Book of Mormonisms

Did they really say THAT?

Archive for July, 2008

Town spends $1 million to buy, shut strip club

Posted by coventryrm on Thursday, July 31, 2008

Lavonia officials bought Cafe Risque as a way to close it down

Pay off a bond or buy a business for the sole purpose of closing it down because looking at naked women is evil!  Now that makes perfect sense.

Posted in atheist, christianity, morality, religion | 2 Comments »

Utah Ranked Most Depressed State

Posted by skiutah on Sunday, July 27, 2008

This is the (depressed) place!

The skiing is good though…

Posted in LDS, mormon, religion, science | 12 Comments »

Climate Change, Carbon Footprint, What should I do, what should I support and what should I believe?

Posted by coventryrm on Saturday, July 19, 2008

First I want to thank blazeheliski for bringing much of this up and causing me to do a bit of research.  I am not claiming that I have found any answers or that I have obtained huge amounts of knowledge.  It does seem however that you can find information and extensive articles in support of either theory; we need to be concerned we don’t need to be concerned.  Which is it?  


I don’t think anyone really knows, and there in lies the problem so you can just pick a side and run with it and collect all the data you can find to support your cause.  I believe that the media promotes and runs with the extremes so consequently we as a society react to the extreme.  If someone was to accurately describe and lay out the facts as actually known would anyone listen?  Would anyone feel the need to change their behaviors or would industry spend R & D money looking for alternatives?  Who knows, I only have my own perception and opinion on what is really going on in this situation. 


Do I believe that there are other resources for oil and that we should be taking advantage of those resources, sure why not?  Have environmentalist made carbon emissions and the use of fossil fuels bad words, yes and they seem to have done a pretty good job of it.  Is all this tied into “Global Warming” no solid proof one way or the other that I can tell, I personally think we will most likely be cooling into another ice age at some point.  Being a skier I like this idea anyway so that is the one I am going with. 


Seriously though I certainly do think that the Environmentalist have embellished and use scare tactics, not that the ends justifies the means but I can understand a bit of the rational it goes hand in hand with the philosophy or statement and I paraphrase, for real change to happen there has to be a crisis either real or perceived.  It seems until very recently little has been aggressively done to find alternative energy sources by this country.  Perhaps the environmentalists believe that creating a perception of crisis is the only way to actually get things moving quickly, history shows us that if tomorrow gas prices dropped back to $2.00 a gallon people would most likely just go about their business and would once again become complacent in the search and development of alternative fuel sources therefore we must come up with a motivating reason other than the pocketbook. 


On the other hand Bush just announced a lift on a ban of offshore drilling, could the crisis in regards to oil prices be the oil companies’ way of creating a crisis to open up new markets and resources for oil.  I don’t know the answer but it does seem, gas prices perhaps will force those “save the planet” types to look harder at the facts and be open to some balance in this confusing and complex debate.  After spending a day of searching and reading articles on the internet I am pretty certain both sides of the argument have used “Bad” science to advance and argue their agendas.  So there is the pendulum and the environmentalists have had it swinging pretty solidly to their side for awhile, high gas prices may swing it back the other way.  Maybe in the end we will continue to look aggressively at alternative sources while at the same be willing to tap into what is available to us now with one not being done at the expense of the other. 


In conclusion, I have decided that where I can and am willing without it causing undo hardship to my current lifestyle I will be conscious of ways that I can minimize my negative impact on our environment.      

Posted in economics, Environment, Fuel, Oil, science | 35 Comments »

LDS Church handles sex offender in house and he is able to victimize for several more years!

Posted by coventryrm on Thursday, July 17, 2008

Posted in christianity, LDS, morality, mormon, religion | 2 Comments »

Mormon “Intellectual” claims Environmentalists, Disney and Pixar are tools of Satan

Posted by coventryrm on Wednesday, July 16, 2008

In one of my first posts I stated that I felt that religion holds us back as a society and one example I gave was “global warming” now called “climate change” My point being how can a belief in Armageddon and the second coming of Christ and the ultimate destruction of our Earth and mankind as we know it being some sort of fulfillment of Gods plan not affect your worldview. 

