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Is the Total Solar Eclipse a coincidence?

The paths and timing of an historical solar eclipse are quiet natural. They might end up being ordinary eclipses that are nothing more than evidence of God’s handiwork. On the other hand, they might mean a lot more than that. I don’t know. I don’t claim to know how to accurately interpret the signs of the times, if that’s what these are. But I know that these could be significant. Below is the research and writing from Joshua Aaron.

First, let’s take a look in detail at the eclipses in 2017, 2024, 2045, and 2052. Then we will see more about the paths of each of the eclipses that will “touch” America from 2017 until the end of the year 2099. If as you read this you think of other interesting points I haven’t considered, please be sure to mention them in the comment section below.


Interesting Facts About the 2017 and 2024 Total Solar Eclipses

Here is the path of the August 21, 2017 total solar eclipse that travels across all of the mainland United States:

august 21 2017 total solar eclipse

And here is the path of the April 8, 2024 total solar eclipse:

april 8 2024 total solar eclipse path

Here is what they look like put on the same map (thanks to Jonathan Neville of Moroni’s America for sending me the following picture of both eclipses on the same map as well as pointing out to me that the 2024 eclipse will also go over Kirtland and Cumorah!):

Eclipses-combined

A total solar eclipse has a limited path or zone where you would have to be to see the total phase of the eclipse. These two eclipse paths have a northern limit, a path center, and a southern limit. In the above pictures, this zone is marked by a northern blue line, a red center line, and a southern blue line.

The green and purple marker pins have to do with the points of greatest eclipse and greatest duration, which I won’t discuss here.

Notable (or meaningless) facts about total solar eclipses in America:

  • The last total solar eclipse that touched the United States was 37 years ago on February 26, 1979. Its path went across only a few states in the northwest.
  • The last total solar eclipse to path across the entire mainland of the United States was on June 8, 1918. It went from Washington to Florida.

Notable (or meaningless) facts about these events:

  • The August 21, 2017 event will go across the entire mainland from Oregon to South Carolina.
  • The August 21, 2017 event will cast a “shadow” over the entire country.
  • The northern limit of the August 21, 2017 eclipse includes Adam-ondi-Ahman, Haun’s Mill,  and Far West.
  • The southern limit of the August 21, 2017 eclipse includes Liberty Jail and Independence.
  • The center line of the August 21, 2017 eclipse lands about half way between Adam-ondi-Ahman and Independence.

independence, haun's mill, far west, liberty jail, independence

makanda

  • The April 8, 2024 eclipse center line also goes over Makanda (just northwest of it, less than 4 miles away).

makanda april 8 2024 eclipse

  • Makanda (also near Pamona) is essentially where “X marks the spot” for the two eclipses. (They “X” at Cedar Lake.) The “X” is located in the Shawnee National Forest.

makanda

  • The April 8, 2024 eclipse goes over Kirtland, Palmyra, and the Hill Cumorah (Palmyra is right near Cumorah). This map also has Cedar Lake (bottom left marker pin) for reference. (This eclipse also goes over Hiram, Thompson, Orange, and Amherst, OH and Manchester, Fayette, and Perrysburg, NY. In addition to other locations mentioned in this article, each of these locations is significant to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.)

Cedar Lake Kirtland and Cumorah

  • The April 8, 2024 eclipse will cast a “shadow” over the entire mainland United States.
  • The second eclipse will happen in the 7th year after the first event.

Okay, so why did any of this catch my attention?

The reason the 2017 and 2024 eclipses interest me has to do with certain events that I believe happened in these areas during Book of Mormon times, certain events that I know happened in these areas in the early history of the LDS church, and prophecies related to some of these areas relevant to the last days.

I won’t list all of those details here. I’m not here to convince anyone or to debate interpretation, though I welcome your thoughts. If you know the events and prophecies I refer to and have added insight, please leave me a note.

It also interests me because of my belief that the Nephites and perhaps some or many of the Lamanites of the Book of Mormon lived in the heartland of America, including in these very locations. The “X” is right over an area that I believe to be of great significance. In fact, the location of the “X” reminds me (when you consider the 7 year timetable) of the 7 year “standoff” between Lachoneus and Gidgiddoni and the gadianton robbers. That, plus the prophesied events to transpire in the near future, plus the location of these eclipses, plus the 7-year timeline, all connect to make me ask, “Is this a coincidence?”

I don’t have the answer.

What I am not saying:

  • I’m not saying I think Jesus Christ’s second coming to all the world will happen in either 2017 or 2024.
  • I’m not saying I think that these eclipses are the sign of the coming of the Son of Man.
  • I’m not saying that I think anything will happen on the exact day or at the exact time of the eclipses that will suddenly jolt all of America. I’m not ruling out that something could happen, but my purpose is not to come on here and make some specific prediction about something happening on August 21st or on the day of one of the other eclipses.

