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Jehovah’s Witnesses in India to sue for right to not stand for national anthem


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1 hour ago, STEPHENS said:

I personally think this article is not true.  

May I ask,  what do you base your opinion on? 

I see from your profile that you live in India,  Brother Kumar   'liked' your post and he as well lives in India. 

 

Would you be willing to enlighten us a little?  Is that article inaccurate? 

 

Thank you Brother. ..

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31 minutes ago, Adelin said:

I was skeptical about it as well. Why would we be so interested in what happens in theatres?

I can see it being an issue.  If you decided to take the wife and kids to a movie after the Meeting and while you're sitting there in the confines of the place and of a sudden the lights go up and over the intercom you hear  'All rise! .. Face the Flag!..Sing!!..'   That could be an issue. ..

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11 hours ago, Adelin said:

Jehovah’s Witnesses in India are looking to overturn a recent Supreme Court ruling requiring movie theatres to play the country’s national anthem before every film, and audience members to stand for the anthem, according to the Indian Express.

http://wwrn.org/articles/46599/

The article states that JWs asking for right NOT to participate in national anthem or paying homage to flag. There is no attempt to overturn the law

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I had a discussion about this with my brother because I was a bit unsure about our stance to "standing during the anthem" and what constitutes worship of the flag and what constitutes showing respect or dis

respect. Like we would stand up for a King entering the room, even bow to a King to show respect but not salute or do a hand-sign that constitutes reverence or allegiance.

 

I remember he said how he wouldn't stand during the pledge of allegiance at IS and got in trouble for it. I recalled the boy in the Paradise book who did stand for the pledge but did not recite it and did not do a hand gesture in support of it (for example hand to heart)

 

It's a little bit tricky because on the one hand, we don't want to show disrespect to flag and nation, on the other hand standing up with everybody else may be constituted as partaking in a ceremony of worship to a certain degree.

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10 hours ago, tekmantwo said:

I can see it being an issue.  If you decided to take the wife and kids to a movie after the Meeting and while you're sitting there in the confines of the place and of a sudden the lights go up and over the intercom you hear  'All rise! .. Face the Flag!..Sing!!..'   That could be an issue. ..

Well, they could say "Just don't go there! It's not essential for your living".

On the other hand, it could be just the beginning of breaking fundamental rights in this respect - that could be a threat. 

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2 minutes ago, Sunnyside said:

Stand but no sing. It's similar to the Hebrew boys. They assembled but did not bow.

Sent from my SM-J100H using Tapatalk
 

Hate to say it, but that's probably also how I would deal with it and my conscience wouldn't bother me. Respect the flag, respect people's views about it without venerating the flag.

 

Sort of glad I live in Germany where this kind of thing is a non-issue.

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 As a school teacher, I had many graduations to attend. Sometimes, I got out of graduation by accepting other volunteer assignments throughout the year.   If I did have to attend graduations, I would study the program ahead of time and enter after the pledge, or leave before it.  When my sons graduated, If I was already standing, I would continue standing. If the chair person asked the audience to stand for the pledge, I would remain seated.  

 

p.s. I am still not sure of what the situation is in India. Prayers going out to our brothers and sisters who are standing firm, wherever their challenges lie.

Edited by kejedo
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i was taught to stand for the pledge but no hand over heart;  and sit during national anthem at some event....  Now i would probly not want to go to events where the anthem was in the US do to the recent media coverage with the NFL.

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The display of the National Flag is one factor.  The playing of the National Anthem is another.  The flag is a symbolic representation of the country.  We do not wish to show disrespect to the nation (or its symbol).    So when the flag is displayed, paraded or in some way presented, we may stand out of respect for the nation or its government.  Some countries expect men to remove their hats.  The National Anthem however is a form of prayer (like our songs at the Kingdom hall are a form of prayer).  We do not wish to join in any prayer for a kingdom other than God's Kingdom.  That would be disloyal to God.  In many cases the audience does not sing the words of the anthem in unison.  They may simply stand at attention to show solidarity with the occasion.  So by merely standing, you show support of the words.  In those cases we do not stand.

 

There are combinations of these events.  Often the flag, or its picture is presented first (as when the military march the flag into a stadium) and the audience is expected to rise.  While ALREADY standing for this event, we may remain or continue standing for the anthem (so as not to show specific insult to the second event).  We aren't standing for the anthem, we are standing for the flag presentation.  The difference between the two occasions is what is represented by our actions.  For the flag it is respect but not participation.  For the anthem it is participation in the prayer.  Even though we might be standing for the presentation of the flag (out of respect) we do not join in the ceremony by repeating a pledge or oath of fidelity or loyalty to the emblem or nation.

