Did Jesus have descendants?

Posted: March 15, 2013 by phaedrap1 in Occult, Spirituality
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The success of The Da Vinci Code has transformed the question whether or not Jesus had descendents. My own quest for understanding has been a strange journey. It led me to uncover new aspects of Mary Magdalene, the name that is normally given to a person that the Jews call Myriam Migdal and others Mary of Magdala.

Painting of Mary Magdalene with the apostles

A lot has been written about Jesus the Nazarean. The New Testament collects the most important moments of the life of Jesus, placed into four gospels. But these merely attest to Jesus’ public life, to show that he was the promised Messiah for Israel. His private life is thus of only secondary importance. Extra knowledge about Jesus is found in documents that did not make it into the New Testament – the apocrypha. Such documents continue to be found on occasion, such as at Nag Hammadi in Egypt in 1945.
In the Gnostic gospels (part of the material that was “surplus” to the requirements of the New Testament), we find references to a special – intimate – relationship between Jesus and Mary Magdalene. They underline that Peter had a certain aversion and jealousy towards this woman; he refuses to accept that after Jesus’ resurrection, it is to her that He has confided his secret teachings and has made her the leader of the community he has left behind.
Some of these documents, such as the Gospel of Philip, state that Mary Magdalene is the companion of Jesus and there are even references to a descendent: “there exists the mystery of the Son of Man and the mystery of the son of the Son of Man.” This gospel continues, to state that Jesus was able to create and “procreate”, suggesting that his marriage with Mary Magdalene was a “sacred marriage” – which suggests that it was type of a ritual marriage. This could be interpreted in several ways, but one could be that the “sacred marriage” was there to create divine offspring, as in the myth of Osiris and Isis.

These are the type of documents that were hunted down and destroyed by the Church after the Council of Nicea, in the 4th century. This meant that by the Middle Ages, nothing but rumours and legends remained about Mary Magdalene. This begs the question how far one can go to verify any of this information and test it to reality.

Monastery of Sainte Marie de Oia Pontevedra

My first discoveries were made on the “Road of Santiago de Compostella” with Prisciliano, better known as the “Heretic Bishop”, born in Galicia in 340. Prisciliano preached a Gnostic doctrine, which was very popular in the North of Spain and Southern Gaul. It should therefore not come as a surprise that we find repeated references to Mary Magdalene in this part of the world, which also includes Rennes-le-Château, which is largely the town where the debate about the relationship of Mary Magdalene with Jesus would give birth to The Da Vinci Code.

The first discovery was made in the Monastery of Sainte Marie de Oia, in the Cistercian church that dates from the 7th century. The church has a painting that shows the descent of the Holy Spirit. On the one hand, my attention was drawn to its resemblance to the seal of the Knights Templar of the abbey of Notre Dame de Mont Sion. On the other hand, the central character represented Mary Magdalene, surrounded by the apostles, while the Holy Spirit, in the form of the traditional dove, descended to them.

Templar seal of the Abbey of Mont de Sion

Close to where I live, I found another important element. This is the Royal Monastery of the Holy Cross, in Aiguamurcia, in the province of Tarragona. This Cistercian monastery has a number of important artistic works, but what drew my attention was one in one of the two chapels situated at the lower slopes of the Temple, near the entrance gate. This chapel was consecrated to St John the Evangelist and contained a painting of this saint, which nevertheless shows “him” with very distinct feminine traits: long red hair and wearing clothing that we would more expect on a woman than on a man.

Observe the red colour of the hair, as well as dress

When I studied this painting closely, I not only realised it was painted on wood and was an oil painting, I specifically discovered seven icons that were added to the bottom part of the scene. Carefully studying these, I noticed that they depicted various biblical passages concerning Jesus and Mary Magdalene.
Even though the central figure on the painting seems to be John the Evangelist, there are numerous details that contradict this. Traditionally, John the Evangelist is depicted much more masculine, with a beard and of a ripe age, carrying a book. We just need to refer to paintings by El Greco, Titian or Velasquez. But the person on this painting is very feminine. And I identify it as Mary Magdalene specifically through the presence of red hair, the type of clothes “she” is wearing, as well as other details that have all been painted red on the painting. But also because in her left hand, she is carrying some of the oils that she is known to have used on Jesus. John the Evangelist has no connection with any anointments.

