Jesus live in India?
By Iqbal Malhotra
The Indian Express
The New Testament of the Bible is completely silent on where Jesus spent 18
years of his life between the ages of 12 and 30. There is also a question mark
on whether Jesus died on the cross or whether he survived the crucifixion and
escaped from Jerusalem with the help of friends, to finally settle in India as
Both history and the Gospels are silent about the life of Jesus before his 30th
year when he was baptised by John. A German theologian, Holger Kersten, has
published a book called Jesus Lived in India, which contains seminal evidence on
the fact that Jesus spent the 18 lost years of his life in India imbibing yoga,
Vedic traditions and Buddhism. Thereafter, he returned to Jerusalem and after
the crucifixion escaped back to India via Damascus and Persia.
Jesus is believed to have been buried in Srinagar, Kashmir. His graves are
intact and points east-west in
the Jewish tradition rather than north-south in the Islamic tradition.
Kersten has provided a wealth of theological, archaeological and historical
evidence in defence of his
hypothesis. According to Kersten, the Tibetans believe that Jesus was the 21st
incarnation of Padmasambhava, the Buddha; the latter himself being the ninth
incarnation of Vishnu. He develops an argument that the three wise men, or the
Magi, were really Tibetan monks hunting for the
If Kersten's evidence is to be tested, it will shake the foundations of
contemporary Christianity as it will set
aside Jesus's sacrifice on the cross to wash the sins of mankind and therefore
initiate a process of introspection to assess whether Christianity is indeed
based on the teachings of Jesus Christ or whether it is based on the
interpretation of the teachings of Jesus Christ by Paul. Paul taught that the
whole function of Jesus centres on his sacrificial death, that through the
shedding of his blood he absolved the faithful of their sins and released them
from chaos and the domination of Satan. According to Paul, a person may be saved
merely by the single act of baptism, becoming a child of God and a completely
new being. Most Christians are of the opinion that the greatness, the uniqueness
of Christianity, stands and falls with this teaching. Yet it may prove to be a
fiction far removed from the ideas of Jesus.
Not even a hint of this so-called Christian doctrine of
salvation is to be found in the Sermon on the Mount --the quintessence of
Jesus's message -- or in the Lord's Prayer, or in Christ's traditional parables.
Kersten first turns to Russian journalist Nicolai Notovitch who visited Ladakh
in the 1880s and wrote a
book called òf40óThe Unknown Life of Jesus Christ. Notovitch discovered the
existence of certain ancient
scriptures in the monastery of Hemis in Ladakh about the mysterious prophet Issa,
whose life appeared to be similar to the stories of Jesus the Nazarene.
According to these scriptures, at the age of 14, Issa, who was born in Israel,
came to Sindh in India and from there he travelled through the Punjab to
Jagannath Puri, where he learnt the Vedas for six years. Later he travelled via
Nepal to Ladakh, where he studied Buddhist scriptures.
Then there is the Natha Namavali, an old Hindu Sutra of
the mystical order of the Nath Yogis, which tells of the great Saint Isha Nath,
who is said to have come to India at the age of 14. After he returned to his
home country and started to spread his teachings there, he fell victim to a
conspiracy and was crucified. By means of the yogic powers he had attained in
India he was able to survive execution, and finally -- with the help of the
supernatural powers of his teacher Chetan Nath, a Nath Guru -- he came once more
to India, where he is said to have founded an ashram in the Himalayan foothills.