According to the Governing Body’s definition, a person disassociates himself from the congregation because he “no longer desires to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses.” The four actions defined as “disassociating actions” contradict the definition that is given. If a brother performs three of the “disassociating actions,” he will not be allowed to remain in the congregation even if he wants to. This shows that he is not leaving of his own free will, as the definition says, but he is thrown out of the congregation.
The best example of which I am aware that illustrates the absurd claim of the Governing Body that the brothers leave the congregation by choice and of their own free will, when in fact, they are thrown out of the congregation against their will, is the literary folktale of The Emperor’s new clothes. An English translation of this tale is included to illustrate that the Governing Body uses an “alternative reality”— they say something that all scholars with knowledge of the situation say is false.
I show how each of the four “disassociating actions” contradicts the definition of disassociation given by the GB.
The basic points of each of the five articles on disassociation are given.
MAIN POINT 1: The members of the Governing Body say in dead earnest that those who have been thrown out of their congregations have left their congregation of their own free will. This is a lie!
MAIN POINT 2: The words of 2 Corinthians 2:5-7 show that Christians can greet and speak with disfellowshipped persons but not socialize with them. Thus, shunning of disfellowshipped and disassociated persons is a violation of the Scriptures.
To the best of my knowledge, the concept “disassociation” was not used by Jehovah’s Witnesses before the year 1972. The book “Shepherd The Flock Of God” (2019). 18.1, has the following to say about disassociation and disfellowshipping:
Whereas disfellowshipping is an action taken by a judicial committee against an unrepentant wrongdoer, disassociation is an action taken by a baptized member of the congregation who no longer desires to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses… (italics mine)
According to the Shepherd book 18.3, there are four actions showing that a person has disassociated himself:
- Making Known a Firm Decision to Be Known No Longer as One of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
- Joining Another Religious Organization and Making Known His Intention to Remain With It.3.
- Willingly and Unrepentantly Accepting Blood.
- Taking a Course That Violates Christian Neutrality.
THE GOVERNING BODY’S NEW CLOTHES
When I analyze the definition of disassociation and compare it with the four actions that are said to express disassociation, I find that the actions do not fit the definition. The difference between disfellowshipping and disassociation, according to the definition, is that a disfellowshipped person is thrown out of the congregation by a committee of three elders while disassociation means that a Witness leaves the congregation of his own free will and by his own decision. But this simply is not true! In all four situations, the person is thrown out of the congregation, and the person’s free will plays a limited role in only two of the situations. I will illustrate this by asking three questions.
- Did the Witness leave of his own free will?
- Would the Witness be allowed to stay in the congregation if he wanted to stay?
- Was the Witness thrown out of the congregation?
The answers are found in table 1.1, and I will elucidate each point below.
Table 1.1. The relationship between the free will of the Witness and the force of the congregation
|Leaves voluntarily?||Allowed to stay?||Being thrown out|
|(2)||Yes or No||No||Yes|
Claiming that each of the four actions mentioned in the Shepherd book shows that a Witness has resigned, of his own free will, to no longer be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, is simply a deception. This is a good example of what is called “alternative reality. The claim of the Governing Body will not be accepted by any scholar who knows the real situation. But because the view of the Witnesses is that the members of the Governing Body are always right, and everything they say or write is the truth and nothing but the truth, the members of the congregations of the Witnesses accept their claim that a disassociated Witness resigns voluntarily.
|The fact that a Witness who has performed three of the four actions claimed to indicate that he has voluntarily resigned from the congregation, will not be allowed to stay in the congregation, shows that he has not left the congregation of his own free will—he has been thrown out.|
I cannot think of a better example of the hollowness of this situation, than the famous literary folktale about The Emperor’s new clothes by the Danish writer H.C. Andersen. Below we find an English translation made by Jean Hersholt.
|Many years ago there was an Emperor so exceedingly fond of new clothes that he spent all his money on being well dressed. He cared nothing about reviewing his soldiers, going to the theatre, or going for a ride in his carriage, except to show off his new clothes. He had a coat for every hour of the day, and instead of saying, as one might, about any other ruler, “The King’s in council,” here they always said. “The Emperor’s in his dressing room.”
In the great city where he lived, life was always gay. Every day many strangers came to town, and among them one day came two swindlers. They let it be known they were weavers, and they said they could weave the most magnificent fabrics imaginable. Not only were their colors and patterns uncommonly fine, but clothes made of this cloth had a wonderful way of becoming invisible to anyone who was unfit for his office, or who was unusually stupid.
