Holy Blood, Holy Vodka Bottle

05/08/2008


By Heidi Martinuzzi

Ever since Holy Blood, Holy Grail and The Da Vinci Code turned the New Testament into a source of endless tabloid headlines, we're used to this sort of thing, so you probably won't be surprised when I give you the what-ifs from the Bruce Burgess documentary Bloodline, opening Friday:

What if Mary Magdalene wasn't a prostitute who followed Jesus around like an abused puppy (her reputation in popular tradition), but was actually his wife and closest confidant?

Okay, we've heard that one before, but . . .

What if Mary Magdalene took Jesus' body from the tomb and made it look like he was resurrected?

What if this sneaky woman then sailed to France and lived there among a Jewish colony and raised her children (the ones Jesus fathered) and was eventually buried there?

Blasphemous enough for you? There's more:

What if Jesus not only married Mary Magdalene, failed to die on the cross (much less be resurrected), and was buried somewhere in France himself?

What if Mary took the Holy Grail with her to France, bore sacred children who later married Merovingian kings, gave them the Spear of Destiny that would be worshipped by the Knights Templar, which turned out to be only part of the occult objects that were destined to be revered by … uh … something about the First Crusade … and …

I knew I couldn't remember it all. I honestly forget the rest. There are only so many legends and rumors you can deal with in a single movie before you kind of lose the thread. Fortunately they invited me to Press Day so I could ask the filmmakers directly: What are you trying to do here other than rehash Holy Blood, Holy Grail the same way Dan Brown did?

“We set out on the back of Dan Brown," director Bruce Burgess admits. "The premise of ‘Bloodline’ and this whole film, yes, it’s kind of out there. You have to go into these things with an open mind.”

Right. Now I feel better.

Burgess

The one thing that can’t be refuted--and kind of the "secret sauce" of this movie--is that Burgess, his producer Rene Barnett, and his English adventurer pal Ben Hammott have indeed discovered someone in a tomb in the Rennes-Le-Chateau area of southwestern France, an area rife with myths and shrines dedicated to Mary Magdalene. DNA tests on hair confirm that this person is of Semitic ancestry, and the person appears to have been buried in a Templar cloak with a big red cross on a white background.

Who is this? If you believe Burgess and Hammott, it is Mary Magdalene, who arrived in France after fleeing the Holy Land immediately after the crucifixion. If you don’t believe them, then it’s either a hoax or some poor disturbed corpse of unknown origin. Bloodline follows a three-year investigation in Rennes-Le Chateau and the actual amateur excavation that Hammott undertook to find the clues he needed for a race against time to oppose the forces of the Catholic Church--oh, wait, sorry, that’s The Da Vinci Code--what I meant to say was that Hammott followed a series of clues left by a 19th-century priest, Berenger Sauniere, at Rennes-le-Chateau, supposedly leading to the tomb of Mary Magdalene.

Magdala Tower

In the film Burgess follows Hammott’s entire treasure hunt step by step and details how Hammott discovered each clue hidden in a recess in the Church of the Magdalene (Sauniere’s old haunt), using a secret map coded on old parchment. The film occasionally wanders away from Hammott to show us clandestine meetings with supposed members of the Priory of Sion, the secret medieval organization linked to the Masons, the Templars and the Catholic Church that supposedly knows everything Burgess is trying to uncover.

Narrated by Burgess himself, the film travels via grainy videocam footage from classy cafes in London to the Bibliotheque in France to small rustic villages in the south of France to hear interviews with members of the Priory of Sion ( a secret society that protects, well, "the secret") who demand that their voices be changed and their faces blurred on camera. Mixed in with those guys are authors who have written follow-up books to Holy Blood Holy Grail, sitting in their back-lit offices behind lots of important-looking books. Interviewees all agree emphatically that there is some kind of conspiracy in the Vatican to cover up a secret that, when discovered, will shake the very foundations of Western Civilization. And probably make a great movie.

Hammot with chest

The only person who agreed to be interviewed on camera, representing the Priory of Sion, is one Nick Haywood, supposedly the adopted son of an English Lord, definitely a 33rd-level Freemason and reputedly a high-ranking Sion member. Haywood spends considerable time leading Burgess to clues about the secrets hidden in Rennes-le-Chateau and being vague in a charming "Bond villain" kind of way. Considering the insane security these "secrets" seems to be under, why would Nick Haywood agree to meet with Burgess and to even allude to the fact that he is on the right track with his discovery?

