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Planet, [a travel guide] and too many people started coming. "And one foreigner ..." he gave me an apologetic look, "broke off a bit from the tomb to take home with him . So that's why it's closed now." On cue, a couple ofunwashed and exhausted Australians appeared, carrying the latest edition of the Lonely Planet guide to India, which, sure enough, carried the tale of Jesus's tomb, with some caveats about crackpots and blasphemy. They asked me to take a photo of them outside the shrine-but were not desperately disappointed that it was closed. The tomb ofJesus was just another place to tick off on their tourist-in-India must-visit list.

A Famous Meeting

T

he ruins of a Buddhist monastery in a spectacular location halfway up a mountainside north of Srinagar are not, yet, mentioned in the Lonely Planet. It's a spot that I had previouslybeen unable to visit,because as a senior police officer told me, it was "infested with terrorists". But the watchman now seemed prepared for the arrival of mass tourism, with his 50 words of English, and his hidden stock ofancient terracotta tiles for sale. He informed me that Jesus was among the religious leaders who attended a famous Buddhist meeting here in AD 80, and even pointed to the place where he sat.The stories ofJesus in India are not just aimed at gullible tourists-they date back to the 19th Century. They were part of attempts to explain the striking similarities between Christianity and Buddhism, a matter of great concern to 19th Century scholars-and also a desire

among some Christians to root the story ofJesus in Indian soil.

Missing Years

T

here is talk of the missing years of Jesus, unmentioned in the gospels, [unless you read Elaine Pagel'sGnostic Gospels] when he was between the ages of 12 and 30. Some I~~"'" say he was in India, picking up Buddhist ideas. These aren't notions that have entirely died out. The US-based Christian sect, known as the Church Universal and Triumphant, is the bestknown modem supporter of the belief that Jesus lived in Kashmir, though they don't believehe died there. And in Islam, in which Jesus is the penultimate prophet, there is also a minority tradition adopted by the controversial Ahmeddiya sect, that Rozabal does contain the grave of'jesus. Professional historians tend to laugh out loud when you mention the notion that Jesus might have lived in Kashmir-but his tomb is now firmly on the tourist trail-and a growing number of credulous visitors believe that he was buried in the Rozabal shrine. And for those who scoff, remember that others have argued, just as implausibly, that Jesus came to Britain. A theory that was much in vogue when the poet William Blake famously asked: "And did those feet in ancient time, walk upon England's mountains green? And was the holy Lamb ofGod on England's pleasant pastures seen?"

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I

The way to the Paneboati (ave.

Story from BBC NEWS: bttpi/rneu禄. bbc. co. uk/go/prljr/-/2/hilprogra11lmes/jrom_ 01ll路_owlI_correspqfllldentl8587838.stm And what did Meher Baba have to say about this? Here is the direct quote from Lord Meher Vol 3 page 752: "That is where Jesus' body is buried"... He said to His women disciples, when they were in Kashmir in 1944. During their stay, Baba once took the women to the village of Harvan and took them up the hills and showed them the spot where he had sat in seclusion in 1929. Pointing to a specific area in the mountainous area, he remarked to them, "That is where jesus'body is buried. But before that, in August 1925 [Lord Meher Vol 8, page 2974] He had told His men mandali "There is one secret about Jesus which the Christians do not know. When Jesus was crucified, he did not die. He entered the state ofNirvikalp Samadhi (the T-am-God state without bodily consciousness). On the third day, he again became conscious ofhis body, and he traveled secretly in disguise eastward (with some apostles) to India. This was called Jesus' resurrection. After reaching India, he traveled farther east to Rangoon, in Burma, where he remained for some time. He then went north to Kashmir, where he settled. When his work was finished on earth, he dropped his body and entered Nirvikalp Samadhi permanently. Saints in India have verified these facts aboutJesus'travels. Mankind will soon become aware of the true life ofJesus." Whenever Meher Baba returned to Srinagar, for his own reasons, he went to the Harvan mountain village near the area where Jesus's body was buried in a cave nearly twenty centuries ago. Baba did not actually show the cave to his men and women mandali, because after viewing the terrain one observes that the cave was probably covered over by avalanches and

Love Street Lamp Post 1st Qtr 2010  

AMBCSC ARCHIVES Rare Print Literature Publication

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