SCEPTIC.INFO Free your mind - question!
SCEPTIC.INFO Free your mind - question!
WAS THE BOOK OF MORMON PLAIGERISED IN THE 1800'S AND PASSED OFF AS A REVELATION FROM GOD?
A LUMP FROM LINDSAY’S PAGE
The Mormon Church needs to deny that there is any evidence that its holy book from God, the Book of Mormon, could have been written in the 19th century when it first appeared. To admit the evidence would amount to saying the book is a hoax.
I have extracted the following from Lindsay’s page, Plagiarism in the Book of Mormon? for I consider it important. Lindsay has created it to refute the view that the book, View of the Hebrews, written by Ethan Smith was used to invent the Book of Mormon. His point is that though there are several parallels between the conclusions of Ethan’s book and the Book of Mormon these do not prove that the Book of Mormon was inspired by the book.
Lindsay goes that the Book of Mormon matches an imaginary book called Man’s Journey to the Moon.
Numerous parallels between the history of man's voyages to the moon and the transoceanic voyages in the Book of Mormon suggest that accounts of lunar journeys may have been a primary source for Joseph Smith. Consider the following startling parallels:
Both accounts provide detailed stories of long and dangerous journeys.
Both accounts describe unusual compasses which were used for guidance on the journey.
Both involved unusual ships for the journey.
Like the astronauts of Apollo 11 and other spacecraft, the Jaredites travelled to a New World in a generally airtight vessel.
Special high-tech lighting elements were needed for the sealed Jaredite vessels, just like the electric light sources used by the astronauts.
In both cases, information is stored on metallic objects - brass or gold plates for the Nephites, and magnetic computer media (iron oxide disks?) for the moon voyagers.
Both involve the discovery of a new land.
Both involve a small group of souls departing from a proud and wicked society
Members of both groups engaged in prayer and respectful reference to God during the journey.
Both groups expressed great gratitude upon reaching their destinations.
The initial voyagers in both cases saw their journey as having great significance to future generations.
Both groups brought objects from the old world to the new world they discovered.
One group was guided by the strong arm of the Lord, while the other group was led by Neil Armstrong. Surely this is more than mere coincidence!
Passages in both texts refer to astronomical terms such as the heavens, the stars, the earth, the moon, and the planets.
The astronauts found the surface of the moon to be desolate, free of vegetation, and the Book of Mormon talks about the discovery of a similar land called the Land of Desolation.
Some Book of Mormon names show striking similarity to names of objects on the moon. For example, the crater "Mairan" is quite similar to the Jaredite name "Moron" and may even be related to "Mormon."
The moon crater "Godin" is very similar to the Book of Mormon names "Gideon" and "Gadianton."
The moon crater "Rabbi Levi" may also account for the Jewish influences seen in the Book of Mormon.
The Pyrenes mountain range on the moon may explain the Book of Mormon name "Pahoran."
The moon's Mare Imbrium, the Sea of Rains, may account for the name "Irreantum" given to the "many waters" of the ocean by the Nephites.
The importance of all this is that if the Mormon Church really believes it then why does it lay so much stress on alleged matches between Book of Mormon names and names used in the Holy Land and Egypt and thereabouts when this study shows it could just be coincidence? Also, Lindsay’s attack on the fact that the View of the Hebrews has provided the background for the Book of Mormon is unfair. There is a difference between parallels that will appear naturally and ones that are deliberate. This is a distinction not made by Mormon apologists when it comes to their holy books.
Smith would and could have had access to View of the Hebrews. That counts for a lot. And especially when it was about the SAME SUBJECT namely the ancient inhabitants of America such as the Book of Mormon was. Lindsay’s comparison with his imaginary book is a hoax. This is proven by the fact that he had to invent a book to find the parallels and couldn’t use an existing work.
For example, every novel will have parallels with other novels in hundreds of details. Sometimes even main points in the stories will parallel one another. But if there are too many parallels in the main points you know that plagiarism has taken place and this has happened in the case of the Book of Mormon and the View of the Hebrews.
One can see parallels where there are only accidental or incidental ones and these are not necessarily plagiarism. For example, if one book describes a long journey in a ship and another one does the same the second may be plagiarising in this thing but it is not necessarily plagiarising if it says that there were lots of supplies on the ship and there were complaints among the crew like the first because these things will have to said anyway for they would be expected on a long journey.
The Mormon Church plainly does not understand how to tell if plagiarism is real or not. The Tanners have found parallels between the Book of Mormon’s Nehor and the newspaper story in the Wayne Sentinel, a paper the Smiths subscribed to, of a man called Strang who was executed in 1827. There were more parallels between Strang and the book of Mormon’s Korihor. A story in the same paper is identical and even identical down to the words in several points. The story is the Sea Voyage and has been plagiarised to create the story of the Lehites on their voyage to America. Parts of the Book of Mormon version were even extracted from Mark chapter 4. Read all about it in The Case Against Mormonism, Volume 2. The Mormon Church will have to admit at most that the parallels may be there and that is enough to cast doubt on the credibility of the Book of Mormon. Mormons think in terms of true or false but the Book could be neither believable or unbelievable but in limbo.
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