“We gave him the time to talk,” explained Burgess when asked about this during press day. “There are an awful lot of journalists and filmmakers who would have dismissed him out of hand, because they would have asked him to categorically prove that he was in the Priory of Sion. The reason I gave him the space to talk and the reason he is in this film, and it is a decision we went back and forth on for weeks and months, you know, how do we know this guy is who he says he is? And we just had to satisfy ourselves that he was who he said he was--we did the best we could. It is the kind of filmmaking I have done. I tend to give people the space to tell their story, and others tend not to. He came across to us every time we met him as pretty understated and credible. This didn’t seem to us to be someone playing at being in a secret society.”

In other words, he wasn't vetted at all, but he seemed like an honest guy. I feel so much better. What's ironic is that Burgess himself admits that many people have been duped before now when it comes to investigating this particular mystery.

“Pierre Planchard, he was a Frenchman who actually talked to the authors of Holy Blood, Holy Grail back in the late seventies and he claimed to be the Grand Master," said Burgess. "CBS did a big expose on him as an imposter and none of it was true and he planted the Paris documents.”

So why is Nick Haywood different? The filmmakers were asked this question in several different ways, and all their answers amount to a shrug of the shoulders.

Also of note are several interviews with authors of books on the region and the Mary Magdalene mythos itself. One glaring omission? Any type of academic or officially recognized authority on the subject of Biblical history, or even medieval French history. The only academic who appears in the movie, in a limited role, is one Dr. Gabriel Barkay from Jerusalem's Bar Ilan University, who analyzes the contents of a first-century chest found among Hammott’s search for treasure in the French hills. Barkay confirms Hammott's finds as genuinely first-century B.C. and coming from the Middle East. But this strange exclusion of professional and recognized experts is suspicious at best, and begs the question as to why Burgess wouldn’t want academic opinions validating his theories. Could it have something to do with his referring to them as “stuffy academics who give me grief every single day” during the interview?

Burgess has other credibility problems as well. The self-admitted “monster-hunting crazy man” has already made documentaries about Sci-Fi Channel staples like Bigfoot, Area 51, and The Bermuda Triangle. Once a conspiracy theorist …

That's why most of what Hammott and Burgess have to sell here is the one solid thing they found that can't be explained away--a corpse. And they're sheepish even about that.

“We had a lot of criticism for this so-called ‘amateur archeology’, which we absolutely admit it is,” says Burgess. “At what point do you stop and hand it over to the authorities? We had to find out at least if there was a corpse under the shroud, at the very least we had to lift that shroud, which was very difficult because you’re working blind, but we certainly didn’t want to take anything out of the tomb unless it had already fallen off the corpse. We didn’t disturb anything else. The next step, which everyone is really excited about, is to do a full-scale forensic analysis, which will give us details, and at that point we can start looking at teeth and everything else. Once we pulled back the shroud and saw that there was someone there, we decided that was as far as we were going to go.”

I didn't quite follow the reference to Mary Magdalene's teeth--I doubt her dental records are available--but the bigger problem is that the body is not in plain sight. It is well hidden in a cave and the only way to see in or out is through a “long zigzag hole” through which Burgess and Hammott filmed by placing their camera on a large pole and pushing in. The true "entrance" was blocked off by whoever placed the corpse there and cannot be accessed because it appears to be far underground.

In other words, it’s hard to believe, from what they show in the film, that it’s a real undisturbed archeological find. In the words of the filmmaker himself, at first site of the tomb and what it contains, “It’s too perfect, like a film set.”

“I am not vouching for Nick," says Burgess. "I am not even vouching for Ben. At first I thought ‘This guy’s full of shit, what does he mean there’s a temple and a tomb? This is ridiculous.’ But when I spent time with him, and I saw his emotions and how he was reacting (I was looking for a ‘tell,’ as they say in poker) every hour of every day, he never did give me one, and he never has. I knew we set ourselves up academically for a fall. I remember someone saying, ‘Well, how can you take this guy seriously, he’s got an empty vodka bottle next to his bed?’ But what the hell does that matter, whether there’s an empty vodka bottle? I can shoot this like the History Channel and put a bloody library of books behind him, does that help it a little more?”