Well  folks I found a perfect example of what I was talking about this particular person wrote a movie review for Wall E.  I would suggest you actually read the article in question for yourself, however I would like to share with you some of my favorite examples of some really wacky thinking. 

“I believe WALL-E is another card in the deck of fear-mongering tactics employed by our common Enemy to get power, money, control, oppress mankind with false “prophets,” and reign with blood and horror prior to the return of the Savior.”

“Have the living prophets and apostles ever taught that we must “go green” or perish?  The Adversary’s environmentalism plan is plotted squarely against God’s plan of salvation.  Choose you this day whom you will serve (Josh. 24:15; cf. Alma 30:8; Moses 6:33).  The prophets have outlined our modern day title of liberty.

It is unfortunate that companies such as Disney and Pixar are beginning to propagate agendas of a maleficent nature, though for their sakes likely without knowing it, when they have promoted so much good in the past.  Here is yet another example of something good being pushed to an extreme.  The Adversary apparently finds it best to start them believing in such perversion while they’re still young. “

Here is the link you can check for yourself I am not making this up!

Posted in atheist, christianity, LDS, morality, mormon, religion | 28 Comments »

Cockatrice Passage

Posted by skiutah on Sunday, July 13, 2008

I’m reading 2 Nephi 24:29. Nephi is discussing some of Isaiah’s prophecies. One of Nephi’s words is translated by JS into “cockatrice“. The meaning of that word is “legendary creature, hatched by a reptile, from a cock’s egg, having a cock’s head and a lizard’s tail.”

Cockatrice” entered the English language in the 14th century. When the King James translators were translating the Bible into English, they needed to translate a word that would nowadays be translated as “viper” or “venomous serpent”. The KJ translators used the word “cockatrice” because it was in common use in England at that time. Using “cockatrice” was okay for the KJ translators, but doesn’t work well in other time periods.
Cockatrice isn’t easily explained away like other BOM anachronisms such as horse, chariot, synagogue, sword, steel, sheep, adieu, glass, wheat, barley, and so on. These words can be explained as the closest words that JS could translate into English in America in the 1800s.

Why would JS translate Isaiah’s word for “viper”, as related by Nephi in 550 B.C., into a 14th century English word for a mythical creature?
  One explanation could be that JS copied 2 Nephi 24:29 verbatim from the KJ translation of the Bible (Isaiah 14:29)…
book of mormon cockatrice

Book of Mormon Cockatrice




Recently Danna  posted the following question on MAAD the resulting debate was interesting to say the least, may even give me some ideas for another posting.   I thought Danna did a wonderful job with the Cockatrice problem and would like to add it to SkiUtah’s orginal post.


“Critics and apologists alike acknowledge numerous anachronisms in the BoM, and for the vast majority, apologists are able to introduce a potentially ‘plausible’ explanation. Usual explanations are loan-shifting (e.g. horses), or translation of a defined concept into 19th century vernacular (thus Isaiah’s ‘heleyl’, mopologized as a double reference to the king of Babylon and the devil, ends up as ‘Lucifer’ in the BoM – in spite of ‘Lucifer’ being a Vulgate/KJV error).


There is one particularly interesting anachronism in the BoM. I think it is interesting because there is no way to loanshift or double-reference out of it. The cockatrice is a supernatural chimera with evil super-powers, a rooster with a serpent’s tail, poisonous breath, and in some references, a gaze which turns a watcher to stone. The cockatrice appears in the BoM and in Isaiah in the KJV at: Isaiah 11:8/2Nephi 21:8/2Nephi 30:14; Isaiah 14:29/2Nephi 24:29.

The word cockatrice derives from a 12th century French re-translation of Pliny (apparently originally describing little birds cleaning a crocodile’s teeth) which was anglicised to Cockatrice. Not knowing what creature was referred to, Brits took the word and imagined their own monster for it, a rooster with a serpent’s tail, which had poisonous breath (Pliny’s natural history got somewhat scrambled). There was subsequently a rash of Cockatrice sightings across Britain, and the Cockatrice became a heraldic creature, later on linked to the Basilisk (which was originally an all serpent concept, but gained its rooster’s head at about the same time the cockatrice appeared).