“Those would be just the clothes for me,” thought the Emperor. “If I wore them I would be able to discover which men in my empire are unfit for their posts. And I could tell the wise men from the fools. Yes, I certainly must get some of the stuff woven for me right away.” He paid the two swindlers a large sum of money to start work at once.
They set up two looms and pretended to weave, though there was nothing on the looms. All the finest silk and the purest old thread which they demanded went into their traveling bags, while they worked the empty looms far into the night.
“I’d like to know how those weavers are getting on with the cloth,” the Emperor thought, but he felt slightly uncomfortable when he remembered that those who were unfit for their position would not be able to see the fabric. It couldn’t have been that he doubted himself, yet he thought he’d rather send someone else to see how things were going. The whole town knew about the cloth’s peculiar power, and all were impatient to find out how stupid their neighbors were.
“I’ll send my honest old minister to the weavers,” the Emperor decided. “He’ll be the best one to tell me how the material looks, for he’s a sensible man and no one does his duty better.”
So the honest old minister went to the room where the two swindlers sat working away at their empty looms.
“Heaven help me,” he thought as his eyes flew wide open, “I can’t see anything at all”. But he did not say so.
Both the swindlers begged him to be so kind as to come near to approve the excellent pattern, the beautiful colors. They pointed to the empty looms, and the poor old minister stared as hard as he dared. He couldn’t see anything, because there was nothing to see. “Heaven have mercy,” he thought. “Can it be that I’m a fool? I’d have never guessed it, and not a soul must know. Am I unfit to be the minister? It would never do to let on that I can’t see the cloth.”
“Don’t hesitate to tell us what you think of it,” said one of the weavers.
“Oh, it’s beautiful -it’s enchanting.” The old minister peered through his spectacles. “Such a pattern, what colors!” I’ll be sure to tell the Emperor how delighted I am with it.”
“We’re pleased to hear that,” the swindlers said. They proceeded to name all the colors and to explain the intricate pattern. The old minister paid the closest attention, so that he could tell it all to the Emperor. And so he did.
The swindlers at once asked for more money, more silk and gold thread, to get on with the weaving. But it all went into their pockets. Not a thread went into the looms, though they worked at their weaving as hard as ever.
The Emperor presently sent another trustworthy official to see how the work progressed and how soon it would be ready. The same thing happened to him that had happened to the minister. He looked and he looked, but as there was nothing to see in the looms he couldn’t see anything.
“Isn’t it a beautiful piece of goods?” the swindlers asked him, as they displayed and described their imaginary pattern.
“I know I’m not stupid,” the man thought, “so it must be that I’m unworthy of my good office. That’s strange. I mustn’t let anyone find it out, though.” So he praised the material he did not see. He declared he was delighted with the beautiful colors and the exquisite pattern. To the Emperor he said, “It held me spellbound.”
All the town was talking of this splendid cloth, and the Emperor wanted to see it for himself while it was still in the looms. Attended by a band of chosen men, among whom were his two old trusted officials-the ones who had been to the weavers-he set out to see the two swindlers. He found them weaving with might and main, but without a thread in their looms.
“Magnificent,” said the two officials already duped. “Just look, Your Majesty, what colors! What a design!” They pointed to the empty looms, each supposing that the others could see the stuff.
“What’s this?” thought the Emperor. “I can’t see anything. This is terrible!
Am I a fool? Am I unfit to be the Emperor? What a thing to happen to me of all people! – Oh! It’s very pretty,” he said. “It has my highest approval.” And he nodded approbation at the empty loom. Nothing could make him say that he couldn’t see anything.
His whole retinue stared and stared. One saw no more than another, but they all joined the Emperor in exclaiming, “Oh! It’s very pretty,” and they advised him to wear clothes made of this wonderful cloth especially for the great procession he was soon to lead. “Magnificent! Excellent! Unsurpassed!” were bandied from mouth to mouth, and everyone did his best to seem well pleased. The Emperor gave each of the swindlers a cross to wear in his buttonhole, and the title of “Sir Weaver.”
Before the procession the swindlers sat up all night and burned more than six candles, to show how busy they were finishing the Emperor’s new clothes. They pretended to take the cloth off the loom. They made cuts in the air with huge scissors. And at last they said, “Now the Emperor’s new clothes are ready for him.”