If you’re still not convinced that Burgess and Hammott are the types, vodka bottles and all, to find something like this, Burgess can take it one step further.

The Nag Hammadi text, Dead Sea Scrolls, and King Tut’s tomb, these are three examples of some of the greatest finds in modern history that weren’t found by the British Museum, that weren’t found by UCLA. They were found by workmen and regular Joes who were then pushed out of the way while the blokes with suits come on. That’s how tombs are found. They are found by people like me and Ben who are covered in spiders and bat shit and then all the academics come in, and that is the next step.”

Chest contents

Despite adamant denials by Burgess and Barnett, though, Bloodline does make accusations and does imply very heavily that the Catholic Church is to blame for a cover-up and even knows about the "big reveal" (the body), for which they use Burgess as their emissary. The film seems to claim, mostly through interviews with Nick Haywood, that the mysterious members of the Priory of Sion are actually high-ranking members in today's Catholic Church. These secrets have been hidden for generations, but now the public has been deemed "ready" to hear them. The implication, then, is that the Pope chose Burgess and Barnett to be his conduits for the big news. They won't quite cop to this claim in person, although they imply it in the film itself. According to Barnett, they had no agenda and the film does not attempt to draw conclusions.

“What we really set out to do with this film was to add to the conversation and spark the conversation, not necessarily to change anyone’s minds,” he says. “We just wanted to lay out what we found. We didn’t have an ax to grind going in, we didn’t have something to prove, we didn’t go in with preconceived ideas, we didn’t want to prove this or that, we just wanted to prove whatever we could and let the chips fall where they may. And I think that’s what he Nick Haywood meant, he kept saying our ‘intention’ was correct.”

“As ever, in this mystery, you can pick your evidence and choose which way you want to go because it is all very inconclusive,” says Burgess, defending himself. “I wasn’t trying to do a Michael Moore, I was trying to just put stuff out there and let the film do it, which is hard.”

Whether Bruce Burgess is a charlatan or just a very lucky man, it seems that there is a body buried under that shroud in France, and the filmmakers are suggesting that it's a body that could potentially have some serious implications for Catholicism and for Christianity in general. Implications such as: Jesus was not divine and did not resurrect; Jesus had children, and has descendants that are alive today; Mary Magdalene was the wife of Jesus and one of his apostles; Jesus is buried in France … the list could go on. Since the excavations of the tomb will be underway "soon" (no date has yet been set) we can expect a formal announcement from the Catholic Church--or maybe not!

I’d like to believe that Burgess and Hammott did find something beautiful and explainable in that tomb--they seem like nice enough guys--but two things bother me about their story:

1) Despite numerous references in the film to people being threatened or hurt or killed to keep the secret of Rennes-le-Chateau, Burgess and Barnett seem very much alive and not at all scared to be going public with their movie. While they claim to have received “threats,” they won’t go into specifics and can’t explain why they have been spared the wrath of the secret societies that other treasure-hunters and scholars have felt. They allude to Nick Haywood having "chosen" them for this mission, but it’s not a very convincing argument, since they haven't proven that Haywood himself is who he says he is. And after meeting these guys--hand-to-mouth documentary filmmakers who seem focused on the quick buck (ahem, Bigfoot?)--I think Haywood might have chosen someone a little more reliable and likely to be trusted by the public. So, good one, Haywood!

2): Indiana Jones is coming out May 22, the same week as Bloodline. Kudos to the Marketing Department! Bloodline was actually scheduled for release the same month as The Da Vinci Code, but wasn’t ready on time. Cha-Ching! Isn’t it slightly classless of the Priory of Sion to take such a back seat to their Big Reveal and allow Hollywood to dictate the release schedule? I mean, won’t the film end up looking like a big grab for cash instead of the truthful revelation Burgess and Hammott are hoping that it is?

Bloodline Poster

Despite all the red flags, there's something about this story that won't go away. Why do so many people want to believe that the mortal remains of Mary Magdalene lie in a cave in France? Why the focus on her and not, for example, on Peter, whose remains probably do lie in a cave tomb underneath St. Peter's Basilica but could conceivably generate just as many conspiracy theories if you were to study the autopsies of the corpse and the carbon-dating of the site? All the books and documentaries and websites that have grown up around Rennes-le-Chateau and the Priory of Sion must represent some yearning in the heart of a certain type of person. Someone who wants to hear that Jesus loved a woman and loved his family. Someone who finds the resurrection to be a stumbling block and is comforted by the idea that Jesus was buried by his wife and children. Someone who wants a "less divine" Jesus, a more accessible savior. Movies like Bloodline, in this sense, are a strange kind of hope for a Christ who's not so scary, who's more like us. Martin Scorsese explored this very emotion in The Last Temptation of Christ. Bringing Jesus down off the cross is something that, oddly enough, many would regard as good news.

