A very interesting discussion on the Spalding Book of Mormon theory

What is really interesting is there is new information on a word print study of the Book of Commandments which indicates Sidney Rigdon was strongly involved in the early revelations of Mormonism in addition to Oliver Cowdrey and Joseph Smith.

solomonspalding.com/Lib/ExM2009.htm

Parts 8 and 9 contain the Book of Commandments information.

I just am taking this to the top so people who haven’t seen this have the opportunity to do so.

Catholic20064,
As Amontoya pointed out, “this blog addressed this study”:

mormanity.blogspot.com/2008/1…w-book-of.html

I would also add that a scholar would not use merely a statistical study to figure out what potential authors relevant to the question of authorship of Shakespeare’s plays, really wrote them. They would use all possible approaches to the question, including especially literary and stylistical questions that could not possibly be answered by a computerized statistical word count approach. (These kinds of studies have actually been done. The most common answer has been that Edward de Vere wrote the Shakespearean plays.)

They would use all possible approaches to the question, including especially literary and stylistical questions that could not possibly be answered by a computerized statistical word count approach.

That has already been done, it is just not comprehensively reported in that article. However, it has been addressed in other articles on that website. Nobody as yet has published a meta analysis of those other studies. By the way, Craig Criddle’s recent talk at the exmormon foundation gathering did discuss how the shrunken centroid study backed up other evidence. Mosiah Alma and Ether contain most of the Spalding material present in the BOM, according to the four studies (Jockers, Donofrio, Broadhurst, and Holley)

Jerusha,
I looked for a few seconds at the video link. My impression was that you can tell as much about the kinds of “truth” being presented by someone through watching them as through listening to them. Sorry, but he seemed fidgety, nervous, defensive, and with an edge in his voice that to me says, “here is a person that realizes deep inside their heart that what they are saying is contrived.”

What a silly reason to dismiss what someone has to say. Some how I don’t think you’d draw the same conclusion if someone acted in a similar manner at a Fast and Testimony Meeting.

Nonetheless, you just briefly skimmed the film, and seeing as your MO here is one of thinking critically I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt. We all have our “gut reactions”. I’m confident you’ll approach this issue again.

he seemed fidgety, nervous, defensive, and with an edge in his voice that to me says, “here is a person that realizes deep inside their heart that what they are saying is contrived.”

At the very first he did seem nervous. And I believe that you were looking through Mormon lenses, mind-reading, as usual. Perhaps you might look at the consequences of taking a stand against the LDS Church. Why is exmormon.org so successful? It is because everyone can post completely anonymously. Takes a lot more work from moderators, but it does work when one has to deal with a climate of paranoia.

Perhaps you might do well to check out your perceptions by watching the entire presentation. I mean, if your perceptions are right, what can it hurt?

There is a difference between nervousness from standing in front of people and talking in public (as a child certainly often does for a “first time” doing that), and nervousness from the subject matter and the inner core feelings of the person. There is a word for distinguishing that kind of difference. It is called “discernment.” Mothers, for example, often have discernment when their child is making up a story to cover up something they might have done or to defend a decision they made. That kind of discernment is an important gift to mothers, and it is a real spiritual gift that is important in this world of ours.

So the Mormon Holy Ghost is guiding you in this discernment?

With all due respect, you have no idea why (or even if) this man was nervous. Unlike his mother, you don’t know him, and your presumption smacks of arrogance.

This isn’t discernment, it’s immaturely putting your fingers in your ears and closing your eyes.

Thank you Parker. I noted the timing of posts, and decided to preserve it for you.

After all, he is a professor in a Mormon-neutral area, and used to speaking in public. It is a very emotion-laden issue for him, as well as for any other person who has been negatively affected by Mormonism.

Perhaps you might do well to check out your perceptions by watching the entire presentation. I mean, if your perceptions are right, what can it hurt?

:rotfl: Great minds think alike. Seems like perception is a strong issue here. :smiley:

I felt that way when I listened to Ann Dibb’s conference talk.:shrug:

Jerusha,
I honestly don’t have time to listen to the entire thing. I tried a couple of the links, but could you let me know which one has something substantive rather than the endless commentary that I find of no consequence? Which parts really get into how he or the team researched the language usage, stylistics, narrative genres, emotive expression, and the obvious differences in authorship based on differences in all of these aspects of the Book of Mormon itself as a text? I don’t have time for the “fluff”, in other words, of his presentation.

Most boards are anonymous, including this board. What consequences are there for speaking against the lds church on the internet for members? And what is the climate of paranoia? I think that you are overdoing it with your own paranoia.

The exmormon site is a one sided site where any post that is considered prolds is deleted and the poster banned. It is a cultish site.

I am not sure if one can put god into a word print study. I am sure that if we do a word print study of the bible, we would find interesting information. But to do it for the bible would be impossible without more writing samples of those involved.

Sidney was around when Joseph was receiving his revelations. Also, they were written down by a second person and that could have been sidney or even Oliver. The fact remains that both sidney and oliver eventually had a fallen out and never said that it was all a fraud. And certainly if it were a fraud, they would have been in on it. Also, sidney was tracted out by missionaries. Now of course the missionaries could have been in on the fraud too. But…that would make the list of accomplices huge. And so, how to explain sidney being tracted out by the mormon missionaries if he wrote the book of mormon?

Now of course, sidney was impressed with the book of mormon and with Joseph Smith and he helped lead some of his church’s members to the mormons.

But how to explain sidney being tracted out by lds missionaries? All such evidence points to sidney not being involved in the book of mormon.

