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'''Mormonism''' is a [[heresy|heretical]] religious movement founded in the early 19th century by [[Joseph Smith, Jr.]] It is self-described as a form of [[
''Christian Restorationism'' ]], and it includes many religious sects and organizations. The largest of these churches today is [[ ''The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints'' (LDS) ]], with its headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Mormonism as a whole encompasses a mélange of many different religious beliefs, the majority of which are contrary to Church teaching. Joseph Smith obtained inspiration from various religious movements of the time. [[Campbellism|Campbellite]], [[Restorationism|Restorationist]], and [[Universalism|Universalist]] beliefs are prevalent in many aspects of Mormon theology; however, the foundation of Mormon belief is the acceptance of modern prophecy. Smith and early Mormon leaders taught that any person with a testimony of Christ is a [[prophet]]. Most modern members of the LDS believe that the current president of the Mormon Church is a living prophet. Another pillar of Mormon belief is their concept of self-deification. Adhering to some extent to the Trinitarian doctrines stated in the [[First Ecumenical Council|First]] and [[Second Ecumenical Council|Second]] [[Ecumenical Council|Ecumenical Councils]], Mormons believe that [[God]] the Father was originally a human being. However, they believe that He also maintains a corporeal form and resides near a planet orbiting a star called "Kolob" (''Doctrines and Covenants'', Abraham III). As stated in ''The Mormon Encyclopedia'':
:"There is no ultimate disparity between the divine and human natures; Joseph Smith asserted that mankind is of the same species as God, having been made in God's image (theomorphism) and being eternal, with unlimited capacity." One early LDS leader proclaimed, "As man now is, God once was. As God now is, man may be" (Lorenzo Snow). Latter-day Saints speak of man as a God in embryo" (under section [[
Deification, then, in Mormon terminology, is a system of progression by which man becomes a god. For a casual observer, this "self-deification" may seem similar to the Church's teaching of [[theosis]], but this is not so. First, there is a definite distinction in the Church between God and mankind. Second, theosis is a unification between God and mankind, not the creation of an entirely separate deity.