In true Hollywood fashion, Burgess and Barnett will be filming the excavation of the tomb, so the Priory of Sion is presumably working overtime to make certain that, in Part II, the Vatican reveals a little more of the ancient hidden saga. This time I hope they get a better entertainment lawyer, though, because it might be time to cite "creative differences" with Burgess and Hammott and look for fresh talent. I hear Oliver Stone is available.


Comments(55)

Droslovinia | 11:47 am on 5/08/2008

Well they got one part of this right - They're covered in bat-shit.

Siarlys Jenkins | 12:02 pm on 5/08/2008

There are all kinds of traditions that all kinds of Biblical characters ended up somewhere far from Jerusalem. Why? Because local residents, mostly descended from tribes that moved into the area centuries later, and became Christians centuries after that, wanted to feel a connection to their faith. E.g., Joseph of Arimathea ended up in southern Britain, where his staff took root and became a flowering shrub. People in southern France liked Mary Magdalene, that's all.

A more revealing legend is that Mary Mother of (Jesus? I don't quite see her as "Mother of God") moved to Ephesus. There is a tradition of churches devoted to Mary there, perhaps the first such in the world. But that might be because, deprived of "Diana of the Ephesians," the local populace wanted an acceptably Christian female deity to, uh, its not worship is it, ummm, oh yes, venerate.

As for whether Jesus married or not, who cares? The Gospels really don't say. The orthodox view is that he was wholly human as well as wholly divine, right? Now a Monosyphyte might object, but I see no need to worry about it.

budda | 01:34 pm on 5/08/2008

Actually if Jesus was married it would be more impressive. I have always understood that Jesus was perfect and sinless. That is noteworthy and special as a single man. For Him to be perfect and sinless as a married man is a miracle beyond belief. Thats why christians can't accept it. Virgin birth? Sure no problem. A married man, perfect, sinless? Forget about it. Impossible.

BJ | 02:03 pm on 5/08/2008

Amen brother. You can't be married without having murder in your heart at some point.

JoshH | 05:24 am on 5/09/2008

I think you hit the main point. Any other aspect of not being married having something to do with being "sinless" is kind of hard to buy.

Paul in Maine | 03:57 pm on 5/08/2008

If Jesus was married, I guarantee you it wasn't Judas that sold him out. It was the wife...one morning after finding the lid to the hole left up, the wet sheepskin hanging off the tent pole, and the garbage STILL not taken out.

Jesus! JESUS! JESUS!!! You can sit around talking, drinking wine with your boys, you can cure the blind, feed the homeless, You can even walk on water, but you can't take out the F'ing garbage? WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE? I've got me half-a-mind to march right into Pilate's office and let him in on a few things. You hear me? I said, do you hear me?

Okay, so I picture Jesus being married to Whitney Houston.

SRebbe | 12:13 pm on 5/09/2008

if it was a hole, WAS there a lid?

BJ | 02:00 pm on 5/09/2008

I'll never forget the time I was using a sheepskin, maybe it was a lambskin. Anyway, I pitched a tent with my pole and popped the lid on a wet hole. Good times, good times.

budda | 02:51 pm on 5/09/2008

Holy Larry, Curly and Moe, that was funny.

Paul in Maine | 03:28 pm on 5/09/2008

Are you sure it wasn't foreskin?

SRebbe | 04:48 pm on 5/12/2008

I could've been homeschooled and told you it wasn't foreskin.

SRebbe | 03:52 pm on 5/08/2008

yeah, I've heard both scholarly sides to the whole marriage thing and if Jesus did follow the Law, he may have been set up for marriage as was custom... and it's a minor point. nothing worth building your entire faith around. as some do.... whiners......

yes, the whole 'Thou Shalt Not Kill' does enter into it at some point for both sides.

