Shoghi Effendi Called Joseph Smith a "Seer"
Before His death in 1921, 'Abdu'l-Baha appointed His eldest grandson, Shoghi Effendi (shawg-kee ef-fen-dee) to be the Guardian of the Faith, meaning the Governor of the Faith and the Interpreter of the Holy Writings of the Faith. Shoghi Effendi (1897-1957) ruled the Faith until his death in 1957. Shoghi Effendi was NOT a Prophet! But, many Baha'is believe he was a Seer. He prophesied of the Holocaust, the Internet, and possibly the 9-11 terrorist attack on the Twin Towers in New York City, years or decades before this things became reality. You can read more about these things in The Prophecies of Shoghi Effendi online.
Shoghi Effendi told Baha'is on several occassions that Joseph Smith was a "Seer":"Joseph Smith was a Seer, not a Prophet; neither major nor minor. He had a high standard, but the Baha'is have a higher standard coupled with God's power that comes direct from God for this age." (Pilgrim notes of Ramona Browne, in Memories of 'Abdu'l-Baha, p.117)By "higher standard" Shoghi Effendi does not mean moral standard, but a standard of Revelation. Baha'is have a "higher standard" of Revelation; meaning a Greater Revelation than Joseph Smith received; because while Joseph Smith was a Seer, Bahá'u'lláh was the Holy Ghost incarnate: the ONE WHO INSPIRED the Prophets (and Seers). In the Faith there are three types of Revelators:
Rawzoolloon (Arabic: "Messengers"): Messengers of God. Major Prophets. Prophet Who bring New Revelations/Dispensations; such as Abraham, Moses, Jesus, Muhammad, etc. The incarnations of the Names/Attributes of God. Manifestations of God.
Nawbeeyoon (Arabic: "Utterers"): Minor Prophets. Those "under the shadow" of a major Prophet; such as Jeremiah, Isaiah, etc. Men who are "overshadowed" (possessed) by the Spirit of a Manfestation Who speaks through Them.
Muhaddathoon ("Those Spoken To"): A "Muhaddath" means "one spoken to" (by an Angel) in Arabic. In English they are called "Seers". A Seer can be male or female, and may prophesy (praw-fess-sai), but they are not "Prophets"; because they are sinful and fallible as any human soul.
The Universal House of Justice, the council of 9 rijals (Arabic: "distringuished gentlemen") who govern the Baha'i Faith worldwide, wrote:"As for the status of Joseph Smith, founder of the Mormon Faith, he is not considered by Baha'is to be a prophet, minor or otherwise. But of course he was a religious teacher sensitive to the spiritual currents flowing in the early 19th century directly from the appearance of the Báb and Bahá'u'lláh and the Revelation of Their Messages of hope and Divine Guidance." (Lights of Guidance, p. 511)A religious fraud or charlatan cannot be "sensitive to spiritual currents". But a Mustafa (moos-staw-faw) can be. Thus, Joseph Smith was not a fraud who invented tales about angels. However, Joseph Smith was a fallible human, like other humans. The LORD gave Joseph the Seer this stern warning in 1832:4 For although a man may have many revelations, and have power to do many mighty works, yet if he boasts in his own strength, and sets at naught the counsels of God, and follows after the dictates of his own will and carnal desires, he must fall and incur the vengeance of a just God upon him.The year 1843 was a turning point for Joseph Smith. In 1843 Joseph Smith publicly denied he was a polygamist, but secretly practiced it. He married up to 32 women as plural "wives", including mothers and their own daughters. The LORD told Moses:
9 Behold, thou art Joseph, and thou wast chosen to do the work of the Lord, but because of transgression if thou art not aware, thou wilt fall." (D&C 4:4,9)"And if a man take a wife and her mother it is wickedness..." (Leviticus 20:14)The Law of Moses said that a man who took as wives a woman and her own mother must be put to death. That Law of God was never abrogated by Jesus, nor Muhammad, nor The Báb, nor Bahá'u'lláh. Those Divine Laws which are not abrogated, remain part of the Law of God.
