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Guru's book claims Jesus practised yoga
Sydney Morning Herald ^ | December 18, 2004 | Teresa Watanabe

Posted on 12/18/2004 5:54:58 PM PST by nickcarraway

The three wise men who came to worship the Christ child hailed from India and named him Isa, or "Lord" in Sanskrit - a name that became Jesus in the Bible.

Later, Jesus travelled to India, where he practiced yoga meditation with the great sages some time during his "lost years" from age 13 to 30, a time of his life scarcely mentioned in the Bible.

As Christians immerse themselves in the Advent season to prepare for Christmas, such assertions might sound like blasphemy or pure fantasy. But they come from a renowned Indian guru, the late Paramahansa Yogananda, in a newly published work that is being praised as the first detailed interpretation of the four Gospels by a Hindu.

Compiled from decades of Yogananda's speeches and writings, the book is being published by his Los Angeles-based Self-Realisation Fellowship 52 years after his death.

The Second Coming of Christ: The Resurrection of Christ Within You, offers startling ideas about the deeper meaning of Jesus's teachings and their essential unity with yoga.

AdvertisementAt 1642 pages, the intricate discourse on various Gospel passages is not expected to be a bestseller.

But it has been praised as a groundbreaking work by scholars.

Robert Ellwood, a University of Southern California professor emeritus and world religion expert, called it a "bridge-building book" that could change the way people see Jesus.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Front Page News; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: bookreview; christianity; hindu; india; jesus; sanskrit; secondcoming; wisemen; yoga
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1 posted on 12/18/2004 5:54:59 PM PST by nickcarraway
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To: Canticle_of_Deborah; Flying Circus

ping


2 posted on 12/18/2004 5:56:33 PM PST by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway

I think there is an Eastern influence in Christianity, but I think it comes through Greece, not some lost years of Jesus.


3 posted on 12/18/2004 5:59:04 PM PST by D-fendr
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To: nickcarraway

Watermelon.


4 posted on 12/18/2004 5:59:40 PM PST by Modok
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To: nickcarraway

wow slow news day on FR


5 posted on 12/18/2004 6:00:06 PM PST by Flavius ("... we should reconnoitre assiduosly... " Vegetius)
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To: D-fendr

Greece is to the West of Jerusalem.


6 posted on 12/18/2004 6:01:04 PM PST by nickcarraway
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To: D-fendr
"Eastern" influences throughout the Roman Empire came through the area we call Persia. Then, there's the interesting problem of the "Western" influences flowing out of the Roman Empire, through Persia, and on to India and China.

Although I haven't read the yoga master's book as yet, it's about time the Hindus recognized the most recent appearance of the Messiah. This book may well precipitate a flood of quite intresting shifts in Hinduism.

7 posted on 12/18/2004 6:07:33 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: nickcarraway

The Silly Season is upon us.


8 posted on 12/18/2004 6:09:12 PM PST by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: nickcarraway

"thru" Greece, from the East. After Alexander...


9 posted on 12/18/2004 6:09:56 PM PST by D-fendr
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To: muawiyah

Yes, interesting. There may have been a great deal more cross-pollination than usually thought.


10 posted on 12/18/2004 6:11:42 PM PST by D-fendr
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To: nickcarraway

Students of Yogananda, Swami viva KAnanda, yoga know that each and every movement in the performance of yoga is in reverence to a Hindu god. There are 32 million gods in hinduism. Each position is reverential to one of their gods. The sick part is one of the places where these techiques are taught is the YMCA (Young Mens Christian Association) They are taught it is exercise, but those who teach it know very well it is a technique taught to get into a altered state of consciousness, which is the doorway to the occult. I am told by those who immerse themselves in yoga it is the fastest way to an altered state. Faster than drugs, biofeedback, sensory deprivation via "witches cradle", hypnosis, or any other technique. I do not believe it is compatible with the fundamentals of the Christian faith.


11 posted on 12/18/2004 6:20:46 PM PST by Texas Songwriter (p)
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To: nickcarraway
I read a book called "Jesus Lived in India" where the author claimed that whatever it was that one of the disciples gave to Jesus while he was on the cross, supposedly a whiff of vinegar to revive him, was actually a drug that caused him to pass out so the Roman guards would think he was dead and take him down.

Wild stuff.

12 posted on 12/18/2004 6:22:30 PM PST by wizardoz
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To: D-fendr
It's actually not all that hard to sail by Dhow from Haifa to Suez, into the Red Sea, and from there cross the Persian Gulf to the Indian Ocean and then to the Malabar Coast.

