There is an account of the visit of the Magi who came to worship the holy child (Matthew 2:1-12), and the subsequent flight into Egypt to escape the wrath of Herod (Matthew 2:13-23). There is a general reference to the settlement of Joseph and Mary, along with the young Jesus, at Nazareth (Matthew 2:23; Lk. 2:39-40). There also is that isolated account of Joseph, Mary, and Jesus' visit to the city of Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover, when Jesus was twelve years old (Luke 2:41-50).
Following that episode, however, there is a blank space in the divine record that covers eighteen years in the life of Christ. Other than the generic allusion that Jesus advanced in wisdom, stature, and in favor with God and man (Luke 2:52), the historian knows nothing of this time span.
The Aquarian Gospel of Jesus the Christ claims to be the true story of the life of Jesus, including "the 'lost' eighteen years silent in the New Testament." As the main article details, the book only dates to 1908 and the word of the translator must be taken in order to accept the manuscript as truthful.
According to the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus spent his early childhood in Egypt which was at the end of the Silk Road. As a result of its role in trade with the East, Egypt was prosperous and enriched with religious diversity. There was even a large Buddhist community known as the Therapeutae (Sons of the Elders) that existed in Alexandria. Today, some scholars believe that Jesus may have been inspired by the Buddhist religion and that the Gospel of Thomas and many Nag Hammadi texts reflect this possible influence. Books such as The Gnostic Gospels and Beyond Belief: the Secret Gospel of Thomas by Elaine Pagels and The Original Jesus by Gruber and Kersten discuss these theories.
One tradition claims that Jesus traveled to India and Tibet during the "lost years" before the beginning of his public ministry. In 1887 a Russian war correspondent, Nicolas Notovitch, visited India and Tibet. He claimed that, at the lamasery or monastery of Hemis in Ladakh, he learned of the "Life of Saint Issa, Best of the Sons of Men." His story, with a translated text of the "Life of Saint Issa," was published in French in 1894 as La vie inconnue de Jesus Christ. It was subsequently translated into English, German, Spanish, and Italian.
The "Life of Saint Issa, Best of the Sons of Men" purportedly recounts the travels of one known in the East as Saint Issa, whom Notovitch identified as Jesus. After initially doubting Notovitch, a disciple of Sri Ramakrishna, Swami Abhedananda, journeyed to Tibet, investigated his claim, helped translate part of the document, and later championed his views. Swami Satyasangananda conjectures that Jesus spent these eighteen years "growing in wisdom and stature" at Nalanda, the ancient Indian university.
Notovitch's writings were immediately controversial. The German orientalist Max Mueller corresponded with the Hemis monastery that Notovitch claimed to have visited and J.Archibald Douglas visited the monastery; neither found any evidence that Notovich (much less Jesus) had even been there himself, his claims were widely rejected. The head of the Hemis community signed a document that denounced Notovitch as an outright liar.
Despite this contradictory evidence, a number of New Age or Spiritualist authors have taken this information and have incorporated it into their own works. For example, in her book "The Lost Years of Jesus: Documentary Evidence of Jesus' 17-Year Journey to the East", Elizabeth Clare Prophet asserts that Buddhist manuscripts provide evidence that Jesus traveled to India, Nepal, Ladakh and Tibet.
There are also Hindu and Tibetan accounts. According to Kersten, the Bhavishyat Maha Purana asserts that Israelites settled in India, and, in verses 17-32, describes the arrival of Jesus in Ladakh:
The further sayings of Muhammad mention that Jesus died in Kashmir at the age of one hundred twenty. The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community has advocated this view for over 100 years. Muslim and Persia sources purport to trace the sojourn of Jesus, known as Isa, or Yuz Asaf ("leader of the healed") along the old Silk Road to the orient. The books, Christ in Kashmir by Aziz Kashmiri, and Jesus Lived in India by Holger Kersten, list documents and articles in support of this view.
There is a temple in the state of Kashmir that is dedicated to Saint Issa. The priests of this temple assert that Jesus traveled there two thousand years ago. According to Kersten, over twenty-one historical documents bear witness to Jesus having lived in Kashmir. Many places there, as well as along the Silk Road, include versions of his name(s) and also versions of the name of Moses. A tomb bearing the name of Yuz Asaf exists in Srinigar to this day, and eighty kilometers away is a tombstone of Moses, which has been tended by Rishis, according to the grave watchman, for over 2700 years. A tomb called Mai Mari da Asthan, "The Final Resting Place of Mother Mary", is situated in a small town named Murree on the Pakistan-Kashmir border.
The Urantia Book claims to be a revelation of the life of Jesus. It offers a detailed account of his childhood, adolescence and early adulthood and provides a comprehensive narrative of later events as recorded in the Gospels.
The problem with the gospels, says Deepak Chopra in Jesus: A Story of Enlightenment, is they give us a "static" Jesus--a Jesus who "didn't have problems" and who "didn't evolve.".(While We're At It)(Brief article)
Feb 01, 2010; The problem with the gospels, says Deepak Chopra in Jesus: A Story of Enlightenment, is they give us a "static" Jesus--a Jesus...