Jump to content

Volcanism in the Book of Mormon


Olavarria

Recommended Posts

This video is Pliny the Younger's account of the destruction of Pompeii.The following is an audio link to 3 Nephi, Chapter 8. It concerns the destructions that occured in the Americas, at the time of The Savior's death. Is the Book of Mormon describing volcanic destruction?

The description of the cataclysmic destruction in 3 Nephi corresponds to the kind of destruction caused by volcanic activity. This destruction was given to the Nephites as a sign that Christ had died. However, we also have record of several volcanic eruptions and social displacements, around the time of Christ. This converges with the destruction in the Book of Mormon at around 34AD.

"On the frounds of the associated ceramics and figurines quantities of which are found beneath the Pedregal, Cuicuilco is clearly Late preclassic, as confirmed by radiocarbon dates. The doom of Cuicuilco was set some time around AD100, an end which must have been spectacular. The young Xictli first sent out dust and ashes that fell in quantity on the site, then great eruptions themselves began, molten lava pouring out over the southwestern margin of the Valley."

"In lieu of extensive excavations underneath the lava, it is difficult to be precise about the size and function of a regional center like Cuicuilco. On the basis of his unrivaled knowledge of the Valley of Mexico, however, William Sanders ascribes to it a population of 20,000, the chief center of a total Valley population of perhaps 140,000 souls"(1).

"Thanks to another volcanic event, we have a spectacularly preserved late Preclassic village at Tetimpa, Puebla, on the northeastern bank of the Popocatepetl volcano. Unlike Cuicuilco, which was buried under a lava flow, Tetimpa was encased in ash falls, preserving much of what the villagers left in haste as Popocatepetl erupted in AD 100"(1).

So while we may never be able to pinpoint "X volcano destroying Y Nephite city", we can say that during the 1st century AD, Mexico experienced a series of volcanic eruptions and social displacements.

Sources

(1) Michael Coe and Rex Koontz, Mexico:From the Olmec to the Aztecs. pg 54-55.

Link to comment

Are there any volcanoes within the suspected areas wherein the BoM took place that erupted at or close to 34 AD? 100 AD does not cut it. Secondly, any volcanic eruption that produces ash or fumes thick enough to quench or prevent fire from combusting would also extinguish human life. Finally, why is ash not mentioned in the accounts? I am finding it hard to buy that volcanic activity is recorded in the BoM.

Link to comment

Are there any volcanoes within the suspected areas wherein the BoM took place that erupted at or close to 34 AD? 100 AD does not cut it. Secondly, any volcanic eruption that produces ash or fumes thick enough to quench or prevent fire from combusting would also extinguish human life. Finally, why is ash not mentioned in the accounts? I am finding it hard to buy that volcanic activity is recorded in the BoM.

Yes.

http://byustudies.byu.edu/showTitle.aspx?title=6500

That essay is most detailed and comprehensive approach to the 3 Nephi 8-10 events from a geologist's perspective. A follow, adding evidence from ice cores is here:

http://maxwellinstitute.byu.edu/publications/jbms/?vol=12&num=1&id=309

Kevin Christensen

Bethel Park, PA

Link to comment

Pedro- Since I live on an island that is considered one of the most user friendly study of volcano's. I will offer this insight. You do not necessarily need even a thunderous explosion or massive earthquake to blacken out the sky. For that matter many volcano's. You do need a lava flow and proximity to water and the amount of volume entering the ocean. Also even water is not needed but the amount of gasses released form calderas.