John S | 07:03 pm on 5/18/2008

Here's an interesting master's thesis on the lack of evidence for the Virgin Mary living in Ephesus. Unfortunately, it doesn't deal as much with evidence of MM living in Ephesus, except to say that a MM tomb was there early on, but it's interesting anyway.

http://www.sacred-destinations.com/turkey/ephesus-virgin-mary.htm

that calvinist doug | 02:00 pm on 5/08/2008

Forget Oliver Stone, he's WAAAY to good for these guys. I'm thinking maybe Geraldo could give'em a hand, right after he finds Al Capone's vault.

SRebbe | 03:59 pm on 5/08/2008

And Hoffa. And who knocked off JFK. And where the earth REALLY came from (and I want to see ALL of his work on that one in tidy moleskin notebooks with 8 by 10 glossy pitchers with the circle and arrows). And if the whole Twin Tower thing really a conspiracy, an act of Pat Robertson, or just terrorists having a bad day. And where socks go. And why you have to reboot the f'ing computer all the time when it gets stupid. And if it's possible to get rid of dust and nuclear waste and empty calories. And boomerang children.

Anonymous | 03:08 pm on 5/08/2008

Thank goodness "Indiana" is back...maybe he can straighten all this out!

SRebbe | 04:02 pm on 5/08/2008

cue spam from friends warning of the plagues from Hollywood and apostasy from "true" Christianity -- ugh.

JoshH | 08:54 pm on 5/11/2008

That's probably the worst part of all of this.

Anonymous | 12:16 pm on 5/09/2008

Will the foriegn ministers of every European country denounce this film? I doubt it.

budda | 02:02 pm on 5/09/2008

Why would they? Since when in the last few hundred years has Europe considered itself "christian".

that calvinist doug | 02:15 pm on 5/09/2008

I think the point was, Budda (by the way, why 2 d's now?), Europe's not "muslim" either, yet they fall all over themselves to condemn anything derogatory about Islam (except the French, but then, they're French).

budda | 02:48 pm on 5/09/2008

I earned the second "d" by entering a new level of enlightenment. I have been waiting for someone to notice. Fingers crossed (and legs in lotus position) to get my "h" and a capital "B" later this year."

I know about the islam pandering, I just think it's so obvious and really quite sensible a thing to do (not to offend islam if possible) that I sorta threw that comment out there. Why do people expect heathens and secular governments to act like anything but? If a government is secular, non-religious, and they get no meaningful protest from christians when The DiVinci Code happens, but they get violent uprising and massive boycotts of European products when they allow anti-islamic stuff, why would they act any other way? It is quite a logical response from their point of view.

Typically Europeans care way more about safety and security than freedom anyway. Thus the trade off between free speech with accompanying violence for the calming, appeasement policy. Appeasement is what the Europeans do best. It is not anything new or even "bad" (depending on the circumstance). Just different. Different value system at work. Not anything to get offended over. I learned long ago to expect heathens to act like heathens and christians to act like ... well .. heathens.

BJ | 03:16 pm on 5/09/2008

I'm working on my L.

SRebbe | 04:14 pm on 5/09/2008

kinda like 'horse'

BJ | 04:44 pm on 5/09/2008

Kinda. You mentioned JFK so I felt obliged to bring LBJ into it.

SRebbe | 04:11 pm on 5/09/2008

entering a new level... koolio

the true lotus position for me would require a small piece of furniture as not to cut off too much circulation. at least I know where to get it.

that calvinist doug | 03:10 pm on 5/09/2008

I still remember a former pastor of mine saying something like, "don't act surprised when non-Christians act like non-Christians."

Good luck with the B & H. If you get them, will you be like the giant fat ass working for Dr. Evil, telling everyone "get in my belly!"

budda | 05:44 pm on 5/09/2008

That was Fat Bastard, he didn't eat everyone, just babies. How does Fat Bastard fit into the whole pseudo budda thing? It is true that I'm short, bald (or as I like to think, "shaved") with a round belly (and a wicked, Anton LaVey gotee, how is that for a word picture) but I don't get the F.B. reference. By now, Doug, you should realize I'm an even worse Buddhist than I am a Christian

Ya, SRebbe, a little meditation bench does wonders for the circulation. I built a really nice one out of mahogany, spent a week on it, but then my dog ate it. It was a big dog. He is gone now.

that calvinist doug | 12:20 pm on 5/12/2008

No particular reason. It's just that Fat Bastard (thanks for the reminder, I couldn't remember) was really fat, Buddha was fat...

