The Legend of Jesus
And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green:
And was the Holy Lamb of God,
On England's pleasant pastures seen!
And did the Countenance Divine,
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here,
Among these dark Satanic Mills?
Bring me my Bow of burning gold:
Bring me my Arrows of desire:
Bring me my Spear: O clouds unfold!
Bring me my Chariot of fire!
I will not cease from Mental Fight
Nor shall my Sword sleep in my hand:
Till we have built Jerusalem,
In England's green and pleasant Land!
(William Blake 1757-1827)
The historically rich and lore loaded Great Britain holds
yet another tradition: that the boy Jesus lived there for a time.
Sandwiched between the Roman invasion and King Author tales of the
Grail quest lies a persistent tradition that Jesus, members of his
disciple group and family, at one time or another, stayed in the various
places in or near Glastonbury.
Stonehenge was not originally built by the Druids; no one seems
to know for sure who or why it was built, though it may have been
an ancient observatory.
|Joseph of Arimathea(the
man who was later given Jesuss body and laid it in the tomb)
figures significantly in these traditions, of which there are at least
four. Summarizing them, Joseph of Arimathea was a tin merchant who
had mining interests in the Glastonbury region of England. He took
the boy Jesus with him on at least one of his trips to the British
Isles. They traveled by ship and arrived in southwestern England.
From there, Joseph toured the mines in Cornwall and Somerset County
where Jesus learned how to extract the tin and purge it from its ore.
An old saying emerging from Priddy, a mining village in the Mendip
Hills of Somerset county is: As sure as Our Lord was at Priddy...
What did Jesus do while in England besides learn the tin trade? Writings
dated around A.D. 550 by Taliesin, the Prince-Bard Druid may suggest
Jesus began an early teaching ministry: Christ, the Word from
the beginning, was from the beginning our teacher, and we never lost
His teaching. Though these words could imply something more
spiritual than the earthbound boy Jesus imparting Knowledge to the
Druids, Jesus Christ, nevertheless, had a profound impact on the future
40 miles distant from Glastonbury is Stonehenge. This ancient cluster
of mysterious, upright granite rock forms is thought to have been
an important center of Druidism. Not much is known about the true
Druidic faith, however. Most of their teachings were forgotten as
they were first conquered by the Romans and then became ideologically
absorbed into Christianity.
While Joseph of Armethia (an Uncle of Jesus) discusses arrangements
with the locals, the boy Jesus looks on.
Behind them are a wattle hut and a workman chopping wood.
|In spite of this, various
authorities purport Druids believed in life after death. Their concept
of God was that of a Trinity; a monotheistic supernatural being named
Duw consisting of three personalitiesBeli the creator who ruled
the past; Taran, who was in charge of the present; and interestingly
enough, Yesu, the All-Heal,the coming future Savior!
This belief finds parallels in Christian thought which describes God
as the Three in Onei.e one God with three aspects: the Father(creator),
the Holy Spirit(comforter) and the Son(redeemer)!
Did this ancient religion anticipate Jesus whose teachings later so
intrigued the Druids as to ignore their own faith and allow it to
fall into superstitious abandonment? And, did the boy Jesus personally
meet the folk who awaited Yesus coming?
Thinking that the entire island was heathen, Saint Augustine traveled
to Britain in 597AD. All were unbelievers as expected. That is until
he reached a certain western section and found a well established
Christian Church tradition there complete with clergy and holidays!
The subsequent report to Pope Gregory describes the location of his
findings in what could very well have been Glastonbury, which was
then a lake island in southwest England. .
At the time of Jesus, Glastonbury was a lake island. Marshlands
may have made parts of it accesable by foot.The island has been
continuously occupied for thousands of years. It has been theorized
the site's location to hard land coupled with its highly defensable
yet fertile ground made it an ideal spot for habitation.Today, Much
of the aquatic landscape has since disappeared, having been packed
in by wetlands growth, swamp drainage and fill .
According to early stories, after the death and resurrection
of Jesus, Joseph of Arimathea returned to England. Accompanying
him were some of the believers including relatives, friends, and
other followers of Jesus including his mother, Mary. Along with
his companions, some legends claim he took with him the cup from
which Jesus drank from at the last suppera cup that would
later be known and searched for as the Holy Grail.
Joseph and his group settled on the Isle of Glastonbury and built
huts to include a church for themselves, probably made of the same
sort of material the indigenous people used mud plastered
over a framework of sticks woven with branches(called wattle). They
preached and taught the local people the true faith and laid the
foundation for what Saint Augustine found 500 years later.
Considering the strength of tradition, documents evidencing Josephs
nature of employ among other things, the events of the era together
with the Bibles silence on much of Jesuss life;* it
is not difficult to believe Englands snowy meadows once felt
the leather-bound feet of the boy Jesus frolicking through them
on one of his birthdays.
of the British Years of Jesus
* Editor's noteJesuss
Palestinian mission is well documented. Where Jesus went what he did
and to some extent what he taught is well represented in the four
gospels. However there is no record in the Bible about the life of
Jesus between the ages of approximately 3 to 11 and again between
his 13th and 29th birthdays. If Joseph took with him the child Jesus
to England as traditions seem to indicate, it probably was between
the time Jesus was 4 and 11 years of age.
Largely extrapulated from an article originally
published in Heart magazine by Summit University Press,
Winter 1985, pp. 20-22, 114-115.
Other portions are from The World book Encyclopedia, volume
18, by Field Enterprises Education Corp., 1974; Funk & Wagnalls
Standard Reference Encyclopedia, volume 22 by Standard works
Publishing Co. Inc., 1961; and Lands and Peoples, volume
1 by Grolier Inc., 1967