In earlier times, no doubt, there was a bit of overland to get to the Red Sea, but there was no reason to have to take the whole trip on foot.

Alexander the Great did it backwards upon leaving India.

http://nabataea.net/ships.html provides a brief on this ancient Indian ship design popularized by Arab traders.

13 posted on 12/18/2004 6:23:39 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: nickcarraway
I remember a "Lost Years" special on Jesus. They investigated the Dead Sea Scrools and suggested that Jesus may have spent some time with the Essenes. They also mentioned a monestary in Tibet, (I believe), where there was documentation of a holy man from the west. There was even a picture on a scroll that may have been Jesus.

They mentioned the crucifiction and suggested that the water flowing from the spear wound in the side and the story about the Centurion who was partially blind and cured by the liquid flowing from Jesus's chest might signify an Eastern to wit Yoga experience!

Go Figger!

14 posted on 12/18/2004 6:24:40 PM PST by Young Werther
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To: nickcarraway

John Dominick Crossan will probably endorse this book.


15 posted on 12/18/2004 6:24:41 PM PST by F15Eagle
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To: Texas Songwriter
Yoga is also great exercise. People who tell you it's a fast doorway to the occult are full of it. There is, in fact, no doorway to the occult since it simply doesn't exist.

That doesn't mean Satan is not real, just that evil is not done except by the hand of man exercising free-will.

Your source that advises you that Hinduism has 32,000,000 gods is also full of nonsense. There are, in fact, as many religions in India as there are people. Some of them share gods, some don't. Many of them are as focused as any Christian group on monotheism, although there are many others that are purely Trinitarian.

They don't call the Subcontinent "the Mother of Religions" for nothing!

16 posted on 12/18/2004 6:28:31 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: nickcarraway

No way. If Jesus was into yoga and wanted us to be He would have told us. Just another way to deceive people.


17 posted on 12/18/2004 6:29:19 PM PST by JudyinCanada (Five-fingered Canadian)
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To: Texas Songwriter

I can't see how Yoga would be anti-christian, the only way to reach the altered states you talk about is to clear your mind of everything. I used to practice meditation and am thinking about getting back into it.


18 posted on 12/18/2004 6:33:21 PM PST by John Lenin
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To: Texas Songwriter

I've got a DVD on Yoga for inflexible people.

Guess I missed the part on demons - all I saw were bend like this, stretch like that.

I don't do it, but have watched it a time or two for the cute girl stretching...


19 posted on 12/18/2004 6:34:04 PM PST by Mr Rogers
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To: Texas Songwriter

Come on now, I've heard the "everything strange is of the devil" crap since I was a little kid. I was raised in a VERY fundamentalist household, went to a Chrsitian school, and had friends that were more fundamentalist than I was. Monopoly was considered from Satan because you played it with dice.
A bunch of exercises are NOT going to lead you to hell. I've done Yoga exercises for years for my back and I haven't grown horns yet.

You're worried about an "altered state of consciousness"? Have you ever seen Holy Rollers, Snake Handlers, Tent Revivals? Those people make Hindus seem positively tame by comparison. Some Christians are just as wacky as any Hindu.


20 posted on 12/18/2004 6:35:39 PM PST by dljordan
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To: ashtanga

ping


21 posted on 12/18/2004 6:37:26 PM PST by dennisw (Help put the "Ch" back in Chanukah)
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To: nickcarraway

There are at least 18 years unaccounted for in the Gospels. The prevalence of foreign influences could well have brought such practices to Jerusalem and maybe to the attention of Jesus. I have an orthodox Jewish friend who practices tai chi and doesn't seem to see any conflict even though there are Buddhist roots to tai chi. It may be so and it's at least an entertaining idea.


22 posted on 12/18/2004 6:39:10 PM PST by muir_redwoods
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To: nickcarraway

Gee that's almost as wacky as the belief that Jesus came to America and preached to the Indians, oops! he says, running from open can O worms.


23 posted on 12/18/2004 6:46:09 PM PST by edchambers ("Pajamahadin Neocon footsoldier of the Haliburton Death squad ")
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To: edchambers
This story is very believable if you know anything about meditation. Hindus use meditation as a way to enter pure consciousness.
24 posted on 12/18/2004 6:54:10 PM PST by John Lenin
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To: nickcarraway

"My yoga is easy. . . ."


25 posted on 12/18/2004 7:02:25 PM PST by Charles Henrickson (". . . and my guru is light.")
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To: muawiyah

interesting.. thanks for the link.


