Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Could Central Baja California be the Narrow Neck? – Part I

Continuing with this series of posts regarding the location of the narrow neck of land, the following covers the Central area of Baja California between the Sea of Cortez (Gulf of California) where the Isla Angel de la Guarda (Archangel Island) is located on the east and the Pacific Ocean on the west.
This distance is 48 miles across. 140 miles north of this point, the peninsula is still only 65 miles across at San Felipe, which is such a gradual change that the peninsula widens at only one mile in every fifteen miles—that is, about the length of a football field every mile—such an imperceptible change that someone even with a satellite image or aerial photo would not consider this a narrowing of land between two larger bodies of land as Mormon describes—that is, no one would consider this a narrow neck of land.
If someone is going to choose this peninsula and look for a narrow neck, one would be better off picking the indentation just south of Loreto at about the Puerto Escondido on the east coast (Sea of Cortes/Gulf of California) through San Javier to Faro de San Andresito and El Pabellon on the west coast (Pacific Ocean), where it drops from 70 miles across to 48 miles and back up to 100 miles in just 100 miles along the peninsula, or a change in width of about one mile in every two. Still, however, it is really not a narrow neck of land, but it is twice the narrowing of the area chosen by the Theorists.
However, the only actual break in the entire Baja Peninsula of any note is the western coast of the Mulegé Municipality that juts out (red arrow) into the Pacific beyond Laguna Ojo de Liebre (originally Scammon’s Lagoon) and the Bay of Sebastian Vizcaino to punta Falsa (False Point); yet, north of there, including the area of their narrow neck of land, the west coast shoreline runs almost unbroken for about 600 miles to Long Beach, California. Certainly straight enough for any man on foot, or standing on a mountain in the Baja Peninsula to believe there was no narrow neck anywhere. And on the Gulf of California side, the unbroken shoreline of some 550 miles would elicit the same belief from someone standing anywhere or at any elevation along the entire Peninsula that there was no narrow neck of land.
Left: Baja California Sur (black) is the southern state of the Baja Peninsula, the other state is Baja California (white); Right: In the lower state, Baja California Sur, the northernmost area (black) is Mulegé Municipality, the only part of the peninsula that actually alters the normal narrow width. As can be seen, there is no area that actually narrows into a narrow neck in the entire peninsula
    There is no possibility of any area north of the Mulegé Municipality to even be considered as a narrowing of the land, and the jutting land itself out to Punta Falsa would be seen as a peninsula sticking out into the ocean that forms the Bay Sebastian Vizcaino, not a narrowing of the land. It is sad that people will study the scriptural record and read where Mormon says that the entire Land Southward was surrounded by water except for a small neck of land, and then turn right around and claim there is a small neck of land in their model where there is no narrowing at all.  
    Consider the width of the entire peninsula, except for the jutting Mulegé Municipality, is about the same from north to south other than in the far south between La Paz and San Jose Island—a distance of about 550 miles from north (Montague Island in the Gulf of Santa Clara) to south (San Jose Island). Along this entire eastern coast adjacent to the Gulf of California (Sea of Cortes), there is so little variance that the idea of a narrowing is simply out of the question. And from the area of Mulegé Municipality (south) to San Pedro, California (north), there is almost no variance in the west coast adjacent to the Pacific Ocean.
    In fact, the width where the Gulf ends at Montegue Island in the Gulf of Santa Clara, is about 100 miles across. So, in a distance of approximately 200 miles, this so-called “narrow neck” only increases to 100 miles, or doubles, meaning it increases in width ever so gradually at about one mile every four miles. This is hardly a “narrow neck,” and no Nephite in B.C. times would know it was a narrowing of the land in any way.
    Thus, Mormon’s words simply cannot be applied to the so-called “narrow neck of land” anywhere along the entire Baja Peninsula.
    However, despite all this limited variance in the geography of Baja California and Baja California Sur, these Theorists insist on using the peninsula as the Book of Mormon Land of Promise. This land has at least two glaring problems with matching Mormon’s descriptions of the land: 1) As mentioned above, it’s shape does not allow for a “small” or “narrow” neck of land, since there is no neck of land anywhere along the 800-mile peninsula; and 2) Like Mesoamerica, there is plenty of land to the north (thousands of miles to the east of the northern boundary northeast and north) for Mormon and his army, with their women and children, to continue their retreat away from the Lamanite armies which, in the scriptural record, destroyed by them in their stand at Cumorah.
After all, can anyone believe that the Nephites, facing the possibility of complete slaughter by a relentless hereditary enemy with a numerically superior force, would not have willingly tried to continue their retreat to the north?  These people had their wives and children with them (Mormon 6:7), and results show they were no threat to stop the Lamanites (Mormon 6:9-15).  To stay and fight when there was a chance to retreat (they had already retreated hundreds of miles from Zarahemla) with hopes of a better tomorrow simply does not make any sense at all.
    Yet Baja California Theorists would have us believe that Mormon, despite plenty of room to keep retreating, decided to stand and fight at Cumorah with thousands upon thousands of square miles to the north and northeast open to his retreat. In addition, why would the Nephites who escaped to the south countries (Mormon 6:15) have chosen to go south into the heart of the Lamanite lands where only certain death awaited them when they could have escaped to the north in this Baja model?
    Despite all the rhetoric in its defense, the Baja model Theorists simply cannot respond to these two questions with any reasonable answer at all. They tell us that a narrow neck of land existed where the land is 48 miles across and is that same width for more than a hundred miles where it very gradually (Imperceptively to the naked eye) widens to 63 miles and then very gradually to 80 miles for about 100 miles then gradually widens to 100 miles where it reaches the northern border. Such gradual widening of the land does not suggest in any way a narrowing to a neck of land.
(See the next post, “Could Central Baja California be the Narrow Neck? – Part II,” for more on why the Baja California Peninsula could not be the Book of Mormon Land of Promise through a comparison of the land and Mormon’s descriptions in the scriptural record)

No comments:

Post a Comment