Vikings, Jews And Templars In North America
Though it's real and surrounds us, let us try to leave COVID aside for a while and contemplate on a little history that is a bit more than history - it may point to something that has meaning.
There's nothing like a good mystery is there?! By that, I don't mean the Agatha Christie kind or any fiction like it, but a mystery of the real kind. A true-life story - especially when it's one that has (to date) no conventional explanation. And is also a mystery that appears to have links with the origins of Christianity.
Such is the case of the developments I have been following in a TV series on Oak Island (Nova Scotia) since 2013, and more particularly many (probably) related findings in the Hunter Mountain area of New York State, USA. And a story that concerns the entire eastern seaboard between those two places.
Ever since I used to cycle in the country area near South Birmingham when about 14 years of age, I was intrigued by the name of the village Temple Balsall. It did not take much to find that it is named as such because of a connection with the Knights Templar of Crusades-era fame - one of a great number of places around England so connected. 'Temple' in London is such - it was a large Templar institution in the Middle Ages.
The suggestion that I have come across, over the last 30 years, that the Templars were in North America took some believing, however, but pictures in Andrew Sinclair's book, The Sword and the Grail (1993) clearly shows that was the case. The book shows carvings of knights and a medieval ship on the eastern seaboard of the USA, and also a still surviving medieval-looking stone tower on Rhode Island.
But it is now academically accepted that Norsemen were in this area in the late 900s. So, Christopher Columbus, you are a fraud! It now transpires that the Roman Catholic Church knew about America in the 1400s (most likely before that) and was desperate to make it a new home for Christianity. Columbus seems to have been roped in to help fulfil this desire.
How am I so certain that Roman Catholicism knew about America so early? Well, it comes back to the Templars again. They were given extraordinary dispensation by the Pope in the early 12th c. to operate as they did in the Middle East, and in Jerusalem, where (it has been proven) they uncovered many documents and things of historical and religious value buried beneath Temple Mount. Bernard of Clairvaux - who was an important personage in the Church and directed the Pope's favour towards the Templars - was certainly impressed with their findings, and even directed (according to a Templar journal of the time) that Hildegard of Bingen should be consulted on certain matters. This Hildegard was a woman of great insight into spirituality and her works on music, natural history and medicine are well known, though her achievements were forgotten until recent times. She held her own against the stolid masculinity and lack of spirituality in the Church at that time.
What was discovered fired a new age of culture. Great cathedrals were built in northern France and elsewhere, particularly Chartres, where sacred geometry is clearly observable in its design. And much more took off, including a great plan to sail to America!
How - on Earth - did such a plan emerge, it may be asked. Well, it would appear that there was evidence found in Jerusalem that back in the years before 70AD (the Roman destruction of the second Jerusalem Temple), Jews travelled there! Unbelievable? Well, it would seem as though cynicism might be in order, unless you are aware that an American president back in the 19th c. believed that Welsh people were ancestors of certain Indian peoples. If that can be the case, then anything else might be a possibility.
However, as stated earlier I have been following the Oak Island series on TV and have been intrigued to see actual proof that both Phoenicians and Templars were in Nova Scotia in early times. But what has been of even greater significance is a book published by a noted historian of the USA, the late Zena Halpern, in her book The Templar Mission (2017). She sadly passed away not long after this was published.
Halpern uncovered, in detail, a record of the journey by a party of Templars and others (including a Welshman and a Moor from Spain) to America's eastern seaboard, a visit that lasted for more than a year and a visit full of discovery and pathos. One of the party that went with them was an important lady from Denmark who was an acknowledged expert on the journey - she had been to America before! Her people probably originated from those Norsemen who first went there in the 10th c. Sadly, she was killed in a skirmish towards the end of the party's visit.
The party was led by a Templar nobleman by the name of Sudeley whose family seat was in Gloucestershire. In her narrative, Halpern, unfortunately, refers to Shropshire as a town of Gloucestershire, but that appears to be one of the very few aberrations in her book. Our shire system is not well understood on that side of the Atlantic!
What they came across in their visit was extraordinary - but they seem not to have been phased by their findings. They seem to have been expected, based on their Jerusalem findings. One of the discoveries was a community of tall people of Welsh origin, who were amongst those who had the responsibility of safeguarding a temple that had been constructed in the Hunter Mountain area. This temple was dedicated to a female deity which was - in very early Jewish history - supposed to have been the consort of Jahweh. This - in my head - rings bells of such ideas in Hindu teachings, and not too surprising, too, when one considers the origin of Abraham. But that is another story.
During their time there, the Templars had access to very ancient documents, with one referring to:
... the True Teachings of our Lord. Also of a Seal of Herod to an agreement of union between one Hasmonian princess, Myriam of Migdal [Mary Magdelene, probably] and Yeshua [Jesus, probably] ben Yosef of the royal House of David...
These two statements are so revealing and correspond with the researchers of numerous others who have good reason to doubt the accuracy of the Bible and its original publisher, the Roman Catholic Church. The Templars, too, were non-conventional in their religion despite their allegiance to the Pope, and were eventually suppressed in France, then disbanded by the Church.
I, for one, have long accepted that "True Teachings" spoken of here were those alluded to and written about by people such as Origen in the early days of Christianity, and the Gnostic Gospels of Thomas and Philip, which correspond to the mystical teachings of other traditions, such as the Qabalah and Sufi streams, and Sanathana Dharma of India: the 'Religion of Love'.
The full story by Zena Halpern has to be read to be properly absorbed and understood, and it is riveting reading for people like me.
To finish with, I would like to refer to the 15th c. Roslyn Chapel near Edinburgh, which was constructed by a Templar family in a way as to be more reminiscent in design of the Jerusalem Temple, and even includes carvings such as American maize. Yet this Chapel was built years before Columbus sailed to America! Further proof, surely, that the Templars did go to America.
Thank you for reading this.