The cooked Book of Mormon

The president of the Mormon Church of Latter Day Saints is being sued in Britain on fraud charges. The man filing the charges alleges Thomas Monson made more than $257 million from the Mormon Church in the United Kingdom by spreading lies, thus the fraud charges.

Those lies he allegedly told are the central tenets of the Mormon faith. The money is the contribution made to the church by its members.

Here are some of the lies Thomas Phillips claims Monson has been profiting off of fraudulently:

  • The Book of Abraham is a literal translation from Egyptian papyrus scrolls by the founder of the Mormon faith, the prophet Joseph Smith
  • The Book of Mormon was translated from golden plates found buried in the earth no one but Smith was allowed to see, and that it “is the most correct book on earth and is an ancient historical record”
  • Native Americans are descended from an Israelite family that left Jerusalem around 600 BC
  • All humans alive today are descended from just two, Adam and Eve

When you see them written out like that, it makes sense, as all of those claims do sound crazy.

Except the last one. That one's in the history book.

Except the last one. That one’s in the history book.

But this is still a bold claim. In order to actually be guilty of fraud (at least in America; I don’t know if they do things right in a land where they still worship a queen) you have to not only tell lies, but intentionally deceive people in order to profit in some way from it.

Thus Phillips is claiming that Monson is spreading a faith he doesn’t believe in so as to bilk limeys out of their hard-earned crumpets, or whatever they call money over there. The entire faith-based religious institution he worked his way up through, spending his entire life following its tenets, was something he never believed in. He was playing the long con.

Or perhaps Phillips is saying the entire Mormon faith is intentionally deceitful, that no one at the top believes what they’re preaching, and they’re just using the institution to make themselves rich.

Which is a crazy accusation against a legitimate religion.

Which is a crazy accusation against a legitimate religion.

The problem, of course, is that this seems impossible to prove. Beliefs are hidden, deep inside us, where your precious science can’t see them. Even if you do things contrary to the beliefs you espouse, well, everybody slips. That’s why there’s the old saying, “Do as I say, not as I got caught doing.”

Ah, but Phillips is not just some random nutjob trying to bring down a major religion for fun. He’s a specific nutjob trying to bring down a major religion for fun. Phillips is an ex-Mormon, and formerly served as a stake president (responsible for a group of congregations), area controller, and financial director for the Mormon Church’s UK corporate entities, as well as other positions within the church between 1969 and 2002. So if there is dirt to be had, he could very well have it.

Phillips is now the managing editor of an online publication (which is a term for a fancy blog, much like this one) that criticizes Mormon history and doctrine, so he has been against the church for years now. What shocking knowledge drove him so far from the church?

If this were just a petty scheme, a legitimate court system wouldn’t let this see the light of day. But District Judge Elizabeth Roscoe has ordered Monson to appear before the court on March 14 to face these charges. If he doesn’t show up, a warrant will be issued for his arrest, all for spreading the ideas of his faith. Clearly, there is a solid basis to Phillips’ claims.

We can thus conclude that the entire Mormon faith is a scam. It’s likely a pyramid scheme, which is how the people at the bottom can be blissfully unaware of what’s going on, but anyone who moves up the ladder has an incentive to keep the scam going. After all, they would have paid so much into it already, and now they have the opportunity to see the rewards. Who would turn that down?

Apparently, Thomas Phillips did. And now he wants his.

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