is true that Russell had to "relearn" what he felt was being wrongly taught by Christendom. He acknowledged the need to seek new perspectives from wherever he could find a more logical answer to his pressing questions. This is something that some people refuse to do and instead rely on authority to dictate their beliefs.
 
There is no valid criticism directed towards Russell's pursuit of truth. Nevertheless, witnesses have further elaborated on this pursuit, leading to new understandings that appear to personally trouble you enough to express your grievances publicly. If you do not possess as comprehensive an understanding of the past and present as you believe, why would you expose this underlying mistake to the public?
 
I understand the advantages that Russell gained, but I fail to see the benefits that you are conveying.
"Remember, we are discussing the truth laid out in scripture and not the interpretation by man."
 
Once again, let's draw on the analogy of a proofreader that you mentioned. How can a proofreader effectively correct the mistakes of others when they themselves make their own errors?
8 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Some see it as Barbour refusing to return to his Adventist views, and ultimately giving up on any version of Adventist chronology while Russell went on to state that the Adventists were instrumental (from God) in giving us a workable God-ordained chronology but that persons like Barbour were like the foolish virgins who let their lamps go out just because the advent appeared to be delayed. Russell specifically accused those who stopped believing in Barbour's 1874 date as "foolish virgins."

We each have our own unique perspectives, but the general public can gain a comprehensive understanding by examining past publications which present the compelling arguments put forth by Pastor Russell and Barbour. The public shouldn't rely on misleading narratives or distorted information from other sources. By delving into the original texts, they can discover the truth for themselves.
8 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Russell many times claimed that the end of the world would occur in 1914, and then later offered a possibility of 1915, and later he said it could be within a few months, or even maybe a few years of 1914. What he didn't believe in was the burning of the world, one of the original Adventist views he rejected. But for many years he preached that 1914 would see the complete and final end of this world, meaning all the world's systems and governments and institutions. I don't refute WW1, but WW1 certainly refutes Russell.

I  can clearly perceive the impact of Pudgy in your statements. However, the public has the opportunity to form its own judgment by reading the front-page article, which contradicts the claims you presented as your version of the truth. I believe the article is self-explanatory. While I acknowledge that you may have differing views regarding the correlation between WW1 and the period of interest in 1914, it is imperative not to impose your perspective on others, as you have persistently attempted to do over the course of the past decade.
 
I fail to comprehend the personal advantage derived from distorting factual information, as you seem to be inclined to do, and subsequently misrepresenting my statements to infer something entirely unrelated to the ongoing discussion. Therefore, unless you can provide a compelling argument that disproves the existence of World War I, your perspective regarding the 1914 analogy holds no relevance.
 
 
 
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11 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Russell many times claimed that the end of the world would occur in 1914, and then later offered a possibility of 1915, and later he said it could be within a few months, or even maybe a few years of 1914. What he didn't believe in was the burning of the world, one of the original Adventist views he rejected. But for many years he preached that 1914 would see the complete and final end of this world, meaning all the world's systems and governments and institutions. I don't refute WW1, but WW1 certainly refutes Russell.

I can easily refute your claim here, JWI, by providing a simple example.

Russell.jpg

When you're publicly proven wrong, it's understandable to feel offended and let anger take over. However, allowing emotions to get the best of you, as George did with Tom, can lead to undesired consequences of being banned for showing deceptions. I will encourage the public to conduct their own research on the topic I am discussing. It is important to verify information independently.

 

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21 hours ago, BTK59 said:

When you're publicly proven wrong, it's understandable to feel offended and let anger take over.

Sounds like you are angry that I wouldn't get angry. "Fiery coals on the head" syndrome I guess. 

The 1914 Bible Students Monthly has already been discussed at length, so I won't belabor it again here under this topic. Best if people do their own research as you say. The easiest way is to get the ZWT database that was once available for free from Bible Student websites. Look up: "end of the age" "end of the world" "consummation of the age" "cosmos" "Matthew 24:3" "Matthew 28:20" etc., and especially pay attention to the previous years of Bible Students Monthly. Then of course, one could go and see Rutherford using the same exact definition of the word "world" when he repeatedly announced: "The World Has Ended - Millions Now Living May Never Die!"

*** w84 2/1 p. 24 par. 11 ‘Oneness of Spirit’ in a Rapidly Growing Flock ***
Thus in 1918 the president of the Watch Tower Society delivered a talk in Los Angeles, California, on a subject later to be repeated by hundreds more speakers, under the title “The World Has Ended, Millions Now Living May Never Die.”
 