The cockatrice was popular during the Elizabethan period in dramas and beastiaries up till soon after the KJV was translated, and that is possibly why it is found in several places in the KJV, as a mistranslation of the original Hebrew word(s) for “serpent” of some natural kind. In the 17th century natural science became more, well, natural, and the Cockatrice was excluded from natural histories and basically dropped out of fashion. The word essentially disappeared from the language, EXCEPT for the KJV (and eventually re-emerging in ‘Dungeons and Dragons’ where I became fascinated with it).

So why would JS use the word cockatrice in the BoM? Isaiah meant “hissing serpent”. There would be no problems for Nephi translating it into reformed Egyptian, or even Mormon abridging it – snakes are snakes in Egypt, Jerusalem, and in America – even with the supposed limited reformed Egyptian vocabulary (where ‘horse’ includes any animal with 4 legs, big enough to sit on). The very concept postdates both Isaiah and the Nephites. There would be no problems for JS translating “hissing serpent” into 19th century vernacular either. Cockatrice was geographically limited and archaic, and only locally mentioned in the KJV.

‘Potentially plausible’ explanations may allow one to (very barely) excuse the BoM appearances of the KJV words Satyr (for “shaggy goat”), and Dragon (for jackal or hyena). There are tiny and credibility stretchingly remote possibilities that these concepts could have been known to Nephi, Mormon, or JS and considered more apt for a broader metaphysical interpretation of Isaiah’s actual description of physical abandonment of a city. Or whatever.

But I see no grounds whatsoever for finding cockatrices in the BoM. OK. Maybe the reformed Egyptian word for ‘Snake’ means “tastes like chicken”, hence the confusion.

As for the scenario, originally put forward by B. H. Roberts, that during translation, when JS realised that a section of the BoM was essentially the same as the KJV, he simply copied the KJV to save time, I don’t think it can hold as a mopologetic argument these days, we now more detail on the specific translation processes used during production of the BoM. Sperry had a similar argument to B. H. Roberts in 1967:
“…199 verses are word for word the same as the old English version. We therefore freely admit that Joseph Smith may have used the King James version when he came to the text of Isaiah on the gold plates. As long as the familiar version agreed substantially with the text on the gold plates, he let it pass; when it differed too radically he translated the Nephite version and dictated the necessary changes.” (Sperry, ref below)

This might be an option if JS were sitting at a table, with the BoM and a KJV both open side by side in front of him (as Sperry probably assumed), wearing the interpreters as spectacles. But, it doesn’t make sense for JS to switch to the BoM if he were translating as reported – either line by line or word by word from the peepstone in his hat. Surely it would take longer and no sense at all to read out the translation, have Oliver repeat it back, then compare with the KJV to see if it were the same or not, then copy the KJV. It would be easier for Oliver to just write down the words as JS spoke them. Basically, in order to know that the translation was the same, he had to translate it first – scanning the text was not an option given modern understanding of the production process. Also, 2 of the 3 cockatrice chapters contain other major text changes from the Isaiah of the KJV.

The more recent apologists have dropped the KJV copying argument. Tvedtnes’ analysis of Isaiah in the BoM is quite clear that JS translated these portions, using KJV language (explaining both similarities and differences) rather than copied them:

“It has long been my contention that the best scientific evidence for the Book of Mormon is not archaeological or historical in nature, as important as these may be, but rather linguistic. This is because we have before us a printed text which can be subjected to linguistic analysis and comparison with the language spoken in the kingdom of Judah at the time of Lehi.” (Tvedtnes, ref below)

Allred’s analysis for FAIR makes the same assumption – that JS translated from ancient texts rather than plagiarised the KJV. Allowing for plagiarism opens up a huge can of worms – massive, massive, chunks of LDS doctrine are reliant on the translation of one other word in 2 Nephi Chapter 24 – the same chapter as the second cockatrice. (That word is ‘Lucifer’, mentioned above). The appearance of Lucifer and cockatrice in the same chapter compounds the problem of the cockatrice, and casts doubt on the standard apologist explanation of the appearance of Lucifer.

