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Pilgrimage to Heresy: Don't Believe Everything They Tell You


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 1999, Aragones 2000, Desde Le Puy 2002, Portuguese 2009, hoping RDLP 2014
Dear Fellow Pilgrims,
I have just discovered this Forum and hope to add my comments whenever I can.
I walked my own Camino in 1999 from the Pyrennees. There is still no doubt in my mind that it was perhaps the most important thing I have ever done, and, as it does with all pilgrims remains a constant influence in my everyday life.
Along the way, somewhere between Ponferrada and Cacabelos, my fellow pilgrim, and a Gnostic priest, told me that there was incresing conjecture that it was not S. James buried in Compostela at all, but a "heretic" named Priscillian. I countered that I had never heard of Priscillian, but the idea wouldn't go away. So when I got back, I began to do a bit of research and what I found was fascinating indeed. Priscillian's story had all the elements of a best seller: persecution and injustice, alternative faiths, a scandal or two, but no such book existed. So I decided the only thing to do was write my own!
Pilgrimage to Heresy has been recently published in the US. It is "novel" in so much as the story and dialogue are my own, but, the historial detail, such as we know it, is accurate, and it presents Priscillian's philosophy dovetailed with the thoughts of Miranda, a modern day Canadian pilgrim, who is looking for the basis for her own beliefs and insights into her own spirituality. If you have walked the Camino, or plan to, I would be very surprised if you do not find something of yourselves within its pages.
For more information, see http://www.pilgrimagetoheresy.com where you can read about Priscillian, my own Camino, and some links to Gnosticism, as well as ordering information. You can also read some pages from the book.
If you wish to read the Prologue and the first chaper, see also http://www.iuniverse.com/lookinside/Loo ... 124&page=3
Ultreia y Buen Camino
Tracy Saunders


Active Member
Pilgrimage is of all people, faiths, sferes and ages - for hunters, gatherers and smorgasbordians:

Hi Tracy!

See on Priscillian (Priscillianus) also The Way of Saint James by Georgiana Goddard King (1920): I-59, III-334, 345; Priscillianism, II-222, 237, III-237, 264, 316. See Index III-624

http://www.openlibrary.org/details/wayo ... 01kinguoft Volume I full-text-on-line Flip Book
http://www.openlibrary.org/details/wayo ... 02kinguoft Volume II idem
http://www.openlibrary.org/details/wayo ... 03kinguoft Volume III idem

A few decades ago I was in Trier (Germany) where according to legend Priscillian’s last procession left for Mondoñedo (or was it Santiago?). I had read * Chadwick, Fletcher and King so in the largest downtown University bookshop I waited patiently till the oldest (looking) employee was free and then asked in my best German for any books on their local martyr. This elderly gentlemen answered just ‘Nein’ looking most indignant and I must have looked most surprised. In those early days I had a similar experience in Santiago so I'm rather curious where your quest may lead to.

Please keep me posted!


* http://libro.uca.edu/sjc/sjc.htm full-text-on-line: R. A. Fletcher, Saint James's Catapult: The Life and Times of Diego Gelmírez of Santiago de Compostela; [224] Diego was at once both the crozier and the catapult of St. James. http://libro.uca.edu/sjc/sjc3.htm note 14