Such as our beloved Kilauea Volcano. Due to the ongoing eruption that occurred starting in 1983 and continues today with lava flowing into the ocean from a side vent Pu'u O'o it is most certainly possible for the sun to be almost blacked out. In fact through out Hawaiian accounts predating vulcanolgists exploring. It is known to darken the skies accompanied by Eq's and thus promoting Pele's wrath as a sign. Throw in a few tsunamis in there as well. When lava enters the water below it causes a large steam cloud of Sulfuric Dioxide to rise. There are times when the wind conditions to what we call "Kona" winds come from the sout east instead of "Trades" cause the dispersal not out to see but over the entire island chains. Now the Big Island in particular gets the brunt, and during Kona wind times visibility can be such that you can look direct at the sun with the naked eye, and barely see it. It is light enough out to go around, but it chokes you causes massive asthmatic attacks to the population, ruins crops with acid. It is so thick sometimes that in broad noon you must turn on the headlights on cars as visibility looks like fog limiting view to less than 100 feet. Now last year the summit Halema' uma' u caldera has open, and is venting adding more SO2 gases to the atmosphere. This is so poisonous that the southern flank of the National Park is closed due to it's toxicity. Visibilty is so poor at times in Honolulu that you cannot see the horizon or mountains, yet they are 200 miles away. We can only thank the trades that come frequently and blow the what we call "vog" away. I have attached some pics of the lava and it's gasses entering the sea.

post-15987-126984076174_thumb.jpg

post-15987-126984084132_thumb.jpg

post-15987-126984101798_thumb.jpg

post-15987-126984106976_thumb.jpg

post-15987-1269841249_thumb.jpg

Link to comment

Pedro- Since I live on an island that is considered one of the most user friendly study of volcano's. I will offer this insight. You do not necessarily need even a thunderous explosion or massive earthquake to blacken out the sky. For that matter many volcano's. You do need a lava flow and proximity to water and the amount of volume entering the ocean. Also even water is not needed but the amount of gasses released form calderas.

Such as our beloved Kilauea Volcano. Due to the ongoing eruption that occurred starting in 1983 and continues today with lava flowing into the ocean from a side vent Pu'u O'o it is most certainly possible for the sun to be almost blacked out. In fact through out Hawaiian accounts predating vulcanolgists exploring. It is known to darken the skies accompanied by Eq's and thus promoting Pele's wrath as a sign. Throw in a few tsunamis in there as well. When lava enters the water below it causes a large steam cloud of Sulfuric Dioxide to rise. There are times when the wind conditions to what we call "Kona" winds come from the sout east instead of "Trades" cause the dispersal not out to see but over the entire island chains. Now the Big Island in particular gets the brunt, and during Kona wind times visibility can be such that you can look direct at the sun with the naked eye, and barely see it. It is light enough out to go around, but it chokes you causes massive asthmatic attacks to the population, ruins crops with acid. It is so thick sometimes that in broad noon you must turn on the headlights on cars as visibility looks like fog limiting view to less than 100 feet. Now last year the summit Halema' uma' u caldera has open, and is venting adding more SO2 gases to the atmosphere. This is so poisonous that the southern flank of the National Park is closed due to it's toxicity. Visibilty is so poor at times in Honolulu that you cannot see the horizon or mountains, yet they are 200 miles away. We can only thank the trades that come frequently and blow the what we call "vog" away. I have attached some pics of the lava and it's gasses entering the sea.

Nice

Link to comment

Yes.

http://byustudies.byu.edu/showTitle.aspx?title=6500

That essay is most detailed and comprehensive approach to the 3 Nephi 8-10 events from a geologist's perspective. A follow, adding evidence from ice cores is here:

http://maxwellinstitute.byu.edu/publications/jbms/?vol=12&num=1&id=309

Kevin Christensen

Bethel Park, PA

Let it be noted that Ben Jordan has a testimony on the "Mormon Scholars Testify" Website. (To my amusement, since his bio mentions no wife and family, I actually received an inquiry by e-mail, from a young woman, as to whether he is single. Answer: He has a wife and several kids, and tells me he's "very happily married.")

http://mormonscholarstestify.org/716/benjamin-r-jordan

Link to comment

Let it be noted that Ben Jordan has a testimony on the "Mormon Scholars Testify" Website. (To my amusement, since his bio mentions no wife and family, I actually received an inquiry by e-mail, from a young woman, as to whether he is single. Answer: He has a wife and several kids, and tells me he's "very happily married.")

http://mormonscholarstestify.org/716/benjamin-r-jordan

Hahahhaa :P . How many single LDS Scholars have you played match maker for I wonder?

