Last night I was at a dinner party where three of the five attendees were former Latter Day Saints, better known as the Mormons. I am a former Catholic. I am not sure about the fifth person's childhood faith. In any case we had a good time talking about the Mormon faith and Mitt Romney.
Two of the Mormons had been mainstream, Utah Mormons. One had been in the much smaller Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (RLDS). That is the one that did not follow Brigham Young to Utah, and instead stayed loyal to the family of the founder, Joseph Smith. And I just leaned something new (from Wikipedia) that the ex-member did not know: this sect changed their name in 2001 to the Community of Christ, and now allows women to be priests.
We had a discussion of where Mitt Romney and the mainstream Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints fits into the theological spectrum. The Mormons, according to their former members, do not believe Jesus is God in the sense that most believing Christians do. They believe Jesus is a sort of planetary god. They believe that if they (the men, anyway) have enough wives and children and are holy enough they will reincarnate on planets of their own, which they will rule over as (small g) gods.
This strange combination of science fiction and primitive Christianity makes a lot of sense if you understand the culture of the United States of America in the 1820s, when Joseph Smith pieced his cult together. Science had discovered that planets were not just mobile stars, but bodies like earth, big enough to live on, perhaps. The large number of stars indicated that there might be large numbers of planets beyond the solar system. The Bible did not mention this (or foresee steamboats and railroads and other development), so either the Bible was not written by a omniscient God or it was only a partial revelation. Times were changing, and religion clearly needed a major update. Joseph Smith was the most successful of the updaters of that era.
Which brings us round to Islam. There can be no doubt that Mohammed, the Prophet, was the Joseph Smith of his day (570 - 632 A.D.). He too was born a nobody. He became a trader and capitalist (just like Mitt) and in the course of business visited much of the Middle East. He came in contact with people of many different religions. Most importantly, in addition to meeting orthodox Christians, he met both gnostic Christians and the original Christians. The original Christians were still Jews and thought Jesus was a prophet, not a god. Their historical records told them that Jesus had died on the Cross, but had not been resurrected.
Eventually Mohammed founded a new religion. He did not pretend to be a god, and his followers have been very strict about that issue. His religion must have met a lot of people's needs because it became wildly popular far faster than any prior religion. It is still popular today.
Just like the Latter Day Saints, early on Islam split into two sects. One, the main Sunni branch, was started by the powerful elders, mostly military leaders, who had known Mohammed. The other, Shia, was formed by the direct bloodline descendants of Mohammed. They have been fighting ever since.
Mitt Romney does not want potential voters to know what Mormons really believe. He does not want them to know that despite its name, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints could be categorized as Islamic. Joseph Smith certainly knew some of what was then modern science. He also clearly was influenced by ancient Egyptian precepts and Islam. Many passages of Smith's writtings are paraphrased from the Koran. The polygamy thing is obvious: Mohammed practiced polygamy. The concept of Heaven in the Mormon Church is right out of the Koran, with some 19th century science updates.
Of course Joseph Smith gave no credit to the Koran, which would have been impolitic. He was a new Prophet and according to his theology, was headed to being a god on his own planet when he died on this earth.
Like most small starter religions, Smith's new Church advocated religious tolerance. "We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our conscience, and allow all men the same privilege." [Pearl of Great Price] Thus they advocated for a non-Christian America where their version of Islam could be part of the cultural mix.
Why then, since he belongs to a branch of Islam, is Mitt Romney currently siding with Israel so strongly?
Mitt Romney has always been skilled at the art of deception and willing to do whatever lying it takes to get what he wants. He went to Harvard Law School to brush up on that skill. What else would you expect from a man who grew up in France, who speaks French better than English, and yet want to be the first Latter Day Saint President of the United States of America?
Romney needs to win in Florida to be President and establish Joseph Smith's vision of a Mormon Kingdom on the American continent. "We believe in being subject to kings," [Pearl of Great Price].
Mitt Romney needs a few hundred thousand Jewish votes in Florida to become President. Those of you who support the human rights of Palestinians don't need to worry about Romney's pro-Israel, zionist rhetoric. Mormons know the True Zion is on the American continent. Their leadership is very pro-Islam, and has already made deals with the Saudis to gain total economic control of the globe and its women. The Jews and Christians just need to be fooled for a few more months.