For those that don't know, a high school friend of mine (Lewis
) is a Jehovas witness, along with his mum. This makes it very hard to say nasty things to her face, because it's pretty much an unwritten rule that you respect the mums of all your friends. Anyway, as a result, I end up with all the Jehovas witness magazines. If you've never read those Jehovas witnesses magazines before (which I'm guessing is everyone who's not a Jehovas witness), I'll fill you in:
There are two magazines that they hand out. One is called "Awake", and the other "The Watchtower
". Awake is a magazine which at first glance tends to have normal(ish) articles. There was an article on Capoiera
and one on Cherry blossoms
. Normal enough, except the concluding paragraph is always something like "Therefore, God is great and all sinners will go to hell". To take the examples to task, the Cherry blossoms article ends with "Fragile in form and yet powerful enough to influence the culture of a nation, the cherry blossom is an outstanding example of the subtle beauty found among our Creator's masterful works."
The Capoeira article has an interesting, and I think somewhat more frightening twist. The article, to me, seemed rather positive, with a small mention of how it is easy to hurt someone. The last paragraph, though, goes: "A careful examination of Bible principles led Edmilson and Augusto, mentioned earlier, to quit performing Capoeira. They decided that their spiritual and physical health were too precious to be put at risk. Although they once enjoyed the contagious rhythm and graceful movements of Capoeira, they have decided that it is not compatible with the Bible, which teaches men to 'learn war no more'". Apparently, you'd need Bible XP *nerdy laugh*.
It sounds very authoritarian. In their articles, they kind of mingle in psalms and things from the bible, which kind of twists the article around a bit. Their rather more front-page style articles have names like "Helping teens in trouble" and "Does God approve of same-sex marriage?". Needless to say, the articles were way too long for a conclusion that was apparent from the headline, so I didn't read them. However, I'm sure it's more of the same. Going through the subheadings, they talk about teenagers having too much sex and taking drugs. You see a peppering of TLAs
for STDs and drugs. The answer, clearly, lies in the Bible. Anyway, if it's watered down articles or technical documentation I'd rather read the technical documentation, which I guess means I'd rather just read the Bible.
The Watchtower is rather more direct. There are titles like "Science and the Bible: Do they contradict each other?". The conclusion is that they do not: "True science harmonises with the Bible". It's far more heavy with the religious references. You know what you're getting into, and I like that. What I like more than that, though, is the pictures, which are truly precious. Seeing as it's the April 1st issue, I thought I'd scan and upload them and poke a bit of a fun. Pics below.
 Watchtower, April 1st, 2005
 Awake!, April 8th, 2005