Link to comment

For a little different perspective on this, go to Google Earth and wander around Mexico and Central America, and get an idea of how many volcanoes are there, big and little.

Paricutin is expecially of interest since we have pretty good records of the eruption and consequences. Two villages were completely destroyed. One was 100% covered in lava 50 feet thick, San Salvador Paricutin; the other, San Juan Parangaricurimicuaro, was mostly covered, but a few blocks weren't covered, just burned away. The lava stopped short in a vertical wall 50 feet high. You can see where orchards were, with regular spots on grid which were trees. And the church sticking part way out of the lava. Many tree locations are also visible in the lava fields, where a tree was, there may be a slight cooler spot and the lava might be right at the freezing point.

Various things that happened with Paricutin are not found in 3 Nephi. A fissure opened up and started issuing gas, at apparently supersonic speed, made a noise like a jet engine. Then rocks started flying out, landing all around, extremely dangerous. But there literally was a great mountain appeared, completely covered the village of San Salvador Paricutin. Also the ground shook, for weeks; rang the church bells with nobody there pulling the rope. In the gas and steam and dust issuing from the volcano, there were weather effects, storms, lightning; as I remember a couple of people were killed by lightning.

Something kind of interesting: the villagers seeing all these things often expressed the question, Was it the end of the world?

Wood

Link to comment

I remember a PBS special on the Artic ice records of volcanic events. The ice maintains a history of major events. It was briefly mentioned, as I remember, that there was an eruption around this time period, but perhaps one of our scholars can confirm that.

It should also be possible, perhaps, to do a detailed study on where that eruption took place. That would make an interesting confirmation for the BOM record.

Link to comment

I remember a PBS special on the Artic ice records of volcanic events. The ice maintains a history of major events. It was briefly mentioned, as I remember, that there was an eruption around this time period, but perhaps one of our scholars can confirm that.

It should also be possible, perhaps, to do a detailed study on where that eruption took place. That would make an interesting confirmation for the BOM record.

Check the link I provided earlier to the Journal of Book of Mormon Studies article on the topic of ice core evidence.

Kevin Christensen

Pittsburgh, PA

Link to comment

any volcanic eruption that produces ash or fumes thick enough to quench or prevent fire from combusting would also extinguish human life.

Relatively light volcanic ash and smoke mixing with heavy fog can create thick darkness and prevent the combustion of dry kindling, easily without extinguishing human life.

Link to comment

Are there any volcanoes within the suspected areas wherein the BoM took place that erupted at or close to 34 AD? 100 AD does not cut it. Secondly, any volcanic eruption that produces ash or fumes thick enough to quench or prevent fire from combusting would also extinguish human life. Finally, why is ash not mentioned in the accounts? I am finding it hard to buy that volcanic activity is recorded in the BoM.

Data on precise dates of eruptions can only be measured by witnessed data collection. You can only measure the flows by a certain amount C-14 isotope given off by charcoal of plants. The dates can only be generalized form 1000 to 1500 years. Now the use a new method using a method called "exposure-age dating" uses a ration of isotopes to measure the age of the grounds surface. Basically in a nutshell the color of the surfaces exposure to weather. This can narrow the age of the flows to 500 thru 900 years. Therefore unless you have actual witness of eruptions of volcanoes recording the time and date looking at eruptions on a precise timeline in the past cannot be measured precisely. You can forget looking at dates such as 100 or 34 AD.

I will also not that volcanic eruptions have neen known to continue for decades. Such as Kilauea. It has been on going on since 1988 with destruction of over 360 homes in its path.

Link to comment

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...