Prince and Jehovah's Witnesses
"All the signs are present for a typical conversion to Jehovah's Witnesses: disaffection with the system of things (the world and especially its entertainment), the intolerance of other religions or world views, disassociation with one's previous persona and habits, and an active evangelistic tone."
Prince with a cross around his neck?
from the Daily Mirror article:
Wow, let any OTHER Jehovah's Witness try wearing a cross. They would be disfellowshipped IMMEDIATELY.
from the Watchtower's own website:
"Suppose a loved one of yours was brutally murdered and the weapon was submitted to the court as evidence. Would you try to gain possession of the murder weapon, take photographs of it, and print many copies for distribution? Would you produce replicas of the weapon in various sizes? Would you then fashion some of them into jewelry? Or would you have these reproductions commercially manufactured and sold to friends and relatives to be venerated? Likely you would be repulsed at the idea! Yet, these very things have been done with the cross!
"Besides, the use of the cross in worship is no different from the use of images in worship, a practice condemned in the Bible. (Exodus 20:2-5; Deuteronomy 4:25, 26) The apostle John accurately reflected the teachings of true Christianity when he admonished his fellow Christians with the words: 'Guard yourselves from idols.' (1 John 5:21) This they did even when it meant facing death in the Roman arena."
Where or when is the committee meeting with the elders going to be held? NOT!!!
Prince declares "Internet is over"
|Prince Wears All Purple
for July 2010 Ebony Magazine Cover
EBONY Magazine just revealed Prince's latest look, and my, does he REALLY look like a Jehovah's Witness now! Wha?
Legendary R&B singer Prince wears all purple everything on the cover of the new July 2010 issue of Ebony Magazine. In Prince’s feature, he talks religion (he used to go door-to-door as a Jehova’s Witness!), his love life and more. He also shows off some never-before-seen photos. Peep Ebony’s excerpt of the issue, which hit newsstands yesterday.
|In a rare interview, the incomparable Prince grants Ebony unprecedented access within the inner courts of the famed Paisley Park, just outside of Minneapolis. During this 12-hour encounter, the musical genius opens up in his own way about topics ranging from his experience going door-to-door as a Jehovah’s Witness and about his priorities regarding his relationship with Bria Valente. As the pop star approaches 52, fans can celebrate his life and music with this keepsake July issue featuring him in his own words and signature never-before-seen photos.|
|Prince and his conversion to Jehovah's Witnesses|
On Being Prince and A Jehovah's Witness (Sep 2008)
Do you think Prince will ever leave the Jehovah's Witnesses? (Mar 2009)
Prince fans have recently become aware of his conversion to Jehovah's Witnesses, but few are aware of just how much that is affecting his music and lifestyle as well. According to Rick Ross, nationally known cult expert, he has even re-written some of the lines to his old songs, not just inserting religion into the new ones:
Four years ago the funkster
converted reportedly to satisfy his mother’s dying wish, but since then Prince
has gone so far as to add religious lyrics to his theme song “Purple Rain.”
The new line in the song goes, “Say you can’t make up your mind? I think you better close it and open up the Bible.”
According to the Mirror (UK),
Her dying wishes were for him to become a Jehovah's Witness, as she had been for most of her life, and to see him married. He tied the knot with Mani weeks before his mother passed away and six months after the death of his father, pianist and bandleader John L Nelson.
Prince is also active in going door-to-door, and in unusual style for a Jehovah's Witness, according to a blog at atheism.about.com:
Evidently, Prince proselytizes door- to-door just like other Witnesses - but unlike other Witnesses, he participates in the "System" in ways that would normally be shunned. When he does proselytize, according to Ross, he goes in a limo with four bodyguards and tailor-made suits. Pity that all Witnesses aren't given the same latitude - but they can't contribute millions to the cause like Prince can. You don't suppose that has anything to do with it, do you?
There is an unofficial Prince fan community site that is quite active in discussing this issue.
A recent issue of Entertainment Weekly provides some insight into the new Prince:
Two nights after the L.A. concert, Prince is backstage before a sound check at the Glendale Arena outside Phoenix, a city named, appropriately enough, after the fiery, feathered avatar of resurrection. Clad in a black sleeveless tunic and cranberry pants, Prince takes a plate from his bodyguard and loads it up with fruit, pasta slathered in cream sauce, and salad. Yes, Prince eats. He also goes to the multiplex. Last night, after his show in Bakersfield, Calif., he and his band unwound by checking out Kevin Smith's latest flick, Jersey Girl, a so so departure from his usual lewd-and-crude comedies. Prince was unimpressed. Not that the 45-year-old, happily married, devout Jehovah's Witness can't appreciate a cleaner act; he himself has scrubbed from his set list staples like "Head" and "Jack U Off." It's just that according to Prince, Smith didn't replace it with anything interesting. "We walked out after an hour," he sniffs. "Guess that's what happens when the potty mouth don't work for you anymore."
Hearing him talk about ordinary things is almost a shock. He speaks in hushed-voice gushes-megabyte downloads of wit, logic, and Christian evangelism.
The second off-limits topic is Prince's past...which rules out almost everything else you'd want to discuss with him. "I've changed. I'm a different person. I'm about the present and moving forward. New joke, new anecdote, new lesson to be discovered," he says." "You know that old lady in Sunset Boulevard, trapped in her mansion and past glories? Getting ready for her close-up? I don't run with that." Even so, Prince begins concerts with a self-venerating video quoting extensively from a speech by Alicia Keys at his Hall induction.