In May of 1843, Joseph Smith preached:"I have more to boast of than ever any man had. I am the only man that has ever been able to keep a whole church together since the days of Adam. A large majority of the whole have stood by me. Neither Paul, John, Peter, nor Jesus ever did it. I boast that no man ever did such a work as I." (History of the Church: 6:408)In June of 1844, several Mormon leaders started The Nauvoo Expositor as a way to expose Joseph Smith's secret polygamy, and cause him to repent and resign as Church President. Joseph Smith had the newspaper closed, and its printing plates destroyed in the street. He was arrested in June of 1844 for illegally destroying an opposition newspaper in Nauvoo, Illinois, while acting as Mayor of Nauvoo. He was sent to Carthage Jail, Carthage Illinois, to await trial. While awaiting trail a mob rushed the jail and killed Hyrum and Joseph Smith. Joseph Smith "fell" to his death (riddled with bullets) from a second story window (Carthage Jail) on June 27th, 1844; in direct fulfillment of Doctrine & Convenants section 4, verse 9! Joseph Smith had became a "fallen" Seer. But he was a Seer nevertheless. After Joseph was killed, a member of the mob drew a large Bowie knife, and acted as if he intended to cut off the head of the Seer. At that instant, a light descended from the sky and struck the man holding the Bowie knife. He dropped the knife and was unable to walk or speak for some time afterwards. Mormons took it as a "sign" (miracle) from God that Joseph Smith was a true Prophet. Anti-Mormons took it as a "sign" from God that Joseph was a false prophet and that He had approved of his murder. Apparently the LORD allowed His fallen Seer to be killed, but He would not allow the body of His Seer to be mutilated and disrespected.
After the death of the Seer, the Church became divided into factions. The family of Joseph Smith followed James Strang, a Mormon who also claimed to be a Seer. His revelations are contained in The Book of the Law of the Lord. He was killed in 1856. Most of his followers then followed Joseph Smith III (eldest son of Joseph Smith), who founded The Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (RLDS Church); now called Community of Christ with about 250,000 members worldwide. But most Mormons followed Brigham Young, the senior Apostle, who led the Mormons to Utah. He founded Salt Lake City and hundreds of other cities and towns. His successors are the Presidents of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: also known as "the Mormon Church" or "the LDS Church" with over 14 million members worldwide.
The 15 leaders of the LDS Church ("The Brethren") are believed by Mormons to be Prophets~Seers~Revelators; with the President of the Church being called "The Living Prophet".
The Baha'is would not believe that the Presidents and Apostles of the LDS Church are "Prophets~Seers~Revelators"; they do not prophesy-see-revelate! They do not prophesy! They do not "see" supernatural visions. They do not "revelate" as Joseph Smith did! They are "Prophets" in "name" only. The current "Living Prophet" of the Church does not prophesy! He claims no supernatural visions or verbal Revelations! He is a "Living Prophet" in name only. On the other hand, the prophecies of Baha'u'llah are numerous.
Shoghi Effendi was once asked if The Book of Mormon was history or parable. He said it was "a matter for historians to pass upon" (High Endeavors No.97). All non-mormon historians who have studied the book have concluded it is not historical, but a product of the early 19th century. They conclude this because all scientific evidence (archaeology, ethnology, linguistics, DNA) declares that the American Indians are from Siberia, and have no Jewish ancestry (DNA) whatsoever. Many of the animals mentioned in The Book of Mormon (oxen, sheep, cows, donkies), did not exist in the Americas before the Spanish conquests. Not one Nephite city or artifact has ever been found.