I have never been a fan of the Spaulding theory because the Spaulding manuscript is available for reading. The Spaulding manuscript (solomonspalding.com/docs/rlds1885.htm) is not primarily a religious text, the BoM is almost nothing but, consisting largely of Jeremiads and wars. Both Joseph Smith and Solomon Spaulding lived in a milieux that contained the same base of folkloric speculation about the Indians. The Spaulding book comes from an entirely different mindset than the BoM. I can promise you the BoM contains nothing quite so exciting as this:

*But now a most singular & delicate subject presented itself for consideration. Seven young women we had on board, as passenjers to viset certain friends in Britain. Three of them were ladies of rank & the rest were healthy bucksom lasses. Whilst deliberating on this subject a mariner arose whom we called Droll Tom Hark, ye shipmates says he. Whilst tossed on the foaming billows what brave son of Neptune had any more regard for a woman than a Sturgeon but now we are all safely anchored on Terra firma, our sails furled & ship keeled up, I have a huge longing for some of those rosy dames. But willing to take my chance with my shipmates, I propose that they should make their choice of husbands. The plan was instantly adopted. As the choice fell on the young women they held a consultation on the subject & in a short time made known the result. Droll Tom was rewarded for his benevolent proposal with one of the most sprightly, rosy dames in the company. Three other of the most cheerful resolute mariners were chosen by the other three bucksom Lassies. The three young Ladies of rank fixed their choice on the Captain the Mate & myself. Happy indeed in my partner,

I had formed an high esteem for the excellent qualities of her mind. The young Lady who chose me for a partner was possessed of every attractive charm both of body & mind. We united heart & hand with the fairest prospect of enjoying every delight & gratification which are attendant on the connubial state. Thus ended the affair. You may well conceive our singular situation. The six poor fellows who were doomed to live in a state celibacy or accept of savage dames, discovered a little chagrin & anxiety. However they consoled themselves with the idea of living in families where they could enjoy the company of the fair sex, and be relieved from the work which belongs to the department of women.
*

*May God bless your soul, says one of the mariners, what would you have us do who have had the woful luck not to get mates to cheer our poor souls and warm our bodies. Methinks I could pick out a healthy plum lass from the copper colored tribe that by washing & scrubing her fore & aft & upon the labbord & stabbord sides she would become a wholesome bedfellow. I think, may it please your honour, that I could gradually pump my notions into her head & make her a good shipmate for the cupboard & as good hearted a Christian as any of your white damsels & upon my Soul I warrant you if we have children, by feeding them with good fare, & keeping them clean, they will be as plump & as fair & nearly as white as your honour’s children. Upon this I filled the bottle with wine & observing to honest Crito that he was at liberty to make the experiment if he could find a fair - - - - to his liking. *

*Other diversions, which had no tendency to fit them for war they seldom practiced, except when in the company of women, being taught by their religion the social virtues, they manifested a great regard for the rights of the other sex & always treated them with attention civility & tenderness. Hence, when in company of the fair sex it was curious to observe that when in the company of women they easily exchanged the warriors ruged & bold attitude of the bold warrior for the complasant & tender deportment of the affectionate galant. The amusements which were pleasing to the female mind were equally pleasing to the men, whenever they held their social meeting for recreation. These meetings were frequent among the younger class of Citizens, whether married or single. Various kinds of amusements would frequently be introduced at such times for their mutual entertainment, but that which held the most conspicuous place was dancing . But their manner of Dancing was different from that of the polished Europeans. Gracefulness & easy attitude were not so much studied in their movements as sprightliness & agility, & those tunes which admitted the greatest display of activity & sprightliness were generally the most pleasing fashionable. Hence those whose bodies were formed for the quickest movements if they keept time with the music, were the most admired. In small assemblies it was fashionable to amuse *

And this was NOT the Urim and Thummim:

*Hamack then arose & in his hand he held a stone which he pronounced transparent. Thro’ this he could view things present & things to come, could behold the dark intrigues & cabals of foreign courts, & behold discover hidden treasures, secluded from the eyes of other mortals. He could behold the galant & his mistress in their bed chamber, &count all their moles warts & pimples. Such was the clearness of his sight, when this transparent stone was placed before his eyes. *

Yeah, Indians, war, but that’s about where the similarities end.

Seems like people can always provide the time somehow or ever to take it a bit at a time, like the way the u-tube site has it. Or you can do something else with headphones on.

Oh-- BTW, I found time to go through LotR with postits to mark every section which popped out as relevant to Mormonism. Thank you for the suggestion. It was very revealing. I once made a resolution to read LotR once every five years. Should have kept that resolution. :o

And Oliver Cowdery knew both Smith and Rigdon. He was an important player. He knew that Smith was the person to do it. It is not even necessary, with that scenario, to have Smith and Rigdon personally know each other during the writing of the BoM.

I think that you are overdoing it with your own paranoia.

Speak of yourself and your own victimhood, bub. When I began researching this subject, I was so wound up with anxiety, that I could not even use the word “Mormon”, all I could say was “they”. Whether it is justified fear or paranoia, one addresses the problem in the same way-- expressing one’s feelings and thoughts in a safe environment.

Yes, Oliver was an important player but it just becomes a question of when. For example he was one of the 11 witnesses. But he never denied his testimony of the book of mormon and later when he was excommunicated and wished to be reinstated he brought his wife and child. Would he bring his child and his wife into the ‘fraud’ years later? I don’t think so.

I don’t think that the people on the exmormon site are paranoid. But they are mean spirited.

If you think it is “mean spirited” to stand up against spiritual abuse, I suppose you, as a spiritual abuser, have a right to your beliefs.

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