That Ancient Quest For The Holy Grail
By James Donahue
Historians, theologians, fiction writers and poets have all created volumes of copy about the human
quest for the Holy Grail.
So just what is this artifact, and why is it considered so precious, especially within the Christian
Medieval legend has it that the grail was a cup that Jesus drank from with his disciples at the last
supper, on the night before he was arrested, brought before Pilot, and sentenced to death.
Yet another story identifies the grail as a cup that a Roman soldier used to catch the blood of Jesus
after his side was pierced as he hung dying on the cross.
Both stories float through the mythology of the death of Jesus. The quest for that object, that "grail,"
has captured the imaginations of poets, theologians and philosophers for centuries. No one knows for sure if such a cup really
existed, and what might have happened to it if there ever was a grail.
The word grail is an old English noun that means platter, which offers very little help in this story.
The legend identifies the Holy Grail as a cup or chalice associated with unusual magical powers associated with the regeneration
of life and even Christian purity.
The stories give us images of knights off on a quest to find this precious artifact. The stories traditionally
link the search to Perceval, one of the knights of King Arthur's legendary Round Table, who devoted his life in search of
the Holy Grail.
The story of King Arthur is English mythology that some say may be based on some degree of real history.
Yet when we examine the knights that were really linked to any kind of search for artificts linked to the Christian story,
we must look at the Knights Templar.
The Knights Templar was a political and religious group of soldiers who had a powerful influence in
the Middle East and Europe during the time of the Crusades. Some say the Masonic Order had its roots in the Knights Templar,
thus keeping the organization and the "quest" alive even to this day.
It should be no surprise that a contemporary dictionary identifies the word "grail" as not only the
cup of blood associated with the death of Jesus, but also a "quest" or search for spiritual truth. This search also has been
identified as "the object of a prolonged endeavor.
There is something else linked to this bloody cup that archaeologists, historians and theologians
appear to be missing completely. Author Michael Baigent came close to identifying this link when he titled his best-selling
book "Holy Blood, Holy Grail," but in his book, he completely missed the point.
Stan Gooch, in his work Guardians of the Ancient Wisdom, writes: "it does not require an over-active
imagination to see the symbolism of the story the elements of the male and female principles. The lance or sword (worn by
the knights) is the penis and the bowl is the vagina.
There are secret magickal rituals used by many practicing magickians and probably including those
achieving high status within the Masonic Order, that involve sexual union with a menstruating woman. It is well known among
gnostics that ancient monthly festivals literally celebrated the menstrual cycle as an important and magickal time.
Thus the image of blood at the end of the lance is highly symbolic of this magickal union in an act
But why would this act be kept so concealed by symbolism and images? Why not just come right out and
identify things for what they are? If the Holy Grail represents the vagina of a menstruating woman, who have we kept this
fact so carefully hidden in the cloak of legend and mythology for hundreds, if not thousands of years?
Believe this or not, the problem has been religious dogma that has dominated the politics and actions
of humans for a very long time. And sex has always been under severe attack from religious circles.
Gooch writes: "intercourse with a menstruating woman (the piestess) was the most important part of
the most important ceremoney." But he noted that an iron law within Judaism forbids intercourse with a menstruating woman,
and for the Jews it was a crime so severe it was punishable by death. The Jews also believed that any child resulting from
such an act was a bastard, even if a husband and wife were involved.
"The total denial of the role of blood in all facets of Jewish life really tells us that Judaism was
originally a blood-worshipping religion. Tales of vampires and werewolves are faint memories of such practice. In the subsequent
Cro-Magnon turn around on these matters, all such central features of the Old Religion were repressed. For this reason, menstruation
is today known as 'the curse' and a very great number of other derogatory names. It was, therefore, probably once 'the blessing.'"
Because of religiousity, humans have been forced to conceal the real secrets of the world under threat
of death. Thus man is caught up in a lifelong search for a truth that should never have been hidden.
Our curse is that the quest has turned into a lifelong search for information that should be readily
available for us all. The quest for the Holy Grail becomes, for those who understand its meaning, a continual search for truth
and the god within.