Discussions of Mormons and Mormon life, Book of Mormon issues and evidences, and other Latter-day Saint (LDS) topics.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Another Mesoamerican Beard....

Publicaity for Diane Wirth's new book, Parallels: Mesoamerican and Ancient Middle Eastern Traditions features another good photo of an ancient Mesoamerica carving showing a bearded man. Anybody read the book yet? I'll order one soon....

3 comments:

danithew said...

What significance do beards hold from a Book of Mormon perspective? Is it purely the idea that Christ had a beard?

T said...

I think it's the idea that people from that area don't wear beards, but if the statues were carved by the Book of Mormon peoples, who came from Jerusalem and such places where men would wear beards, then it would mean that Mesoamerica is the land of the Book of Mormon.

Mormanity said...

The presence of people with beards among ancient Native Americans suggests a genetic diversity not readily seen today. Semitic men, of course, generally can grow beards, and some figurines show what appear to be Semitic figures.

In drawing conclusions about ancient peoples based on DNA testing of modern descendants, we should bear in mind that over 90% of the native population died off from disease after Columbus. Entire tribes and peoples vanished. Of course, genetic loss can occur through many other mechanisms. The fact that we don't see Jewish-looking people today among indigenous peoples doesn't rule out the possibility that Semitic peoples once landed on this continent and latter intermingled with other population groups.