Talk:Book of Mormon DNA
BOM Introduction: Lamanites principal ancestors of American Indians?
The article states: "Perhaps the controversy begins with an unofficial and individually assumed idea about the geographical location of the events portrayed in the Book of Mormon. Many Mormons and non-Mormons have read the book and assumed that no one else was on the American continent when Lehi and his company arrived; from this misconception it would be easy to assume Lehi and his wife were the parents of all human inhabitants in North and South America; it would also be possible to imagine that this group of people and their operations encompassed the whole of the western hemisphere."
The misconception is not only created in the unofficial and popular readings of the Book of Mormon, but also on the Introduction page, written by church authorities, which stated (until 2006) that "the Lamanites, ...are the principal ancestors of the American Indians." The new introduction, as discussed in the Deseret Newsreads that those in the Book of Mormon "are among the ancestors of the American Indians." However, the online version of the Introduction on the LDS Web site still reads the 'old' way. So let's not foist the misconception off on the uninformed masses. I'm making some changes to the article based on all this. --Jerekson 23:49, 10 November 2007 (MST)
According to Experts...
Please offer some citations here on limited geographical scope. The article reads very poorly with phrases like this inserted, but not backed up.
In addition, I have read some assertions that the entire geographical setting fits well into the Great Lakes area of the US, with the expanses of water, and the 'narrow neck' of land dividing the land being easily notable. While the scale and grandeur of the Mesoamerican ruins make them attractive settings for the Book of Mormon, the Mesoamerican location rises from a limited and limiting perspective. Articles like Matthew Roper's, Limited Geography and the Book of Mormon: Historical Antecedents and Early Interpretations (Farms, 2004) provide extensive detail on the source of popular notions and misconceptions, but still seems to hold doggedly to the Mesoamerican location. The study of the locations and their sizes should likely be considered in light of the emerging views on how to interpret the actual size of the populations involved (i.e., were the numbers of people given in the text systematically figurative, as many such numbers are in other ancient texts, or were they absolutely literal?). If the actual numbers of people are unknown, then the location and scope of the geography is less easy to narrow down. --Jerekson 23:48, 10 November 2007 (MST)
Central or South America
Without citations, the assertion that Lehi landed in Central or South America is a pure guess. Based on what follows in the article about the non-official nature of most of the speculation on locations, wouldn't it be more appropriate just to say that the location of Lehi's disembarking point is just plain unknown? The only fact is that the small number of people who are interested enough in Book of Mormon geography to keep studying it tend to focus on Central and South America. They follow clues and hints, and various statements made by past general authorities outside of General Conference or the canon. I have made this change in the article, and welcome discussion and additional revision. --Jerekson 11:17, 13 November 2007 (MST)
The Maxwell Institute's statement on Book of Mormon geography is quite succinct. After making some contributions here, I am now beginning to wonder if much of this article should not be moved to the stub on Book of Mormon Geography, leaving this page free to document the specific issue of DNA research. That stub could use much of the content I found when I first came to this article, but could also be built on the backbone of the Maxwell Institute article. Is it Fair (bad pun) to use a Farms article in this wiki? Encyclopedia of Mormonism? Much of wikipedia is built on older editions of Encyclopedia Brittanica... --Jerekson 11:43, 13 November 2007 (MST)