The pseudonomyous Spengler’s objections to Mormonism are as follows:
1. Mormonism is CRAZY. CRAAAAZY. You believe that the Almighty cares for you enough to make you as He is? CRAAAAZY.
Spengler is on record elsewhere saying that the essence of Christianity is love. If we’re no more crazy than he is charitable, I think we’ll be all right.
Spengler didn’t make any effort to look at the Mormon response on any of these or to look at the positive Mormon case. He didn’t even make an effort to be accurate (he says Smith lost 16 pages and stopped translating “the golden tablets”). The only interesting thing about his talking points was that I discovered that Catholics now have their very own anti-Mormon friar. Give the Prods some competition, padre.
3. Joseph Smith “translated” the Book of Mormon by looking at “seerstones” inside a “hat.” Dude.
Christ “healed” a man of blindness by “spitting” in dirt and rubbing mud on his eyes. Dude. Incarnation isn’t something Mormons distinctly teach but sometimes I think we’re the only ones who believe in it. Most of the Christian world seems to have this idea that anything commonplace or prosaic cannot be spiritual. Rock aren’t spiritual enough, and even if they were, a man who was wanting to concentrate on revelation wouldn’t use a hat to block outside distractions because that’s just not aesthetic.
4. Mormons are pagans.
This needs some explanation. This isn’t the normal dumb argument that Mormons are polytheists because we do not believe in just three gods. This is a dumb argument much more complicated than that.
Relying, he says, on a thinker named Rosenzweig, in his various web articles Spengler argues that all mankind is naturally disposed to seek immortality in the immortality of their ethnos, polis, tribe, etc. This, he says, is the essence of paganism. Since the tribe is not actually immortal, real paganism tends to be fatalistic, gloomy, and angry. But with the Jews God acted to create a genuinely immortal people. And then, in Christ, God extended immortality to all, on the condition that they be willing to accept personal immortality alone and abandon their hope for the immortality of their people. Which is all very interesting provided its not pushed too hard.
But what does this have to do with Mormons, you ask? An excellent question. I’m not exactly sure. Spengler tends to assume that any faith he dislikes must be pagan. He repeatedly has claimed that Islam is pagan according to his definition, for instance, and his grounds for doing so are extremely unclear. I’m pretty sure that’s all he’s doing here. As far as his actual arguments go, they appear to be that Mormons are judaizers, believing in the house of Israel and so on. Since he doesn’t think the Jews are pagans, how this makes Mormons pagan is unclear. Mormons are also pagan because, abandoning his own definitions, we worship the Book of Mormon instead of God and because we claim that God has the power and the love to make us as He is, which obviously means that we worship ourselves. It’s mostly rot.
The sociality that exists among us, purified and redeemed, will exist in heaven. This claim isn’t opposition to Christ’s work. It is Christ’s work. His work of love is perfected in binding us to our ancestors, our descendants, and to each other.
Mormonism needs better enemies if its immortality is to be tested.