Ps1: I just saw the discussion on the MSN forum covering a part of what there is to know about what is happening at Santiago or Fisterra. Pilgrimage is older than any church; in fact as old as mankind. Let's talk about what Ms King has to say about the earliest days of 'going west'.
Ps2: See http://www.york.ac.uk/projects/pilgrimage/intro.html on What is Pilgrimage? The Origins of the Terms 'Pilgrim' and 'Pilgrimage'
Ps3: Perhaps we should not concentrate on differences between James and Priscillian but on their identical message about the meaning of life. Reaching the end of their known world illuminates the only 'scientific' truth in life: our certain death.
Ps4: http://www.archive.org/details/corpussc ... 18auguuoft
Ps5: http://www.santiago.es/ir.php?var=Prisciliano
Ps6: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santa_Compa%C3%B1a - The Santa Compaña, or 'Santa Companha' ("Holy Company") is probably one of the most deep-rooted mythical beliefs in rural Galicia, and also in Asturias, where it is called Güestia.
Ps7: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christianised_sites - Santiago de Compostela is a major site of Christian pilgrimage, and said in Christian tradition to originate as the burial place of Saint James the Great; pilgrims traditionally follow the Way of St. James until they reach the Cathedral, but then, having visited the church, continue to Cape Finisterre. The continuation to Cape Finisterre is regarded by historians as unjustifiable for Christian reasons, but Finisterre has a prominent pre-Christian significance, it was considered to literally be the edge of the world (hence the name finisterre, meaning end of the world), due to it seeming to be the westernmost point of Europe (in reality, even though it juts out to the west, the more subtle Cabo da Roca holds the honour). In pre-Christian times, the souls of the dead were believed to trace their way across all Europe to Finisterre and follow the sun across the sea, and their route, the Santa Compaña, became a significant pilgrimage throughout south western Europe. Santiago de Compostela itself was held to be the place where the dead gathered together, and where their paths finally all joined together for the final stretch of the journey; one possible etymology of Compostela is burial ground, suggesting that even the name derives from the pre-Christian belief. To historians, the church was put in place to divert the pilgrims to Christianity, rather than the pilgrimage coming after the church.


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 1999, Aragones 2000, Desde Le Puy 2002, Portuguese 2009, hoping RDLP 2014
Hola Pelgrim Geert, and Goedenarvond!
Thank you so much for your reply and your interest. Your links are especially useful to me as some I have not come accross. I shall be going to Galicia in early April and plan to walk some of the Camino Primitivo. I haven't come across the Mondonedo link before so shall certainly check that out. I want to a bit of research before staring on book two, working title: Peregrinus. There is some thought that the mysterious Peregrinus might have been Instantius, one of Priscillian's followers who was exiled after the Synod of Bordeaux to the Scilly Isles. That's my next avenue of research.
The problem is that we don't know very much about Priscillian, except, that is, from the Catholic Encyclopaedia and obviously biased sources. I curse my dreadful German and even worse Latin at times like this!
Your story about your reception at the university in Trier made me smile. I went to Avila and asked at the Cathedral about Priscillian, only to be told - with the same disdain - that "No such person ever existed". Hard to research in such circumstances.
Yet I am certain that this man was one of the most mistunderstood in church history, most especially given the continuation, albeit in secret, of pagan practices in Galicia. We have obfuscated so much belief in the name of Faith.
Perhaps that's why I felt that I had to write the book - and yes, it is fiction, but something compelled me to write what I did!
Again, thank you. You have given me much to think about and follow up!
Tracy Saunders
Pilgrimage to Heresy:Don't Believe Everything They Tell You
P.S. I noticed the link to York University. Are you in Canada by any chance?


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 1999, Aragones 2000, Desde Le Puy 2002, Portuguese 2009, hoping RDLP 2014
By the way, I shall think the topic of "What is Pilgrimage?" is one I shall ponder for the next few days. Perhaps it would be a good topic for another thread. It was quite clear in Mediaeval times, but now....? Who would have thought that the idea of going on a pilgrimage (to Santiago or...?)should still be such a popular idea.


Priscillian said:
By the way, I shall think the topic of "What is Pilgrimage?" is one I shall ponder for the next few days. Perhaps it would be a good topic for another thread. It was quite clear in Mediaeval times, but now....? Who would have thought that the idea of going on a pilgrimage (to Santiago or...?)should still be such a popular idea.

You would do well to ponder that 'topic'. And you may find, having pondered it, that the time has come to simply make your pilgrimage, without any preconceived ideas. See what the Camino may tell you, and discover Who you meet on the way. It may be that you meet Him, for He is always waiting for us and when we are ready (and suitably quiet) we may meet Him. Walk in the night looking up and looking west. Whatever you think of the history of some bones in a casket, there is a living Tradition here and a God who speaks to you. Just be ready.

Buen Camino.



Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
"What is Pilgrimage?"

For thousands of fans it is a trip to Graceland!

For multitudes of Zulus it is a walk up the Shembe hill in KwaZulu Natal.

For millions of Christians it is to visit Rome.

For many millions of Muslims it is a journey to Haj.

For millions of Buddhists it is the 1600km 88 temple circuit on the island of Shikoku.

etc etc etc......


Active Member
Hola Tracy!
And a very good night (it’s far passed midnight here) to you too and thank you very much for your kind and long answer! I’ll try my best again and react to some of your words after quoting them:

“Mondoñedo”: See King I-84, 88-122, II-278, 299, 421, III-91, 93, 141, 295, 406-7; diocese of , II-472; bishop of, II-16; synodals of, III-233, 235.
“Peregrinus”: I only just found him and Instantius on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Priscillian and .../Peregrinus so I’ll be very interested in what you dig up.
“The problem is that we don't know very much…”: Perhaps we will know more when we open our ears, eyes and especially our hearts and feelings more in a different way!? I’m referring to the identical signals mentioned earlier that hardly anybody talks about.
“German”: In Dutch we have luckily different words for pilgrimage: the verb pelgrimeren and the nouns pelgrimage, pelgrim and bedevaart. Bede stands for Dutch bidden and German beten (praying) and vaart for fahring in wayfahring and Wallfahrt. That allows us to make (when asked for) an easy and comfortable distinction between religious and secular pilgrimage.
As a professional pilgrim I started making new secular pilgrim’s routes that at first glance have little to do with religion. For instance: the yearly trek of veterans to the battle fields of Arnhem (goal of operation Market-Garden in A Bridge Too Far) has always been called pilgrimage; see http://pelgrimspad-market-garden.blogspot.com and http://pelgrimspad-overijssel.blogspot.com. In this context we would never talk of bedevaart.
There is a strange coïncidence that Dutch wal en German Wall come back in all kinds of words that mean strange, far, alien (like in peregrin) and even bad: wallnut-walnoot-Wallnusz; Wales, our excentric island of Walcheren; Dutch walgen: to keep far away, to detest; etcetera.
Another coïncidence is that Galicia can mean a lot: 'Throughout history the term has been used to denote widely varying territories and has various meaning among different groups.' http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galicia_%2 ... _Europe%29
“Hard to research in such circumstances.” I had that experience in Santiago in 1983 [Thank you, TS!] when I mentioned Priscillian! It finished abruptly a very nice conversation with an elderly gentleman on the influence of Chartres on Santiago cathedral.
“albeit in secret”: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Priscillian: Some writings by Priscillian were accounted orthodox and were not burned.
“obfuscated”: I think that’s beside the point! Pagans do the same; we all do!
“compelled”: I love people with a passion! But beware: the word has at least two meanings!
“follow up”: If you need me I’ll be there!

Thank you again! I ‘believe’ that the King reprint will make many curious pilgrims think along with you! Was it not Ms King who said: “It is all one great story.”? [No, not quite; see Ps3] Anyway, I hope you’ll see it too.
Geert Bakker - http://www.pelgrimspaden.nl - http://king-early-days.blogspot.com

Ps1: “Canada”: Why?
Ps2: Also see Re: A New Beginning at Finisterre by PILGRIMSPLAZA on February 22nd, 2008, 8:43 pm answering Bob M.
Ps3: King: Volume I: FOREWORD: I have made one straight story out of three years' wanderings, and places visited and revisited.


Active Member
Priscillian said:
still be such a popular idea
And growing fast too! Since a quarter of a century I ask myself: Why? Why Santiago? Why Fisterra? Why so many? With almost every book and pilgrim's story the enigma gets bigger. Still I 'believe' that Ms King already indicated most answers; also the ones that are not yet openly discussed! That book hit me hard! This summer I hope to be reading Volume II on the beach with a broad view.


