Monday, June 22, 2015

Are These Just Coincidences? – Part IV

Continuing from the last three posts on how coincidental it is that all these scriptural references match Andean South America, and in many cases, only Andean South America, if that land is not the Land of Promise. It is also interesting that very few of these scriptural references and descriptions match anywhere else in the Western Hemisphere.
    In this final post on coincidences we will show the unusual coincidences surrounding the landing site and what was found there and what is found in La Serena, Chile, at the 30º South Latitude as has been described for Lehi’s landing site (1 Nephi 18:23-25).
Overlooking La Serena and Coquimbo Bay. To the far left is Port Coquimbo and the modern docking facilities, to the right is Poroto Point
2. La Serena, a settlement area on the northeastern edge of Coquimbo Bay, an area of modern crop production that is the highest producing area of all Chile, and ships winter fruits and crops to North America and elsewhere.
    Nephi described that at this landing site where they pitched their tents, tilled the ground and planted the “seeds they brought from Jerusalem” (1 Nephi 18:24), that “grew exceedingly, producing an abundant crop.”
    It is a fact that all plants cannot grow in just any climate. Plants are usually very selective in where and what type of environment they will grow in. This is why we see certain plants growing in different parts of the world with different temperature climates than others.
    The point being, that even today, if you are going to plant seeds with any hope of growth, you will want to do so in a climate conducive to those seeds, i.e., typically in a climate identical to, or at least similar to, where they were grown. This is because:
1. Seeds have a temperature range in which they will reliably sprout;
2. Seeds require a soil temperature similar to the soil in which the seeds were first produced;
3. Seeds require a similar soil moisture level to where they were grown;
4. Seeds require a similar soil type and soil group to which they were grown;
5. Seeds require a similar amount of light to where they were grown;
6. Seeds germinate in a similar temperature, climate, moisture, and soil to which they were first grown.
Seed packets and instructions carry maps of planting zones, time of the year, and such things as depth and light requirements for the seeds contained
    Today, of course, many plant seeds are versatile enough to not only germinate and grow in different or less than ideal temperature environments, but may be able to thrive in more than one type of temperature setting. In addition, today we understand techniques of preparing dissimilar climate soils for temperature (burlap coverings), moisture (mist nozzles, drip watering, automated sprinkling), most ideal conditions for sprouting (forecasting weather conditions, plastic bag pre-sprouting), soil conditioning (inoculating, firming soil to optimize contact), and sowing (furrows, wide-row planting, broadcast planting), seed-spacing (seed tapes) and light tolerance (full, partial or minimum sun or shade).
    In addition, seeds today are usually produced to be high producing hybrids, as the end product is the goal. Seeds grown naturally as would have been the circumstances in 600 B.C., unless grown in a similar climate as stated above, generally produce lesser quality, poor tasting, and usually smaller produce, if they produce at all. Even today, seed packets have a recommend climate range, temperature, and soil conditions printed on the packet. In fact, most gardening hints involve the person planting seeds to find out which seeds grow best in his climate region.
    Consequently, before any of this advanced knowledge was discovered and known, like in 600 B.C. when Nephi planted his seeds “brought from Jerusalem,” we need to recognize that the climate of the Land of Promise needed to be very similar, if not exactly, like that of Jerusalem. Now Jerusalem has a Mediterranean Climate, and there are only five others in the world outside the Mediterranean coastal area—two in Australia, one in Africa, one in central Chile, and one in central California. Of all those, only two are found in the Western Hemisphere, and only one in an area where the Land of Promise could have been located—30º South Latitude in Coquimbo/La Serena, Chile.
By chance of coincidence, or Divine Plan, the very winds and currents leaving the southern coast of the Arabian Peninsula, just so happens to lead in that direction and pass directly offshore of this area of Chile along the western coast of South America. Also, by chance of coincidence, or Divine Plan, the winds and currents just so happen to die down along that 30º South Latitude area, bring the fast moving Humboldt Current to almost a standstill offshore of the Bay of Coquimbo, making landfall there a simple matter. It also just so happens, that Coquimbo Bay is the best harbor all along the Coast of Chile and Peru, and the Humboldt Current, once it moves northward and hits the bulge of Peru, is pushed back westward into the Pacific Ocean where it becomes part of the South Pacific Gyre and taking drift voyages back westward across the Pacific toward the Philippines or out and down into Polynesia, as shown in Thor Heyerdahl’s Kon-Tiki drift voyage.
    Now, this all could have been coincidence, however, the Lord, who created these winds and currents, being the Master Architect of the entire planet, solar system and universe, knew full well where a ship leaving shore from the southern Arabian Peninsula would have ended up. Obviously, this takes the Lehi voyage out of the realm of coincidence and into the area of the Divine Plan.
    So, how does this area of Coquimbo Bay and La Serena stack up to the rest of what Nephi says he found in the immediate vicinity of his landing site?
    Adjacent to La Serena is a temperate rainforest, beginning about 1 1/2 miles inland from the bay at Coquimbo and covers approximately 103,301 square miles (of which 70% lies within Chile), and is the second largest of five temperate rainforests in the world, and includes at least five tree species indigenous to that area. Still existing today, it is the only rainforest in South America, and has multiple ecosystems in the immense Fray Jorge National Park along Route 5 in La Serena, Chile, overflowing with ferns and cinnamon trees, and is home to the majestic Alerce tree, which can reach heights of 377 feet, and live for more than 3000 years, along with a variety of species including eagles, pumas and guanacos (wild parent of the llama). Of the estimated 87,687 square miles of original forest existing at the time of European contact, only about 40% remains today, suggesting it might have been even larger in 600 B.C.
    In addition to the Mediterranean Climate for Nephi’s seeds “brought form Jerusalem,” and the forest certainly large enough to be the home of both domesticated and wild animals, there are two copper smelting plants on either side of Coquimbo Bay, and to the south is the Topado quartz-vein gold ore deposit located in the IV region of Chile, and linked to the nearest city of La Serena.
Gold, Silver and Copper mines are found honeycombed all around the area of La Serena, Chile, where Lehi would have settled
The deposit area is confined to the mountain system of the Coastal Cordillera and defined by a low mountain and medium altitude mountain relief. The maximum altitude does not exceed 400 feet above sea level. Most of the gold-carrying ore bodies are found in the 550-800 altitude interval. In addition, silver mines abound in this area, and today, Chile, the world’s leading producer of copper, with Peru next. Chile is fourth in the world in untapped gold reserves, after Russia, but ahead of the U.S. Ore in Chile contains high levels of gold, silver and copper. Numerous old mining sites are honeycombed all over the area where the Spanish extracted and smelted huge amounts of gold, silver and copper to send back to Spain.
    In addition, while there are very few places in the Western Hemisphere where the three metals of gold, silver and copper found in single ore, i.e., in the same ore reserves, several of these type mines are found in Chile very close to the area where Lehi landed.
Since the specific ores Nephi mentions, especially the gold would have to have  been visible, such as that washed down by rivers and streams, creating alluvial deposits that allowed for placer mining, the rivers flowing into this area from the inland mountain range provides the ore necessary
    It is interesting that what Nephi said he found where he landed are exactly what one would find along the 30º South Latitude of Chile, where the winds and currents would have allowed a ship “driven forth before the wind” to have affected a landing. One could say, of course, that all of this is merely a coincidence; however, sooner or later one must come to the conclusion that as all these coincidences continue to build up and provide the only place in the Western Hemisphere where all of the scriptural references are found, that it is more than a coincidence.

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