David Whitmer, one of the "Three Witnesses" of The Book of Mormon, once described meeting the Angel Moroni (more-row-nai) on the road Fayette, New York in 1827, and described him as an old man in a brown suit carrying a U.S. Army napsack on his back. He offered the old man a ride but the man said, "No, I am going to Cumorah!" Joseph Smith, who was also in the wagon, said, "That was Moroni!" (Historical Record 6:207). David Whitmer said that the old man in a brown suit appeared to his mother at the Whitmer barn in Fayette, and took the gold plates out of the knapsack and showed them to her (Historical Record 7:621). In 1827, an old man named Ethan Smith (no relation to Joseph Smith) came to Palmyra, claiming to have authored a book about how the Indians were the descendants of the Hebrews (as does The Book of Mormon). Ethan Smith served in the U.S. Army during the War of 1812, and was a Congregationalist minister from Vermont. He was in fact the pastor of the Cowdery family. Oliver Cowdery was Joseph Smith's cousin and main scribe, and co-founder of the LDS Church in 1830. Perhaps the "Angel Moroni" was in fact Ethan Smith! We know that Ethan Smith had contact a group of men called the Zionitic Brotherhood, who had a commune in Ephrata, Pennsylvania. The Zionitic Brotherhood claimed to hold the Melchizedek Priesthood since the time of Jesus. They came to America from Europe in the early 1600s, from a village in Belgium called Mormont (pronounced "Mormon"). They sometimes wrote in an abbreviated Latin shorthand called "Tironian" whose characters resemble those on the "gold plates" from which The Book of Mormon was translated. They had a round wooden temple in Ephrata, and practiced baptism for the dead. They were very devout and spiritual men (like the Essenes in Jesus' day), and made prophecies and had visions. They believed that the souls of prophets and apostles (Peter, James, John, and John the Baptist) "returned" in their founders and leaders. They believed that they were preparing the way for the Kingdom of God on earth and the City of New Jerusalem which they believed would be built on the American continent. Perhaps this is all mere coincidence, or perhaps not!
If the book is not a history but a divine prophetic parable (an inspired story that predicts the future), the Nephites (nee-fights) would be a symbol of the white race in America, and the Lamanites (lay-man-nights) were be a symbol of the colored races of America. The Book of Mormon says that the Nephites were "utterly destroyed" by the Lamanites 400 years after Jesus visited them; because of their "pride" and "whoredoms" and materialism (love of wealth and worship of money). Perhaps the book is a prophetic parable about the future of the white race of America or perhaps the future of the Mormons in America?
'Abdu'l-Baha visited the Mormons in Utah in 1912. If you take 1912 plus 400 years it comes to 2312 A.D. At the beginning of the 24th century, the white race in America will be a small minority; like the Nephites in The Book of Mormon. Will the white minority by then become prideful and arrogant and lovers of wealth like the Nephites in The Book of Mormon? Will their fate be the same as the Nephites? Only time will tell. Perhaps The Book of Mormon is not a history of Jews in ancient America. Perhaps it is a prophetic warning to white race of the Americas who shall become utterly extinct, like the Nephites, because while they outwardly worshipped God, and called themselves "Saints", inwardly, in their own hearts, they spent their lives not in the service of their fellow human beings, but in the selfish and worldly pursuit of MORe MONey (Mammon/material wealth).
By the year 2312, the white race in America will become a small minority; like the Nephites (nee-fights) in The Book of Mormon. Is the book the history of a colony of Jews in Ancient America? Or...is the book a inspired prophetic parable about the final destruction of the white race in America "if" they do not "repent" and "come unto Christ". And "Jesus Christ" (the Father and the Son) have come again in "clouds". Christ (Holy Ghost) incarnated as a Persian Prince in 1817, a descendant of King David of Israel and King Cyrus of Persia. Jesus (the WORD) came as His Eldest Son, born in 1844. He cometh with "clouds" (new bodies/new names).
East Door of the Salt Lake Temple. "Zion" means "stone monument". The Salt Lake Temple, a granite monument which Mormons used to refer to as "The Zion of God" in 1912, faces East; the direction from which they believe Jesus will "suddenly" (unexpectantly) come to His Temple and knock on the East Door.
Shoghi Effendi did believe that Joseph Smith was a "Seer" with a high standard of Revelation. But, he said the Baha'is have a "higher standard"; because while Joseph Smith was a Seer, Bahá'u'lláh was the Holy Ghost, the One Who inspired the Prophets and Seers.
Summary (10 of 12)