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Israfil
 
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Quote Israfil Replybullet Topic: Yuz Asaf
    Posted: 08 June 2006 at 10:31am

Interesting article

Yuz Asaf

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Yuz Asaf (or Yus Asaph, or Shahzada Nabi Hazrat Yura Asaf) is believed, by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Movement and others, to be the name adopted by Jesus after he survived the crucifixion and subsequently migrated to Kashmir.

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History

Yuz Asaf was revered as a prophet (by Ahmaddi Muslims) and a holy man (by Hindus and Buddhists). These beliefs are discussed in the book Jesus in India, written by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (the founder of the Ahmadiyya sect of Islam, who claims to be the promised messiah for both Muslims and Christians). Drawing on some Kashmiri oral traditions, as well as on the Qur'an, the Hadith, and on accounts by explorers, he claims that Yuz Asaf (which he translates as "Jesus the Gatherer") travelled eastwards to Srinagar, and lived there until his death, aged 120.

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad also supports the belief that the tomb of Yuz Asaf is the Roza Bal shrine, located in the Khanyar district of Srinagar, Kashmir. This is claimed to be the tomb of a man who was both a prince and a prophet and is claimed to date to about AD 100. Until the arrival of Islam in Kashmir, the tomb was maintained by Buddhists and Hindus who claim descent from Yuz Asaf.

Similar beliefs are held about Yuz Asaf by a wide variety of people and groups, without endorsing all the aspects claimed by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad. Other local beliefs about Yuz Asaf include that he married a woman called Marjam (that is, Mary) who bore him a number of children. It is also claimed that Jesus' mother, Mary, is buried nearby in the town Murree in Pakistan, where her burial place is called Mai Mari da Ashtan. His teachings are often compared with those of Jesus in form and sentiment and influenced later Buddhism. These beliefs about Yuz Asaf have also been adopted by people in the New Age movement. Other writers, such as Gene Matloc and Suzanne Olsson have also sought to demonstrate links between Buddhism and Judaism and claim that the Jews originated in India and that Jesus visited India several times during his life. Olsson believes that Yuz Asaf also means "son of Joseph", and that "Iosaphat" is also a translation of "Buddha".

Supporters of some of these theories also claim that a 17th century text, Tarikh-i-Kashmir by Khwaja Hassan Malik records an inscription which reported that Yuz Asaf entered Kashmir in 78. However, this inscription is now illegible or lost, while critics note that the text is not available for general study. An old Hindu text, the Bhavishya Mahapuroma, records Jesus as having lived in Kashmir years after his crucifixion occurred. Another inscription is said to have existed at the Temple of Solomon (in Srinagar) which is claimed to have been carved by Jesus and St. Thomas when they allegedly visited and repaired the Temple. The court of King Gondopharnes in nearby Taxila also record the visit of Thomas to the area circa 52-54 AD. The pillars were removed in recent times when Hindus converted the Temple of Solomon to a Shiva Temple, renaming it Shankacharaya. However, the ancient carvings could lend some validity to the claims for Yuz Asaf being here.

The tomb itself consists of a low rectangular building on a raised platform, surrounded by railings at the front. It has three arches at the front, where entry can be had, and four arches at the side. Inside is a rock carving showing feet bearing crucifixion wounds, which, it is argued, are in a position identical with the unusual crucifixion wounds on the Shroud of Turin.

The tomb had previously been maintained by local descendents of Yuz Asaf. It is currently maintained by a Board of Directors consisting of Sunni Muslims. Sahibzada Basharat Saleem, a former caretaker (now deceased), claimed to hold genealogical tables that link him as a direct descendant of Yuz Asaf or of Jesus. In recent times another man was buried beside Yuz Asaf, who is revered by some as a Sufi saint, although others argue that he was the shrine's long-serving caretaker.

See also

Bibliography

  • Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (AS) Jesus in India Online version
  • Nicolas Notovitch, The Unknown Life of Jesus Christ, Leaves of Healing Publications (April 1, 1990), ISBN 0960285016. Reprint of this 1890s publication, which first proposed this theory.
  • Holger Kersten, Jesus Lived in India Online summary
  • Prof. Fida Mohammed Hassnain: "A Search for the Historical Jesus." Gateway Books 1994, ISBN 0946551995
  • Suzanne Olsson, 2005 Jesus, Last King of Kashmir ISBN 1419611755
  • Abubakr Ben Ishmael Salahuddin, Saving the Savior: Did Christ Survive the Crucifixion?, Jammu Pr; 1st Pbk edition (June, 2001), ISBN 0970828012
  • Andreas Faber Kaiser, Jesus died in Kashmir: Jesus, Moses and the ten lost tribes of Israel Gordon & Cremonesi (1977), ISBN 0860330419
  • Khwaja Nazir Ahmad, Jesus in Heaven on Earth: Journey of Jesus to Kashmir, His Preaching to the Lost Tribes of Israel, and Death and Burial in Srinagar, Ahmadiyya Anjuman Ishaat, 1999, ISBN 0913321605
  • Gene Matloc, Jesus and Moses Are Buried in India, Birthplace of Abraham and the Hebrews (1991) ISBN 0595127711

Skeptical views

  • Paul C. Pappas, Jesus' Tomb in India: The Debate on His Death and Resurrection, Asian Humanities Press, (September 1, 1991), ISBN 0895819465 Concludes that Yuz Asaf is not Jesus.
  • Hugh Schonfield, The Essene Odyssey, Element Books Ltd (1993), ISBN 0906540631 Argues that Yuz Asaf is an Essene teacher, not Jesus.
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DavidC
 
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Quote DavidC Replybullet Posted: 08 June 2006 at 10:56am
I have always ignored Ahmadiyya beliefs on advice of member here I have grown to respect.

What is your opinion of these folks, Israfil?
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Israfil
 
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Quote Israfil Replybullet Posted: 08 June 2006 at 2:07pm
Well brother DavidC being one who opposes any sect my opinion of this movement or sect does not differ than any other opinion I may have. What makes it even more of a heterodoxical faith is that the founder considers himself to be three things: A reappearence of Muhammad (the last prophet) being the Messiah Jesus and the avatar of the Hindu god Krishna. Like most religions those who wish glory like their founder tend to create the illusion of being a successor and want the glory that comes along with it. To me this is nothing more than a person who fanticize his own glory more like a cult leader does.
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