Really, don't read too much into a lot of my comments, as I don't put much thought into a lot of them myself! Most of my "humor" is whatever pops into my head at the moment; probably why most of it isnt' very humorous! As Buddha used to say, "The unexamined joke is not a joke well made."

Process Deist | 06:52 pm on 5/09/2008

OK...I'm hooked...now I have to see this movie.
Yahoo does not show it anywhere near me. (NorthEast, Texas).
LOOK, I have wasted good money on worse crap.
Heidi...where do I go in my area to see it.?

SRebbe | 04:50 pm on 5/12/2008

I'm sure there will be bootleg copies circulating around soon. Or The History Channel will buy rights.

Prophet Lopi | 09:38 pm on 5/09/2008

Mary M is not in a cave in France. She is tending bar at The Carbon Firemans Club in Carbon PA. It is the same place where the people hold onto their guns and faith.

Vic | 12:04 pm on 5/10/2008

If I were completely honest with you (hard to do, I don't know you or feel safe with you), I'd have to admit that when reading articles like this one, I am reminded of how human (maybe I should say neurotic) I really am. A sudden guilt overtakes me, and then guilt over the guilt (why did I let my mind go there in the first place)... because I caught myself wondering how I would stand up for my Christianity if a day came when all these 'facts' were revealed, or those facts, or other facts that were harmful to, well, to the Christian 'religion' -[ I suppose you can't harm the Christain 'faith', actually - So, maybe I should then realize the difference between religion and faith... okay - going a different direction now].

Where was I trying to go with this. Truth is truth. Truth can't disprove truth. So, I've always felt science eventually proves, not disproves God, if God is what I know. Do I know God? I know God. Can anything disprove God to me, no. why? Well, that's my personal faith, sharing why and how I know won't be your proof. Where was I going with this? sorry. Maybe these things popping up are good for our faith. They help us reflect and align our ideas, and question what is tradition and what is spiritual and what is fact and what is theory, to shake out what is 'detail' and what is 'foundation'.

Putting these things into words is difficult. I did not just say what I wanted to get across. I wonder if the apostles had the same trouble. Oh, wait, God was helping them write. Is God helping me write this?, because God is in me... certainly not everything I write 'about' God is 'from' God... going a different direction again. drat.

frustrated now. grhmpf

SRebbe | 04:52 pm on 5/13/2008

Vic,
regarding 'inspiration' as it were, which is kinda your question, I do think you can write about G-d and it can be 'from' G-d... the test comes when you stack it up when you test it against the principles. customs and times change. some ideas will change. some things back then, I believe, don't apply now. and the apostles struggled with what they believed, even when Christ was with them. they didn't get it. they had no idea, even when they were being trained by their Rabbi about a new way of living. no clue. I don't think we have it any easier now.

now can we 'know' G-d? trickier question. we can know about him, know little facets here and there, see little bits and pieces of the picture, and learn of him through what others have told us. but know him intimately like so many people have jammed down our throats? I don't think it's possible. that's my personal opinion. until I get a chance to sit down and go through my list (and I have one, which I most likely will forget once I actually have a chance to sit or whatever happens in the next life), I won't 'know' G-d. or Jesus. I know about them, I can know about the Holy Spirit, I can apply principles and let them seep into my life instead of just going through the motions. but I don't have imaginary friends.

anyway, any more questions feel free to follow my link or look me up on facebook:
http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1123868242

kate22 | 12:58 pm on 12/11/2009

All these movies test our faith, actually i think they are shaking it pretty tough. I have the impression that their real purpose is to make money though, to create a strong controversy that will make them known. People always asked themselves if the bible is saying the truth or not, but i think its not that hard to figure it out. Just thinking of the early Christians who gave their life because of their beliefs you can realize that it is true. Many of the apostles who knew Jesus, and assisted his death and resurrection were tortured to death because they didn't want to give up their faith. They had believed that the new covenant Jesus had thought them will be their salvation, so they were not afraid of death. Knowing all this, it's hard not to believe they had witnessed a miracle.

sluggard | 11:36 am on 5/11/2008

I like Vic.