As we mentioned, underneath the central image are seven, small icons, four of which present Mary Magdalene and the three central and larger icons represent episodes of the life of Jesus: birth, crucifixion and the descent from the cross. To give a detailed description of each individual one would take too long and we will only concentrate on what is central to the current debate. In the central image, the scene of the crucifixion of Jesus, we find a depiction of Mary Magdalene, showing her… pregnant!
I studied this scene from all possible angles to make sure that I was not looking at an optical illusion. But there is no doubt about it… the Magdalene at the foot of the Cross, at the feet of Jesus, with her red hair and a handkerchief, this Mary Magdalene is pregnant: her breasts are enlarged, her belly is in the typical shape of pregnant women. Next to her is a skull, which is typically associated with this saint in iconography, confirming it is she. On the painting appear only the two women that are traditionally identified as the Virgin Mary and Mary Magdalene, which clarifies any remaining doubt about the person who is represented. The third person is the apostle John.
This is the ultimate proof that I needed. Is it possible that I was the first person to notice this? For how long would this hidden message therefore have been on this painting? How many eyes looked at it? And could anyone fail to notice it? All the pieces of the puzzle fell into place. And I felt it was vital to look at all other details of this painting.

Mary Magdalene, clearly pregnant, at the foot of the Cross

In the next scene, we can see the descent of Christ from the cross. He is surrounded by several people. From left to right appear May, the wife of Cleophas and the cousin of the mother of Jesus; Joseph of Arimathea with the beard and the typical turban that certain Pharisians wore; Jeanne, sister of the Virgin Mary and aunt of Jesus, who appears to sit on her knees at the foot of the Cross; finally, standing on the ladder that rests against the Cross is a man who could very well Nicodemus.

The descent from the Cross

In the iconography of the descent of the Cross, the author gives us another intriguing reference: everyone who is depicted on this painting seems to be immediate family of Jesus. According to the Law of Moses, it was forbidden to touch the dead, unless if you were very close family, as is confirmed in Numbers 19:11: “He that touches the dead body of any man shall be unclean for seven days.” The same can be read in Numbers 19:14-16, which is corroborated in Ezechiel 44:25: “And they shall come near no dead person, lest they be defiled, only their father and mother, and son and daughter, and brother and sister, that hath not had another husband: for whom they may become unclean.” This therefore confirms the “law”, which states that only the closest family is allowed to touch the dead. This means that the painter underlines the close affinity that Mary Magdalene has to Jesus.

The rest of the iconography also appears to underscore the relationship between Jesus and the Magdalene. But nowhere is the evidence of descendants of them more apparent than in another painting where we see the Magdalene depicted in the presence of two twin daughters!

A pregnant Mary Magdalene at the foot of the Cross

Mary Magdalene, with two, twin children

She is carrying one child, holding the other one’s hand. It is a clear sign that someone believed this couple had offspring. And it underlines the notion that such a tradition – that Jesus and Mary Magdalene had a relationship and that she had children – existed in the past, and was passed on as legend into the Middle Ages.

It is impossible to convey in one single article everything that I conveyed from the painting of this artist. It is something I have set out in my book, but I only need to underline that this Monastery of the Holy Cross belonged to the Cistercian Order, founded by St Bernard of Clairvaux, who was also the man behind the Knights Templar.
These came to the Monastery of the Holy Cross through the military order of the Holy Mary of Montesa, founded in 1319 by King James II of Aragon, to accommodate the Knights of the Order of the Temple that succeeded in fleeing the persecution of King Philip IV of France, with the approval of Pope Clement V. The Knights who managed to flee France took refuge in other orders, such as that of Montesa or Calatrava. They carried amongst them a secret knowledge that the order had acquired from their exposure to various heretical Christian groups. Amongst these secrets was the existence of the “Holy Blood”, which asserted that there was a “royal” descendant from Jesus and Mary Magdalene.

Saint Bernard de Clairvaux

The above painting was done in 1603 and shows to us that this tradition was transmitted in Western Europe. It is also a fact that the Cathars in this region had a specific fascination with Mary Magdalene, which other Cathars elsewhere in Europe did not possess, showing that there was a local tradition present in the region – a local tradition that was also adopted by the Cathars, another heretical form of Christianity that had a different interpretation of the Gospels than those found in the New Testament.
I believe that the painting speaks for itself. But we should note that even though the painting takes us back to 1603, there are other and older paintings that show this painting is not unique. Still, this painting had four centuries in which people should have noticed this anomaly, but perhaps we should indeed agree with Hermes who stated that everything arrives in its own and proper time.

Extract from the book « El legado de María Magdalena – The Heritage of Mary Magdalene» by José Luis Giménez

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