Active Member
You are so right, Gareth, and your words make me happy again! This week I spent far too many wee little hours surfing this wonderful, miraculous, technically outstanding forum reading pilgrim's motivations looking for one that matched my own. In all these hundreds of posts (and there must be thousands more?) I read a lot of wonderful words of many people I already feel close to but I found only one that I was really looking for: a simply curious pilgrim. Whatchathinking? said: "Why do the Camino, I'm curious." Many others said or meant more or less the same but this one quote struck me. I love people who want to know it all. And as a professional walker on many lonely walks in our vast deserted woods I inevitably became a creationist. All good walking is spiritual!


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 1999, Aragones 2000, Desde Le Puy 2002, Portuguese 2009, hoping RDLP 2014
Thank you to all of you for replying. As always, I am learning a great deal, and as I continue my research, I expect to learn a great deal more.
One thing I try very hard NOT to do is to become blinkered to any idea, no matter how it might clash with my own ideas. I led philosophy seminars at university in Canada, and I found that the most effective way of teaching ethics, was to find out what views my students had, and then asking them to research, and be prepared to debate, the opposite platform. Some of them found that very difficult, and very few people changed their opinions, but all learned exactly HOW to argue for their position. While walking the Camino (and Gareth, I've left over 2000 kms of shoe leather over the last 8 years!) I fhave found that the pilgrimage (note lower case) is to the heart (definitely not bones!). The Camino teaches us to value simplicity, friendship, our own courage sometimes, the restorative power of water, and the gift of suffering. It has taught me to actively look for, and trreasure, the ordinary. (As an aside, I work as a psychotherapist and one of the techniques I use to help people overcome depression is to ask them to look for ONE thing a day which makes them smile, and then to write it down. After a couple of weeks they see so many things that the device is no longer need!)
I belong to no organised religion, neither do I need one. I call myself a "Smorgasbordian"! A sort of religious fusionist - and frankly, I like it that way.
Whose bones? It doesn't matter...almost everyone has told me that and I agree. But I would rather investigate the possibility of a long standing "misconception", than accept blindly what I have been told, and what, historically, and factually, makes little sense.
Thanks again, and please keep dem comments a rollin'
Um...Geert, you do mean 1983, don't you? Or are you like Merlin???

P.S. Still thinking. When I go to a place I have known and loved, I make a point to go to places that have made me happpy, which have good memories and which remind me of how lucky I am to have seen so many of them. I guess that's a pilgrimage too.
As for "Why go?" I haven't the faintest idea. Especially when we have so much materially, and we take so little. It's that yearning for a simpler less complicated life where what is more than 6 metres away from you either side is not of very much importance. There's no periphery...only forward. (I mention something about this in the book when the pilgrims come to the "Four Corners" halfway across the Montes de Oca.) I like Jack Hitt's comment at the end of Off the Road (a classic!). When asked: "What was your motive for walking the Camino?", he replied: "To find my motive". I love that!


Active Member
Hi Tracy, Here we go again:

"please keep dem comments a rollin'": Your wish is my command and I'm easy to trigger on this lifelong passion, so here is an argument I forgot last night. It's about a most exciting book on the apostle Paul in relation to his confrère James: 'São Paulo' by Teixeira de Pascoaes (1934 - in Dutch: Paulus, de dichter Gods, translated by the German Albert Vigoleis Thelen and our Hendrik Marsman - 1939).

When you like Priscillian you'll love this! It's about James's battle with Paul to be second in command which in a way is similar to his connection with Priscillian; isn't it? They all have aspects of limits, loss, death, rites of passage and so the camino is also a procession route of transition. The question is: Do we already know? Is that why we're going? Are we being pushed or drawn to the end of the world? Do we really have a choice? Looking at the labyrinth in Chartres the message seems to be that we don't; that there is no straight way to heaven and that our wrestling faith, bending and turning in life is monitored. Doing the labyrinth -as intended- on your knees helps!

