Mormonism is known for its strange teachings. One of the strangest beliefs of the early leaders of Mormonism was that both the sun and the moon were inhabited! The belief that the moon and planets of our solar system were inhabited was common in the nineteenth century due to hoaxes and ignorant speculation. For example, Ellen G. White, the founder of Seventh-day Adventism, claimed that there were people living on Jupiter. Brigham Young, the successor to Joseph Smith, said in one of his discourses that people lived on the sun:
“Who can tell us of the inhabitants of this little planet that shines of an evening, called the moon? When we view its face we may see what is termed ‘the man in the moon,’ and what some philosophers declare are the shadows of mountains. But these sayings are very vague, and amount to nothing; and when you inquire about the inhabitants of that sphere you find that the most learned are as ignorant in regard to them as the most ignorant of their fellows. So it is with regard to the inhabitants of the sun. Do you think it is inhabited? I rather think it is. Do you think there is any life there? No question of it; it was not made in vain” (Journal of Discourses, vol. 13, p. 271).
Young appears to have been following the lead of Joseph Smith who is reported to have taught that the moon was inhabited:
“The inhabitants of the moon are more of a uniform size than the inhabitants of the earth, being six feet in height. They dress very much like the Quaker style and are quite general in style or fashion of dress. They live to be very old; coming generally near a thousand years. This is the description of them as given by Joseph [Smith] the Seer, and he could see whatever he asked the Father in the name of Jesus to see” (Journal of Oliver B. Huntington, vol. 2, p. 166).
If you can’t trust Joseph Smith and Brigham Young when it comes to whether there are people living on the sun and moon, why should you trust them when it comes to salvation?