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Polite suggestions please? JWs won't leave us alone. - Page 8

post #141 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by hollyvangogh View Post
ETA: It's not about bothering people who are busy to tell them they are wrong. Some have suggested that it's perfectly acceptable to be rude to people who come door to door...but if the tables were turned and someone treated you like crap because you wanted to tell them about breastfeeding, or no circ, or vaccines, or [insert thing you sincerely believe in and care deeply about] you'd probably be offended. Like I said, I can't speak for how the JWs do it, but LDS missionaries give up 1.5-2 years of their life, on their own dime to volunteer full time (and it's not all going door to door, they spend a lot of time just doing service for people). They don't do it to annoy you, or to bash you, or to interrupt you're busy life. They do it to share something that is important to them and has made them happy. I think acting like they don't deserve to be treated with as much respect as anyone else because you happen to be in the middle of something when they come by is a mean attitude. Some posters seem to think missionaries deserve to be treated like dirt and I think that's ridiculous. No one deserves to be treated like dirt for simply asking if you'd like to talk to them about something very dear to their hearts. Like I said, if someone was nasty to you just for trying to talk to them about your beliefs/thoughts/opinions/whatever I imagine you'd be pretty ticked off.
Um, no. If I were rude enough to go around interrupting people's lives to deliver my unasked for opinions, I'd pretty well expect them to be nasty to me.

I don't much care that the JWs or LDSs or whomever are doing this because THEY think it's the right thing to do. They can care for my soul all they want, but leave me the hell out of it. Their religious obligations to spread their beliefs don't trump my own rights to be left alone, and if they come to MY door, unasked for, I'm under no obligation at all to be polite. I think what they're doing is incredibly rude and obnoxious. Maybe if they showed any interest in discussing MY religion too, I'd think it less obnoxious, but as was already noted, they clearly refuse to take literature from those they try to foist their own literature on, have no interest in sitting and listening to MY beliefs, etc. Why on earth should they expect me to extend them courtesies they're unwilling to extend back to me, IN MY OWN HOUSE?

I never asked them to give up any years of their own lives - they chose to do that. I never asked them to share what makes them happy, and I don't care if THEY don't feel it's an interruption or intrusion in my life because it's their calling - once they come to MY house, unasked for, they lose the right to expect the polite responses I might have for people I voluntarily entered into discussions with.
post #142 of 199
Well the JWs just came by, surprisingly it was two young men this time. I have only seen the old ladies before.
Also surprising, they did not run screaming when I said we were atheist. Rather, they wanted to know what my explanation was for pretty much every culture worldwide having a flood story.
We had a pleasant chat, interrupted by Gavin getting ahold of the remote and turning the TV to max volume.
We'll see if they come back.
post #143 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShwarmaQueen View Post
Well If I were trying to convert someone (which I would NEVER) I would think it would be easier to convert someone who doesn't believe in God or isn't sure rather than convert someone who is devout in their religion already. Make sense? I guess I could see it from the other way also. I don't really know, I've never thought of converting anyone.
I wonder what the success rate for these door-to-door conversions is?
Every atheist I've ever met was very secure in his/her beliefs. I can't imagine any of them being converted to a belief that involves a deity.
post #144 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShwarmaQueen View Post
Well If I were trying to convert someone (which I would NEVER) I would think it would be easier to convert someone who doesn't believe in God or isn't sure rather than convert someone who is devout in their religion already. Make sense? I guess I could see it from the other way also. I don't really know, I've never thought of converting anyone.
I wonder what the success rate for these door-to-door conversions is?
Actually, no, when I was a JW we feared unbelievers the most. Why? Because to a JW the bible is the authority on all things. Any question or concern is answered with the bible. Every teaching or argument presented was backed up with the bible. If you got someone at a door who didn't believe in the bible or god, your entire presentation fell flat. Every argument you were taught to prove your points could not be used, because suddenly you could not point to the bible as the one true authority on all matters. Atheists and agnostics were generally very educated on subjects that many JW's were not even allowed to learn about in high school, such as evolution or philosophy. JW's have a view on science that is very incomplete, and meeting atheists or agnostics at the door who were very knowledgable on the subject was extremely intimidating and scary. Scary because they asked questions that we couldn't answer, and because they questioned even our own "science" book called: "Life - How Did it Get Here? By Evolution or Creation", which has rampant misquotes and errors, which they were happy to point out. Most atheists/agnostics we met were very firm in their beliefs and were not searching for anything else, especially not a deity to follow, especially not one in a fundamentalist religion that threw the science they believed out the window. The people who were "easy" to convert were the poor, the emigrant groups, or people who had just had a trauma in their lives such as a death in the family. Also, people who needed and longed for community, such as single mothers, or people who didn't fit in well with their own church. People who believed in god, and the bible, give JW's a common ground to work with. Even emigrant groups who believed in some kind of religion were easier to convert then atheists or agnostics.
post #145 of 199
I think it would be way easier to get someone who believed in a god to switch religions than to get someone who does not believe in a god to believe in a god.
post #146 of 199
I did not read the whole thread...but Smokering, your post on the first page had me cracking up (gotta love being able to pull out the Calvinist bit ...too bad they didn't stick around to hear the Confessions LOL!).