26 posted on 12/18/2004 7:03:14 PM PST by D-fendr
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To: dljordan
Interesting that you bring in the snake handlers and holy rollers.

You ever hear of soma? It was a drug used by the ancient people who seem to have been responsible for writing down the Upanishads (Hindu sacred scriptures that are really, really old).

These people found that the sacred mushroom with soma simply didn't exist in the Indian Subcontinent so they turned to other hallucinogenic drugs. Their mode of worship was quite interesting.

One branch of Pentecostal belief in America and Scandinavia is associated with Sa'ami (Laplander) beliefs that center on the use of amanita muscaria. This mushroom has been identified as being the source of the ancient soma.

The snake handlers, of course, derive their beliefs from ancient practices more closely associated with the Roma (Gypsies) than with any other group, and, of course, they too come originally from India (circa 1400). The Roma speak a language that is a cognate of ancient Sanskrit, which was the successor language to the Dravidian language in which the Upanishads were first written. The Dravidian languages are related to Sa'ami and Sumerian.

Yoga derives from an entirely different tradition, has nothing to do with soma, and wasn't invented by the Gypsies, Sumerians or Sa'ami. For the most part it is simply exercise.

A friend of mine does combine it with worship. He frequently stands on his head in an inverted lotus position while he focuses on a picture of Lord Krishna as a child ~ my friend does not play the flute, but if he could, he would because he and I know, as do most people, that music is the only pathway to an alterated state of consciousness.

He also practices yoga as a form of exercise!

27 posted on 12/18/2004 7:16:29 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: nickcarraway

Exactly... This is why all Hindus should convert to Christianity.


28 posted on 12/18/2004 7:32:45 PM PST by Brilliant
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To: Cicero

Could be worse. We could have every thread "OK This is how Kerry is going to win" alternated with "OK this is how we can impeach Bush."


29 posted on 12/18/2004 7:37:28 PM PST by OSHA (OSHA, the Grand Wizard and Chief Executive Fascist of FreeperWorld- Industries LLC)
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To: nickcarraway
...being praised as the first detailed interpretation of the four Gospels by a Hindu.

Oh, boy!! Just what we Christians have been needing! An interpretation of our Gospels by a heathen!

30 posted on 12/18/2004 7:40:01 PM PST by Aarchaeus
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To: JudyinCanada

yoga is fun as exerise. I don't find it incompatable with chritianity.


31 posted on 12/18/2004 7:42:15 PM PST by longtermmemmory (VOTE!)
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To: muir_redwoods
There are at least 18 years unaccounted for in the Gospels.

Yes, thank you - and the belief that Jesus traveled to or near India has been around for a looooooooong time, and has come from a variety of sources.

32 posted on 12/18/2004 7:43:05 PM PST by PianoMan (and now back to practicing)
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To: nickcarraway

Alexander the Great brought Hindu Brahmin back from India. Hindu influences are seen among the Greek, Jewish and Middle Eastern cultures and beliefs.


33 posted on 12/18/2004 7:49:50 PM PST by Canticle_of_Deborah
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To: nickcarraway
In a sense, this is "old news"..

It is part of the Lost Years of Jesus as many others have already intimated..
Whether there is any truth to the stories must be left up to the individual..

There was a book called, I believe, "The Jesus Conspiracy" circa 1966-69 or so..( or Conspiracies ) that covered the lost years as part of the whole life of Jesus..

It intimated ( or just flat out claimed as fact ) that upon reaching age 12, and due to the "incident at the temple with the Elders" it was decided that Jesus should enter the preisthood.. and therefore, should recieve a sound education in comparative religions..

Jesus was "apprenticed" to an uncle, Joseph of Arimathea.. ( same one, supplied the crypt ) and that J of A was a travelling merchant.. a far travelling merchant..
That Jesus travelled to England, learned mystic secrets from the Celts and the Druids, and upon returning from his first travels continued into the east..
He travelled through Greece, Persia, India, and into Tibet, possibly even farther east..

It was purported that he not only learned and mastered the highest teachings of those religions, but mastered certain "techniques" of Yoga, meditation, mental and physical self-control, that others spent entire lifetimes attempting to achieve without success..

Thus, he was able to control breathe, heartbeat, temperature, even perception of time..
Likewise, he learned various medicinal secrets, and techniques of self-defense.. ( martial artists like to point out his walking through a crowd of attackers without being touched as a prime example of AIKIDO..)
Also, examples of possible use of pain management techniques, hypnotism, the medical knowledge to bring people back from the dead, and of course, his own resurrection..

