Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Astrology from the Watchtower Society

Astrology as discussed in recent Watchtower Society articles (Such as the Awake! magazine July 8, 1994 issue) is ridiculed along with star worship. While this may not be of any surprise to Jehovah’s Witnesses, what is missing from the aforementioned magazine as well as other articles from the Awake! and Watchtower is what the Watchtower Society use to believe and teach Jehovah’s Witnesses. For 62 years covering 1891 to 1953, the Watchtower Society taught that God resided on the star Alcyone in the Pleiades constellation and that from this star he governed the entire universe.

This belief was first introduced in the year 1891 in Volume 3 of Studies in the Scriptures on page 327:

“…this distance to be from ninety to ninety six millions of miles, their latest calculation and conclusion being ninety-two millions. The Great Pyramid has also its own way of indicating that most correct standard of all weights and measures, based upon the size and weight of the earth, which it is also claimed to indicate.

Commenting upon the scientific testimony and the location of this majestic “Witness,” Rev. Joseph Seiss, D. D. suggests:

“There is a yet grander thought embodied in this wonderful structure. Of its five points there is one of special pre-eminence, in which all its sides and exterior lines terminate. It is the summit corner, which lifts its solemn index finger to the sun at midday, and by its distance from the base tells the mean distance to that sun from the earth. And if we go back to the date which the Pyramid gives itself, and look for what that finger pointed to at midnight, we find a far sublimer indication. Science has at last discovered that the sun is not a dead center, with planets wheeling about it, and itself stationary. It is now ascertained that the sun also is in motion, carrying with it its splendid retinue of comets, planets, its satellites and theirs, around some other and vastly mightier center. Astronomers are not yet fully agreed as to what or where that center is. Some, however, believe that they have found the direction of it to be the Pleiades, and particularly Alcyone, the central one of the renowned Pleiadic stars. To the distinguished German astronomer, Prof. J. H. Maedler, belongs the honor of having made this discovery. Alcyone, then, as far as science has been able to perceive, would seem to be the ‘midnight throne’ in which the whole system of gravitation has its central seat, and from which the Almighty governs his universe. And here is the wonderful corresponding fact, that at the date of the Great Pyramid’s building, at midnight of the autumnal equinox, and hence the true beginning of the year as still preserved in the traditions of many nations, the Pleiades were distributed…””

The Souvenir Convention Report from 1914 published by The International Bible Students (One of the early titles of the group now following the Watchtower Society) states on pages 252 and 253:

"The Pleiades, the center of the universe, are located in Taurus, and as though to emphasize the foundation, the original meaning of Alcyone, one of the chief stars of the Pleiades, is "foundation". How significant that the whole universe should throughout the ages swing about that constellation and that star which alone picture so clearly the Ransom! The bullock offered on the brazen altar in the court was indeed the foundation: it represented the sacrifice of the Lord. The bullock in the sky represented the very same thing."

The Watchtower Society also taught that the Great Pyramid of Egypt provided additional proof of God's throne in the Pleiades. This is based on the information found in The Golden Age September 10, 1924, pages 793 & 794:

"... the position of the Pleiades at the time of the completion of the Great Pyramid of Egypt, "God's Stone Witness," is a very prominent feature of that building in the midst of the land of Egypt. For these and other reasons Bible Students have good cause to believe that in the region of the Pleiades is located the throne of Jehovah God..."

The book Reconciliation in 1928 contains these writings of J.F. Rutherford – former president of what is now known as the Watchtower Society, on page 14:

"The constellation of the seven stars forming the Pleiades appears to be the crowning center around which the known systems of the planets revolve.... It has been suggested, and with much weight, that one of the stars of that group is the dwelling place of Jehovah and the place of the highest heavens…The constellation of the Pleiades is a small one compared with others which scientific instruments disclose to the wondering eyes of man. But the greatness in size of other stars or planets is small when compared to the Pleiades in importance, because the Pleiades is the place of the eternal throne of God."

Crazy, bizarre and almost as if straight out of a science-fiction movie such teachings are what were provided to followers of what is believed by some to be God’s spirit-directed organization as being the truth. Nonetheless, these teachings and beliefs were not undone until decades later. It was not until late in the year 1953 that the Watchtower Society changed its teachings.

The Watchtower from November 15, 1953 states the following:

“Some attribute striking qualities to these constellations or star groups and on the basis of such they then offer private interpretations of Job 38:31,32 that amaze their hearers...when viewed Scripturally they are completely without foundation

It’s very peculiar that the Watchtower Society used the word “some” and the phrase “amaze the hearers”, as it was the Watchtower Society who brought about and supported such teachings to its followers. Furthermore, the specific mention of Job 38 is the exact chapter the Watchtower Society used in The Golden Age, May 16, 1928 issue (page 540) to prove where God resided:

"The Bible seems to show that God's throne in heaven is in what we call the north, very likely near the stars called the Pleiades (Job. 38:31)"

According to the Watchtower what they use to teach as truth is now completely without scriptural foundation. Although, when they were holding on to such beliefs they found a way to interpret the scriptures to fit their teachings. It leaves one to wonder what they are currently teaching now through their interpretations of the scriptures they will in the future call completely without scriptural foundation.

Constellations of the Zodiac since the 1953 Watchtower to this present day are considered by the Watchtower Society as of pagan origin. However, from the early beginnings of the Watchtower Society up until the year 1953 it was seen as divine in origin. This is a part of the factual history of the Watchtower Society.

The Watchtower Society has never admitted their error regarding relying on the pagan teaching of astrology. Claims are made by the Watchtower Society that they are objective and candid when revealing their history, yet never makes any mention of it in the Watchtower Society’s history book ‘Jehovah’s Witnesses Proclaimers of God’s Kingdom’ published in 1993. This is further evidence of an organization which hides the truth and tries to sweep its embarrassing history and teachings under the carpet. But you can’t hide or conceal the truth. Their very own words found within their publications shows what the use to teach as truth is completely without scriptural foundation.