I've had both good and bad experiences with JW's. We're related to one that is very dear to us...none of us bring up our differences though...that is how we maintain the peace Another time I had an old ba..lady at my friend's door and I know a bit about Greek. She got peeved at me and started snarking off at me. And then we've recently had some young girls driven by a group of people and they started in on the homeschooling bit (very pro). I let them get their starting piece in. When they tried to hand me their papers I kindly told them that we already know their beliefs, our beliefs are very contrary to theirs, but we thank them for coming by, and told them that they would be better to keep their papers as we won't read them and they would just be round filed. They thanked us for being kind and went on their way.
post #147 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by jennica View Post
Actually, no, when I was a JW we feared unbelievers the most. Why? Because to a JW the bible is the authority on all things. Any question or concern is answered with the bible. Every teaching or argument presented was backed up with the bible. If you got someone at a door who didn't believe in the bible or god, your entire presentation fell flat. Every argument you were taught to prove your points could not be used, because suddenly you could not point to the bible as the one true authority on all matters.
Yep that. Someone that at least entertains the notion of God being reality, would be far easier to sway to your particular version of religion (the general your here sorry). I usually just say no thank you & shut the door.. but on the few occasions I offered them a drink of cold water on a hot day etc, they realized the bible really didn't hold much sway with me at all (I'm pagan )
post #148 of 199
I've only had JW's visit twice since I moved here (been here about 5 years now). Once I wasnt home, so they left stuff outside that door. The second time I was in a horribly bad mood and while I wasnt rude, I just said flat out I was an athiest and wasnt interested in hearing it, and shut the door. I'm not really an athiest either...that just seemed easier than saying I was a unitarian with buddhist tendencies

For us its the LDS that visit all the time! I dont mind too much as they are always nice and arnt pushy at all when I say I'm not interested...and I'm pretty sure they are different guys each time. They also ALWAYS ask if I need help with anything...dh said I should take advantage of this and get the dishes done, but I wouldnt do that. Well, I mean, I might if I were on bedrest or something, but I'm perfectly capable of doing them myself right now, tyvm.

I've also known one JW who I had no clue even was until she mentioned it in passing one day. She never said a word about it and I really respected her for it-she knew my beliefs before I knew hers and she didnt try to push stuff on me like some people I've met. On the same hand, I've known a LOT of LDS' in real life and had some great friends that were as well, and again, they never once pressured me into their religion. I did go to church one time with one family though and um...got myself into trouble. What can I say, I was a 17 year old from a VERY liberal household who had a hard time keeping my mouth shut when I should, lol.

Anyway, I do agree its rude to keep bugging people when they've said hey, I'm not interested, but at the same time, it doesnt bother me so much having someone come by once, ask if I have any questions, and then leave me alone. Of course, everyone has their own take on this...and there are times where I definately am NOT amused at uninvited guests. But I'd be more upset to see my mom at my door unannounced than a religious group (of course, my mom is scary, for reals).
post #149 of 199
I just talked to Dh the other day about this thread, and he reminded me that, as we've established, a "no soliciting" sign will only work for a handful of witnesses, but, a "no trespassing" sign will stop most JW's in their tracks. See, some years back, the Watchtower Society started saying that if fines were incurred from trespassing when a no trespassing sign was posted, they would not pay those fines. So, most witnesses will not cross a "no trespassing" sign. The Watchtower Society still maintains that soliciting does not apply to them, and they teach their members their own little definition of soliciting.
post #150 of 199
I have no idea how JW's define soliciting, and the definition they give may be wrong, but they are correct that they are not doing it. To solicit does not require an exchange of money. It is, in a nutshell, to ask for something or to try to get someone to do something, usually in a beseeching or persistent fashion. This can be asking someone for money, trying to get someone to buy something or trying to get someone to do something (sign a petition, attend a rally, vote for them, commit a crime, whatever). So long as the JW's only give things away and do not take money or anything else (probably one reason they are not allowed to take other people's literature, thought probably not the only reason or even the most important one), and do not try to get you to take some sort of action, then they are not soliciting. They may be incredibly annoying, they may be trespassing, they may be harassing you, but they are not soliciting.