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To add some references:

 

*** w02 9/15 p. 22 “Salvation Belongs to Jehovah” ***

“National anthems are expressions of patriotic feeling and often include an invocation for divine guidance ….A national anthem is, in effect, a hymn or a prayer in behalf of a nation. …National anthems often express feelings of national pride or superiority.

… many make a personal decision to refrain from participating in the flag salute and in the singing of patriotic songs. But how do they conduct themselves when confronted with situations that bring them face-to-face with these issues?

When national anthems are played, usually all a person has to do to show that he shares the sentiments of the song is to stand up. In such cases, Christians remain seated. If they are already standing when the national anthem is played, however, there is no need for them to take the special action of sitting down. It is not as though they had specifically chosen to stand for the anthem. On the other hand, if a group are expected to stand and sing, then merely standing up out of respect but not singing would not constitute sharing in the sentiments of the song.

*** w02 9/15 pp. 23-24 “Salvation Belongs to Jehovah” ***

Today, flags are usually saluted with outstretched arm or with the hand held to the forehead or over the heart. …. By standing quietly while others salute the flag, true Christians make it evident that they are respectful observers.

 

*** lv p. 213 par. 2 Flag Salute, Voting, and Civilian Service ***

While not joining in ceremonies that they view as unscriptural, Jehovah’s people certainly respect the right of others to do so. They also respect national flags as emblems and recognize duly constituted governments as “superior authorities” serving as “God’s minister.” (Romans 13:1-4)

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When I was at school, we had an assembly once a week and with it the national anthem. We would sit on the lawn at the front of the school and be told to stand for the anthem. I would remain seated. Quite a few students would take it upon themselves to encourage me to stand. As a consequence I would go home with many bruises, but I went home happy that I had obeyed Jehovah. I was however very happy to leave school at 15 and go into the workforce. I have never had an issue since, as I don't have to attend events of the sort that play the anthem.

Even if it is not compulsory to sing the anthem etc. continue to pray for the children at school.

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Like ChocoBro, in Britain it is a non-issue.  I do often think with sympathy, though not with personal experience and understanding at what our brothers go through in flag-saluting countries.  However, the excerpts above are good!

 

Years ago I went to a classical concert where Charles, Prince of Wales attended along with Camilla.  It was a case of all rise for the 'God Save the Queen', so we decided to remain seated.  We were nervous like anything as we were on the sides of the auditorium, openly exposed to everyone.  Then lo and behold, another family remained seated in front of us.  Slightly relieved at not being the only ones, we were curious as to perhaps they could also be our brothers.

 

Sadly it turned out they were Welsh Nationalists who didn't recognise their 'English Overlords', so refused to stand.  I still chuckle over it years later at how our stand for the truth was distracted by some disgruntled Nationalists....

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On 1/13/2017 at 0:23 PM, tekmantwo said:

May I ask,  what do you base your opinion on? 

I see from your profile that you live in India,  Brother Kumar   'liked' your post and he as well lives in India. 

 

Would you be willing to enlighten us a little?  Is that article inaccurate? 

 

Thank you Brother. ..

I would not think that the Org would take up a case for watching movie in Theatre (Entertainment) . If this was for some fundamental right, i would have accepted this.  Also the article does not name any JW SPOC. Lets wait till Feb 14 when the Supreme court has the hearing

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no matter how hard we may try to avoid it brothers,we must accept the fact that we will always be faced with situations that requires COURAGEOUSNESS - 1 cor 16:13.

we need to realise that 'the fear of man' is one of the traps that satan(the bird catcher) uses to cause us to fail Jehovah.

for me i always endeavor to avoid problematics situations
especially in my job as a school teacher - prov 22.3. this is so as to avoid needlessly offending people because Jehovah's witnesses are peace-loving. but really,this is not always possible.so i always complement wisdom with courageousness.

so the point is: if you can,please try and avoid the problematic situations (that is wisdom) but if you can't, then you must choose to obey God as ruler rather than man,(but please remember to do so in a humble and respectful way,)





Sent from my TECNO P9 using Tapatalk

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It's getting so dangerous here, I feel a bit paranoid when I go to the mall or the movies now, even if I'm with a large group... You never know when someone might start shooting or try to burn the theater down O.O 

 

I am seeing a very nationalistic/patriotic spirit in many people now since January 20th... I am very careful to keep an eye open when at the dr's etc, as I already get dirty looks for wearing a mask. Then when people see my JW literature or phone app I really get some interesting looks lol 

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