The Jewish Masoretic Text Isaiah and the Great Isaiah Scroll from Qumran do not refer to the word or concept of cockatrice. The words used by both of these Jewish texts are Hebrew for ‘hissing serpent’. The intended concept is clear and it is a ‘natural kind’ recognised on all continents ~ poisonous snake.

It is not possible that any sort of conceptual contamination occurred (somehow) from the Septuagint, written in the third century BCE. Although the Greek translation used the word ‘basiliskos’ (as well as aspis), the basilisk at that time was just a lethally poisonous but normal snake, probably derived from the Egyptian cobra. The basilisk did morph into the supernatural chimera concept circa the 12th century when it became linked to the cockatrice – too late to contaminate the BoM.

The Vulgate circa 400CE uses ‘basiliscus’ and ‘regulus’, again, the terms refer strictly to the concept poisonous snake, emphasizing the lethality of the serpent.

So – given that the concept ‘serpent’ does not require loan-shifting when moving from Hebrew to reformed Egyptian to English, the word that JS would have seen on his peepstone should have been ‘serpent’ or ‘snake’. With maybe an appropriate adjective attached at most.

It defies reason to expect that Isaiah’s hissing serpent is more accurately translated as ‘cockatrice’ rather than serpent or snake, or even some actual local American species. Given the minor changes to other phrases (‘ships of the sea’!), this phrase is not insignificant. The 2 Nephi chap 21 story describes how created nature is made safe in the ‘millennium’ – the insertion of a non-existent supernatural monster amongst the wolf, lamb, leopard, kid, calf, lion, cow, bear, lion, and human child is ludicrous. Cockatrice not only substitutes a concept, it is out of context for Isaiah’s story.

The use of the single term ‘cockatrice’ is proof of erroneous, contextually inappropriate, and inexplicable material from the KJV in the BoM. The term is completely incompatible with the assertion that the BoM is an ancient Hebrew-American text.


Alexander, R. McN. The Evolution of the Basilisk. Greece & Rome, Second Series, Vol. 10, No. 2, (Oct., 1963), pp. 170-181

Allred, Alma.…_of_Mormon.html

Assorted parrellel bible translations including Septuagint (The Douay-Rheims is an english translation of the Vulgate):

Breiner, Laurence A. The Career of the Cockatrice. Isis, Vol. 70, No. 1. (Mar., 1979), pp. 30-47.

Great Isaiah Scroll:

Masoretic Text:

Sperry, Sidney B. The ‘Isaiah Problem’ in the Book of Mormon. Answers to Book of Mormon Questions pp 73-97.

Tvedtnes, John A.

Vulgate in Latin:


Posted in agnostic, atheist, LDS, mormon | Tagged: , , | 44 Comments »

Create Calendar, Get Excommunicated

Posted by skiutah on Friday, July 11, 2008

Mormon Missionaries Gone Wild Calendar

I wonder if they have a calendar for the sister missionaries?

want to meat a mormon missionary?

want to meat a missionary?

See the youtube video from Chad Hardy and his story about making the calendar. He was excommunicated because of it and wasn’t allowed to graduate from BYU. Regardless of what Mormons think, BYU will never be taken seriously has an institution of higher learning as long as they let the Mormon Taliban run off the creative intelligent types.

And the folks in Provo wonder why the University of Utah was invited to join a real college conference, and why nobody but 4th tier conferences want BYU.

In last 180 years the Mormon church has had one creative member, Joseph Smith, and the Mormon Taliban couldn’t get rid of Joseph Smith because he was in charge. But he got himself killed…

Posted in LDS, morality, mormon, religion | 5 Comments »

Fish fossils plug hole in evolutionary theory

Posted by coventryrm on Thursday, July 10, 2008

Posted in atheist, christianity, mormon, religion, science | Leave a Comment »

Mind Control – The BITE Model (Sounds like Mormonism)

Posted by coventryrm on Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Reminds me of my life in the LDS culture.

Posted in agnostic, atheist, cults, LDS, morality, mormon, religion, science | 4 Comments »