What I am saying:

  • I am saying that I believe these eclipses (and the eclipses in 2044/2045 and 2052) could be relevant to and indicative of tribulation in America, an Adam-ondi-Ahman event, a New Jerusalem event, and an event relevant to the people there being defended against enemies.
  • I am saying that I believe that if these eclipses do mark a point in time of fulfillment of prophecy, then the things that will happen will come about in the days, weeks, months, and years surrounding the eclipses. Significant things may or may not happen on the exact day of the eclipses.
  • The kinds of events that come to mind for me include both wonderfully welcome and tragic happenings, like famine, pestilence, disease, terrorism, civil unrest (political, cultural, etc.), wars, earthquake, tsunami, weather events, economic hardship, miracles, long-anticipated fulfillment of prophecy, etc.

I hesitate to make any specific predictions. I hope you’ll see that I am not trying to do so. There are two important reasons why. One is that I have not been called of God to receive a revelation for the world. Second is that I do not want to become a stumbling block in your way.

It has been prophesied that prior to the return of Jesus Christ, people will say that the Lord delays His coming. I believe that will happen for at least two reasons (probably more). First, because people anxious for His return make false predictions that don’t come to pass, Jesus Christ’s followers will be mocked and otherwise persecuted by those who do not believe. And because of the pain and difficulties of their persecution, they will murmur that the Lord delays His coming, and those who do not believe in Jesus Christ will mockingly say that the Lord delays His coming. It will be like The Boy Who Cried Wolf. Second, many of the true prophecies will be misinterpreted. But those who sincerely follow Christ, who have paid the price in prayer and study and faithfulness to know the signs, and who patiently wait for ALL of them to be fulfilled may not be deceived, notwithstanding the fact they may endure tribulation.

I do not want to start rumors, and I don’t want to gain an “eclipse cult” following. I don’t want to tempt you to take your focus away from where it really matters, which is on the Savior and your relationship with Him, the inspired teachings of His living prophets, the scriptures, your faith, your testimony, your virtue, your integrity, your family, your character, and your discipleship.

I’m not asking you to sell everything you have and buy a tent.

Other Thoughts Related to the Areas of the 2017 and 2024 Eclipses

Astonishing Discovery about the 2017/2024 and 2045/2052 Eclipses

Part of my initial sense of wonder about the 2017 and 2024 eclipses is that the 2024 eclipse happens in the 7th year after the 2017 eclipse. 2422 days sits between the two eclipses.

When I saw that there would be an eclipse in 2045 followed in the 7th year by an eclipse in 2052, I wondered how many days would sit between them. Answer? Exactly 2422 days, just like the eclipses in 2017 and 2024!

Note that approximately 21 years passes between the 2024 and 2045 eclipses. Also note that approximately 21 years passed between the end of WWI and WWII.

WWI Rhyme

It has been said that history does not repeat itself, but history does rhyme.

The fact that the 2017/2024 and 2045/2052 eclipses happen about 100 years after WWI and WWII respectively (give or take a few years), and that there is approximately 21 years between the 2024 and 2045 eclipses and there was approximately 21 years between the end of WWI (1918) and beginning of WWII (1939), has inspired me to look for “rhymes” related to these two eclipses and the two world wars.

I have found one potential WWI rhyme so far.

WWI started on July 28, 1914. On August 21, 1914 there was a total solar eclipse that traveled over a part of the world impacted heavily by WWI. Here is the path of that eclipse. Our eclipse this year also lands on August 21, and the world is already in chaos with many whisperings of a world war on the horizon.

8/12/2017 Update: On July 28, 2017, North Korea tested an ICBM (its 2nd test, with its first ICBM test happening on July 4th, just a few weeks earlier). This test was a major pivot point in relations that led to a startling escalation of rhetoric, including President Donald Trump stating that any more nuclear threats by North Korea would be met by “fire and fury” unlike anything the world has ever seen. North Korea followed that up by threatening to launch missiles toward Guam and revealing they were building a plan to attack Guam, an American territory. Also note that a USA and South Korea military exercise is scheduled to start on August 21st. A week after the last time we held this exercise last year, North Korea performed a nuclear weapon test.

Salem, USA and Jerusalem, Israel

The moon will begin to cover the sun in Salem, OR around 9:05 AM. During the eclipse in Salem, the sun will set in Jerusalem. It is interesting to note that Salem means Peace, and Jerusalem means City of Peace.

While the moon is casting a shadow over Peace in America, the light of the sun will be hidden from the City of Peace in Israel.

Other cities/towns named Salem the August 21, 2017 eclipse’s path of totality will go over include the following:
Salem, Oregon
Salem, Idaho
Salem, Nebraska
Salem, Kentucky
Salem, South Carolina

New Madrid Fault

While watching an episode of Nephite Explorer by Ryan Fisher where he and Rod Meldrum discuss  the New Madrid fault, I remembered that I had previously learned about this earthquake zone during my natural disaster studies (later graduating in Emergency Management).

The New Madrid fault is known to produce extremely large and damaging earthquakes. But earthquakes along the New Madrid that are similar in magnitude to those produced by the well-known faults of California can be more damaging than those in California, because the earth in the heartland amplifies the waves due to its unique make up.

