It was at that time that Grail lore was itself denounced as a heresy by the Vatican. The sixth-century writings of Merlin were expressly banned by the Ecumenical Council, and the original Nazarene Church of Jesus became an "underground stream", aided by such notable sponsors as Leonardo da Vinci and Sandro Botticelli.

In those days, the Church policed and controlled most literature in the public domain; and so, in order to avoid outright censorship, the Grail tradition became allegorical and its message was communicated by way of secret watermarks, esoteric writings, Tarot cards and symbolic artwork.

But why should Grail lore and the writings of Merlin have posed such a problem for the High Church? Because, within the context of their adventurous texts, they told the descendant story of the Grail bloodline-a bloodline which had been ousted from its dynastic position by the Popes and Bishops of Rome who had elected to reign supreme by way of a contrived "apostolic succession".

This apostolic succession was said to have been handed down from the first bishop, St Peter (and, indeed, this is still the promoted view). But one only has to study the Church's own Apostolic Constitutions to discover that this is simply not true. Peter was never a Bishop of Rome-nor of anywhere else, for that matter!

The Vatican's Constitutions record that the first Bishop of Rome was Prince Linus of Britain, the son of Caractacus the Pendragon. He was installed by St Paul in AD 58, during Peter's own lifetime.

From the 1100s, the powerful Knights Templars and their cathedrals posed an enormous threat to the 'male-only' Church by bringing the heritage of Jesus and Mary Magdalene to the fore in the public domain.



The cardinals knew that their whole establishment would tumble if the Messianic descendants gained the upper hand. They had to be crushed! And so the brutal Inquisition was implemented-a hideous persecution of all who dissented from the rule of the bishops.

It all began in 1208, when Pope Innocent III sent 30,000 soldiers into the Languedoc region of southern France. This was the home of the Cathars ("the Pure Ones") who were said to be the guardians of a great and sacred treasure-a mysterious secret which could overturn orthodox Christianity. The Pope's so-called Albigensian Crusade lasted for 36 years-during which time, tens of thousands of innocent people were slaughtered-but the treasure was never found.

The main thrust of the Inquisition (or "Holy Office") was instituted by Pope Gregory IX during the course of this massacre, in 1231, and it was set against anyone who supported "the Grail heresy". By 1252, the torture of victims was formally authorised, along with execution by burning.



"Heresy" was a wonderful charge to level against captives, because only the Church could define it. The victims were tortured until they confessed, and having confessed they were executed. If they did not confess, then the torture continued until they died anyway. One recorded form of torture was to spread the victim, little by little, with fat (beginning with his feet), and then to roast him alive in sections, limb by limb, over an open fire.

These savage persecutions and punishments were openly waged for more than 400 years, and were also extended against Jews, Muslims and Protestant dissenters. But the Inquisition was never formally terminated. As recently as 1965 it was renamed "the Sacred Congregation", and its powers are theoretically still in force today.

Undaunted by the Inquisition, the Nazarene movement pursued its own course, and the story of the bloodline was perpetuated in literature such as the Grand Saint Grail and the High History of the Holy Grail. These writings were largely sponsored by the Grail courts of France (the courts of Champagne, Anjou and others), and also by the Knights Templars and the Desposyni; and, at that stage, Arthurian Romance became a popular vehicle for the Grail tradition.



In the light of this, the Templars became a specific target of the Inquisition in 1307 when the henchmen of Pope Clement V and King Philip IV of France were set in their direction. The papal armies scoured Europe for the Templar documents and treasure-but, like the Cathar inheritance, nothing was found. However, many Knights were tortured and executed in the process, and their companions escaped to countries outside the papal domain.

But the Templar hoard was not lost, and while the Vatican emissaries were searching, the treasure and documents were locked away in the Chapter House Treasury vaults of Paris. They were under the protection of the Templar Grand Knights of St Anthony-"the Guardian Princes of the Royal Secret"-who loaded the hoard one night onto 18 galleys of the Templar fleet at La Rochelle.

By daybreak, the fleet had sailed for Scotland, and on arrival they were welcomed by King Robert the Bruce who, along with the whole Scottish nation, had been excommunicated by the Pope for challenging the Catholic King Edward of England. In Scotland, the Templars and their treasure remained, and the Knights fought with Bruce at Bannockburn in 1314 to regain Scotland's independence from Plantagenet England.