Then the Emperor himself came with his noblest noblemen, and the swindlers each raised an arm as if they were holding something. They said, “These are the trousers, here’s the coat, and this is the mantle,” naming each garment. “All of them are as light as a spider web. One would almost think he had nothing on, but that’s what makes them so fine.”
“Exactly,” all the noblemen agreed, though they could see nothing, for there was nothing to see.
“If Your Imperial Majesty will condescend to take your clothes off,” said the swindlers, “we will help you on with your new ones here in front of the long mirror.”
The Emperor undressed, and the swindlers pretended to put his new clothes on him, one garment after another. They took him around the waist and seemed to be fastening something – that was his train-as the Emperor turned round and round before the looking glass.
“How well Your Majesty’s new clothes look. Aren’t they becoming!” He heard on all sides, “That pattern, so perfect! Those colors, so suitable! It is a magnificent outfit.”
Then the minister of public processions announced: “Your Majesty’s canopy is waiting outside.”
“Well, I’m supposed to be ready,” the Emperor said, and turned again for one last look in the mirror. “It is a remarkable fit, isn’t it?” He seemed to regard his costume with the greatest interest.
The noblemen who were to carry his train stooped low and reached for the floor as if they were picking up his mantle. Then they pretended to lift and hold it high. They didn’t dare admit they had nothing to hold.
So off went the Emperor in procession under his splendid canopy. Everyone in the streets and the windows said, “Oh, how fine are the Emperor’s new clothes! Don’t they fit him to perfection? And see his long train!” Nobody would confess that he couldn’t see anything, for that would prove him either unfit for his position, or a fool. No costume the Emperor had worn before was ever such a complete success.
“But he hasn’t got anything on,” a little child said.
“Did you ever hear such innocent prattle?” said its father. And one person whispered to another what the child had said, “He hasn’t anything on. A child says he hasn’t anything on.”
“But he hasn’t got anything on!” the whole town cried out at last.
The Emperor shivered, for he suspected they were right. But he thought, “This procession has got to go on.” So he walked more proudly than ever, as his noblemen held high the train that wasn’t there at all.
I will now discuss each of the four “disassociation actions,” showing how they contradict the Governing Body’s definition of disassociation, and thereby affirm that the Governing Body “hasn’t got anything on.”
Writing a letter of resignation
If a brother writes a letter saying that he wants to resign from his congregation, this unquestionably shows that the person “no longer desires to be one of Jehovah’s witnesses.” The brother was a member of the congregation, and before he wrote his letter he was allowed to continue being a member of that congregation.
But what happens after the letter has been written? A committee of three elders considers the letter, and, in reality, they throw him out of the congregation. The situation can be illustrated in the following way: An employee enters his boss’s office and hands him a letter of resignation, and says, “I no longer desire to be an employee of this company, so I resign.” His boss smugly replies, “You can’t quit because I’m firing you!” Because the company has the employee’s resignation letter, it can, for PR purposes, claim that the employee resigned of his own free will. However, on the official books of the company, and in every other way, the employee was actually fired—thrown out. For example, unlike employees who are given two weeks after they resign, to transition their work with the company, a fired worker is immediately dismissed. He is not permitted to finish any work, he is not allowed to engage in conversation with fellow workers at the jobsite. Instead, he is escorted from the building by security. He may even lose any severance pay that would have come to him if his resignation had been an amicable one with the company. Therefore, while it can be said that the employee did, indeed, desire to resign from the company, he was not allowed to do so in the dignified and respectful manner he intended. The employee’s resignation letter notwithstanding, he was, in reality, thrown out of the company in disgrace.
The situation is similar with one who submits a letter declaring his desire to resign from being one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. To be sure, his resignation letter clearly reflects his desire to no longer be known as one of JW. In spite of this, the elders will throw him out of the congregation like one who has been “fired” from a secular job. This is seen by the fact that he is not allowed to leave the congregation in a quiet way, with the elders expressing that they respect his choice. But he is now viewed as an apostate and an “antichrist,” and “should be viewed and be treated the same as disfellowshipped persons,” says the book “Pay attention to yourselves and to all the flock” (1991), page 102. (italics mine)
The free will of the brother is expressed only up to the point where he decides he no longer wants to be a Witness and turns in his letter of resignation, everything that happens after that represents the decision of the three elders of the committee. They throw him out of the congregation, and all Witnesses treat him as one who is disfellowshipped.