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12 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

Sounds like you are angry that I wouldn't get angry. "Fiery coals on the head" syndrome I guess

This comment is specifically for your fan base, not intended to be an expression of truth. However, I will refrain from expanding further on the matter.

14 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

The 1914 Bible Students Monthly has already been discussed at length, so I won't belabor it again here under this topic. Best if people do their own research as you say. The easiest way is to get the ZWT database that was once available for free from Bible Student websites. Look up: "end of the age" "end of the world" "consummation of the age" "cosmos" "Matthew 24:3" "Matthew 28:20" etc., and especially pay attention to the previous years of Bible Students Monthly. Then of course, one could go and see Rutherford using the same exact definition of the word "world" when he repeatedly announced: "The World Has Ended - Millions Now Living Will Never Die!"

Absolutely! It is crucial for visitors to witness firsthand how personal perspectives can be used to deceive. They should have the opportunity to explore Pastor Russell's words in writing, where he clearly stated the truth. It is perplexing that you, along with some former and current members of the Watchtower, persist in making baseless accusations while refusing to acknowledge this.

So, you're suggesting that instead of addressing the issues with Russell, you now want to argue about Rutherford? Are you also interested in discussing your misleading interpretation of events in 1975, which you seem to be defending, even though it's a false narrative?

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You have made a false accusation in this open forum regarding the Watchtower's reference to the end of the world in 1975 by citing publications from 1966, 1968, and 1969. Before you continue down this path of deception, I urge the public to read the Watchtower literature to gain a genuine perspective on the meaning behind the year 1975, which primarily focuses on the 6,000 years of human existence.

Although there was certainly an excessive amount of overthinking in the past, leading to incorrect conclusions, one would have needed to experience that era in order to grasp it fully. Furthermore, during that time, there was an "assembly" titled "Why We Have Not Been Told ‘That Day and Hour" that provided an explanation to the brotherhood that could not have been any clearer. It aimed to guide individuals and ensure their genuine comprehension. This is the reason the Watchtower put an end to such speculation in 1974 with the publication of the following insightful article.

*** w74 10/15 p. 635 Growing in Appreciation for the “Divine Purpose” ***
The publications of Jehovah’s witnesses have shown that, according to Bible chronology, it appears that 6,000 years of man’s existence will be completed in the mid-1970’s. But these publications have never said that the world’s end would come then. Nevertheless, there has been considerable individual speculation on the matter. So the assembly presentation “Why We Have Not Been Told ‘That Day and Hour’” was very timely. It emphasized that we do not know the exact time when God will bring the end. All we know is that the end will come within the generation that sees fulfilled on it the sign that Jesus Christ said would then be in evidence. (See Matthew chapters 24, 25.) All indications are that the fulfillment of this sign began in 1914. So we can be confident that the end is near; we do not have the slightest doubt that God will bring it about, the speaker stressed. But we have to wait and see exactly when, in the meantime keeping busy in God’s service.
 

The article "Divine Purpose" is rooted in a series of assemblies that emphasized the divine aspect, such as "1971 Divine Name," "1972 Divine Rulership," "1973 Divine Victory," and so on. Most of the congregation comprehended the significance of the year 1975 without misinterpreting previous articles or taking them out of context, unlike some irresponsible individuals who falsely claim to be witnesses.

Although I don't agree with the topics discussed in the closed club, as they often revolve around irresponsibility, there's no need to perpetuate this distortion to the public, especially when they are already aware of the false narratives propagated by former members.

Now you can understand JWI's beliefs based on what he posted.

47 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

Look up: "end of the age" "end of the world" "consummation of the age" "cosmos" "Matthew 24:3" "Matthew 28:20" etc.

He fully supports the apostate propaganda without reservations.

This is the type of deceit and dishonesty that disgusts people and leads to banning. Joking aside, the image that Toms presents is just a way to divert the public's attention from their true hidden agenda: deception. Using the name of the Watchtower to defame and slander God's people is a highly irresponsible act. Such individuals shame both God and the Watchtower by misusing its name in an open forum, thereby engaging in irresponsible behavior.

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4 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

Hands that shed innocent blood. Fortunately, on a forum like this few will physically murder anyone. Some will take on personas like B.T.K. or Billy The Kid, known for shedding innocent blood, but this is just their own form of fantasy gunplay.