That's probably kind of self-serving, because I think I'm probably a lot like Vic. I am pretty sure if it was up to me and Vic, we never would have gotten around to inventing things like flush toilets, but we'd have all of our thoughts carefully arranged, and at the ready to honestly accommodate any new input that arrived. Would the lack of flush toilets be a problem? My immediate thought is definitely yes. I do a lot of camping and it is always a guilty pleasure to return for that first flush. But I don't know. I think in a millenium or so we'll have a better idea.

Questioner | 01:59 pm on 5/11/2008

Hey Vic,
Yeah Tradition,Spiritual Truth, Fact, Theory, Faith do seem to get jumbled up. Seems to have been going on ever since the Gospel ventured out of its local context of 1st century Palestine. The move up into Europe with its vast array of petty godlings and world views... Man, trying to translate Christianized Judaism mixed with Roman culture into that must have left many confused. Now add American Conspiracyism (sorry for the spelling, the word is not in Webster's) and low and behold!... We get Debates about that which is in reality not debatable because how can anyone prove Faith with science. That is not science's job, just as faith can not be and is not a fact checker (just {some "JUST", huh} a conscience checker).

Anonymous | 06:18 am on 5/12/2008

Both this and the "DaVinci Code" connect the Messiah (or a harbringer thereof) to the Merovingian kings of France. If I remember history class right, the M.ving.s preceeded the Capetian kings that ruled until Louis XVI. Is the whole point of this that someone wants the Merovingians BACK to rule France (or Europe)? I'm confused.

that calvinist doug | 03:30 pm on 5/12/2008

I'm pretty sure I was staring at Susie Johnson's butt the day we went over that in history...

Donna_B | 02:58 pm on 5/13/2008

Actually, the whole point of protecting this "bloodline" is to bring up a man who will rule the entire world, not just France. All of the royal houses of Europe are of the bloodline. In fact, the Stewarts and through them the Spencers (Lady Diana, anyone?) are more royal than the Windsors, if the "Jesus" bloodline or the "Dragon" bloodline are followed.

If you Google "Tracy Twyman" or "Nicholas de Vere," you can learn more about the Dragon/Elven bloodline and how it connects to the Merovingians and how they plan to bring forth the AntiChrist from this bloodline.

If you read David Icke, you'll learn that the Bush family, the British Windsor royal family, and most of the royals in Europe are reptilian shape-shifting aliens.

And if you believe Doctor Who, the British royals have been infected by alien werewolves ever since Queen Victoria was nipped by one in 1869. So she created the Torchwood Institute...

As for me and my house, we will believe the Doctor.

live_life | 03:38 am on 5/13/2008

Very interesting article and the discussion as well!!!

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http://www.thefaithdebate.com
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live_life | 03:38 am on 5/13/2008

Very interesting article and the discussion as well!!!

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SRebbe | 04:43 pm on 5/13/2008

I should introduce these guys to Howard (I think that's his name), this guy from one of my past lives who contacted me and decided later on that we could start our own religion because I could philosophize as well as he could regarding religion and xtianity (think I was about 22 at the time)... until I told him that I did believe in what I was talking about and wasn't going to walk. Then he walked, mourning his loss of a 'good mind.' haven't heard from him since.

some strange people out there.

AnnieCQU | 12:06 pm on 5/17/2008

OMG, I loved this line of thought. But wait, The Universe exists. no matter who died when or is buried where, the Universe continues to exist. Call it what you want, it's still there.

TCP | 11:17 am on 5/26/2008

Quote from Jason Rhodes' review of Bloodline on Mania.com shedding some light on the DNA findings. No surprise, the DNA shows European ancestry specific to SW France, not Middle Eastern. Note the last comment - "why split hairs?" - indeed!

"Hairs extracted from the head of the corpse (the extraction was not shown on camera) were sent to the Paleo-DNA Laboratory at Lakehead University (Canada) for analysis. According to Barnett and Burgess, the result of Mitochondrial DNA testing revealed a Middle Eastern origin for the deceased (ergo, this could conceivably be Mary Magdalene, although they seemed to have arrived at that conclusion well in advance).

"Well - yes and no. The report from Lakehead was shown on camera and identifies the mtDNA sample as belonging to Haplogroup I, which migrated out of the Near East and into Europe between 30,000 and 40,000 years ago prior to the last Ice Age. It is virtually unknown outside of Europe, but is no stranger to the French Pyrénnées. One major subculture belonging to this haplogroup settled in southern France and Northern Spain 10,000 to 20,000 years ago during the period archaeologists refer to as the "âge du Renne", or Age of the Reindeer.