Has the urge been in our bone marrow and collective memory since the dawning of time? I'm very surprised to feel that Santiago will keep calling me (a born pagan) for the rest of my life to come home. King may help us meeting (at least halfway?) the way Gareth described sooner then we may realize now. Did anyone make a study or an inquiry into all these impulses? There is a clue for similarities and twin aspects for all pilgrims to see very clearly (but why don't they?) in de Pórtico de la Gloria if you can observe like our medieval ancestors reading their stone bible (between the lines of course - and when you see it you'll understand the name too - and when you tell me we'll have a nice lunch one day to talk about it - and laugh that it took us so much time and effort!).

"I make a point to go to places that have made me happy, which have good memories and which remind me of how lucky I am to have seen so many of them. I guess that's a pilgrimage too." Exactly! That's also why we make in a most respectful way new pilgrim's paths to places of human interest. We are finding so many of the most beautiful gems on these roads; it's most amazing!

"As for "Why go?" I haven't the faintest idea": Be patient! That might change reading King! And what about the aspect of seasonal bird migration like those two French journalists suggested?

""To find my motive". I love that!" Did he find it?

"little sense": Without rising above these endless discussions we won't see the light; King will show us our own Way to everybody's Monxoi where 'Thou shalt be free'.

Have fun! Geert

Ps1: On this sunday afternoon as the rain kept me from the beach I just read of your book what the internet permits. Beautiful! It brought back nice memories and really made me look forward to your next! (Your Ithaca is so enchantedly rich!) And for now ... when the going gets tough:
'As you set out for Ithaca
hope your road is a long one,
full of adventure, full of discovery. (...)
Ithaca gave you the marvelous journey.
Without her you wouldn't have set out.
She has nothing left to give you now.
And if you find her poor, Ithaca won't have fooled you.
Wise as you will have become, so full of experience,
you'll have understood by then what these Ithacas mean.'
http://portugal.poetryinternationalweb. ... bj_id=4658 -
http://www.agencia.ecclesia.pt/institui ... iaid=12893 -
http://www.assirio.pt/livraria.php?id=1 ... eccao=6953 - http://ler.letras.up.pt/uploads/ficheiros/3910.pdf - http://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teixeira_de_Pascoaes - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hendrik_Marsman -
http://www.diocesechartres.com > Cathédrale 2x > Labyrinthe
Ps2: Found a interesting book that also mentioned the Scilly Islands regarding Instantius:
Ps3: and to brush up your latin: http://www.openlibrary.org/details/corp ... 18auguuoft .


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Active Member
ad Sedem Britonorum

Was there not a link from Mondoñedo > Bretoña > Britain > William the Conquerer > Normandy? ‘Bretoña, localidad situada a apenas treinta kilómetros de la actual iglesia de Mondoñedo.’ I Googled a while on "ad Sedem Britonorum":
http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bretones_e ... y_Asturias
http://www.scandinavica.com/culture/his ... rmandy.htm

On this forum:

- 7th Int. Colloquium Compostela - analysing the myth of Santi by sillydoll on October 3rd, 2012, 8:15 pm on miscellaneous-topics/topic15488.html?sid=3c3d31942f82ec2b4362a49c623be346#p107834

- Un congreso aborda los mitos sobre la traslación del apóstol by PILGRIMSPLAZA on October 17th, 2012, 4:09 pm on miscellaneous-topics/topic15488.html?sid=3c3d31942f82ec2b4362a49c623be346#p108895

- Santiago Colloquium 2012 by PILGRIMSPLAZA on October 18th, 2012, 8:49 am on miscellaneous-topics/topic15617.html#p108951

- Re: 7th Int. Colloquium Compostela - analysing the myth of Santi by Priscillian on October 21st, 2012, 9:29 pm on miscellaneous-topics/topic15488.html?sid=3c3d31942f82ec2b4362a49c623be346#p109168 -

- Re: Whose is the Pink Marble Tomb? by Priscillian on October 21st, 2012, 9:45 pm on miscellaneous-topics/topic4966.html#p109170

- ad Sedem Britonorum by PILGRIMSPLAZA on April 19th, 2008, 5:04 pm on miscellaneous-topics/topic3554.html#p21583

- Early British Settlements in Galicia - http://pilgrim.peterrobins.co.uk/santia ... licia.html -

- miscellaneous-topics/topic15488.html?sid=3c3d31942f82ec2b4362a49c623be346#p109175 -



Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
Peter - I just love your website - I don't think anyone has more info on pilgrimage and the countries they pass through than you do.