The book purported that Jesus engineered his own crucifixion, and the timing...
Due to the Passover holiday, Jesus had to be removed from the cross at sundown..
With his extensive training in eastern religion, he was able to survive the crucifixion and "revive" himself in a burial crypt.. Provided by his own Uncle, who he knew and trusted as a family member..

The book also contends that, having survived his ordeal, Jesus went on to claim his right to the Maccabee line of succession and his place as king of Israel..
Jesus then led several violent revolts against the Romans, but eventually died in battle, either in one of the final battles, or at Masada, taking his own life along with the others that died just before the seige on the mountain fortress ended..

There may have been an alternative concerning Mary Magdelene and moving to Europe with their child, ( the whole Bible Code thing..) but I may be imagining that.. ( I have seen that story too many times to trust my memory on where I saw it first...)

This is not necessarilly my belief, but it was quite a book, and presented quite an entertaining speculation, if nothing else..

34 posted on 12/18/2004 7:51:52 PM PST by Drammach (Freedom; not just a job, it's an adventure..)
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To: nickcarraway

Paramahansa Yogananda was/is a divinely sparked soul. His writings brought me back to Christianity many years ago. "Autobiography of a Yogi" is his story.


35 posted on 12/18/2004 8:19:27 PM PST by WarPaint
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To: muir_redwoods

Sheesh, I hold a black in Kenpo and my son in TKD. I guess we're satanic too. ')


36 posted on 12/18/2004 8:33:54 PM PST by Indie (Ignorance of the truth is no excuse for stupidity.)
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To: wizardoz

This wild stuff was widespread in the couple centuries after the Crucifixion. There is not much new to the stories although the stories are new to every generation.


37 posted on 12/18/2004 8:39:19 PM PST by RightWhale (Destroy the dark; restore the light)
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To: nickcarraway; RightWhale; Indie; WarPaint; Drammach; Canticle_of_Deborah; PianoMan; Aarchaeus; ...
Perhaps I can be of some slight service here. The whole "lost years of jesus" thing is originally the concoction of a loveable, swashbuckling, larger then life russian nutjob; one Nicholas Konstantinovich Roerich (1874-1947): artist, explorer, ethnographer, visionary, mystic, self-proclaimed guru, possible spy and all-around adventurer who, by turns bamboozled his fellow tsarists, then bolshevists, colonial british but above of all, we soft-hearted, mushy-headed americans. He can be fairly credited as the Father of the New Age and that is how I first heard of him, when I was dabbling in that stuff in my early twenties. Of the many tall tales he schlepped around in the 1920's was that he had found (in his many travels throughout Central Asia) in an obscure tibetan monastery (of course) a manuscript proving that Jesus Christ from age eighteen to age thirty left Palestine and traveled the Silk Road to India and there studied under Hindu sages and Bhuddist lamas, conmingling with his rabbinical teachings therein to forge his ministry. In the intervening decades many kooks have taken up the story and put their stamp on it but Roerich was the kook of origin.

The man was more full of it than the mythical Baron Munchausen (Roerich, I mean) yet somehow he managed to wander over an incredibly dangerous part of the world in an extremely violent time and make an outrageous pest of himself yet somehow avoid arrest and/or execution and always garner publicity and sponsorship among the high and mighty. He is forgotten now, except among the New Agers, but he was once paraded through Manhattan, received by President Herbert Hoover, and nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. His highest-placed devotee and acolyte was none other than Henry Wallace, FDR's Vice President, Secy of Ag. and Truman's fired Secretary of Commerce. Roerich is widely suspected of influencing Wallace's design of the one-dollar bill's Great Seal (take that, Nicholas Cage!).

Roerich did a great deal to popularize Eastern Mysticism and his works were likely the source material for James Hilton's 1933 bestselling novel Lost Horizon. He first made a name for himself as a set designer in his native St. Petersburg. He was a pretty good painter and I recommend his (art)works highly. Peace out.

38 posted on 12/18/2004 11:36:37 PM PST by sinanju
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To: nickcarraway

BTTT


39 posted on 12/18/2004 11:43:06 PM PST by Fiddlstix (This Tagline for sale. (Presented by TagLines R US))
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To: nickcarraway
Robert Ellwood, a University of Southern California professor emeritus and world religion expert, called it a "bridge-building book" that could change the way people see Jesus.

People gullible enough to buy the book, maybe.

40 posted on 12/18/2004 11:49:02 PM PST by L.N. Smithee (Liberals love minorities...as long as they stay in their place. Ask Ted Rall. Ask Harry Reid.)
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To: nickcarraway

Boy, everybody sure wants a piece of Jesus, don't they?