It just so happens that both the 2017 and the 2024 eclipses go straight through this fault zone. The town of Makanda sits atop the major center of the fault zone like a hat or a crown. Here’s a map to show what I mean (note that I put the black lines on the image to indicate the paths of the eclipses):

New Madrid Fault and Eclipses

*Image Source: Earthquake Hazard in the New Madrid Seismic Zone Remains a Concern

Thank you Merlin who, in his comment below, informed me about an eclipse that happened in 1811 and an earthquake in that same year along the New Madrid.

In recorded history, the most powerful earthquake to shake the USA east of the Rockies happened on December 16, 1811, and it happened on the New Madrid. Estimates put the powerful quake at around magnitude 7.5-7.9, but I’ve read the fault can produce earthquakes in the 8s. That year, in September, there was an annular solar eclipse that pathed a few hundred miles northeast of the edge of the fault zone. The edge of the path of totality closest to the fault zone went through Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio. The edge of the fault zone closest to the path of totality is in the southern Illionois area.

The path of totality of the 2017 eclipse will be much closer to the fault zone than the 1811 eclipse. In fact, if I’m interpreting my research correctly, the path of totality will go directly over the northeastern edge of the fault zone.

Juan de Fuca Plate

The 2017 eclipse also paths directly over the Juan de Fuca plate, which plate is off the coast of Northern California, Oregon, Washington State, and Vancouver Island in Canada. The Juan de Fuca is capable of earthquakes of magnitude 9.0 or larger, which are capable of producing massive tsunami.

Teton Fault and Yellowstone

The 2017 eclipse paths directly over the Teton Fault in Wyoming and skirts the southern border of Yellowstone National Park.

Eastern Tennessee Seismic Zone

The 2017 eclipse paths directly over the Eastern Tennessee Seismic Zone.

Middleton Place-Summerville Seismic Zone

The 2017 eclipse paths directly over the Middleton Place-Summerville Seismic Zone in South Carolina.

Trail of Tears

The August 21, 2017 event paths directly over about half of the northern land route of the Trail of Tears, which is a path the Cherokee Nation took when they were forced out of their tribal lands. Thousands of Cherokee perished. This trail happens to go directly through the Shawnee National Forest, only 10-20 miles south of where the two eclipses cross paths.

Civil War

The August 21, 2017 event paths over Fort Sumter in South Carolina. The official beginning of the war was on April 12, 1861 when the Confederate forces bombarded the Union-controlled Fort Sumter in Charleston Bay.

Exclusively the USA

According to greatamericaneclipse.com, the August 21, 2017 event is the first time a total solar eclipse will have visited the USA and no other nation since 1776, the year America was founded. (Note that I have not yet verified this claim. If someone has evidence of this, please send it along to me in the comment section below.)

Update: According to National Eclipse (in an article called Debunking the National Eclipse) there was no USA eclipse in 1776. The way the statement that “the August 21, 2017 event is the first time a total solar eclipse will have visited the USA and no other nation since 1776” is written can therefore be misleading, depending on how you interpret it. A correct statement, again according to National Eclipse (a .wordpress.com site), is that there has not been an eclipse that exclusively visited the land that now makes up the United States since the year 1257, meaning America has never had this happen before as long as we’ve been America.

Update again: An article on Newsweek by Hannah Osborne published on Why is the August 21 solar eclipse special? . . .  It is the first total solar eclipse ever that goes over only U.S. land and no other country.” So, I’m not sure what to believe on this point. As far as I can tell, the 1257 eclipse in this link only touches land that is now part of this country. Maybe I’m looking at it wrong. Is this really the first time it’s ever happened over the land that makes up the USA, or is it the first since 1257? I’m thinking 1257, but I could be wrong.

Extermination Order

The August 21, 2017 event paths right over Jefferson City, which is Missouri’s capital.

In 1838, Governor Lilburn Boggs issued an executive order authorizing the extermination of all “Mormons” living in the state (this executive order was rescinded in by Governor Kit Bond in 1976, two years shy of 140 years after the order was given).

Gen. John B. Clark, the General to whom the executive order was addressed (he was responsible to carry out the order), wrote the following soon after the “Mormons” surrendered:

“. . . you must not think of staying here another season, or of putting in crops, for the moment you do this, the citizens will be upon you; and if I am called here again, in a case of a non-compliance of a treaty made, do not think I will do as I have now. You need not expect any mercy, but extermination, for I am determined the governor’s orders be executed.”

In so many instances, the outcasts were robbed of their dignity, their virtue, their lives, their liberty, and their pursuit of happiness. They were denied their freedom to peaceably practice their religion, their freedom to peaceably assemble, their freedom of speech, their freedom of press, and their petitions for redress of grievances went largely ignored. Other basic God-given freedoms were violated.

Even with this heartbreaking history, Missouri is a place of hope for members of the church. Some of the most significant events in all of human history occurred there and will yet occur there.

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