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 1999, Aragones 2000, Desde Le Puy 2002, Portuguese 2009, hoping RDLP 2014
Thank you all! This new topic of Diego Pelaez and why he managed to seriously tick off the king is becoming almost as enigmatic and mysterious as Priscillian! I mean William of Normandy for heaven's sake... could this possibly be true and if so, why were the people of Galicia so loyal to Pelaez? After all, we don't expect bishops to betray their benefactors (Um....Thomas a Becket...?) You have given me a lot to read and think about. I note that the Diocese was transferred from Iria Flavia to Santiago with the creation of the post of Archbishop: Diego Gelmirez. I am also wondering why so many years had to pass before building work recomenced?
So wish I was independently wealthy and could work on this full time!
Any publisher's advances out there!!!
Tracy Saunders


Active Member
Priscillian said:
Diocese was transferred from Iria Flavia to Santiago
Does anyone know if Cée near Fisterra was a station on this transfer? Or that it played another role (seat?) in this part of the Santiago story?


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 1999, Aragones 2000, Desde Le Puy 2002, Portuguese 2009, hoping RDLP 2014
Cee is much closer to Fisterra than it is to Iria Flavia, and the journey to "the ends of the earth" is much older than the "pilgrimage" if we consider the latter to be only connected with the St. James´"myth". One thing I to am trying to sort out is the route from Padron to Santiago is the extension of that from Portugal, whereas, the Pico Sacro appears to be on that from Orense which comes from the south east (an alternative for the Ruta de la Plata which "cuts off the corner") I passed through a tiny and gorgeous little village called Rubial on my way back and there was a stone saying that the bulls in the story stopped for water there. Pico Sacro overlooks this valley, but it is not on the Portuguese route, so I´m confused: are there two routes from Padron, one of which goes somewhat out of the direct way to Santiago? Why would it do that? And another: Libredon which may, or may not, be the original name for the area where SdeC grew up, translates loosely as Freely Given: but by whom and why? Queen Lupa may have given, but it was hardly freely.. Land for the burial of Priscillian, however, would likely qualify for this, given his popularity in Galicia.
Tracy Saunders


Active Member
Follow the Tau

Priscillian said:
... so I´m confused
So was I till I discovered the greater and longer story lines by following the Tau-cross staff that made it full circle. From the Holy Land via Axum in Ethiopia (where the Tau-cross staff is still carried around in procession by christian priests –I’ve got such an original Tau at home!) along the southern [quite remarkable – there must be a lot of untold stories! -gb] shores of the Mediterranean via Nazaré [Nazareth?] on the Portuguese coast to Padron and Santiago cum annexis to Ireland [linking picture created errors just now] from where Brandan, Willibrord and Bonifatius took the story back to the continent to Dokkum in Friesland (where the latter was murdered) and Echternach (with its dancing procession) in Luxemburg & so on & so further. Who said again: It is all one great story?

Some references (not to confuse anyone anymore!):

http://images.google.com/images?hl=nl&q=Tau&gbv=2 ; Franciscan Tau Crucifix

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dancing_pr ... Echternach : Three steps forward are taken, then two back, so that five steps are required in order to advance one pace. [Just like a good story should develop!]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_of_ ... ry_of_Zion ; It remains a significant center of pilgrimage for Ethiopian Orthodox Christians, especially during the main Festival of Zion Maryam ; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Axum ;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethiopian_Orthodox_Church : The initiative in the Roman Catholic missions to Ethiopia was taken, not by Rome, but by Portugal, as an incident in the struggle with the Muslim Ottoman Empire and Sultanate of Adal for the command of the trade route to India by the Red Sea.

