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JarMan

More Galileo in the Book of Mormon

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In a recent thread we talked about Galilean ideas in the Book of Mormon but concentrated mostly on Helaman 12 and whether a heliocentric model of the cosmos was being described. Today in gospel doctrine we talked about Noah's ark and comparisons were brought up with the Jaredite barges. I have previously noted a Galilean principle applied to the design of the barges, but this discussion brought a second Galilean principle to my attention that I hadn't considered before. This is the idea that the hole in the bottom of the barge was used as a moon pool.

Let me take a step back and explain one of Galileo's publications that was the result of a scientific debate and was very popular when it was originally published in 1612. It's called "Discourse on Bodies in Water" and it's purpose was to refute the Aristotelian doctrine explaining why things float. Galileo drew heavily on Archimedes' principles from the third century BC as well as his own careful experiments. The prevailing opinion was that objects floated when the resistance of the fluid to being divided exceeded the force applied by the object to the fluid. The idea was that the shape of an object determined whether it would sink or float; a flatter object would tend to float since the fluid applied greater resistance the larger the surface area in contact. Galileo correctly argued that an object floats if its density is less than the density of water, but sinks if its density is greater than water, and that the shape of the object had nothing to do with whether or not it would float.

One of Galileo's main arguments is that a floating body, if forcibly pulled to the bottom, will rise again to the top. If the resistance of the fluid prevents the body from sinking, then it should also prevent the body from rising. Since the body rises anyway, the resistance theory cannot be correct. Galileo made a point of considering the combined density of both the object and any entrained or encapsulated air. Thus a vessel whose materials are denser than water will float as long as some amount of water is displaced by air (as in the hull of a ship), making the combined density of the vessel and the air less dense than the water. Thus a ship which takes on water will sink to the bottom once a sufficient amount of air is displaced from the hull such that the combined density of the ship materials and any remaining air is more dense than the water.

The Jaredites took advantage of this principle by designing their entire barges water tight, not just the lower portions normally in contact with water. Thus when they were "buried in the deep" the Lord "did bring them forth again upon the top of the waters." Aristotelian physicists would never have designed a barge to be temporarily submerged in the water since, in their minds, this would have sunk the boat. But objects coming up to the surface, once being buried in the water is one of the fundamental experiments providing evidence in support of Galileo's argument.

The second principle which I hinted to at the beginning is the idea that the lower hole was used as a moon pool, either to dispose of waste or to fish from. This was a theory that several class members were aware of but which I don't remember ever hearing. Their explanation was that as long as the the top hole was sealed the bottom hole could be opened without water coming in. Now there are some practical design considerations in incorporating this principle which could make this idea work at certain shallow depths assuming fairly calm seas. But my purpose is not to show how this could work, but to show how the principle may have been understood in the 17th Century based on Galileo's book. In two different places Galileo explains an experiment in which he submerges a dish in water upside down. This is rendered into English from the Italian as a "glass reversed with the mouth downwards" and later as "a cup or such like vessel under water, whilst it is full of air". He goes on to explain that the air stays in the vessel as can be observed when using a transparent glass. So it makes a lot of sense that the Jaredite barges were described as being "tight like unto a dish" if there was an awareness of Galileo's experiments. And this potential Galileo connection helps to explain the head-scratching conundrum of why a hole would be placed in the bottom of the barges.

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30 minutes ago, JarMan said:

................................................................ So it makes a lot of sense that the Jaredite barges were described as being "tight like unto a dish" if there was an awareness of Galileo's experiments. And this potential Galileo connection helps to explain the head-scratching conundrum of why a hole would be placed in the bottom of the barges.

