Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon (We Need Dan Vogel's Help!)

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Shulem
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Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon (We Need Dan Vogel's Help!)

Post by Shulem »

Extra! Extra! Read All About It!

Radio Free Mormon just dropped a bomb on the Book of Mormon! A BOMB!! Nothing will ever be the same after this. Everything has changed!

Give 'em the old razzle dazzle
Razzle Dazzle 'em!


RFM, It never occurred to me that Joseph Smith fooled Oliver Cowdery by using a parlor trick. Not in my wildest imagination did it occur to me that Oliver really thought that Smith mysteriously through a miraculous gift of God translated the Book of Mormon while his head was in a hat. You, RFM, so it appears, have unlocked the SECRET trick and exposed Joseph's sleight of hand. The hat was the trick! The stone was the distraction.

This is a momentous podcast, earth shattering! Congratulations for cementing your place in history in exposing the Mormon Illusion -- Smith's translation trick. This podcast is going to get you noticed like never before. You've just stepped up big-time, baby. The game has now changed.The apologists are going to tremble with fear and concern when they take into consideration all the problems associated with the Book of Mormon and realize the translation was a trick. This is the bomb!

Radio Free Mormon: 161: Magic and the Book of Mormon

People, if you haven't made a donation (contribution) to Radio Free Mormon -- you will after listening to this podcast. For what you are about to receive is to be received with a grateful heart. Folks, Mormonism has just taken a death blow!
Last edited by Shulem on Fri May 08, 2020 9:19 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

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Thank you, Radio Free Mormon!

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Things will never be the same for Mormonism

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Shulem
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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

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Radio Free Mormon has won the game!

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The Book of Mormon lost!

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

Post by Fence Sitter »

Interesting observations RFM. But it raises a tough question. This would imply that there was an existing text for the Book of Mormon off of which Joseph Smith was reading. Now to me, that makes more sense than words magically appearing on a stone, but for believers they are going to demand some evidence that such a ur text actually existed. Given the text of the original dictation, this text would have to have been composed by Joseph Smith. What evidence do we have such a text existed? How would Joseph Smith have written such a text without anyone seeing it happen?

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

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Fence Sitter wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 10:02 am
Interesting observations RFM. But it raises a tough question. This would imply that there was an existing text for the Book of Mormon off of which Joseph Smith was reading. Now to me, that makes more sense than words magically appearing on a stone, but for believers they are going to demand some evidence that such a ur text actually existed. Given the text of the original dictation, this text would have to have been composed by Joseph Smith. What evidence do we have such a text existed? How would Joseph Smith have written such a text without anyone seeing it happen?
That of course is the million dollar question. With some thought and imagination coupled with research, I think evidence can be compiled and arranged to show that Smith was working off pre-written script that he loaded into his HAT for dictation. Looking at the whole matter from this new vantage point may help in revealing more about Smith's translation.

It's a whole new game now!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Practice makes perfect.

Bro. Oliver will be knocking on the door soon.


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Last edited by Shulem on Mon May 04, 2020 8:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Dr Moore
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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

Post by Dr Moore »

An instant classic.

The misdirection wouldn’t have required a full text to read from, merely notes as signposts, if any notes were used at all.

The hat - not the stone - as key element in the magic trick, could also have served the very simple role of hiding Joseph’s eyes from the scribe. Both freeing Joseph’s ocular senses from distraction, and hiding suspicious eye movements from the scribe. It has long been known that what people do with their eyes can betray deception or creativity in real time.

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

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This was a fascinating podcast. Quick question. How do we know the hat was white?

I'd always gone with a fairly simple (and perhaps lazy) theory that Joseph Smith simply had the unique talents to produce the Book of Mormon, and felt no need to think there was anything more to it than that. But now, RFM has me reconsidering if that's all there was to it. What was up with the hat?

RFM's insights into the magic show aspects of this reminds me of "The Lucy Code" by Dave Trebas. Trebas speculates that what's most likely is that the mastermind behind the Book of Mormon was really Lucy Mack Smith, with Hyrum Smith being the main brains of the operation. According to Trebas, what most likely happened is that Lucy, Hyrum, and Joseph Smith Sr. are the ones who actually wrote it, and in order to impress their audience, they pretended that the charismatic yet uneducated Joseph Smith Jr. wrote it. According to Trebas, what really happened was that Joseph Smith would memorize a couple of pages, and would then stick his head into the hat and recite what he had memorized. He'd then take a break, memorize the next few pages, and repeat.

