Joseph Smith's activity in bringing forth the Book of Mormon can be viewed as a project of alchemy, which was influenced by his affiliation with treasure digging, the folk magic worldview, the Hermetic tradition,1 as well as his many mystical spiritual experiences. I suggest he initially sought to bring the “gold plates” of his visions into material reality, and in the process discovered the true “gold” was within himself, the elusive Philosopher’s Stone.
I suggest that the translation of the Book of Mormon was Joseph Smith's alchemical Magnum Opus, or "Great Work," a transmutation of his own base desires for materialistic gold and treasure into the highest spiritual realizations of human atonement in God consciousness, and a realization or awakening of eternal life in his Self, even theosis, which he continued to preach for the rest of his life.
An addition to the BHT, about whether only one man may be a prophet, or if many people may be, at the same time.
As I add new translations to the BHT, I thought it would be good to also publish a blog post noting each specific addition, so that readers may get those updates. The following is a translation today of 2 Peter 1:19-21, which concerns the scriptures and prophetic revelation and interpretation of the Word.
We awaken in Christ’s body as Christ awakens our bodies, and my poor hand is Christ, He enters my foot, and is infinitely me.
Several months ago I began to write new "translations" of key passages of scripture in the Old and New Testaments of the Bible. I thought the original translations were not clear enough, and did not communicate the truth very well that I have experienced in recent months and years. So I began to rewrite them as I understood this truth, to try to better convey that truth to a modern reader. I've called this the Bryce Haymond Translation (BHT).
One of the most remarkable things I've found is the tremendous insight that comes from doing nothing. That sounds strange, and it is. But I think there is truth in it.
The poem was an anthem to Emerson's belief that to 'know thyself' meant knowing the God which Emerson felt existed within each person.
We distinguish the announcements of the soul, its manifestations of its own nature, by the term Revelation. These are always attended by the emotion of the sublime. For this communication is an influx of the Divine mind into our mind. It is an ebb of the individual rivulet before the flowing surges of the sea of life.
On my mission in El Salvador East ('00-02) I once taught a woman the first discussion, and after teaching about the First Vision she said "YES! I've seen the same thing!"