41 posted on 12/18/2004 11:54:18 PM PST by fire_eye (Once you've pulled his pin, Mr. Hand Grenade is no longer your friend!)
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To: muawiyah
Yoga is also great exercise. People who tell you it's a fast doorway to the occult are full of it. There is, in fact, no doorway to the occult since it simply doesn't exist.

That's no less a dogmatic statement than his that yoga positions are tributes to obscure deities.

Yoga may indeed be "great exercise," but the fact remains that by its nature, it cannot solely be healthful and athletic -- its practice calls upon the participant to buy into its inherent mysticism.

As a Christian, I prefer Pilates, which doesn't ask you to adopt elements of a religion you reject.

42 posted on 12/18/2004 11:58:30 PM PST by L.N. Smithee (Liberals love minorities...as long as they stay in their place. Ask Ted Rall. Ask Harry Reid.)
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To: L.N. Smithee

I disagree. You can practice yoga postures - certainly at the simple "I need to stretch" - without buying into ANY of its mysticism.

In martial arts, some debate the tie between the religious training once associated with it & its pure atheletic movements. Most would agree it depends on how you wish to learn it - some will only teach it associated with its religious roots (meaning no Christian can accept learning there), while others divorce it from its religious past and teach it simply as self-defense/sport.

I believe Christians should understand yoga and oriental martial arts have a religious root, and that some teachers will teach religion under the guise of physical fitness. But it is wrong to say I cannot learn, say, judo without buying into oriental philosophy (religion).

I joked earlier about watching the video only to check out the cute girl - truth is, when I follow the stretching, I see good improvement in my flexibility. As taught in the video I've got, there is NO - zero, nada - religous overtones. Just "Bend over holding the chair edge thus, keep your back straight and slowly move your shoulders..."


43 posted on 12/19/2004 12:25:42 AM PST by Mr Rogers
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To: sinanju

I've heard of the guy. A painter too. He got around a lot same as Gurdjieff. We must give him credit


44 posted on 12/19/2004 3:40:57 AM PST by dennisw (Help put the "Ch" back in Chanukah)
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To: Indie
"Sheesh, I hold a black in Kenpo and my son in TKD. I guess we're satanic too."

My 2nd dan is in hapkido but I haven't got to the devil worship stuff yet either. Maybe 3rd dan ;-)

45 posted on 12/19/2004 6:49:31 AM PST by muir_redwoods
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To: sinanju
This Roerich sounds like a contemporary of Madame Blavatsky..

Possible linkage there?

46 posted on 12/19/2004 9:16:06 AM PST by Drammach (Freedom; not just a job, it's an adventure..)
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To: Drammach
There may have been an alternative concerning Mary Magdelene and moving to Europe with their child, ( the whole Bible Code thing..) but I may be imagining that.. ( I have seen that story too many times to trust my memory on where I saw it first...)

Wow! Then did he and Trinity pilot a spaceship into the mainframe to confront the machines and free humanity from the Matrix?

Just kidding. Sorry. Couldn't help myself.

47 posted on 12/19/2004 9:25:06 AM PST by wizardoz
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To: nickcarraway
Actually, the Magi were the priests of the Parthian Empire, which was distinctly Persian rather than Indian. They held the right to name the kings of the Parthians, which is why Herod and the rest of Jerusalem got nervous when they showed up asking for "He who is born King of the Jews." They thought the Parthians, the Romans' largest rival, were trying to stir up a border incident. (The fact that the Magi wouldn't have come without a small army to protect them probably didn't help either.)

In all likelihood, these Magi were familiar with the prophet Daniel, who had been the head of their order at one time. They would have known the birth of the Messiah was close from his prophecy of the Seventy Weeks. I would imagine that either one of them received a prophecy concerning the star, or they had written prophecies of Daniel that have since been lost to us about the Messiah's birth star that led them to seek Him out in Israel when it appeared.

48 posted on 12/19/2004 9:30:46 AM PST by Buggman (Your failure to be informed does not make me a kook.)
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To: nickcarraway

Sounds like an Indo-Italian entree.

Just kidding - if my recollection serves, wasn't the good yogi the inspiration for Yes' Tales from Topographic Oceans?


49 posted on 12/19/2004 9:34:17 AM PST by P.O.E. (Thank you, Vets!)
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To: nickcarraway
Guru's book claims Jesus practised yoga"

Jesus was resurrected from the grave. He didn't need inventions of man to tell Him how to function.

50 posted on 12/19/2004 9:35:43 AM PST by patriot_wes
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