Much of what has changed in Prince's life has occurred in the several years since he committed to the Jehovah's Witness faith. His music has always wrestled with Christian-tinged spirituality, but Prince says he didn't start reading the Bible until he'd become a Witness. His religious fervor was evident in the 2001 concept album The Rainbow Children, which was roundly knocked by critics. (Prince also attempted to produce an evangelical video based on the album directed by...Kevin Smith, whose surreal tale of working with Prince can be found on the DVD An Evening With Kevin Smith. "I'm cool with him not liking Jersey Girl," says Smith. "I f---ing hated his album Crystal Ball, so now we're even.")
As a result of his faith, Prince has developed an uncharacteristic modesty. In concert, he's taken to changing "I'm your messiah and you're the reason why" in "I Would Die 4 U" to "He's your messiah..." Still, it appears he has some kinks to work out in squaring his dogma with his golden-god persona. Asked if he feels he's alienated his fans over the years, Prince says: "No. The love has never left. I've always felt that there were people in my corner. It's a gift, that God gives us the chance to feel such love. Arid it's all for His glory: I don't believe in idol worship. That's why I don't sign autographs. When I get asked for my autograph, I say no and tell them why, because I'm giving them something to think about." This from a man who often prompts his concert audiences to scream his name. Ironies, contradictions, and exceptions escape Prince like doves from a cage.
There is also the predicament of his own potty-mouthed past-the one where he sang of erotic cities and a love that is soft and wet. But Prince has this problem solved as well. He doesn't perform those songs anymore. The founding father of the warning label freely concedes he's come full circle since he scandalized Tipper Gore with the word masturbating in "Darling Nikki." "Look at this situation with the FCC after Janet: We've gone too far now. We've pushed the envelope off the table and forgotten there was a table. You can't push the envelope any further than I pushed it. So stop! What's the point?"
partial quotes from Entertainment Weekly, April 23, 2004, p. 29-32
Rolling Stone magazine offers some additional insights:
It's hard to tell precisely what counts for the more easygoing Prince. He refuses to speak about any aspect of his private life, but his becoming a Jehovah's Witness a few years back has seemingly brought him a good deal of spiritual calm. The religion's combination of absolute certainty and convoluted interpretive zeal suits him perfectly. He began his remarks at the Hall of Fame induction by offering "all praise and thanks to the most high Jehovah," and his additional declaration there that "too much freedom can lead to the soul's decay" should be read as his acceptance of the strict tenets of that faith. In consequence, he has expunged all profanity from his language and refuses to perform any of his racier songs - no "Darling Nikki," no "Head," no "Gett Off."
And speaking of sexual decorum, Musicology, among its other subjects, is a paean to monogamy ("Eye see U picked me out like U want something/But shame on U, baby, can't U see this ring?"). And Prince has even become an unlikely advocate for cleaning up the airwaves. "This culture is in big trouble," he insists. "All you see on television are debased images...."
More personally, Prince's marriage to twenty-seven-year-old Manuela Testolini in 2001 seems also to have settled him. Beautiful, slender and soft-spoken, she was by his side virtually every moment he wasn't on-stage in Cleveland. The past seven years or so have not been easy for Prince. The child he had with his first wife, Mayte Garcia, died from a rare illness after living for only a week. The couple's marriage ended not long after that. Both his parents passed away. Amid all that loss, remarriage and faith appear to have come as great, restorative gifts.
partial quotes from Rolling Stone, May 27, 2004, p. 56-60
All the signs are present for a typical conversion to Jehovah's Witnesses: disaffection with the system of things (the world and especially its entertainment), the intolerance of other religions or world views, disassociation with one's previous persona and habits, and an active evangelistic tone. Prince has revealed much of this in interviews. He goes door-to-door, albeit in a fashion unlike any other Jehovah's Witness, but that was also the case with Michael Jackson, a former Witness himself. (Michael used to go in disguise however, Prince does not.)
How long will Prince remain a Witness? If he is still down deep as independent as he has been in the past, he may ruffle some feathers with the big boys in Brooklyn. Perhaps he will "reach an agreement" with the Watchtower leaders to quietly disassociate himself once they are tired of trying to explain him to the outside world. Or perhaps he will just become too conflicted with his past and retire from the stage someday. Will he become another victim of cult mind control breakdown? At any rate, for now it looks like he is "dug in" for the long haul. Perhaps when he becomes aware that the Watchtower is run by psychopaths, he may reconsider his devotion to this self-styled "one true church."
Sunday, August 23, 2009 from http://www.twentyfourbit.com/
I’m not sure how Prince could go from not even casting a vote in the presidential election, saying “I got no dog in that race,” to wanting to work for President Obama months later, but if the White House’s Special Advisor for Green Jobs, Van Jones, is to be believed, that’s exactly what happened. Check out this excerpt from Jet magazine (not yet available online):
Van Jones, Obama’s special adviser for green jobs at the White House Council on Environmental Quality, told JET that celebrities including Russell Simmons and Prince have contacted him looking for ways to join Obama’s team.
Celebrities vying for jobs at the White House is certainly not news to me (actor Kal Penn left hit show House to be an associate director in the Office of Public Engagement), but look at what Prince told Tavis Smiley in April on his reasons for not voting (via Jezebel’s Tracie Egan):
Well, the reason why is because I’m one of Jehovah’s Witnesses and we’ve never voted. That’s not to say that I don’t think Barack Obama—President Obama—is a very smart individual and he seems like he means well. Prophecy is what we all have to go by now.
Perhaps he simply wants to bring said prophecy to the leader of the free world. And far be it from Prince to leave his Crystal Ball at home.