Yes, and it also correlates with the sea-chest principle, as drawn by my colleague, Dr. Gordon C. Thomasson:

JAREDITE BARGE GCT.pdf 

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58 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Yes, and it also correlates with the sea-chest principle, as drawn by my colleague, Dr. Gordon C. Thomasson:

JAREDITE BARGE GCT.pdf 

The Book of Mormon only mentions opening a hole (singular). It never mentions opening both at the same time. That's not to say it's not possible, but it doesn't seem like the intent was to use both simultaneously. There are some practical problems with this design, as well. First, I doubt that air circulation could be accomplished as intended. What would probably end up happening is movement in and out of the tube but none from the cabin to the tube or from the tube to the cabin. The reason is that the movement of air in the tube produces a negative pressure relative to the air in the cabin that would be equal at both holes. There would be no way for the air to escape since  a negative pressure in the cabin would prevent it. There are a couple of ways to solve this. One would be to make the tube into a venturi pipe such that its diameter was restricted as it passed one of the holes. This would cause a larger negative pressure at that hole than at the other hole so that air would come out of the cabin near the restricted hole but go into the cabin near the unrestricted hole. The problem with this, though, is that you would tend to recirculate the same air from one hole to the next. A better design would be to have a single hole leading to the tube and then a second hole (or multiple holes) in the roof of the cabin. I would also put a restriction in the tube near the hole to create maximum velocity of the moving air and, therefore, a negative pressure large enough to do some real circulation. But now we are describing a design that doesn't seem to be supported by the text.  

The main problem I have with this model, though, is that the engineering principles are way beyond what could have been known by the Jaredites. In fact they are more than a hundred years more advanced than Galileo's time. I realize we could make the argument that the Lord told them how to make the boats and they blindly followed, not understanding what they were doing. But it seems more likely to me that the design was based on 17th Century science since every part of the description of the boats' design and operation would have been known scientifically at that time.

Edited by JarMan
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1 hour ago, JarMan said:

........................... But it seems more likely to me that the design was based on 17th Century science since every part of the description of the boats' design and operation would have been known scientifically at that time.

I have advised Dr. Thomasson of your objections, and will let you know if he responds.

I am looking forward to your full-scale presentation on a 16th or 17th century Book of Mormon.

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Just curious. In your hypothetical European prophet/translator scenario, did the events in the Book of Mormon actually take place in the Americas? 

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9 hours ago, JarMan said:

The Book of Mormon only mentions opening a hole (singular). It never mentions opening both at the same time. That's not to say it's not possible, but it doesn't seem like the intent was to use both simultaneously. There are some practical problems with this design, as well. First, I doubt that air circulation could be accomplished as intended. What would probably end up happening is movement in and out of the tube but none from the cabin to the tube or from the tube to the cabin. The reason is that the movement of air in the tube produces a negative pressure relative to the air in the cabin that would be equal at both holes. There would be no way for the air to escape since  a negative pressure in the cabin would prevent it. There are a couple of ways to solve this. One would be to make the tube into a venturi pipe such that its diameter was restricted as it passed one of the holes. This would cause a larger negative pressure at that hole than at the other hole so that air would come out of the cabin near the restricted hole but go into the cabin near the unrestricted hole. The problem with this, though, is that you would tend to recirculate the same air from one hole to the next. A better design would be to have a single hole leading to the tube and then a second hole (or multiple holes) in the roof of the cabin. I would also put a restriction in the tube near the hole to create maximum velocity of the moving air and, therefore, a negative pressure large enough to do some real circulation. But now we are describing a design that doesn't seem to be supported by the text.  

The main problem I have with this model, though, is that the engineering principles are way beyond what could have been known by the Jaredites. In fact they are more than a hundred years more advanced than Galileo's time. I realize we could make the argument that the Lord told them how to make the boats and they blindly followed, not understanding what they were doing. But it seems more likely to me that the design was based on 17th Century science since every part of the description of the boats' design and operation would have been known scientifically at that time.

Here you go again not allowing the Book of Mormon provide its own answers, Why do you insist that the Jaredites couldn’t have known about certain engineering principles, as if the then current state of scientific advancement was the only source technical knowledge available to them, when the record’s narrative plainly testifies that the Jaredites were able to bypass secular sources of scientific knowledge because the unique design of the barges was revealed by direct revelation from God? 

Aside from its primary importance as another sacred witness that Jesus is the Christ, the Book of Mormon’s constant recurrent theme is its laser focus on the absolute necessity of men receiving continual divine revelation or, in its absence, being left in the dark. How can one who believes the Book of Mormon is a true sacred history of a real ancient people insist that the record cannot be accepted at its own word and on its own terms? 

16 And the Lord said: Go to work and build, after the manner of barges which ye have hitherto built. And it came to pass that the brother of Jared did go to work, and also his brethren, and built barges after the manner which they had built, according to the instructions of the Lord. And they were small, and they were light upon the water, even like unto the lightness of a fowl upon the water.

