A few thoughts on the Book of Mormon lands.

I have debating tonight on whether to expand on the comments made by me and a visitor on my last posting on the Book of Mormon lands. I don’t mind a good discussion but I don’t want to end up in a long drawn out debate that will lead to no where. I believe I have addressed my viewpoints well enough through my postings and comments but I will re-emphasize them now.

I don’t believe that most of the events that took place in the Book of Mormon could have happened in one small geographical area as suggested by several theories. Knowing what I know about mankind’s history I find it very unlikely that two very large societies, the people of Zarahemla and  the people of the land of Nephi, could exist within a few hundred miles of each other for close to 400 years without knowing the existence of each other. Societies will grow and expand until they reach a large enough barrier to stop its growth for a time, whatever the barriar may be. And even this barrier will somehow be broken through. Nearly every culture or society in the world’s history follows the same pattern. People will migrate to new places searching for a place with enough resources and security to support their families. People will always leave their homes during times of great difficulties whether it be a war, oppression, natural disaster, famine, etc. Some of course will stay to deal with whatever the situation is and the survivors are the ones that will rebuild their cities and towns. During times of peace in a society rulers will generally send explorers out to search out new lands to expand their kingdoms or to search for resources to use in their kingdoms. In the case of the Book of Mormon it is recorded in Omni that there were many wars and contentions with the Lamanites and many years of peace. I find it hard to believe that during all this time that there would be no contact between the two nations. Otherwise why would Mosiah discover the land of Zarahemla? Someone during the nearly 400 years would have brought back news of a large society up north. This would have been common knowledge by Mosiah’s time. There had to be a significant distance or barrier between the two lands for the two societies not to have any contact with each other during all of this time. This is where I stand concerning this model. I know it is not perfect and maybe I have made too many assumptions but this is based on my general knowledge of world history and societies.

To be continued….

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3 thoughts on “A few thoughts on the Book of Mormon lands.

  1. BOMC

    The model in your head allows you to interject ideas not supported by the text.

    First of all, it was closer to 300 years not 400. The fact you rounded UP rather than DOWN is proof your model, that’s in hear mind is filtering what you read.

    Secondly, we don’t know how long they were in the Land of Zarahemla verses the Land Northward where they first arrived and found Coriantumr.

    Third, what population numbers are you imagining Nephi had, and Zarahemla had???? Note, when the two merged, the set up churches and it says there were ONLY seven churches, and their numbers were HALF that of the Lamanites.

    Fourth, you assume all people will expand as far as they can, but truth in fact, if your needs are being met (which they were) people don’t wander off. Point in fact, the Pilgrims stayed put for nearly a hundred years.

    Fifth, if their are indigenous peoples around you (which there were in Nephi and Zarahemla), it’s not likely you would venture into THEIR lands.

    Sixth, there is land and resources sufficient enough to support a population in the millions in Western New York. Consider Indonesia, that sustains a population of 240 MILLION!

    In all, like I said, begin with what is know, viz. Cumorah, the land, seas and prophecies around it. God appreciates the interest.

    Reply
  2. uft36 Post author

    I don’t know what to say. I must be reading a different version of the Book of Mormon than you. First of all, it is closer to 470 years between Lehi’s landing and when Mosiah discovered the people of Zarahemla. I am using the dates that are printed on the bottom of each page of the official version. 600-130=470 If this is not correct then you can use the dates given in the text. I cannot find any reference to Mulek being in the land Northward other than that the Jaredites are generally found in the lands north of Zarahemla in the land of Desolation. Coriantumr lived many years after the war. He could have wandered anywhere in the country. I am not imagining any numbers. The text in Omni said that the people of Zarahemla became exceedingly numerous to the point where they had wars and contentions within their borders. You have to have sufficient numbers of people and large enough lands to have armies and wars. Otherwise, the nation will destroy itself. From my understanding Mosiah left the the land of Nephi and discovered the land of Zarahemla where he became the king and was able to convert a whole nation to the teachings of God. Maybe I missed the reference. Where does it say that the two nations merged? Yes, the Pilgrims stayed in the same general area but they were also supported by the local tribes and eventually they were able to move into new areas. And yes, people will wander off to search for new lands. This is how America and other parts of the world were discovered by explorers. There are too many accounts of native peoples leaving their homelands and moving into their neighbors lands because of wars, famine, natural disasters, etc. A recent case. Haiti. Some families were leaving their native homeland and going into Dominican Republic. Another example. The Russian Revolution in the 1800’s. Russians were leaving their homeland by the thousands to all parts of the world. I don’t agree that there would be enough resources to support millions in western New York alone. Early settlers in western New York had a extremely hard time establishing their farms. The winters were very harsh and the ground very difficult to work with. Some were successful only after many years of hard work. Maybe the land was very different 2000 years ago. The Native Americans in New England were primarily hunters and gathers for hundreds of years. Only in the Central US is where you will find farms large enough to support the populations. Indonesia is a poor example. It is a collection of different islands and they have a lot of resources that they could use to trade with other nations to obtain what they need. It is not a totally self-sufficient society. Very few societies have enough resources and land to support itself. As far as the land of Zarahemla is concerned from my understanding it was completely destroyed and changed. You cannot bury cities and lift valleys without dramatically changing the landscape. This would also mean rivers would change directions and lakes would dry up. The landscape is very different today than it was 2000 years ago. And how would you explain the destruction of Zarahemla? There were very serious natural forces at work to do this much damage. Anyway, I hope I didn’t use my imagination too much in my explanations.

    Reply
  3. BOMC

    Your an example of how deadly presentism can affect a person. With each example I’ve given, you merely imply your interpretation is better, ignoring the vulnerability of the approach.

    Until you can show an Internal Geographic Map, all this filtering by your world knowledge is useless.

    To begin with, you must identify FOUR bodies of water surrounding one piece of land, with another piece of land surrounded by three.

    Second, you must place the Hill Cumorah in Palmyra in the area. You must show that as the final battle ground.

    Third, you need to identify what land prophecies were so far.

    Four, you must tell how and where the New Jerusalem was fulfilled.

    Reply

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