The Lost Sutras of Jesus: Unlocking the Ancient Wisdom of the Xian Monks

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9781569753606: The Lost Sutras of Jesus: Unlocking the Ancient Wisdom of the Xian Monks

In the first half of this book, editors Thomas Moore and Ray Riegert tell the amazing story of the sutras. The writing flows quickly from event to event, with chapters describing the journey of Christian monks who brought the sutras to China, the creation of a monastery at Da Qin at the request of the Chinese Emperor, the mysterious hiding of the sutras in a cave around A.D. 1005, their accidental discovery in 1907 and the recent translating of the sutras and rediscovery of the original monastery.
The second half of the book presents a collection of the sutras. The sutras are divided thematically and each section includes a running commentary that draws on Moore's unique experience as a former priest and enlightening author. Together with Riegert, Moore shows how the sutras combine Jesus teachings with Taoist maxims and Eastern meditations to create a more gentle and spiritual form of Christianity. These scrolls constitute the sacred teachings of a Chinese Christian church of the Tang and early Sung dynasties. Here Christianity melds with Buddhism and Taoism in a fashion never seen before or since. The result is a dynamic form of Christianity that marks the meeting point of East and West."

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From the Inside Flap:

In 635 C.E. a small band of Christian monks traveled along the Silk Road from Persia to the imperial capital of China. Welcomed by the Tang Dynasty emperor, the missionaries set about translating into Chinese the sacred texts they had carried for 3000 miles across the deserts and mountains of Asia.

Influenced by Buddhists and Taoists they encountered along the way, the Persians translated their manuscripts into a collection of unique teachings, part Christianity and part Eastern wisdom, that combined the teachings of Jesus with the principles of Eastern thought. Recorded on a set of delicate scrolls, these new scriptures became known as the Jesus Sutras.

During the next few centuries, the political climate in China turned menacing towards Christians and Buddhists alike and sometime around 1000 C.E., the Jesus Sutras, together with thousands of Buddhist manuscripts, were hidden in a desert cave.

They were not seen again until 1900, when a Taoist monk restoring cave paintings in western China accidentally discovered the sealed cavern housing these priceless religious documents. Within a few years, European archaeologists and private collectors had removed the sacred texts from China, relegating them to academic obscurity for the next hundred years. Now, the new translation presented in this book offers a unique opportunity to delve into their unparalleled wisdom and tells the story of the discovery in 1998 of one of the monk's original monasteries.

About the Author:

Thomas Moore is a psychotherapist, writer and lecturer who lives in New England with his wife and two children. He has published many articles and is a popular lecturer in the areas of archetypal and Jungian psychology, mythology, and the arts. Moore lived as a monk in a Catholic religious order for twelve years. He has a Ph.D. in religious studies from Syracuse University, an M.A. in theology from the University of Windsor, an M.A. in musicology from the University of Michigan, and a B.A. in music and philosophy from DePaul University.

A member of the Society of Biblical Literature and the American Associations of Religion, Ray Riegert has written for newspapers and magazines throughout the United States. He is the editor of "The Lost Gospel Q" and "Jesus and Buddha: The Parallel Sayings," and the co-author of "The Gospel of Thomas."

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