A weakness of Trebas's theory was the relative implausibility of memorizing the pages and then going through the weird ritual with the hat. However, if the hat was actually translucent and it was possible to read something in the hat while your head was in it, this bolster's the rest of Trebas's theory.

If you are interested, here is a video of Trebas's theory. I heard a book would eventually come out, but who knows if it will happen.

Most of this video is about the circumstantial arguments that Joseph Smith Sr, Lucy, and Hyrum are the main authors, and an alternative history about what their original objectives were, and then how those objectives evolved. Joseph Smith Jr is just the front man.

You can fast forward to 52:15 for how Trebas imagines the actual translation magic trick went down.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wf3MluItWQE

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

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You had me at the rock in the hat show, Joseph Smith. Of course you performed a magic act for the already wanting to believe audience. Who else would have fallen for the disappearing plates act you did as an encore? Bravo Joseph Smith, bravo!

And more importantly, BRAVO to RFM/Consiglieri for his wonderful podcasts!!!

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

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I've always just kinda figured that O. Cowdery was in on it. I mean, he did claim that P B & J (Peter James and John) appeared to him, right. Obviously that didn't happen so, anything coming from him is tainted. Hard to tell where the actual manuscript came from but, I think the rock in the hat show was just for the stray visitor with Joe spouting gibberish. How could they know if that gibberish was actually in the finished book. In this concerted conspiracy, any purported timelines are irrelevant.

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

Post by Dr Exiled »

I've wondered if it was actually written over a period of time from just before composition of the lost 116 up and until the printing of the first addition was finished. There is a lot of time between when the magic show ended in the summer of 1829 and when the first addition was completed in March, 1830. A lot of composition and revision could have occurred in that time. Maybe the lack of punctuation could have been contrived to make it look old worldly for the printer to see so he would then tell the world about the curious work. Then, it was always a work in progress with subsequent revisions.

Dantana makes a good point that the rock 'n hat show could have been merely a diversion to make the composition a fantastical, "religious" miracle. I think that is the safe view and more than likely what happened. Perhaps Oliver Cowdery participated in the manufacture of the book. That seems like a good possibility. Hyrum seemed to be the smart one in the Smith clan and I think he participated. However, we will probably never know how it was actually composed although the 19th century is clearly where it should be placed.

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

Post by moksha »

Now I want to see a Youtube video of RFM reading notes from Bill Reel's hat.

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

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Analytics wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 3:30 pm
This was a fascinating podcast. Quick question. How do we know the hat was white?
I seem to remember seeing a white hat in a church-produced picture and being a little surprised by the color. Assuming they were attempting to be historically accurate ( :lol: ), that suggests there is evidence it was white. But it would be good to see a reference.

But now that I think about it, since the hat was a prop, its likely to have been fabricated in such a way to allow sufficient light in to make reading his notes easy. I imagine you could even make a black hat with a thin enough weave to allow sufficient light in.

This truly is an amazing RFM episode. I love the way he logically walks us through all the essential components of the trick. This is my favorite episode, by far. We know Joseph was fascinated by folk magic. Very occasionally Shulem can stray into hyperbole 😂 but not this time. I believe this is a major advance in our understanding of how Joseph Smith pulled off one of the greatest magic tricks of the 19th century.

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

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Simon Southerton wrote: This truly is an amazing RFM episode. I love the way he logically walks us through all the essential components of the trick. This is my favorite episode, by far. We know Joseph was fascinated by folk magic. Very occasionally Shulem can stray into hyperbole 😂 but not this time. I believe this is a major advance in our understanding of how Joseph Smith pulled off one of the greatest magic tricks of the 19th century.
I agree. I've listened to the podcast 3 times and it's without question the bomb -- his best work yet. I don't think RFM realizes what he just did. He's got a lawyer brain and he doesn't realize what he has actually done in cracking the case and solving the mystery of the Book of Mormon translation in which Oliver was duped. How much of the Book of Mormon was complete in manuscript form before Oliver came on the scene is a big question. I tend to think that the Smith family pulled a con. I wonder if father Smith was the one who wrote the Book of Mormon? I don't know. Things are more fishier now more than ever. There is much to be considered in light of this new inspired theory that makes total sense. I think the pieces will fall into place!