Joining another religious organization
The action of joining another religion is a step taken by the Witness himself based on his own decision and free will. Does this show that “he no longer desires to be one of Jehovah’s “Witnesses? In most cases, the answer is Yes. But I show in the article dealing with this issue that in some special situations, the answer is No.
After joining another religion, would he be allowed to continue to stay in the congregation as a Witness? The answer is No. Both if he wanted to stay in his congregation or if he did not want to stay, he would in either case be thrown out of the congregation because he would ‘be viewed and treated the same as a disfellowshipped person.’ No Witness would say a greeting to him or speak with him, and he would be treated as if he did not exist.
Joining another religion would mean that the person would support and spread false teachings, and this is one of the 11 disfellowshipping actions that are based on the Bible. For 44 years after N.H. Knorr became the president of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society in 1942, those who joined another religion were disfellowshipped. And this was the correct biblical procedure.
But in 1986, there was a change of viewpoint: The view was now that the person had voluntarily left JW because he “did not desire to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses any longer.” In reality, the situation was exactly the same as before 1986. The first part of the situation represented the free will of the brother, but the second part represented the decision of the three elders of the committee.
Here we can “see” the “Emperor’s [invisible] new clothes.” The elders of the committee will throw him out of the congregation, exactly as they did with those whom they used to disfellowship for joining another religion before 1986. But the Governing Body has spun a new garment on their looms, called “disassociation,” and it is claimed to give the dignified appearance that the person has voluntarily left Jehovah’s Witnesses of his own free will. In reality, one can see through this invisible, hollow cloak right down to its original disfellowshipping underpinnings. The only difference after 1986 was that the Governing Body had put a new spin on the same disfellowshipping concept, and called it by its new designation—“disassociation”. This was only a cosmetic change without any real substance. So, like the Emperor, the Governing Body “hasn’t got anything on.”
Accepting blood without repentance
This is the clearest example of the Emperor’s new clothes. Accepting blood by a Witness rarely happens. But if it happens, it is likely to be an extreme situation where the Witness accepts blood in order to save his own life or the life of a family member. Accepting blood is a clear violation of one of God’s laws. But no scripture in the Bible shows that this is a disfellowshipping offense.
For 19 years, from 1942 to 1961, persons who accepted blood were allowed to continue to be members of the congregation. But from 1961 to the end of 20th century, Witnesses were disfellowshipped if they accepted blood without repenting. In the 21st century, the new view was introduced that a Witness who accepted blood without repenting, showed by this action that he has disassociated himself from his congregation because he “no longer desires to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses.”
But the fact that those accepting blood previously were disfellowshipped but now are viewed as having disassociated themselves shows that the situation is exactly the same and that disassociation is just a codename for disfellowshipping. The situation was exactly the same before and after 1986. But the difference was that the Governing Body now said that the new spin they put on disfellowshipping after 1986 was a different garment altogether, called “disassociation”. But the problem is that this has turned out to be a sham; the Governing Body “hasn’t got anything on.”
The violation of Christian neutrality
I have never heard of a Witness who has voted in a political election or has supported the armed forces of a nation. But if it happens, the situation must be considered. The person has violated his neutral stand as an ambassador for God’s kingdom, and because of this, he will no longer be allowed to be a part of the congregation. He cannot be disfellowshipped, however, if the Bible is followed because no scripture says that he is guilty of a disfellowshipping action.
This is also a situation that is similar to the folktale of the Emperor’s new clothes. The Governing Body says that this person has disassociated himself from the congregation because he “no longer desires to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses.” But this view is false because he will surely be thrown out of the congregation, and he will be viewed and treated as one who has been disfellowshipped. The disassociation claim of the Governing Body, which has no substance, can be compared to the Emperor’s lack of clothing.
The conclusion so far is that the term “disassociation” is made up and invented by the Governing Body. It has no biblical basis whatsoever, and the four actions that are viewed as “disassociation actions” contradict the definition of the very term. The Witnesses do not actually leave the congregation of their own free will. But they are thrown out of the congregation.
