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Lost Sutras of Jesus, The

Product no.: 1-56975-522-1
The story of the "Jesus Sutras" begins around A.D. 640, when a band of Christian missionaries entered China.

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Publisher's Synopsis

The message they brought was translated into a series of tales about Jesus, describing his teachings with a Taoist and Buddhist overlay. These sutras were eventually sealed in a cave around A.D. 1005, where they remained hidden until being unearthed by explorers in 1907.

The Lost Sutras of Jesus combines the amazing story of the writing, disappearance, and rediscovery of the sutras with an exploration of their message. Photos and maps are included.

Reviews

"It’s an amazing story, one only now being told. More than 1,300 years ago, a Persian Christian monk named Aleben traveled 3,000 miles along the ancient caravan route known as the Silk Road all the way to China, carrying precious copies of the New Testament writings (probably in Syriac). Aleben and his fellow Christian monks stopped in the Chinese city of Chang-au (Xian), where, under the protection of the Tang Dynasty Emperor Taizong, he founded a Christian monastery and began the arduous task of translating the Christian texts into Chinese. It was the year A.D. 635. When the Italian explorer Marco Polo arrived in China nearly 600 years later, he was astonished to discover that a tiny Christian community had existed there for centuries."        ~Christian Yoga Magazine

"The selections here from the Jesus Sutras include the Ten Methods for Meditating on the World, The Nature of the One Spirit, Creation, The Four Laws of the Dharma, Jesus' Teachings for Those Who Have Escaped the Realm of Desire, a Parable, the Five Skandhas, and Prayers. These texts present a wonderful blend of Christianity, Buddhism and Taoism. They celebrate the One Spirit that blows freely like a wind and is active in people's lives as well as in the whole creation. In these teachings there is no denigration of the world nor is there a separation of the body and spirit. We were especially taken by the third of four laws of the Dharma:

'The third law is no virtue. Don't try to find pleasure by making a name for yourself through good deeds. Practice instead universal loving kindness that is directed toward everyone. Never seek praise for what you do. Consider the earth. It produces and nurtures a multitude of creatures, each receiving what it needs. Words cannot express the benefits the earth provides. Like the earth, you are at one with Peace and Joy when you practice the laws and save living creatures. But do it without acclaim. This is the law of no virtue.'

Reading this passage, we realize how Jesus' practice of humility in the Gospels is very similar to the Buddhist path of selflessness. They reinforce each other and challenge us to find other ways to practice the idea of no self in everyday life. The Lost Sutras of Jesus is a fine and fetching lure to more multi-faith adventures."      ~Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat

Excerpt

"The Lord of Heaven sent the Cool Wind to a girl named Mo Yen. It entered her womb and at that moment she conceived. The Lord of Heaven did this to show that conception could take place without a husband. He knew there was no man near her and that people who saw it would say, 'How great is the power of the Lord of Heaven.' Their hearts would become filled with pure faith and they would devote themselves to bettering the karmic condition of all.

Mo Yen became pregnant and gave birth to a son named Jesus, whose father is the Cool Wind. Some people were ignorant and said if she gave birth after becoming pregnant by the Cool Wind, then the whole thing was merely of this world. If a Sage on High issues an edict, then everyone willingly will submit to it. The Lord of Heaven dwells in heaven above and controls everything in heaven and earth."         ~From the Luminous Religion, Xian, China

Biography
In 1623 graver diggers working outside of Xian dug up a stele weighing two tons and carved with 2,000 Chinese characters. Now known as the Monument Stele and residing in a museum in Xian, It was created in A.D. 781 and tells the tale Aleben and what the Chinese writers called “the Luminous Religion” because it taught of light. Here is what the Stele proclaimed:

"The Emperor Taizong was a champion of culture. He created prosperity and encouraged illustrious sages to bestow their wisdom on the people. There was a saint of great virtue named Aleben, who came from the Qin Empire carrying the true scriptures. He had read the azure clouds and divined that he should journey to the East. Along the way, Aleben avoided danger and calamity by observing the rhythm of the wind.

In the ninth year of the Zhenguan reign [A.D. 635], Aleben reaching Chang-an [Zian]. The Emperor sent his minister, Duke Xuanling, together with a contingent of the palace guard, to the western outskirts to accompany Aleben to the palace.

The translation work on his scriptures took place in the Imperial Library and the Emperor studied them in his Private Chambers. After the Emperor became familiar with the True Teachings, he issued a decree and ordered that it be propagated…

…the Emperor issued a proclamation, saying:

'We have studied these scriptures and found them otherworldly, profound and full of mystery.

We found their words lucid and direct.

We have contemplated the birth and growth of the tradition from which these teachings sprang.

These teachings will save all creatures and benefit mankind, and it is only proper that they be practiced throughout the world.'

Following the Emperor’s orders, the Greater Qin Monastery was built in the I-ning section of the Capital. Twenty-one ordained monks of the Luminous Religion were allowed to live there…

The Emperor Gaozong [A.D. 650-683] reverently continued the tradition of his ancestor and enhanced the Luminous Religion by building temples in every province. He bestowed honors upon Aleben, declaring him the Great Dharma Lord of the Empire. The Luminous Religion spread throughout all ten provinces, the Empire prospered and peace prevailed. Temples were built in 100 cities and countless families received the blessings of the Luminous Religion."

Editor Riegert, Ray
Coeditor Moore, Thomas
Book Type Trade Paperback
Page Count 140 pp.
Publisher Ulysses Press 2006
Browse these categories as well: Mystic and Esoteric Christianity, Eastern Orthodox Christianity, The Taoist Canon, Eastern Buddhism and Zen Masters, Syncretism and the Perennial Philosophy, Noteworthy Releases 2006

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