chapter  8
24 Pages

Ethics and Lifestyle

Jehovah’s Witnesses seek to live in accordance with their understanding of the Bible’s teaching. eir way of life has sometimes been described as ‘world renouncing’,1 but such a description is misleading. Unlike certain eastern religions such as Hinduism and Buddhism, where the spiritual adept is the yogi, the ascetic or the monk, and where the ideal goal is to transcend earthly existence, Jehovah’s Witnesses acknowledge the fact that God’s creation of the world was ‘very good’.2 Witnesses live within the world, emphasising the values of work and family life, and enjoy many of life’s pleasures, although not in a lavish way. ere is no place for the ascetic, and the only example of community living is the Bethel: this is an administrative centre, a few of which are also printeries. Most Bethel workers are single, although married couples can be considered for working life there. Jehovah’s Witnesses’ attitude to the world is therefore somewhat ambivalent: although it is currently held to be ruled by Satan, the earth is thoroughly redeemable, and will provide the location of the eternal paradise for the vast majority of those who survive Armageddon.