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Who was Nicolas Notovich – and did Jesus really visit India?

My first novel, The Transmigrant, was inspired by an 1894 book written by a Russian-Jewish explorer named Nicolas Notovitch. His book, “The Unknown Life of Jesus Christ” was transcribed from ancient Tibetan scrolls that were read to him when he convalesced in a Tibetan monastery in Kashmir, Northern India.

The scrolls spoke about a journey Jesus made through Asia where he studied Buddhism and Hinduism. But as soon as Notovitch returned to Europe and announced his amazing find, the church ridiculed him and fought hard to deny his claims. After all, in many ways, these ancient scrolls contradict the persona invented by the First Council of Nicaea.

Many historians still dismiss Notovitch as a fraud and claim no one else has ever seen these scrolls. But that’s not true.

In 1922 the Indian Swami Abhedananda saw the scrolls. In 1925,the Russian professor Nicholas Roerich saw them, and later in 1939 two ladies, the American Mrs. Clarence Gasque and the Swiss Madame Elizabeth Caspari saw the same scrolls. There are undeniable parallels between Jesus’ speeches and the scriptures of the ancient religions.

It’s much more logical than unlikely that Jesus was in fact influenced by all these religions, although we will never truly know whether he traveled through Asia or just encountered and learned from spiritual leaders who traveled through his own country.

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