A picture is indeed worth a 1000 words so I’m going to post my current map of God’s Vineyard or what sometimes is meant by the word “earth”. I put earth in quotes b/c I do not think when we see that word in scriptures it always or even usually means just our globe. I think it could mean Arda or possibly just the various land masses that once made up a single land mass but has since been broken apart into pieces, although one day it will be restored.
It places the Lehites in outer space, which gives us a whole other view of Nephi’s ship when he said:
Now I, Nephi, did not work the timbers after the manner which was learned by men, neither did I build the ship after the manner of men; but I did build it after the manner which the Lord had shown unto me; wherefore, it was not after the manner of men.1 nephi 18
Nephi seems to be saying “I don’t know how to say this exactly without sounding crazy, but this ain’t the kinda ship you’re thinking of and that’s why my brothers also thought I was crazy for thinking I could build a ship like this.”
This would apply to the Jaredites also and perhaps make sense of Moroni’s very strange description of their ships. You know, “tight like unto a dish” and such. Or maybe tight like unto a [flying] saucer.
Yes, space ships! You think that’s crazy? Tell me one thing about any world religion that isn’t crazy. Jesus resurrecting? Crazy. Gold plates? Crazy. A man and a bunch of angels in the heavens that no one has ever seen? Crazy. Or tell me it isn’t crazy believing the entire universe spawned itself (looking at you, atheists). Crazy. Everything humans believe is crazy, but we all choose our own style I suppose.
With that said, here is my current map of God’s Vineyard (borrowing from the Jacob 5 analogy):
This is of course as of today. The world didn’t always look like this. It was once united as one land mass before Numenor and half of Eressea were “sunk” and Valinor and the other half of Eressea were lifted up.
Depending on how much you know about “deep doctrine” as Mormons used to be fond of saying, you may recognize this idea from D&C 133 speaking of when the world will be brought back together:
and the earth shall be like as it was in the days before it was divided
Most people think that refers to Pangea, or the earth’s continents all coming back together. Maybe. But apparently Joseph Smith supposedly talked about the idea of actual pieces or chunks of the earth being removed but that one day they will come back together again. William Wright references Philo Dibble’s recollection (among others) of JS teaching this idea.
I should mention that while I borrow a lot of ideas form William’s blog, we don’t always see things the same way. He isn’t convinced the dwarves are gentiles, for example, so don’t take my linking to him as either one of us fully endorsing each other’s ideas, although I’d say we agree on the vast majority of this strange worldview.
At any rate, that’s my current map. Next I’m going to map the Lehites in this messy cosmos. Why? Because as Jesus makes clear at Bountiful, the gathering of all of the scattered remnants of Israel will not happen until AFTER the Lehites repent. And that won’t happen until AFTER the Lehites are first scattered by the gentiles.
So if we want to know where we are today in the timeline of “the end” then we better start with the scattering of the Lehites. Now that we (maybe) have a reasonably proper view of the cosmos, we can go to the next step.