I guess I haven't made my intent clear. I was not stating there was evidence. I can't find any. I admit that. It was not my attempt to declare doctrine or history. I was making a hypothesis
While it did take the comments (from unknown sources) to get me to think along those lines, it was this logic that made me believe it to be credible. It was even more credible since I've experienced something very similar in my own life.
I believe most of the other claims are fairly well established.
Calmoriah summarized the hypothesis quite well. Objections included there was not enough there to provide him with such translation ability. And this hypothesis depicts a fairly mundane method as opposed to the gift and power of God.
Here's my response:
It took me two months to learn Spanish in this manner. I did not have the benefit of the MTC (special circumstances). I was thrown into the language mid-mission. I only spent one hour each morning in such study. Much of the day, I didn't exactly have full immersion in the language (long story). Joseph (for the most part) spent most of the waking day in such translation. While this may be considered a mundane method, I know I was blessed in part with the gift of tongues in order to learn so quickly. I have even more reason to believe he received similar aid from Heaven.
How is the use of the seer stone "by the gift and power of God"? Several others were mentioned in church history of having the ability to use a seer stone. Such were not prophets or called by God to do so. So, this could also be considered fairly mundane.
The power of God was evident in that he was guided in the translation process to make (to borrow from Ben) the most appropriate translation. It was evident that not 100% of the words would have been learned in the earlier work (as Calmoriah suggested). I know I used words in Spanish that I never came across in my studies, and I don't remember hearing from anyone. But I thought of a word, and immediately the Spanish word (non-cognates included) came to my mind.
Let me emphasize again--
"it appears unreasonable
to me that a person with Joseph mnemonic capabilities was unable to learn the written language sufficiently after 116 pages to be able to translate quite a bit of it through mortal means alone, let alone with spiritual and intellectual light from Heaven.
Edited by Carborendum, 29 July 2012 - 05:54 PM.
The measure of a man's character is how he treats others when he has the freedom to treat them poorly.