Have you ever considered the consequences of your actions, JWI? You have caused a great deal of harm and division by pitting brother against brother. It is not enough to simply excuse yourself and seek refuge in a loyal fan base within a closed club. Remember the stains of blood on your own hands.

7 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

There is a concern that is sometimes brought up that if someone brings up a controversial doctrine here (like chronology date setting related to the times and seasons, or "overlapping generations" or "pyramidology") that this alone will stumble persons and they will no longer respect the Watchtower or the Governing Body, which in turn can lead to their falling away and losing eternal life. That's a valid concern, but this can be taken so far as to be the equivalent of a claim that no one should read books, or read the old Watch Tower publications, or Russell-related court documents, or newspapers, or use Google or Bing. When all the same controversial information is available from Mr. Google, what does it matter if another person brings it up here? If there's a good answer to the controversy, then where else but to bring it up online, where the controversy can exist side-by-side with the truth about it.

Instead of imposing your own beliefs on these matters, why not engage in a constructive dialogue within an appropriate setting? Your apostate views are not suitable for an open forum, especially if you identify as a Jehovah's Witness. Before passing judgment on others, consider your own actions. You do not have the authority to judge the Governing Body, and your credibility to judge the elders is questionable. Your personal opinions hold little value in this context.

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26 minutes ago, BTK59 said:

Have you ever considered the consequences of your actions, JWI?

Yes. But as I said, if there is a good answer to anything controversial that you or I or others bring up here, then that answer appears right here, online, where the original controversial point has probably been rehashed in other places with or without an answer. Also, if there is no viable answer to the controversy, then the issue has been brought up and persons who are interested in truth ("making sure of all things") will know that there is no answer to it (yet). That's also good information to have so that we don't go around deceiving people inadvertently. 

For example, let's say that someone claims that "Pyramidology" was presented as truth to householders as late 1933, nearly 5 years after it was declared "from the Devil" and two years after most Bible Student associations and individuals began identifying themselves as "Jehovah's witnesses." This point was brought up to me once (by a Bethel sister, who was a proofreader, no less) and I was asked to question the writer about making a small change in the "ka" book which referenced this point of organizational history incorrectly.  This book ("ka") was about to be reprinted for the mid-week Book Study. I claimed to her that her statement was false. But she showed me the 1928 through 1933 "Informants" which she had copies of. This was something controversial to her and she knew it, and she wanted someone else to pass the question back to the writer. 

To be sure, she was skewing the emphasis on pyramidology to make the point more memorable. The "ka" book reference never mentioned pyramidology, only the date when the Society stopped selling the Studies in the Scriptures series. 

Should we all have ignored the issue? This book was going out to the public. I placed several copies of this book myself. Interested persons would attend the Book Study. In the end, it was decided that the sentence would not be corrected. But does this mean no one should have questioned? Should no one have tried to "make sure of all things"?

But I also learned that the people who get angry over such things, when the answer is not in favor of their interests, are the ones who KNOW there is no answer, or don't want to admit the answer. That's why I'm not concerned about bringing up controversial things publicly. There is nothing secret that will not be made known. 

And I've found that online the anger is most often from those who, deep down, realize that they don't like the truth. But I always remember Proverbs 6:17; Psalm 26:3; Psalm 31:5: ". . . Jehovah, the God of truth."

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59 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

Yes. But as I said, if there is a good answer to anything controversial that you or I or others bring up here, then that answer appears right here, online, where the original controversial point has probably been rehashed in other places with or without an answer.

What positive outcomes can be achieved by spreading disinformation? You are the one responsible for manufacturing these controversies, unwilling to accept the truth when it is presented. Let's consider the example of the Russell comment and the apocalyptic rumors about the end of the world. You are well aware that Russell had to issue a full-page disclaimer to counteract the misleading ideas propagated by certain individuals, just like the Watchtower eventually did for the year 1975. However, you persist in promoting a false narrative, continuing to fuel this controversy. So, what beneficial response are you hoping to achieve with your personal denial?

This controversy is purely a product of your imagination, not of the Bible students, the Watchtower, or Jehovah's Witnesses. It has already been clarified, so it requires a nonconformist diehard to keep revisiting this deceit. Therefore, what is the benefit of airing this nonsense in public? Who stands to gain from this other than apostates?