"And, perhaps tellingly, this group is called the "Magdalenian Culture" - the name being derived not from Mary Magdalene, but from an excavation site called La Madeleine in the Dordogne region of southern France where its relics were discovered in the 19th century.

"But forget all those bothersome dates and inconvenient details that tend to unnerve alternative historians and spoil a good story - "Renne", "Magdalenian" - close enough, right? Why split hairs?"

Colin Taylor | 02:51 pm on 5/30/2008

I am currently involved with the film makers having carried out some research for them in the Sth. France. and hope to be further involved in the 2nd film dealing with the excavation.

There are a number of things which have convinced me of the authenticity of this find. the first is the Mummified corpse in the tomb. They are not easy to come by. It is not as thoguh you can just pop out to the shop a pick one up. Second is the fact that the corpse is lying on a marble block of immense size which must weigh in at about 2-3 tons. Third, when Ben took film footage of the tomb with equipment supplied to him by Bruce ie; fibre optic camera etc the tape supplied by Bruce was blank. It had to have been recorded at that time.

I have spent some time talking with both Ben and Bruce and cannot detect the lie here. After 30 years as a very experienced Scotland Yard detective I am used to people lying to me. So either they are telling the truth or I have lost the plot!!

Yes the archaeology employed has been abysmal, and I did have some advice to give about the handling of items and exhibits. But would anyone else in thier situation done it differently. There was a need to get some information to make the whole story creditable. So I think they should be forgiven. They have dealt with the items no diferently from any other past discovery, such as the Dead Sea or Nag hammaddi scrolls. In fact most of the most important historical finds in the past have been made by ordinary people.

The eventual excavation will be carried out in a completely different manner with all the requisite experts in place to preserve the integrity of what is found.

Finally, Rene the producer lost her daughter during the making of this film and is bringing up her daughters three children. She has dedicated the film to her. A hoax, I think not!

Colin Taylor

Catherine in Seattle | 10:49 pm on 8/29/2008

Spoiled sports! Quite trying to kill my buzz from being a descendant of Jesus.

But I forgive you, of course.

:-P

.keith hendricks | 09:47 pm on 10/25/2008

I saw the bloodline trailer. There are certain sigils on the vial parchment that correspond with certain findings, further the size of the parchment seems a probable fit for a glass phial a very noted one which Antoine Captier handed over to Sauniere.However the charcoal of the large parchment is like new. Moreover,the site itself would have been littered with any small animal's carcass and bones. The most likely candidate for a tomb of that sort would have been a royaume of the line. The skull looks quite
large for a female. A good gander at the distot and whether the thumbs are subtended should prove a real shit'n a giggle! Then there is always the brother of Jesus whose toponymic "fossil"(name place)is located very close to Rennes le Chateau;that is if you follow the work of a certain disbarred Austrailian theologian.The wine bottle in which the large parchment was found looks nothing like the type of one hundred fifty years ago. Someone has definitely not paid very much attention to the cross patee or for that matter even a Cathar cross!

.keith hendricks | 09:51 pm on 10/25/2008

I saw the bloodline trailer. There are certain sigils on the vial parchment that correspond with certain findings, further the size of the parchment seems a probable fit for a glass phial a very noted one which Antoine Captier handed over to Sauniere.However the charcoal of the large parchment is like new. Moreover,the site itself would have been littered with any small animal's carcass and bones. The most likely candidate for a tomb of that sort would have been a royaume of the line. The skull looks quite
large for a female. A good gander at the distot and whether the thumbs are subtended should prove a real shit'n a giggle! Then there is always the brother of Jesus whose toponymic "fossil"(name place)is located very close to Rennes le Chateau;that is if you follow the work of a certain disbarred Austrailian theologian.The wine bottle in which the large parchment was found looks nothing like the type of one hundred fifty years ago. Someone has definitely not paid very much attention to the cross patee or for that matter even a Cathar cross!

.keith hendricks | 10:23 pm on 10/25/2008

p.s. Errata Antoine Captier's father, ADDENDA: "post 50"supports
the tampering or modifications that would have been made over the
centuries. Such modifications imply custodial or guardianship over RELICS ! THE LAPWING IS DEFINITELY IN EVIDENCE HERE!

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