Note: I am not a JW or former JW. I am an English major and the daughter of a lawyer and I care deeply about words and how they are used.
post #151 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adele_Mommy View Post
I have no idea how JW's define soliciting, and the definition they give may be wrong, but they are correct that they are not doing it. To solicit does not require an exchange of money. It is, in a nutshell, to ask for something or to try to get someone to do something, usually in a beseeching or persistent fashion. This can be asking someone for money, trying to get someone to buy something or trying to get someone to do something (sign a petition, attend a rally, vote for them, commit a crime, whatever). So long as the JW's only give things away and do not take money or anything else (probably one reason they are not allowed to take other people's literature, thought probably not the only reason or even the most important one), and do not try to get you to take some sort of action, then they are not soliciting. They may be incredibly annoying, they may be trespassing, they may be harassing you, but they are not soliciting.

Note: I am not a JW or former JW. I am an English major and the daughter of a lawyer and I care deeply about words and how they are used.
Interesting perspective, being as I was a JW I have a different take on it. Despite what they tell you, they are coming to your house to get you to take an action. That action being that you also become a JW. They give away literature, but they are always supposed to ask for a donation (this is because if they charge for literature they will fall into a different tax bracket, so they simply ask for donations instead). They try converting in a persistent fashion, just as you say. Their goals are to place literature, return and ask you what you thought of it and place more, start a bible study using the literature that they placed, and bring "worldy" people into their religion. They believe they have the true religion and they are saving everyone else by getting them to convert to it (because non-JW's likely wont survive according to them).

So, I think they ARE soliciting. They are soliciting donations, and they are soliciting conversions. They will tell you that they are sharing a scripture, or that they are just doing as Jesus commanded, which is also true, however, if you attend their meetings, you will see that conversions are what they are trained to do, and what is their ultimate goal and purpose in coming to your door.
post #152 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by jennica View Post
Interesting perspective, being as I was a JW I have a different take on it. Despite what they tell you, they are coming to your house to get you to take an action. That action being that you also become a JW. They give away literature, but they are always supposed to ask for a donation (this is because if they charge for literature they will fall into a different tax bracket, so they simply ask for donations instead). They try converting in a persistent fashion, just as you say. Their goals are to place literature, return and ask you what you thought of it and place more, start a bible study using the literature that they placed, and bring "worldy" people into their religion. They believe they have the true religion and they are saving everyone else by getting them to convert to it (because non-JW's likely wont survive according to them).

So, I think they ARE soliciting. They are soliciting donations, and they are soliciting conversions. They will tell you that they are sharing a scripture, or that they are just doing as Jesus commanded, which is also true, however, if you attend their meetings, you will see that conversions are what they are trained to do, and what is their ultimate goal and purpose in coming to your door.
If they ask for donations then you are right, they are soliciting. Also, if they are actively trying to get you to convert, then that would also be solicitation. The Mormons I have talked to all had the perspective that they were just sharing information and providing help, support, guidance, or whatever. Any converting that happened just happened naturally or was caused by God. Or at least that's what they told me. I don't know if they actually believed this or not, but they seemed sincere. If JWs are going out with the intent of causing action in people then they are soliciting and trying to give the appearance of not. Knowingly misrepresenting in other words. This greatly lowers my opinion of them. I was assuming (and kind of hoping) that they were honestly spreading the word about what they believe to be true and worth communicating as an act of faith. I would find it very disappointing if all or most JWs are just slick, manipulative, religious salespeople.
post #153 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adele_Mommy View Post
If they ask for donations then you are right, they are soliciting. Also, if they are actively trying to get you to convert, then that would also be solicitation. The Mormons I have talked to all had the perspective that they were just sharing information and providing help, support, guidance, or whatever. Any converting that happened just happened naturally or was caused by God. Or at least that's what they told me. I don't know if they actually believed this or not, but they seemed sincere. If JWs are going out with the intent of causing action in people then they are soliciting and trying to give the appearance of not. Knowingly misrepresenting in other words. This greatly lowers my opinion of them. I was assuming (and kind of hoping) that they were honestly spreading the word about what they believe to be true and worth communicating as an act of faith. I would find it very disappointing if all or most JWs are just slick, manipulative, religious salespeople.
In certain groups it would seem that what is taught on the inside and what is presented to the general public does not always line up completely. It isn't that they are lying or anything, just not sharing the whole story in the beginning. They kind of piecemeal their religion out at first, so as not to overwhelm and to make it more palatable.