59 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

For example, let's say that someone claims that "Pyramidology" was presented as truth to householders as late 1933, nearly 5 years after it was declared "from the Devil" and two years after most Bible Student associations and individuals began identifying themselves as "Jehovah's witnesses." This point was brought up to me once (by a Bethel sister, who was a proofreader, no less) and I was asked to question the writer about making a small change in the "ka" book which referenced this point of organizational history incorrectly.  This book ("ka") was about to be reprinted for the mid-week Book Study. I claimed to her that her statement was false. But she showed me the 1928 through 1933 "Informants" which she had copies of. This was something controversial to her(,)and she knew it, and she wanted someone else to pass the question back to the writer. 

What relevance does any of that have to do with the remarkable progress achieved by the Watchtower since gaining full control in 1950? Do the events of 1933, which a sister found controversial, truly matter? Did she fully grasp the significance of what she was reading? It is true that 60% of Bible students were in the process of relearning, while 30% did not adhere to Pastor Russell's ideology and chose to leave, leading to a separation from the IBSA. History shows that. However, what does this ultimately prove? Merely having access to dubious insider information does not hold much weight, especially when your own credibility is questionable.

59 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

To be sure, she was skewing the emphasis on pyramidology to make the point more memorable. The "ka" book reference never mentioned pyramidology, only the date when the Society stopped selling the Studies in the Scriptures series. 

Does today's Watchtower endorse pyramidology just like Brother Rotherford failed to endorse in his tenure as the head of the Bible Student Association under the publishing house the Watchtower? What was the true motivation behind the pyramidology that you personally find distasteful? It aimed to present an alternative perspective on chronology, which even Pastor Russell himself found intriguing but not essential. Those were Pastor Russells thoughts about it, regardless of what you dream up to refute his actual words by misrepresenting them, just like you did with "the end of the world in 1914" apostate fiasco.

What positive lessons can be derived from inaccurate information? You are eager to persuade others to adopt your perspective, so demonstrate how one can benefit from learning from misrepresentation. Instead of accepting your lack of credibility and deceitful conduct, how can one actually learn from your experiences? If tarnishing your reputation is your aim, then congratulations on a job well done as a role model.

59 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

But I also learned that the people who get angry over such things, when the answer is not in favor of their interests, are the ones who KNOW there is no answer, or don't want to admit the answer. That's why I'm not concerned about bringing up controversial things publicly. There is nothing secret that will not be made known. 

And I've found that online the anger is most often from those who, deep down, realize that they don't like the truth. But I always remember Proverbs 6:17; Psalm 26:3; Psalm 31:5: ". . . Jehovah, the God of truth."

Before criticizing others, it would be wise to reflect on your own actions. It seems that you are quick to judge others, especially me, while disregarding your own anger when you ban someone. Why do you continue to ignore this?

Matthew 7:3-5 English Standard Version
3 Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? 4 Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye.

 

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What motivated brothers in the past to stand up for Pastor Russell and correct the misconceptions surrounding pyramology? Some brothers took it upon themselves to directly address the issue by personally funding the placement of a pyramid stone near Pastor Russell's grave. Unfortunately, there was misinformation circulating that claimed the Watchtower had acquired and installed the stone.

"Pastor Russell
was always firmly opposed to all forms of occultism, as will be discussed in greater detail in the section on Pyramidology later in this chapter; and he never knowingly employed any mystic symbols in his ministry and teachings."

"PYRAMID USAGE. Finally, we need to comment on yet another absurd charge in connection with the Pyramid. This was made by David Reed, who attempts to build a case on the alleged usage of questionable forms of pyramidology in the Pastor’s over all ministry. First, he cites the fact that a seven-foot-tall stone pyramid was used in the Society’s Rosemont Cemetery near Pittsburgh to mark the location of burial plots for members of the Bethel staff, including Pastor Russell, and then writes."

Another misconception that was circulating at that time involved the confusion between the "name" Rutherford and another Rutherford who was involved.

"A monthly publication, Pyramidology, by Dr. Adam Rutherford of New Castle, began in 1941. The Forest Gate Church (London) Bible Monthly was published 1936-1985. Phillys Stracy compiled an evening devotional book, Songs in the Night."

This insider knowledge may seem irrelevant today, as it reflects people's confusion in the past about the language used by others. However, it is important to acknowledge that we cannot make well-informed judgments about those conditions since we were not alive during that time. Whether Pastor Russell found the pyramid scheme intriguing but useless, or if later under Rutherford it was condemned as the devil's work because of the usage by other Christian denominations, none of these matters as it holds any significance now.

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