Sunday, May 10, 2015

More Comments from Readers – Part V

Here are more comments that we have received from readers of this website blog: 
   Comment #1: “I read recently an article that claimed we are now learning that the history of the Americas is much older, and much more complicated than was once thought. It said that new evidences of early human habitation are constantly being found, a few sites have produced dates of human habitation as early as 50,000 years ago and more. Sites such as Pedra Furada in Brazil, Monte Verde in Chile, and Fells cave in Tierra del Fuego, Chile, are helping archaeologists paint a new, and more complete picture, of the early history of the Western Hemisphere. How does that affect South America as the Land of Promise?” Grace N.
Response: If you have been reading this site very long, you know I have no faith or belief in such dates—the Flood occurred about 4360 years ago, with a Pre-Flood people, referred to as the Antediluvians, who lived on this Earth for about 1656 years before that. And during that time many people lived and died throughout the world, though we have no knowledge of their location, cities and numbers. Their remains are still in the ground somewhere.
    However, when talking about extreme dates, such as 10,000 to 50,000 years before that and more, there should be an understanding of one very important thing. This Earth was not created in the sense that it was made from nothing.
As Latter-day Saints, we should understand the world was organized out of material already in existence (organized from parts)—“Yonder is matter unorganized.” Joseph Smith taught that the Hebrew word baurau, which Bible scholars have interpreted as “create” really means “organize.” He also said of this organizing, “the same as a man would organize materials and build a ship. Hence we infer that God had materials to organize the world out of chaos--chaotic matter ..."
    That some or all of that material may have been used for a world(s) before or that this world was a “makeover” of a previous world (organized not out of separate parts, but out of a near whole).
    In fact, the Hebrew word Bible scholars have translated as “heaven,” is shamayim, which is actually a plural term (heavens)—it has no singular form. In reality, however, it does not mean that at all, but means “sky.” So in reality, the first verse of Genesis literally means “formed the Earth and sky,” with sky meaning that which was above the firmament (the endless Universe). However, in greater clarity, the meaning is because heaven and earth already existed in a formless and void state, to which God brings form and order.
    The point of this is simple. The previous parts could have been any age, from any previous world existing in any previous time period—with materials in it left over from a previous occupation, from which pieces and small parts still exist somewhere within the mantle of this world and the outer crust.
That these could be found and dated is certain, for they exist in the literal sphere (our existence) and would contain the properties that are dateable (perhaps even Carbon-14, who knows). That these small fragments of a former period are seen as part of our existence by science is a given, and that they try to build a “one case fits all” out of everything is certain. Consequently, we are being fed information that, in part is accurate (to some degree), but also not correct.
    All of this is simply assumptive reasoning, of course, but in reality, we know one thing for certain. About 6000 years ago Adam left the Garden of Eden, to which I have given an arbitrary date of 4000 B.C. (others have placed the date a handful of years earlier than that). With that in mind, the Flood occurred in 2344 B.C., ended a year later, and all dates in our world begin then as all life was renewed.
    Comment #2: “You seem to be very opposed to the concepts of radiocarbon dating, yet it is a well accepted science” Kara S.
    Response: It is not an opposition to Carbon-14 dating—this is based on factual scientific data, i.e., Carbon-14 does have a half-life (5730 years), and it can be measured, very accurately today, by the way, in laboratories. So it can be determined how long ago something that was once living died. The problem with it is in the interpretation, not the science.
    I am not in favor of Willard F. Libby’s dating clock since he went against his own findings that showed the atmosphere was not in equilibrium and claimed that it was and, therefore, changed the setting of his clock to read much older dates. His own measurements showed that the atmosphere was increasing in carbon content at about 12% per year—he swept it under the “science rug” by claiming it was within his range of error, and because, in his own words: “Everyone knows the earth is billions of years old,” even though his experiments showed the earth to be less than 20,000 years old.
There is no secret to this, he described the incident and his statement in his autobiography.  Others, much smarter than I am, such as Melvin A. Cook, of Yale University, also a Nobel Prize candidate, showed a couple of years later that the earth’s atmosphere was actually increasing at the rate of 22% (others after him showed it to be as much as 37%), indicating the earth is really closer to 10,000 years old.
    How can you not be opposed to a clock based on such erroneous interpretation?
    Comment #3: “I don’t understand why you disagree with the principal of diffusion. It seems quite clear and upfront to me” Sage B.
    Response: Diffusion is based upon people’s judgment. In fact, the entire concept is based on people’s beliefs—if you were to read my recent post on “Stages and Periods in Archaeology, Part II,” you would see how the idea of diffusion came about, and it was not the only idea at the time and has been altered more than once over time. But let me just give you a simple answer:
Say an archaeologist finds a few pottery sherds at a site he has uncovered. He of course immediately determines they were from the inhabitants of the site he has found; therefore concludes that the people there knew pottery, were of the ceramic period, and dates the site, at least in his mind, with his team, and to those reporters who will listen to him, as existing sometime in very late B.C. or early A.D. period (Ceramic Period: 2000 to 500 years ago).
    However, he has no way of knowing if some nomad wanderer stumbled through the site with a jug full of water that he accidentally broke while there before moving on (say like Coriantumr being found by the Mulekites). Or even if the wanderer came through after the people of the site had abandoned it. There is no way of knowing that these ceramic sherds were actually part of the population that dwelt at the site, or whether they were brought there, or were a left over from a group of people who moved into the area and dwelt there for a short time (say a family from another area), and did not bother to show others how to make the pottery, or did not know how themselves but had merely purchased it from someone else.
Even if there were a lot of sherds—what if a adventuress merchant had bought a bunch of pottery from another area and came through with his camels (donkeys, etc.) selling them, but upon entering the city, had an accident that resulted in the breakage of all his pottery. He didn’t know how to make it and those of the village who did not have pottery (why the merchant was coming there in the first place), so the pottery idea never got to first base there.
    The point is, there is no way to know anything about finding pottery sherds on the ground. It only results in assumptions made, which lead to the determination of dates and much else.

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