Where the hell are you, RFM! You want another dollar out of me you better show up and comment!!

And where the hell is Kishy? :evil:

:wink:

Here is a reference to the white hat:

wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seer_stone_(Latter_Day_Saints)

Smith's usual procedure was to place the stone in a white stovepipe hat, put his face over the hat to block the light, and "see" the necessary information in the stone's reflections.[8][9][10]
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Oh yes, that should do just about right.

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

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I am simply beside myself. If I was standing on the edge of a cliff, I could just fall off -- or jump. It will be RFM's fault if I fall and dash my foot against the stones and die! Your fault!

Radio Free Mormon (RFM) our beloved Consiglieri has just posted another podcast WITHOUT even commenting on his last one wherein it was the bomb.

RFM, what the heck? What is wrong with you? Don't you know what you've done? Hello, McFly! You've exposed Joseph Smith's magic trick with the rock in the hat and now you're just going forward, full steam ahead, and releasing another podcast?:

Radio Free Mormon: 162: John Larsen Interviews RFM

We need to hear your comments, Consiglieri! Hurry it up before I ____ start yelling. I'm beside myself and practically freaking out.

:eek:

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

Post by consiglieri »

Peace be unto you, Shulem.

I will have something up along those lines tomorrow. God willing.

It is already half done but I didn't want to release it half baked.

You are quoted by the way.

Thank you so much for all your support!

RFM

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

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consiglieri wrote:
Mon May 04, 2020 6:53 pm
Peace be unto you, Shulem.

I will have something up along those lines tomorrow. God willing.

It is already half done but I didn't want to release it half baked.

You are quoted by the way.

Thank you so much for all your support!

RFM
THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

:smile:

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Now you see it, now you don't
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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

Post by Shulem »

Hip hip hooray for Radio Free Mormon!

Folks, it was Joseph Smith who razzle dazzled Oliver Cowdery. I can imagine Smith cracking up with laughter while having his head buried in his hat just prior to reading his hidden script. I always thought Cowdery to be smart (seeing he was a school teacher like Daniel F. Peterson) but have since changed my opinion on that -- he was dumber than a box of rocks! I have to wonder if in the end Mormonism is going to become a great source of entertainment whereby everyone is going to simply laugh at it.


:lol:

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

Post by Shulem »

The Book of Mormon was NOT translated using a magic stone in a hat.

Rather, it was read aloud by simply reading hidden script in the bottom of the hat.

Abracadabra!

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

Post by Simon Southerton »

Its important to remember it was not a regular top hat. It was a stovepipe hat. Stovepipe hats are taller than top hats. A white stovepipe hat would be ideal for "translating" in the method Smith used because it would let in more light, thus making it easier to read your notes.

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

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This is a quote from Scrying for the Lord: Magic, Mysticism, and the Origins of the Book of Mormon Clay L. Chandler Dialogue 36/4 (2002): 43-78. Bold added by me,
In most descriptions of the translation process, Joseph Smith placed his stone in a hat and held it up to his face, blocking out all light. If these descriptions are accurate, he was likely doing two things: First, he was creating a state of sensory deprivation; and second, he was changing his blood chemistry. What should be pointed out here and, I believe, has been overlooked heretofore, is what Joseph Smith was not doing: Technically, he was not crystal gazing, since with no light in the hat, it would have been impossible for him to see the stone. Unless one is willing to grant the stone actual magical powers or the ability to glow in the dark, then the stone becomes irrelevant to the proceedings except for a possible placebo effect. Nonetheless, by staring into the darkness, Joseph was likely inducing an altered state of consciousness where his mind could become blank as described above. It's also possible that Joseph, much like a hyperventilating person who breathes into a paper bag, changed his blood chemistry slightly, increasing the amount of carbon dioxide and reducing the amount of oxygen getting to his brain. This state, known as hypoxia, can cause brain damage and even death if the oxygen deprivation is complete, but minor changes in blood oxygen level may have helped Joseph induce a trance state. Prolonged periods of even mild hypoxia would likely have impaired Joseph's judgment and reduced his motor coordination, so we must consider the possibilities that his hat was either porous enough to let him breathe freely, he didn't really hold it tight around his face, or he was constantly removing his head from the hat in order to get oxygen. If either of the first two is correct, then some light may have gotten in, and Joseph may indeed have been crystal gazing. If the third possibility is correct, it's unlikely that Joseph could have maintained the trance state for the long periods of time that he was reported to have spent dictating.
We know the hat was white and you can see clearly enough to read in a white hat. But it was also a very tall white hat that would allow more light in. It also needed to be porous to allow the translator to keep breathing for long periods. More light.

