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36,766. The Mormon religion is so obviously fake, founded by a transparent charlatan in the nineteenth century, Joseph Smith. Nothing could be more obvious than that that man was a fake and a charlatan and a liar. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith & Cults: COJCOLDS & Fake) Professor Richard Dawkins, lecture ‘I’m An Atheist But ...’
95,935. In March 1826 a court in Bainbridge, New York, convicted a twenty-one-year-old man of being ‘a disorderly person and an impostor’. That ought to have been all we ever heard of Joseph Smith, who at trial admitted to defrauding citizens by organizing mad gold-digging expeditions and also to claiming to possess dark or ‘necromantic’ powers. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith & Cults: COJCOLDS) Christopher Hitchens, God is Not Great p161
95,936. This story raises some very absorbing questions, concerning what happens when a plain racket turns into a serious religion before our eyes. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith & Cults: COJCOLDS) ibid. p165
95,937. Smith obviously seems like a mere cynic, in that he was never happier than when using his ‘revelation’ to claim supreme authority, or to justify the idea that the flock should make over their property to him, or to sleep with every available woman. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith & Cults: COJCOLDS) ibid. pp165-166
95,938. It does, however, have two indelible stains. The first is the sheer obviousness and crudity of its ‘revelations’, which were opportunistically improvised by Smith and later by his successors as they went along. And the second is its revoltingly crude racism. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith & Cults: COJCOLDS) ibid. p166
95,939. The retrospective baptism of the dead seems harmless enough to me, but the American Jewish Committee became incensed when it was discovered that the Mormons had acquired the records of the Nazi ‘final solution’, and were industriously baptizing what for once could truly be called a ‘lost tribe’: the murdered Jews of Europe. For all its touching inefficacy, this seemed in post taste. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith & Cults: COJCOLDS) ibid. p168
36,823. Joseph Smith wasn’t the only person who was wandering around with a seer stone looking for gold, but he was particularly good at it. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith & Stone) Simon Worrall, author
36,824. A seer stone. He would put the stone in the bottom of the hat. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith & Stone) Daniel Peterson, Mormon apologist
36,825. Joseph Smith was the Henry Ford of revelation. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith) Kathleen Flake, historian
36,826. The scandal of Christianity ... God doesn’t deliver gold plates to farm boys. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith) Professor Terryl Givens
37,769. Monson begins with a well-known story about an operation on Joseph Smith's leg during childhood. The doctors suggest tying down Joseph’s arms so he won’t thrash, but Joseph refuses. They offer alcohol to ease the pain. Joseph also refuses. He undergoes the operation without any fuss, and his leg was miraculously cured.
From this, Monson says we should learn courage. But instead, we learn it is good suffer, even when relief is available. If Joseph could do it, so can we. This is an example of ‘doctrine over self’.
Next, he tells the story of the First Vision. He only tells the authorized version. Members are oblivious to the fact that there are multiple conflicting First Vision stories. There are also historical facts surrounding this story which are contradictory. For example, Monson relays that there was a religious revival in New England in the 1820s, which is also not true. There were revivals in 1816-1817 and later in 1823-1824. This is an act of ongoing deception regarding Church history.
Monson tells us that Joseph Smith stuck to his story, even in the face of persecution. The moral of this story? Ironically, Monson says it’s ‘honesty’. This is an example of double-speak.
Monson tells of the martyrdom. Joseph Smith was arrested on ‘trumped up charges’. He acted selflessly by running to the window, in the hopes of saving the others, thereby giving his life for them. From this, Monson thinks we should learn love.
... Monson claims 12 million members believe Joseph Smith to be a prophet of God. This is another deception, as at least 50% of those members are disbelieving inactives, who don’t even feel it necessary to claim ‘LDS’ on the census survey.
He is also hinting that this is ‘proof’ that Joseph Smith was a Prophet. As the saying goes, ‘12 million people can’t be wrong’. But 12 million people certainly can, and have been wrong about a great many things. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith) Luna, board post 10th October 2005 ‘Conference Talk Analysis, Thomas S Monson, Sunday Morning’
36,832. In affidavit after affidavit the young Smith was depicted as a liar and self-confessed fraud, a cunning and callous knave who delighted in nothing so much as preying upon the credulity of his neighbors.