I can say for a certainty that they are taught to preach, and that conversion is the ultimate goal. I can also say that they are taught to ask for donations. However, they are also taught to say that they are not soliciting, and that they are simply there to share a scripture, and that they are simply following Jesus example to preach. Of course, individual JW's have their own ideas and interpretations of these suggestions. Some truly may be happy to just share a scripture, though, in my experience, that is a rarity.
post #154 of 199
Quote:
They also ALWAYS ask if I need help with anything...dh said I should take advantage of this and get the dishes done, but I wouldnt do that.
"Well, while you're here, you could cut the grass. Want some lemonade?"
post #155 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adele_Mommy View Post
ISo long as the JW's only give things away and do not take money or anything else (probably one reason they are not allowed to take other people's literature, thought probably not the only reason or even the most important one), and do not try to get you to take some sort of action, then they are not soliciting.
Bolding is mine in the above quote. The action to be taken is to pursue further learning in the religion. So it is a conversion tactic. If it was simply to share information on the belief, then all they'd really have to do is leave stacks of magazines and tracts at the doors without knocking or having the conversations. They could leave it to the householder to read/not read, pursue/not pursue on their own, based on their own inclinations. The conversation is designed to exchange enough further information to stimulate the householder's interest in becoming a member of the religion, i.e., taking action, converting.
post #156 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Valkyrie9 View Post
The action to be taken is to pursue further learning in the religion. So it is a conversion tactic. If it was simply to share information on the belief, then all they'd really have to do is leave stacks of magazines and tracts at the doors without knocking or having the conversations. They could leave it to the householder to read/not read, pursue/not pursue on their own, based on their own inclinations. The conversation is designed to exchange enough further information to stimulate the householder's interest in becoming a member of the religion, i.e., taking action, converting.
Based on what Jennica has said, you are probably right about most JWs. I was incorrectly grouping all religious prosyletizers and missionaries together. I believe the Mormon missionaries I talked to were honestly not soliciting.
post #157 of 199
I can't believe this thread is still going on.

Anyway, I just have to say a few things, get 'em off my chest. First of all, if you really are seeking a "polite" way to ensure that JW's don't come back, that has already been answered a looong time ago. Get on the do not call list.

Secondly, I know some former JW's or atleast some who won't actually take the steps to remove themselves from the organization because the just want to be able to still talk with family, post their own opinions and they are welcome to, obviously. But I just gotta say, this little gem,
Quote:
when I was a JW we feared unbelievers the most
. That one cracks me up. I don't know any JW who "fear" unbelievers. The mental imagery is just a hoot. The picture painted here of JW's, sounds so vilinous, and they are out to take over the world! mwuahahahaha!

Quote:
I would find it very disappointing if all or most JWs are just slick, manipulative, religious salespeople.
You are right, Adele_Mommy, that would be disappointing. But in my own congregation, majority of those who faithfully go out in the ministry are little old ladies, never had a college education and whose whole lives, for decades revolved around their love for Jehovah. No slick, manipulative ones I know of. I have grown up around many of these woman my whole life and their genuine love for their God is obvious. And you know what, all of them would be so happy to just share 1 scriptrue with someone at their home. That's it. No great scheme of conversion. Just share a scripture, share some good news form your own bible, if you like.

Collective you, not you you.

And what else is shocking. Some people actually do want to learn about the bible. I know! Crazy, right?
post #158 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guava~Lush View Post
I can't believe this thread is still going on.

Anyway, I just have to say a few things, get 'em off my chest. First of all, if you really are seeking a "polite" way to ensure that JW's don't come back, that has already been answered a looong time ago. Get on the do not call list.
Except it doesnt work.

Quote:
Secondly, I know some former JW's or atleast some who won't actually take the steps to remove themselves from the organization because the just want to be able to still talk with family, post their own opinions and they are welcome to, obviously. But I just gotta say, this little gem, . That one cracks me up. I don't know any JW who "fear" unbelievers. The mental imagery is just a hoot. The picture painted here of JW's, sounds so vilinous, and they are out to take over the world! mwuahahahaha!
Well it is true, because any kind of "sense" that JWs try talking into someone who just plain doesnt believe goes out of the window and they fear that because they have no defense against that.
post #159 of 199
Quote:
Well it is true, because any kind of "sense" that JWs try talking into someone who just plain doesnt believe goes out of the window and they fear that because they have no defense against that.
Sorry, but I guess I just don't know many Jw's. Because the ones I know, wouldnt waste their precious time. Fear? You have got to be kidding me.
post #160 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guava~Lush View Post
Sorry, but I guess I just don't know many Jw's. Because the ones I know, wouldnt waste their precious time. Fear? You have got to be kidding me.
no, i guess not.
not my mother, my father, my grandmother, my brother, my nanny, the rest of her family, a great deal of mine... etc.
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