Subsequent to the Battle of Bannockburn, Bruce and the St Anthony Templars founded the new Order of the Elder Brothers of the Rosy Cross in 1317-from which time the Kings of Scots became hereditary Grand Masters, with each successive Stewart King holding the honoured Grand Priory title of "Prince Saint Germain".

So, why was it that King Arthur, a Celtic commander of the sixth century, was so important to the Knights Templars and the Grail courts of Europe? Quite simply, because Arthur had been unique, with a 'dual' heritage in the Messianic line.



King Arthur was by no means mythical, as many have supposed. Far from it. But he has generally been looked for in the wrong places. Researchers, misguided by the fictional locations of the romances, have searched in vain through the chronicles of Brittany, Wales and the west of England. But the details of Arthur are to be found in the Scots' and Irish annals. He was indeed "the High King of the Celtic Isle", and he was the sovereign commander of the British troops in the late sixth century.

Arthur was born in 559, and he died in battle in 603. His mother was Ygerna del Acqs, the daughter of Queen Viviane of Avallon, in descent from Jesus and Mary Magdalene. His father was High King Aedān of Dalriada (the Western Highlands of Scotland, now called Argyll)-and Aedān was the British Pendragon ("Head Dragon" or "King of Kings") in descent from Jesus' brother James. It is for this reason that the stories of Arthur and Joseph of Arimathea are so closely entwined in the Grail romances.

Indeed, the coronation records of Scotland's King Kenneth MacAlpin (a descendant of Aedān the Pendragon) specifically refer to his own descent from the dynastic Queens of Avallon.

King Aedān's paternal legacy emerged through the most ancient House of Camulot (England's Royal Court of Colchester) in a line from the first Pendragon, King Cymbeline (who is well-known to students of Shakespeare).

By that time, Messianic descendants had founded Desposynic kingdoms in Wales and across the Strathclyde and Cambrian regions of Britain. Arthur's father, King Aedān of Scots, was the first British monarch to be installed by priestly ordination, when he was crowned and anointed by Saint Columba of the Celtic Church in 574. This, of course, infuriated the Roman Church bishops because they claimed the sole right to appoint kings who were supposed to be crowned by the Pope!

As a direct result of this coronation, Saint Augustine was eventually sent from Rome in 597 to dismantle the Celtic Church. He proclaimed himself Archbishop of Canterbury three years later, but his overall mission failed and the Nazarene tradition persisted in Scotland, Ireland and Wales and across the breadth of northern England.

An important fact to remember is that the Grail dynasts were never territorial governors of lands. Like Jesus himself, they were designated "Guardians" of the people. The Merovingians of Gaul, for example, were Kings of the Franks-never Kings of France. King Aedān, Robert the Bruce and their Stewart successors were Kings of the Scots-never Kings of Scotland.

It was this implicitly 'social' concept which the High Church found so difficult to overcome, for the bishops preferred to have dominion over 'territorial kings', while the people's senior lord and master was supposed to be the Pope. Only by maintaining ultimate spiritual control over individuals could the Church reign supreme, and so whenever a Grail dynast came to the fore he was met by the wrath of the papal machine.

In 751 the bishops managed to depose the Merovingian succession in Gaul, and they established a new tradition whereby kings of the Carolingian succession (that of Charlemagne) had to be approved and crowned by the Pope. But the Church could never topple the Desposynic lines in Scotland, even though the old Celtic kingdoms of England had been dismantled by Germanic Anglo-Saxons from the sixth century.

Even into the Middle Ages-long after the Norman Conquest of England-the Nazarene Church and the long-prevailing cult of Mary Magdalene were prominent in Europe. Women's rights of equality were upheld throughout the Celtic structure-and this was an enormous problem for the male-only priesthood of orthodox Christianity.



The underlying principle of the Grail monarchs was always one of Service, in accordance with the Messianic code established by Jesus when he washed his apostles' feet at the Last Supper. And so the true Grail dynasts were kings and guardians of their realms, but they were never rulers.

This key aspect of the Grail code was perpetuated at the very heart of nursery tale and folklore. Never did a valiant cardinal or bishop ride to the aid of an oppressed subject or a damsel in distress, for this has always been the social realm of Grail princes and their appointed knights.

