Anachronisms in The Book of Mormon - Technology Anachronisms - Compass

Compass

The Book of Mormon also states that a "compass" or "Liahona" was used by Nephi around 600 BC. The compass is widely recognized to have been invented in China around 1100 AD, and remains of a compass have never been found in America. In the Book of Alma when Alma, speaking to his son Helaman, explains "our fathers called it Liahona, which is, being interpreted, a compass" (Alma 37:38). Alma tells his son that "it is as easy to give heed to the word of Christ ... to eternal bliss, as it was for our fathers to give heed to this compass ... to the promised land" (Alma 37:44).

Apologists counter that the compass used by Nephi (the Liahona) was, according to the narrative, created by God himself (Alma 37:38), and not by the Nephites. Also, unlike a normal compass, the Book of Mormon says that there was also writing on the ball that displayed additional instructions from God (1 Nephi 16:26-29). Apologists claim that it is possible that the compass used by the Nephites was not copied or used by the civilization, and as such archaeological evidence of compasses may not exist in the Americas. Based on this theory, Joseph Smith would have chosen the word "compass" in his translation of the golden plates as a best fit for the concept of the compass, and as such it is not necessarily an anachronism.

Read more about this topic:  Anachronisms In The Book Of Mormon, Technology Anachronisms

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Famous quotes containing the word compass:

    However closely people are attached to one another, their mutual horizon nonetheless includes all four compass directions, and now and again they notice it.
    Friedrich Nietzsche (1844–1900)

    loosely bound
    By countless silken ties of love and thought
    To everything on earth the compass round,
    Robert Frost (1874–1963)

    It is the star to every wand’ring bark,
    Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
    Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
    Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
    Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
    But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
    William Shakespeare (1564–1616)