A money-digger by profession, Smith spent his nights and his days lounging about the local grocery story entertaining his fellow tipplers with tales of midnight enchantments and bleeding ghosts, the affidavits maintained ...
In a statement dated 4 December 1833 and signed by 51 residents of Palmyra New York, Smith was described as being ‘entirely destitute of moral character, and addicted to vicious habits’. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith & Cults: COJCOLDS) Rodger I Anderson, ‘Joseph Smith’s New York Reputation Re-Examined’ p2-3 & 8; viz also Eber D Howe, Mormonism Unveiled 1834
36,833. The general employment of the family, was digging for money. I had frequent invitations to join the company, but always declined being one of their number. They used various arguments to induce me to accept of their invitations. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith) Peter Ingersoll, affidavit December 1833
36,834. Joseph told me on his return, that he intended to keep the promise which he had made to his father-in-law. ‘But’, said he, ‘it will be hard for me, for they will all oppose, as they want me to look in the stone for them to dig money.’ And in fact it was as he predicted. They urged him, day after day, to resume his old practice of looking in the stone. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith) ibid.
36,835. One day he (Smith) came, and greeted me with a joyful countenance. Upon asking the cause of his unusual happiness, he replied in the following language: ‘As I was passing, yesterday, across the woods, after a heavy shower of rain, I found, in a hollow, some beautiful white sand, that had been washed up by the water. I took off my frock, and tied up several quarts of it, and then went home.
‘On my entering the house, I found the family at the table eating dinner. They were all anxious to know the contents of my frock. At that moment, I happened to think of what I had heard about a history found in Canada, called the golden Bible; so I very gravely told them it was the golden Bible. To my surprise, they were credulous enough to believe what I said. Accordingly I told them that I had received a commandment to let no one see it, for, says I, no man can see it with the naked eye and live. However, I offered to take out the book and show it to them, but they refused to see it, and left the room.’ Now, said Jo, ‘I have got the damned fools fixed, and will carry out the fun.’
‘Notwithstanding, he told me he had no such book, and believed there never was any such book, yet, he told me that he actually went to Willard Chase, to get him to make a chest, in which he might deposit his golden Bible. But, as Chase would not do it, he made a box himself, of clap-boards, and put it into a pillow case, and allowed people only to lift it, and feel of it through the case.’ (Mormons & Mormons: Smith) ibid.
36,842. One of Joe Smith’s weakest points was his jealousy of other men. He could not bear to hear other men spoken of. If there was any praise it must be of him; all adoration and worship must be for him. He would destroy his best friend rather than see him become popular in the eyes of the church or the people at large. His vanity knew no bounds. He was unscrupulous; no man’s life was safe if he was disposed to hate him. He set the laws of God and men at defiance. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith) William Law
36,866. Q) Was Joseph a habitual drunkard?
A) I don’t believe he was. I only saw him drunk once. I found Joseph and Hyrum at a place where they kept quantities of wine. I remember that Joseph drank heavily, and that I talked to Hyrum begging him to take his brother away, but that was the only time I saw the prophet drunk. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith) Dr William Law, interview Dr Wyl
36,867. Q) What kind of a life did the prophet lead in Nauvoo?
A) Joseph lived in great plenty. He entertained his friends and had a right good time. He was a jolly fellow. I don’t think that in his family tea and coffee were used, but they were served to the strangers when he entertained as tavern-keeper. At least, I suppose so. The Smiths had plenty of money. Why, when I came to Nauvoo I paid Hyrum $700 in gold for a barren lot and at that rate they sold any amount of lots after having got the land very cheap, to be sure. Their principle was to weaken a man in his purse, and in this way take power and influence from him. Weaken everybody, that was their motto. Joseph’s maxim was, when you have taken all the money a fellow has got, you can do with him whatever you please.
... Oh yes, he used to boast of his riches. He expressed the opinion, that it was all-important that he should be rich. I heard him say myself, ‘it would be better that every man in the church should lose his last cent, than that I should fall and go down.’ (Mormons & Mormons: Smith) ibid.
36,868. Q) Was Joseph a coward?
A) Yes, he was a coward and so was Hyrum. You see it already in the fact that when I attacked him on the street with most violent words, he did not dare to answer a word. (Mormons & Mormons: Smith) ibid.