I can't believe I went back on that site. In my defence, I was sitting in the hospital for hours while my grandchild was being born. But I simply could not believe the level of historical research that went into this lovely article.
http://www.ldsanswers.org/was-joseph-sm ... he-occult/
The article's contention? There was no way that Joseph could have been involved with magic as contended by Quinn, Bushman et al, BECAUSE THE BIBLE SAYS MAGIC AND WITCHCRAFT IS OF THE DEVIL. So as a prophet, he just wouldn't be involved in such things. And their supporting material? Because President Hinckley said so: "Similarly, the fact that there were superstitions among the people in the days of Joseph Smith is no evidence whatever that the Church came of such superstition." Ok then. Question answered! And then, if you STILL have questions, you doubter you, here's what you need to do to solve your dilemma, instead of reading nasty books like Rough Stone Rolling:
"When you encounter material claiming Joseph Smith, or his family, dabbled in magical practices, the answers can generally be found in the following two categories. Dishonest, questionable or even nonexistent sources – It is often the case that claims made by progressive historians, anti-Mormon literature and other material are not based in credible, primary sources. Do your own research, and investigate their claims!" Because of course, as a trained historian, Bushman just made this crap up and he can't possibly be right, never used primary sources, never went into the archives to do research, he just pulled it out of his butt. Meanwhile, the only "primary" sources they quote are the Bible and GBH? Are you kidding me? Unfreakingbelievable. This website is like crack, I just can't stop. Dang you to heck, RubinHighlander!
This, along with the thread on "do we believe in magic now?" started by Hagoth, is just gold, Jerry, gold!