17 And they were built after a manner that they were exceedingly tight, even that they would hold water like unto a dish; and the bottom thereof was tight like unto a dish; and the sides thereof were tight like unto a dish; and the ends thereof were peaked; and the top thereof was tight like unto a dish; and the length thereof was the length of a tree; and the door thereof, when it was shut, was tight like unto a dish.

18 And it came to pass that the brother of Jared cried unto the Lord, saying: O Lord, I have performed the work which thou hast commanded me, and I have made the barges according as thou hast directed me. (Ether 2)

I must admit I just don’t get what it is you’re trying to accomplish. 

 

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I'm really skeptical of the model Thomasson provides for various reasons. I discussed my own view at T&S. Although over all I find the description ambiguous. Further it's Moroni writing centuries later and with no apparent understanding of sea faring. So one would expect things to get somewhat distorted. My view is that the Jaredite vessels most likely were a variant of a canoe - although we can't know for sure.

Nibley suggests a Ugarit parallel for the ventilator: nappashu ventilator. It's possible although it's hard what to make of that. My guess is it relates to how polynesians would swamp their vessels to deal with storms and then use flotation items (often coconuts) to help bail out the canoes. How isn't clear to me. It's one of those places where there's lots of speculation and not a lot of evidence to narrow things down.

Edited by clarkgoble
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2 hours ago, Bobbieaware said:

Here you go again not allowing the Book of Mormon provide its own answers, Why do you insist that the Jaredites couldn’t have known about certain engineering principles, as if the then current state of scientific advancement was the only source technical knowledge available to them, when the record’s narrative plainly testifies that the Jaredites were able to bypass secular sources of scientific knowledge because the unique design of the barges was revealed by direct revelation from God? 

Aside from its primary importance as another sacred witness that Jesus is the Christ, the Book of Mormon’s constant recurrent theme is its laser focus on the absolute necessity of men receiving continual divine revelation or, in its absence, being left in the dark. How can one who believes the Book of Mormon is a true sacred history of a real ancient people insist that the record cannot be accepted at its own word and on its own terms? 

16 And the Lord said: Go to work and build, after the manner of barges which ye have hitherto built. And it came to pass that the brother of Jared did go to work, and also his brethren, and built barges after the manner which they had built, according to the instructions of the Lord. And they were small, and they were light upon the water, even like unto the lightness of a fowl upon the water.

17 And they were built after a manner that they were exceedingly tight, even that they would hold water like unto a dish; and the bottom thereof was tight like unto a dish; and the sides thereof were tight like unto a dish; and the ends thereof were peaked; and the top thereof was tight like unto a dish; and the length thereof was the length of a tree; and the door thereof, when it was shut, was tight like unto a dish.

18 And it came to pass that the brother of Jared cried unto the Lord, saying: O Lord, I have performed the work which thou hast commanded me, and I have made the barges according as thou hast directed me. (Ether 2)

I must admit I just don’t get what it is you’re trying to accomplish. 

 

Ironically you are making the same argument against me that Galileo's opponents made against him. The argument is essentially that observation and reasoning cannot possibly contradict your (or, in his case, his opponents') personal understanding of the scriptures. Galileo countered this argument in several ways. For one, he showed that there are multiple ways to view scripture. He didn't grant his opponents or the church the exclusive right to interpret scripture and then impose that interpretation on him. Such an argument is nothing more than an appeal to authority. He also showed that scripture could be alternately interpreted in a way that fit his theories. And even though the alternate interpretation was not the orthodox interpretation, it fit the real world much better. That's where we are with the Book of Mormon. The orthodox model simply does not fit the real world.

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1 hour ago, JarMan said:

Ironically you are making the same argument against me that Galileo's opponents made against him. The argument is essentially that observation and reasoning cannot possibly contradict your (or, in his case, his opponents') personal understanding of the scriptures. Galileo countered this argument in several ways. For one, he showed that there are multiple ways to view scripture. He didn't grant his opponents or the church the exclusive right to interpret scripture and then impose that interpretation on him. Such an argument is nothing more than an appeal to authority. He also showed that scripture could be alternately interpreted in a way that fit his theories. And even though the alternate interpretation was not the orthodox interpretation, it fit the real world much better. That's where we are with the Book of Mormon. The orthodox model simply does not fit the real world.