http://www.tadias.com/wp-content/upload ... -1-new.jpg ; Figure 1: tau-cross staff ; http://www.tadias.com/?cat=10 ;

http://www.britishmuseum.org/explore/hi ... _head.aspx ; Tau cross head ; This cross head in the shape of a T (the Greek letter tau) was discovered in the garden of a rectory at the beginning of the twentieth century. It would originally have been fixed to a wooden staff to form a crozier, the powerful symbol for a senior official in the Church.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lalibela ; http://home.wanadoo.nl/spaansen/lalibela.htm ;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Sign_and_the_Seal ;

http://elcaminosantiago.com/PDF/Way_of_ ... mes_03.txt : The Way of Saint James by Georgiana Goddard King: > Taustaff > Volume III The Bourne : The High God [347] > [358] "Dr. Garstang desires to elucidate the passage by reference to the Hittites and their draped pillars, and such pillars are known to Minoan cults, and the dressed Virgins of Spain are their daughters. In this connexion I should like to point out [359] that the figure in the Gloria which I have called S. James Minor and which is usually interpreted as a reduplication of the Son of Zebedee, carries as his attribute a Taustaff wrapped around with cloths."

In The Messianic Legacy van Baigent, Leigh & Lincoln (from The Holy Blood and The Holy Grail) 1986, ISBN 0-552-13182-2, see foto’s between pp136-7:
10: The twelfth-century Kilfenora Cross, Co. Clare. The figure on the left holds a familiar bishop’s crozier [kromstaf-gb], and that on the right the T-shaped staff of office traditionally carried by bishops of the Egyptian Church.
11-12: Above left, detail from an illustration of Anthony and Paul, Monastery of Anthony, Egypt, showing the Egyptian T-shaped staff.
Above right, carving of St James, Portico of Glory, Santiago de Compostela, featuring the Egyptian staff.
13: Below left, cross shaft at Tighlagheany, Inishmore, Aran Islands. The rosette at the top is a characteristic Middle Eastern pattern.
14: Below right, Egyptian Church gravestone of the seventh of eighth century A.D. showing te rosette pattern.
P148: Priscillianist texts were used in Ireland, despite their heretical status in Rome’s eyes.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tau : Scientific uses : The lower-case letter τ is used as a symbol for: The Golden ratio 1.618... (although φ (phi) is more common) ; Other uses : In ancient times, a symbol for life and/or resurrection, whereas the 8th letter of the Greek alphabet, theta, was considered the symbol of death. - Tau is usually considered as the symbol of Franciscan orders due to St. Francis' love for it, symbol of the redemption and of the Cross. Almost all Franciscan churches have painted a tau with two crossing arms, both with stigmata, the one of Jesus and the other of Francis; usually members of the Secular Franciscan Order wear a wooden τ in a string with three knots around the neck.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taw#Hebrew_Pronunciation ; In Judaism : Tav is the last letter of the Hebrew word emet, which means truth. The midrash explains that emet is made up of the first, middle, and last letters of the Hebrew alphabet (Aleph, Mem, and Tav: אמת). Sheqer (falsehood), on the other hand, is made up of the 19th, 20th, and 21st (and penultimate) letters. - Thus, truth is all-encompassing, while falsehood is narrow and deceiving.

In Jewish mythology it was the word emet that was carved into the head of the golem which ultimately gave it life. But when the letter aleph was erased from the golem's forehead, what was left was met - death. And so the golem died. - Sayings with Taw - From Aleph to Taw describes something from beginning to end; the Hebrew equivalent of the English From A to Z. [Got it!?]

Follow the Tau – 2

See miscellaneous-about-santiago/topic3794.html :
5a. How jewish Ja'akov became roman Jacobus and catholic James
Is this Ja'akov with his Tau-staffl? See big picture below or click on foto 47 on
http://www.manbos.com/en/verfoto.asp?id ... ql=2&cod=1


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Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 1999, Aragones 2000, Desde Le Puy 2002, Portuguese 2009, hoping RDLP 2014
Brilliant to have Peter Robbins' link again. I thought I had lost it, and, forgive me Peter, didn´t remember it being associated with you! There is a MINE of information of it and I am enjoying looking over it once again now that 4 years have passed.
http://www.peterrobins.co.uk/camino/Bri ... licia.html



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