Ancient Stories of Jesus Christ in India
There is a part of the Holy Bible, in the New Testament, that mentions about Jesus Christ being 12 years of age with his parents (Mary and Joseph) and a large group of their relatives and friends are on a pilgrimage to the holy Jewish capitol city of Jerusalem ” according to the Jewish custom of Passover” in Luke 2:41-52. When the Biblical books then talk about Jesus Christ again, about 18 years have mysteriously gone by, not telling what else happened to Jesus Christ during those missing or absent years, except that “Jesus Christ was about 30 years old when he started his ministry” according to Luke 3:23.There are ancient stories, during the time period of Jesus Christ, circulating in India that Jesus Christ lived in India and went from Buddhist monk to Buddhist priest while attending a large Buddhist monastery because of his great fascination to learn all he could about the life of the Buddha and Buddhism. Buddha, who came from India, lived about 6 centuries before Jesus Christ was born.
Buddha was a great spiritual teacher. Jesus Learned about Buddha and his philosophy from Buddhists’ who were already living in Israel, for centuries, especially in the big city capital of Jerusalem. In the First Century there were even some Buddhist temples in Israel and Egypt, but were gone by the early Middle Ages. or somewhat before. Many people from all over the known world were anciently attracted to the mainly warm weather nations of Israel and Egypt, especially around the beach front areas along the rivers.
Buddha’s teachings Jesus Christ passionately agreed with, Such teachings include forgiving one’s enemies, being non-violent, peaceful. pacifism, being against material pleasures and materialistic possessions, kindness to animals while many religious would preach animal sacrifice to their deity or deities. Buddha taught about reincarnation which many scholars believe Jesus Christ also taught when he referred to as ” being born again”. ” Verily, verily , I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God”. John 3:3. Buddha preached about acquiring “enlightenment “or being “enlightened” and Jesus Christ once called himself to be as such when he proclaimed that “I am the light of the world; he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life” (John 8:12.)
Jesus Christ was, of course, born and raised as a Jew in a devout Jewish family. He would also be fascinated with Judaism and become a rabbi. In the Bible, Jesus has been called as “Rabbi”. Mark 9:5, Mark 11:21, Mark 14:45, and John 1:49. But, Jesus Christ, according to the ancient legends, was also fascinated with the Buddha, his history, his sermons, and Buddhism. Jesus Christ is called “master” many times in the Bible, and since ancient times high ranking Buddhist clergy in Buddhist nations or Buddhist communities have been called “master”. In the Orient, the word “master” often means “teacher”. Some of the many Biblical references that refer to Jesus Christ as “master” include: Matthew 8:19, Matthew 10-25, Matthew 23:8, Matthew 26:18,25, 49. Mark 14:45,Luke 8:24 and John 13:13,14.
Another ancient similarity with Jesus Christ and Buddhism is that the Buddha, as well as Buddhist saints, and the saints and gods of Hinduism, are very often depicted in artwork as having a strong ,large colorful halo or nimbus around their head and neck. Buddhism for centuries before the birth of Jesus Christ and Hinduism, for thousands of years (eons) before the birth of Christ, illustrated their holy figures with halos; nimbuses. For Jesus Christ to have journeyed to India, he would either have to sufficiently speak the language or someone; some individuals would have to speak the same language Jesus Christ would speak. Jesus spoke Aramaic. Jesus Christ also knew ancient Hebrew. In being a rabbi, Jesus would have to have known ancient Hebrew because the Books of the Old Testament Bible were written in ancient Hebrew and all rabbis must be able to read their ancient sacred Judaism books. The first two books of Genesis were estimated to have been written down around 1450 BC to 1400 BC. The last written book of the Old Testament, Ezekiel, was written down, during his captivity in Babylon, under King Nebuchadnezzar 2, from about 593 BC to 570 BC. Also, if Jesus also knew another language, such as Greek or especially Roman; Latin, he would have been understood by certain people in India since hundreds of years before Jesus, Alexander the Great, a Greek military leader, conquered large parts of India and centuries later the Romans conquered India. During the time of Jesus Christ, Israel; Judea was under the military rule of the Romans and the Bible records Roman magistrate Pontius Pilate and Jesus Christ conversing with each other, so Jesus Christ must have known Latin; the main language used throughout the Roman Empire.
An interesting factor is that India, at the time of Jesus Christ, had various Jewish communities that were centuries old. The Cochin Jews are considered to be the oldest, continuously living Jewish community in the world. These Jews began arriving from Judea at least 2, 500 years ago, on the Malabar Coast of India and created settlements as merchants; traders near the town of Cochin in what has become currently the most southerly Indian state of Kerala. Their first massive immigration occurred in 586 BCE following the destruction of the First Jewish Temple by the Babylonians. Another massive exodus of Jews from Israel to India, with even higher Jewish refugees, occurred at the destruction of the Second Jewish Temple under the Roman army in 70 AD. So Jesus Christ could have lived with Cochin Jews, temporarily, while in India, while eventually seeking out a Buddhist monastery to enter and join the Buddhist order. The Buddhist monastery would be the type that is very large and contains hundreds or thousands of ancient books or scrolls on Buddhism, history, and medicine. Today, there are only 26 Cochin Jews living in India.
In Buddhism, the idea of spreading the message of the Buddha and getting converts is very important. Buddhists believe in telling the whole world about the life, teachings, and death of the Buddha. Buddhists want to save lost souls from transgressions to bring them happiness. Buddhists would stress that happiness comes from the mind and not from being a slave to material possessions including money. In Christianity, both Jesus Christ and his followers greatly believed in preaching to the world, getting converts. and saving souls to bring them to Paradise( The Kingdom of Heaven). Jesus stressed that “The Kingdom of Heaven is within you”. Luke 17:21 meaning that Heaven is a state of mind and not having to go to some material place for joy. In Buddhism, the Buddha, who was once a prince and lived in a castle, walked away from all of his wealth, living the life of a pauper and a spiritual ascetic. In Christianity, Jesus Christ told the wealthy young man to sell all of his possessions and then give that money to the poor, which made the rich man feel very sad and reluctant. Matthew 19:21-22.
The Buddha seems to have taught never to commit murder under any circumstances. Jesus Christ was also totally against murder. When an adulteress was brought before Jesus Christ and the disciples the scribes, and the Pharisees were ready to stone her to death for her crime according to the Laws of Moses; Jesus stopped the execution by commanding to the men there by saying “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.” John 8:7. In various parts of India today, there are stories of an ancient holy man believed to be Jesus Christ of Israel who came to study Buddhism in depth. But, no definite physical proof. to convince religious scholars and archeological researchers currently. Some times events happened in ancient times, but no real evidence has survived, Some times, scant evidence survives.
If Jesus Christ was in India, after a certain time of years, he could have gotten a return trip to Israel to visit his parents, at times, by either travelling with Jews who wished to worship Judaism at certain major holidays directly at the Holy Jewish capitol city at the Great Synagogues in Jerusalem, or travel with Buddhist missionaries to Israel who were looking for more converts to Buddhism. In being both a Jew and a Buddhist, Jesus Christ taught his religion to the known ancient world and his religion was a fusion of Judaism and Buddhism, which his followers turned into Christianity. Instead of people worshiping Buddha, the followers of Jesus Christ made people worship Jesus Christ, Himself as the Son of God and even as an incarnation of God from Heaven on earth. At times in the ancient past, Jesus Christ was called the sun of God, to indicate that he was the light; the enlightened one; but the word “sun” got entirely replaced with the word “son”. Jesus Christ at times referred to himself as the “Son of Man”.