This is arguably the most successful magic trick of the last 200 years. He's tricked everyone. This apologist was getting close by figuring out the hat needed to be porous to allow more air in, but he missed the fact that a porous hat would allow more light in as well. He also suggested the stone was unimportant!! He was so close! It wasn't the stone, it was the visible notes Smith was reading on the bottom of his well illuminated tall, white, porous hat.

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Magic and the Book of Mormon

Post by Kishkumen »

We are living in exciting times! We are closing in on how Joseph Smith convinced others that he translated an ancient Book of Mormon, when what he did was to compose a story about a fictional civilization to answer the theological questions of his time (with the help of Adam Clark's commentary and other texts and oral traditions) and then perform a translation as a magic trick.

Now, people have long speculated that there was a text at the bottom of the hat. What RFM has done is to explain a plausible method through the lens of the prestidigitator's art. It was always the hat. This is huge. What made this convincing? Smith had always used the hat. It was part of his shtick as a treasure seer. Here he used it in a new way. But people did not suspect he was doing something different because he already had a reputation as a treasure seer who looked into the hat to see things in his stone!

In their minds what changes is the presence of the plates. This is what is new to them, and what they pay attention to. Their curiosity turns to the plates, and they don't think about what is at the bottom of the hat. Why would they? They never doubted he was looking in a stone in the hat before when he was looking for treasure!

What was at the bottom of this hat? It could have been nothing, sure. So, maybe there is no there there. Maybe he is just memorizing an outline and filling in the details on the fly. But it may have been a small manuscript bearing a shorthand outline. An outline, in other words, written in a code or symbolic mnemonic device. This could be where we get the "caractors." So Reformed Egyptian is nothing more or less than Smith's shorthand system used to write an outline of the content of the Book of Mormon. He can fill in the details from memory. This is why the end product reads so much like an oral composition. To a large extent it was, but the amazing structure was worked out in advance, and it was committed to paper in chunks to keep Smith on track.

And the lovely thing about using a hat is that Smith can always keep it close to him in order to prevent others from closely examining it. They were already inured to Smith's use of the hat in another context. It invites no suspicion for that reason. If someone starts to get a little curious, however, he can always pick the stone out of the hat and put it on his head, shoving the manuscript into its compartment in the hat or up his sleeve in the process. Or, simply by placing it on his head, he relies on the fact that good manners discourage touching it once he has it up there.

Fantastic work, RFM. This is impressive stuff.

Now, I know that the Mopologists, while squirming about the jig being up, will say that RFM can't really prove this is what Smith did. True. Unfortunately, it is not possible for us to go back in time and steal that hat to see how he rigged it, if he did. But the surrounding evidence in favor of this kind of scenario is very suggestive. The elephant in the room is that Smith was already involved in a con game that relied on orchestrating the impression that there really was treasure in the ground that simply wasn't there. This meant that deceit and misdirection were called upon to keep people enthused about finding a treasure that would never be found. Which person in the treasure conspiracy would be charged with coughing at the wrong time, or dropping a dirt stained board in the ground?

The skills and methods were already there in the treasure digging companies. All that was required was to find a mark, someone who could be made to believe in the reality of the treasure and then fork out the money to pay the con artists who were duping him. In the case of the Book of Mormon, of course, that person was the credulous Martin Harris, a man who would lend his name to a handful of different wacky religious claims. A man who believed he saw the Lord Almighty in the form of a deer. A man who was just wealthy enough, and naïve enough, to give Joseph Smith thousands of dollars.

Folks, we have seen it a thousand times, and it is a con as old as the hills. Today we have phony "archbishops" peddling poisonous disinfectant as a miracle cure. Back then there were thieves, mountebanks, and jugglers who dealt in buried treasure, finding lost objects, and providing secret Masonic initiations. A large percentage of the population is willing to be duped. They want the quack cure and the fictional secret knowledge. They want to go to a seminar or through a secret initiation that will solve their problems or give them an edge over the competition. Joseph Smith is not a different character. He is a very common character. He is an interesting example of one of the oldest, most common phenomena there is.
Last edited by Kishkumen on Tue May 05, 2020 8:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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