. Definition of “alternative reality”: “Where what you think is real, is completely different from what the majority of the population thinks is real. A common syndrome of politicians, (un)reality stars and musicians.” (https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=alternative%20reality)
THE MAIN POINTS OF THE FIVE ARTICLES ON DISASSOCIATION
The Category “Disassociation not based on the Bible” on this website has five articles, and I will discuss the main points of these in the light of the discussion above.
The article, “Resigning from Jehovah’s Witnesses leads to shunning”
The article “Do Jehovah’s Witnesses shun those who used to belong to their religion?” at jw.org withholds the information that those who resign from their congregation are, in fact, shunned. And by this failure, they mislead the readers. However, books written for baptized publishers and for elders show that all Witnesses must shun those who resign.
The Watchtower admits that the persons discussed at 2 John 10, that Christians must not receive into their homes or say a greeting to, refer to the antichrists mentioned in the context. Nonetheless, The Watchtower applies these words to those who have resigned because the Governing Body says that they are apostates and are like antichrists as well. However, this is hardly ever the case, and so, this is an abuse of the Holy Scriptures.
The words of Paul in 1 Corinthians 5:11 to “stop associating with” means “not socializing with.” The words do not imply that the Christians must also shun particular persons. On the contrary, Paul shows that Christians must greet the person with whom they are not socializing with and speak with him. However, when we do not socialize with a disfellowshipped person, he may become ashamed and repent, as Paul says. But there is absolutely no purpose, i.e., nothing to gain, in not socializing with, or even be shunning, a person who has resigned from the congregation. It is extremely unlikely that a person who no longer desires to be one of JW can be ‘shamed’ into returning to the fold. Thus, shunning disassociated ones is pointless and unchristian.
Shunning any person, one who is disfellowshipped or one who has resigned violates several principles in the Bible. The words of Paul in 2 Corinthians 2:5-7 show that Christians can greet and speak with disfellowshipped persons while they are rebuking them. But as mentioned, they cannot socialize with disfellowshipped persons.
One principle is that Christians must love their enemies and greet their enemies. Putting strong pressure on a Witness not to resign, as do Jehovah’s Witnesses, is a violation of human rights, of the absolute right to hold or change one’s religious beliefs.
The truth is that Jehovah’s Witnesses treat those who resign from their congregation, which is called “disassociation,” in a cruel and inhuman way that has no basis in the Bible whatsoever.
The article, “Disassociation by joining another religious organization”
During the 44 years from 1942 to 1946, a Witness who joined another religious organization was disfellowshipped. Persons who join another religious organization promote a sect and spread false teachings, and these are two of the 11 actions that the Bible shows to be true disfellowshipping actions.
In 1986, the members of the Governing Body changed their view, and a letter to the elders said that from now on, persons who joined another religion should not be disfellowshipped. But the new view was that these, by their action, had shown that they voluntarily had disassociated themselves from the congregations because they “no longer desired to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses.”
The article shows that this view is wrong. The first part of the situation represented the free will of the brother—he had joined another religion. But the second part represented the decision of the three elders of the committee. If the brother had wanted to remain a member of his congregation, he would not have been allowed to do so. As a matter of fact, he would be thrown out of the organization, in the same way a brother would have been before 1986. And he would be viewed and treated as a disfellowshipped person.
The situation before and after 1986 was exactly the same. So, the new view simply is cosmetic, and it has no real substance.
The article, Willingly and unrepentantly accepting blood
Since World War II, blood transfusions have occurred on a grand scale. The Watchtower literature has argued that accepting a blood transfusion is a violation of one of God’s basic laws.
In connection with the issue of blood, there have been two different schools among JW. The one school, that became the dominant one, argued that what was forbidden in the Bible was eating blood and anything akin to eating it. The other school argued that to uphold the life of one creature by the blood of another creature was forbidden, as well as any use of blood.
Articles in the Watchtower literature in the early 1950s argued that taking a blood transfusion was the same as eating blood, and therefore it was forbidden. The argument was that taking nutrition through the veins was the same as taking nutrition through the mouth, and this was a logical argument. In almost all medical situations, there are alternatives to blood transfusion, and this was also, to a great degree, the case in the 1950s. But in some rare cases, the life was at risk, and a Christian will give his life rather than violate the law of God.
Christians have from the first century on been ready to give their life when necessary to remain faithful to God. But, of course, there must be a clear and indisputable reason for this. And here we have a problem. If only eating blood is what is forbidden in God’s word, by refusing blood, we may become involved a situation where we rest our life on a definition. We rest our lives on the definition of the word “eat”—on the definition that taking a blood transfusion is the same as eating blood.
