The MormonLeaks team is excited to announce release of Episode 06 at MormonLeaks.com.
Episode 06 focuses on the origins of the defining feature of Mormonism: belief in personal and prophetic revelation. We provide evidence implicating Sidney Rigdon, a man who suffered a brain injury as a child (Episode 3), as the likely source of the revelatory style unique to Mormonism and to the Mormon cannon. Accordingly, we choose as the icon for Episode 06 a 3D map of the brain of teenagers with early-onset schizophrenia, and we give Episode 06 the title “Thus Saith the Lord”.
Episode 06 shows that the poor grammar found in the 1830 Book of Mormon (since removed) can be attributed to the use of Appalachian English during the book’s dictation. Variations in its usage within the text give clues regarding the dictation process. We also present computer authorship attributions for Smith and Cowdery, and discuss their significance. Attributions are also provided for the Book of Commandments and for the Book of Moses. Unlike the Book of Mormon, the Book of Commandments appears to be the work of just three men. We show that Book of Moses is an extension of the process used to create the Book of Mormon and is likely a prequel for the Book of Ether (the story of the Jaredites in the Book of Mormon).
Institutional power is a major theme. Several lines of evidence suggest that Rigdon and Smith used revelations to control Cowdery and Harris. We also show how Rigdon orchestrated establishment of the Church of Christ, his sudden emergence as a co-equal partner with Smith, and his behind-the-scene role in commanding migration of early Mormon converts from New York to Ohio, where Rigdon had prepared receptive congregations. As Episode 06 closes, Smith and Rigdon are sharing the reins of power in Ohio.