The Grail code recognises advancement by merit and acknowledges community structure, but, above all, it is entirely democratic. Whether apprehended in its physical or spiritual dimension, the Grail belongs to leaders and followers alike. It also belongs to the land and the environment, requiring that all should be "as one" in a common, unified Service.

Throughout the ages, parliaments and governments have had as much trouble as the Church in confronting the Messianic social code, and the position is no different today. Presidents and prime ministers are 'elected' by the people. They are supposed to represent the people. But do they? In actual fact, they don't. They are always affiliated to a political party, and they achieve their positions by way of majority party vote. But not everybody takes the trouble to vote, and sometimes there are more than two parties to vote for. Consequently, at any given time, more than half the people of a nation may not be represented by the political party in power. In this regard, even though a 'majority vote' has been applied, the democratic principle fails. What emerges is not "government by the people, for the people", but "government of the people".

Jesus confronted a very similar situation in the first century. At that time, Jerusalem and Judaea were under Roman occupation, with King Herod and the Governor, Pontius Pilate, both appointed by Rome. But who represented the people? The people were not Romans; they were Holy Land Jews-Pharisees, Sadducees, Essenes and the like. Apart from that, there were large numbers of Samaritans and Gentiles (non-Jews, the Arab races). Who represented them? The answer is "no one"-until Jesus made it his mission to do so.

This was the beginning of the Grail code of non-affiliated princely service-a code perpetuated by the Messianic dynasts in their continuing role as "common fathers" to the people. The Grail code is based on the principles of liberty, fraternity and equality, and it was particularly apparent in the American and French revolutions, both of which discarded the lordship of despotic aristocracy. But what has replaced it? It has been replaced by party politics and largely non-representative government.

From the Middle Ages there were a number of chivalric and military orders specifically attached to the Messianic Blood Royal in Britain and Europe. They included the Order of the Realm of Sion and the Order of the Sacred Sepulchre. But the most prestigious of all was the Sovereign Order of the Sangréal-the Knights of the Holy Grail. This was a dynastic order of Scotland's Royal House of Stewart, the royal house which in the 14th century introduced the unicorn of the Cathars as the sovereign emblem of Scotland. Shortly afterwards, they introduced the prestigious Order of the Unicorn, which carried the Grail motto "All as One".

Like King Arthur, the Stewart Kings also had a dual Desposynic heritage from both Jesus and his brother James. In fact, from the 1370s they were the senior house of the Messianic line, and they were Europe's longest-reigning dynasty, holding their crown for 317 years until finally deposed by the Anglican Church in 1688. They were deposed because, in compliance with the Grail code, they claimed affinity to God and the nation before Parliament, the Church and the aristocracy.

Today, the senior legitimate descendant in this line is HRH Prince Michael Stewart, Count of Albany (whose own book, The Forgotten Monarchy of Scotland, is scheduled for publication by Element Books in May 1998).

And now to a question that I have frequently been asked in the months since Bloodline of the Holy Grail was published. The question is: why is all this information coming to light at this particular time?

The fact is that the information has never been suppressed by those whom it concerns. It has been suppressed by outside power-seekers who have sought to serve their own ends, rather than serve the communities they are supposed to represent.

Today, however, we are in a new age of 'questing', as many people grow more disillusioned with the establishment dogmas that prevail. We live in an age of satellite communications, sound-barrier travel, computers and the Internet-so the world is effectively much smaller than before. In such an environment, news travels very quickly, and the truth is far more difficult to restrain.

Also, the very fabric of the 'male-dominated' Church and governmental structures is being questioned, and it is generally perceived that the old doctrines of spiritual control and territorial management are not working. More and more people are searching for the original, uncluttered roots of their faith, and for their purpose in society. They are seeking more effective forms of administration to combat the all-too-apparent slide into social and moral decline. They are, in fact, questing for the Holy Grail.

This quest for new enlightenment is considerably heightened by the coming new millennium, and there is a widespread feeling that this should also present a new Renaissance, an era of rebirth wherein the precepts of the Grail code are acknowledged and practised-the precepts of liberty, fraternity and equality.

Grail lore spells out loud and clear that the wound of the Fisher King must be healed if the wasteland is to return to fertility. And so, given that I had been afforded privileged access over past years to the archives of the Knights Templars, the Celtic Church and the Messianic sovereign houses of Europe, the time arrived for me to play my own small part in trying to heal the age-old wound of the Fisher King. The result was my book, Bloodline of the Holy Grail.


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