I would not, and I will never accept that! If only eating blood was forbidden, I would have taken a blood transfusion with a good conscience. I agree that taking a blood transfusion is, in principle, the same as eating blood. But in this situation with only the eating of blood being forbidden, I would have insisted that only the sense of the word “eating” in the Hebrew and Greek scriptures could be included. And this would mean that only taking blood as food and drink through the mouth was forbidden.
However, I show in the article that because blood is holy and can only be used as a sacrifice on the altar, any use of blood is forbidden. Because of this, I will not take a blood transfusion. Supporting my view, The Watchtower has also had several “second school” articles showing that any use of blood is forbidden.
What is forbidden is the use of dam (Hebrew: “blood”) and haima (Greek: “blood.”) The only reference of these words is the red fluid in the veins of humans and animals. So, any use of this red fluid is forbidden. Medical science has learned how to fractionate blood, and the Governing Body has made an artificial distinction between different components and fractions of blood. Red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets, and blood plasma are forbidden, but the use of albumin, immunoglobulins, and coagulation factors is a matter of conscience for each Christian.
From one point of view, it is logical that red cells, white cells, platelets, and plasma are forbidden because these components are the main components of blood. However, none of these components are mentioned in the Scriptures and the mentioned Greek and Hebrew words only refer to full blood (the red fluid). The Governing Body has no right to introduce prohibitions against something that is not mentioned in the Bible. Therefore, accepting red cells, white cells, platelets, or plasma is not forbidden by the Scriptures. This means that the conscience of each Christian must decide whether to accept one or more of these components.
The Governing Body has decided that a person who accepts full blood or one of these four components has resigned from the Christian congregation because he does not want to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses any longer. In most situations, this is not true, and it is a pretext for throwing this person out of the congregation. The prohibition of the four components is a human commandment that is not based on the Bible. And while eating or using full blood is a violation of God’s law, no Scripture in the Bible shows that this is a disfellowshipping action.
The article, Disassociation because of the violation of Christian neutrality
The article shows clearly that “disassociation” is exactly the same as “disfellowshipping.” This is so, both because the person who has violated his neutrality, and by this “has disassociated himself,” will not be allowed to remain in the congregation even if he wants to do so, and because he is viewed and treated like a disfellowshipped person.
Because a person who has violated his neutrality has compromised his duty as an ambassador for God’s Kingdom, the view is that he cannot be allowed to continue to be a member of his congregation. On the other hand, he cannot be disfellowshipped because this has no basis in the Bible. And he has not voluntarily left the congregation, as the Governing Body claims.
Before 1972, the publisher’s card of a Witness who had violated his neutrality was removed from the congregation file, and the person would no longer be a member of the congregation. But the Witnesses would say a greeting to him and speak with him, and he would not be viewed or treated as one who had been disfellowshipped. This is, in my view, one possible way a person who has violated his neutrality today should be treated as well.
The article shows that the organization has become dictatorial, and the consciences of the members of the Governing Body and the elders are put above the conscience of the individual Witnesses. The elders have, for example, the right to decide that the job of a brother violates his Christian neutrality. Even though the brother disagrees, he is given six months to change his job. If he does not do that, he is viewed as one who has voluntarily left the congregation because he no longer desires to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. If the situation was not such a serious one, this viewpoint would be considered a joke. But the members of the Governing Body say in dead earnest that those who have been thrown out of their congregation, have left their congregation of their own free will.
|MAIN POINT 1: The members of the Governing Body say in dead earnest that those who have been thrown out of their congregation, have left their congregation of their free will.
MAIN POINT 2: The words of 2 Corinthians 2:5-7 show that Christians can greet and speak with disfellowshipped persons but not socialize with them. Thus, shunning of disfellowshipped and disassociated persons is a violation of the Scriptures.
The term “disassociation” is made up and invented by the Governing Body, and it has no basis in the Bible.
The members of the Governing Body say in dead earnest that those who have been thrown out of the congregation have left the congregation of their own free will. This is an incredible claim! But because the Witnesses believe that everything the members of the Governing Body say and write is the truth, and nothing but the truth, they also believe what the Governing Body says in this case, even though what the members of the Governing Body say is self-contradictory.