1. But Smith's family practiced things like water dousing. I can accept that they believed it actually worked, due to the power of the ideomotor effect:<quoted text>
1. When Joseph was around 9 or 10 he thought you could find buried Spanish treasure by the use of seer stones. This was a common wish back then. And this practice was mind of like water witching (which people still do today). I can't really fault a kid at that age for believing something like that. Heck I thought/hoped some cars really could transform when I was that age.
2. No matter what you call the language the BOM was written in, it is still very possible that a civilization existed and had their own writing style that we haven't even discovered yet. So this could have happened too. We can't prove it either way. Their explanation in the BOM was that they modified the writing style of their forefathers, who knew Hebrew and Egyptian. Why would Joseph have a reason to fabricate that part if he didn't have real plates? If he didn't have real plates, then he knew no one would see them to question him. Instead, he was allowed to show them to several people who verified their existence. Professor Anthon in New York also verified their authenticity and later retracted his signed verification once he found out how they received the plates. This fulfilled a scripture in Isaiah by the way. The papyri that Joseph translated was lost. We only have the other scrolls that were purchased when he bought the mummies and papyri. I have explained this one before too.
3. The Urim and Thummim are spoken of in the OT. Please google.
4. Gentiles basically meant everyone that wasn't Jewish. So you're kinda right. I'm sure He went to several groups of people. I hope we find those records one day. I see you resorted back to insult again. I question your maturity and sincerity when you do this.
I totally agree that as a child it is fantastic to think of things as magic. I would never question whether Smith or anyone else was being a fraud as a child.
His family engaged in these activities which, in my opinion, are fraudulent. But I'll back off that language and say instead they engaged in magic.
2. You are doing cartwheels to rationalize this belief. Notice your language, which is typical of conspiracy theory advocates and apologists: "Why would Smith...etc." Asking questions that divert us from the bigger picture, questions that are not very rational to begin with.
Smith was a Bible fan. He had been since childhood. He knew full well the stories of Hebrews coming out of Egypt. It makes perfect sense that he would invent his BoM in some form of Egyptian for a number of reasons. First, that he was in fact a fan of the OT's stories and knew them pretty well. Second, that at that time nobody could translate Egyptian. So it was a fairly safe bet he could get by with it.
So what happened to these plates? Can we investigate them today? Is there a reliable photo of them? Who outside of the LDS saw them and wrote about it?
3. I don't care if magic rocks are in the Bible. I don't understand your reason for bringing that up over and over. Smith believed in magic rocks NOT JUST as a matter of them being in the Bible, but he though he had magic rocks and could use them. And you believe he could. That's not rational.
There are unicorns and dragons mentioned in the Bible. If Smith claimed a unicorn talked to him you'd be rationalizing that too, right?
4. The Bible was written for and by people of a particular region. I'm quite sure no one in that book knew about or was referencing Native Americans, including Jesus. This is an irrational Mormon teaching that you guys spend a ton of energy trying to justify. I Googled the Biblical passage referring to other flocks and 9 out of 10 results were specifically Mormon! lol
And I thought Poccahontis joke was funny. You prefer Sitting Bull?