And your view of the Book of Mormon does not fit in with the Church. But that’s nothing new because the things of God have always been considered laughably false foolishness to the natural man who relies on the arm of flesh.

I’m wondering why someone who thinks as you do believes anything at all about the Book of Mormon (if you still in fact do believe anything at all about it) if so much of it is nothing but pack of whopping, bald-faced lies. Talk about building one’s spiritual life on a foundation of shifting sand!

Modern science says its an impossiblity that the rotting corpse of one Jesus of Nazareth could have been raised from the dead into a state of glorious immortality and eternal life. Is this most foundational and critically important of all Christian doctrines also another lie that doesn’t “fit with the real world”? If you do believe the bodily resurrection of Christ is just another lie, what’s the point in wanting to be identified as a Latter-day Saint? 

Edited by Bobbieaware

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12 minutes ago, Bobbieaware said:

And your view of the Book of Mormon does not fit in with the Church. But that’s nothing new because the things of God have always been considered laughably false foolishness to the natural man who relies on the arm of flesh.

I’m wondering why someone who thinks as you do believes anything at all about the Book of Mormon (if you still in fact do believe anything at all about it) if so much of it is nothing but pack of whopping, bald-faced lies. Talk about building one’s spiritual life on a foundation of shifting sand!

Modern science says its an impossiblity that the rotting corpse of one Jesus of Nazareth could have been raised from the dead into a state of glorious immortality and eternal life. Is this most foundational and critically important of all Christian doctrines also another lie that doesn’t “fit with the real world”? If you do believe the bodily resurrection of Christ is just another lie, what’s the point in wanting to be identified as a Latter-day Saint? 

This board is not a place for bearing testimony or for ridiculing somebody else's testimony. I don't like reporting people to the mods but your constant haranguing makes the prospect very tempting.

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17 hours ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Yes, and it also correlates with the sea-chest principle, as drawn by my colleague, Dr. Gordon C. Thomasson:

JAREDITE BARGE GCT.pdf 

This is the design "improvement" I was talking about.

Presentation1.jpg.5b1edcff30836e8d2b95184c41e31fff.jpg

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2 hours ago, JarMan said:

This board is not a place for bearing testimony or for ridiculing somebody else's testimony. I don't like reporting people to the mods but your constant haranguing makes the prospect very tempting.

Did you not first ridicule my testimony of the ‘orthodox model’ of the Book of Mormon, and by implication the testimonies of all the others  who believe in the historicity of the Book of Mormon, when you said that such testimonies don’t fit in with the “REAL WORLD,” as if those who believe in the historicity of the Book of Mormon and the spiritual realm are deluded fools?. My post was simply offered as the logical antedote to your rather arrogant and dismissive testimony that the Book of Mormon is fake because an uninspired world that knows not the ways of the Spirit says it is. Fair is fair. 

Edited by Bobbieaware

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7 hours ago, Bobbieaware said:

Here you go again not allowing the Book of Mormon provide its own answers, ...........................................

I must admit I just don’t get what it is you’re trying to accomplish. 

JarMan is simply trying to account for the BofM in terms of scientific and technical knowledge available in or about the 17th century.  He is doing that because the BofM translation uses Early Modern English, and so may have originated in the 17th century.  It cannot have originated in the 19th century (where the anti-Mormons ordinarily put it).  To my mind it is an interesting thought-experiment, Bobbie, and it may even clarify difficult parts of the text.  It may also be a blind alley.  However, this is a dialogue and discussion board, and we shouldn't get upset if someone starts a thread suggesting approaches of which we do not approve.

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47 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

JarMan is simply trying to account for the BofM in terms of scientific and technical knowledge available in or about the 17th century.  He is doing that because the BofM translation uses Early Modern English, and so may have originated in the 17th century.  It cannot have originated in the 19th century (where the anti-Mormons ordinarily put it).  To my mind it is an interesting thought-experiment, Bobbie, and it may even clarify difficult parts of the text.  It may also be a blind alley.  However, this is a dialogue and discussion board, and we shouldn't get upset if someone starts a thread suggesting approaches of which we do not approve.

Thank you, Robert. My perplexity came to an end when, just a short while ago, it finally came to my attention that JarMan is another in an apparently growing number of Church members who believe the Book of Mormon is scripture in some sort of vague, metaphorical (😉), Aesop’s Fables sort of way, while simultaneously believing its text is heavily littered on virtually every page with brazen and preposterous lies.

Now that I’ve come to this realization, I will no longer be attempting to converse with JarMan because we don’t have enough in common to be able to have meaningful dialogue. That being said, I may attempt to converse with others who participate on his threads, but I’ll be very careful to leave any direct references to JarMan out of my comments so that he’ll be less likely to engage with me. Fare well, JarMan.

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On 2/12/2018 at 6:21 PM, Robert F. Smith said:

JarMan is simply trying to account for the BofM in terms of scientific and technical knowledge available in or about the 17th century.  He is doing that because the BofM translation uses Early Modern English, and so may have originated in the 17th century.  It cannot have originated in the 19th century (where the anti-Mormons ordinarily put it).  To my mind it is an interesting thought-experiment, Bobbie, and it may even clarify difficult parts of the text.  It may also be a blind alley.  However, this is a dialogue and discussion board, and we shouldn't get upset if someone starts a thread suggesting approaches of which we do not approve.

Yeah, that’s how I see Jar Man’s proposals. As bizzare as they are, they are intriguing and he uses sound logic. Many discoveries seem bizarre at first but very “ordinary” after they have been grounded into common thought. One side rhought I have is that Jar Man’s investigations msy never lead prople to conclude that the Book of Mormon was first translated into the 16th century and then Joseph Smith was revealed that translation, but, honestly, his questions and recpsearch may end up in other related conclusions. That’s one of the benefits to mankind when one goes forward with bizarre but logical hypothetical ideas. :)

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On 2/12/2018 at 5:19 PM, JarMan said:

This is the design "improvement" I was talking about.

Presentation1.jpg.5b1edcff30836e8d2b95184c41e31fff.jpg

I know you do not think the Jaredites used such advances tubing but in that design, wouldn’t water get into those top tube holes when the barge roles over to its side? 

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39 minutes ago, Darren10 said:

I know you do not think the Jaredites used such advances tubing but in that design, wouldn’t water get into those top tube holes when the barge roles over to its side? 

One could always stop up any holes in rough seas, and open them when calm.

Noah's Ark is described as very large and like a barge which is unlikely to roll over on its side:

arkmodel12.jpg

See also http://www.sevenbaskets.org/html/noah_s_ark.html .

Edited by Robert F. Smith
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53 minutes ago, Darren10 said:

I know you do not think the Jaredites used such advances tubing but in that design, wouldn’t water get into those top tube holes when the barge roles over to its side? 

I didn’t include a keel or an outrigger in the drawing. Or a sail or the oars or a nuclear power plant. I was just trying to improve the ventilation system.

Edited by JarMan
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57 minutes ago, JarMan said:

I didn’t include a keel or an outrigger in the drawing. Or a sail or the oars or a nuclear power plant. I was just trying to improve the ventilation system.

I like your design improvements.  Here is an additional improvement which you may want to consider:

 

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28 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

I like your design improvements.  Here is an additional improvement which you may want to consider:

 

This is great. I actually think there’s a good chance this is the intended design.

There is a limit, though, to how far the boat can submerge since the air inside the cabin is compressible and the water pressure (and therefore the air pressure) increases with depth. Galileo would not have known this, though, since the compressibility of fluids under pressure wasn’t really understood until about the 1660’s with Robert Boyle. Just to give you an idea, a submergence of 1 meter would compress the air to 91% of its original volume. 2m, 83%; 3 m, 77%; 4m, 71%; 5 m, 67%; 10 m, 50%. The loss of air volume has to replaced by water so a submergence of 1 meter would require an internal tube that was at least 9% (100-91) of the total volume of the cabin. That might be a feasible design. But if you were designing for a submergence of 5 meters, one-third of the entire cabin (plus a safety factor) would need to be tube. A submergence of 10 meters would require over half the cabin to be tube. I’d be fascinated to see a full scale model built. 

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