“Sylvia Browne gave me a psychic reading that was so accurate and profoundly moving it changed my entire outlook on the possibility of life after death.”
—Melvin L. Morse, M.D., author of Transformed by the Light and Closer to the Light
“[A] down-to-earth approach to the supernatural . . . ample fare for readers with a taste for comfortable excursions to the other side.”
“Providing exercises designed to call up to a personal Spirit Guide and past-life history, Browne spawns a sense of exhilaration about being here and eases much of the fear about being there.”
“Sylvia Browne is more than a psychic—she is a master at conveying the truth that exists in the fourth dimension.”
—Caroline Myss, Ph.D., author of Anatomy of the Spirit
“A Fodor’s guide to the Beyond: how to get there, what to expect, how to get back to Earth. Readers will be delighted . . . Browne offers a comforting view of the other side.”
“So what is the secret of staying healthy and happy in this life? Understanding past lives, argues bestselling psychic Browne, who gives us some special guidance here.”
“Possibly the most famous psychic in the world. [Sylvia Browne] is very good.”
—Mystic Living Today
Visits from the Afterlife
Sylvia Browne’s Book of Dreams
Past Lives, Future Healing
Blessings from the Other Side
Life on the Other Side
The Other Side and Back
Adventures of a Psychic
An Uncommon Perspective on the Life of Christ
Dearest Lord, look past the blindness of our eyes.
And help us see truth as the aeons of time flies.
The values you taught reside in our soul.
Let the lessons of life, to love God be our goal.
Walk with us, Lord, through the harshness of life.
And smooth over all the innumerable strife.
I ask your blessing from God for everyone.
Especially since He in greatness sent His beloved son.
To my readers . . . bless you, everyone.
IT IS VERY HARD sometimes to describe oneself, but as many of you know, I am what the world calls a psychic. I was born in Kansas City, Missouri, in 1936 and inherited my psychic gifts from my beloved grandmother and a long list of ancestors who had psychic abilities that go back more than three hundred years. In my youth I was tested many times by doctors and scientists, and they all came to the conclusion that I had very distinct paranormal abilities. They would throw terms at me such as clairvoyant, precognitive, clairaudient, prophet, sensitive and trance medium. While I more or less knew the definitions of these words, as a young woman I really didn’t understand them that well, especially as they pertained to me. I just thought that maybe I was nuts or mentally ill.
As a young girl I would sense things, see things and hear things and sometimes they were very frightening to me. If it had not been for my grandmother Ada, I just think that I would have gone into a shell and locked myself out from the world. As it turned out, with my grandmother’s loving counsel (and much, I’m sure, to the chagrin of my parents) . . . I didn’t. I was nothing if not a handful—very precocious, outgoing, loud, energetic and incessantly asking questions and talking. My constant talking got me into trouble more times than not, as I would sense things and just blurt them out to family or even complete strangers. I really couldn’t understand why my father would bury his face in his hands or why my mother would turn and yell at my father to do something with me. I’m sure it was hard on my family to raise me, for I would consistently do things that would embarrass them. Some may have seen my behavior as “cute” or “charming,” but I am sure others would have just seen me as a little “brat.”
I was eight years old when my spirit guide, Francine, first made contact with me. To hear the words “I come from God and you have nothing to fear” when no one was there was quite terrifying, and I immediately ran to my grandmother screaming. From that time on my gift of clairaudience has never left, and Francine would give counsel and solace to me many times over the years. She said to me in the beginning that she would not help me with my own abilities, as they needed to develop on their own, and to this day she does not help me with my private readings or in answering questions from audiences or groups when I do lectures.
I first became aware of my trance mediumship ability while taking a class on hypnosis in my late teens. Fortunately, I was with a few close friends whom I had grown up with and already had talked to them about Francine. The teacher started a group hypnosis exercise on the class, and I went under easily. Then, for the first time, Francine came into my body. She quickly introduced herself to my astonished friends and gave them a few tidbits of information so they would be convinced it was not me. When I came back to consciousness, my friends quickly informed me of what had happened and I instantly became infuriated. I was confused, angry and frightened. Francine immediately began talking to me to calm me down. She logically explained that she had to do this to show me my trance mediumship ability and that it was not harmful in any way. She knew I would never have allowed her to do it otherwise. The truth be told, she was probably right, as I was already in the mind-set that I could possibly be crazy. We made a pact that day that she would never enter into my body in trance again without my permission . . . and she never has.
As most of you know, I have written many books on a variety of subjects dealing with spirituality and God and the paranormal. Much of the information in these books was heretofore unknown and comes from research trances with Francine. Over the years she has given me information that I have had transcribed into thousands of pages. Some of this information is very controversial and has caused me, as well as others, to research extensively for verification, as I have always been what I call an “open-minded skeptic.” Most of the time I have been able to verify in varying degrees the information she has given me. Sometimes I cannot due to a lack of substantial documentation. I have found that many times it is a crapshoot at best because the farther you go back in time or history, the more obscure documentation becomes. You find yourself dealing with legends, myths, corruption, lies, deceit and traditions. So it is not always easy to verify her information. Much of what we think of as truth (historical or otherwise) has so many potential holes for untruth, you sometimes scratch your head in wonder as to why it is considered truth in the first place. This is especially relevant when you are researching and trying to get confirmation on religious subject matter.
Religion is so subjective and so steeped in traditional and historical beliefs that it is hard to discern and separate truth from fiction in many cases. Add to that the fact that all the major religions have bloody histories of corruption and schisms and holy wars, with different sects and factions constantly rising and falling, and you have the proverbial confusing and bewildering murky mess. Thank God that numerous scholars and writers and historians are taking a new interest in various religions, especially Christianity. With new discoveries being made in archaeology and with books like The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown coming out, it has sparked a renaissance over the many controversies that have remained unanswered in Christianity and other religions.
With that in mind, when my publisher called me and asked me to write a book on Jesus Christ and his life, I was stunned into disbelief and silence. I am nothing if not controversial already and my publisher wants me to write a book on our Lord? Being a Gnostic Christian, I am already considered heretical by most, but this assignment would really bring out the critics and skeptics and would be a daunting and often frightening task.
I then thought about my life for a bit. I had dedicated my life to God and to bringing forth the truth about our Creator by trying to help others through my books, my counseling and my lectures. I most surely have my faults, but I have tried to live a good life by helping others as much as I could. Would doing this book jeopardize all that I have tried to do for them? With what I know and believe, I would have to tell the truth as I know it, and that truth will create an inevitable controversy . . . but then, isn’t that why I am here?
I have given my life to teaching and nurturing others, to helping people in any way I can for God. To write about such a holy figure as Jesus Christ may be madness on my part, but it would be an even greater madness to not put forth the truth about him and his works for God so that people can better understand his teachings and from whence he came. To that end, this book contains verifiable truths, and where verification is not possible, it contains logical and truthful information from my spirit guide, Francine. In the more than sixty years of knowing and working with her, I have never found her to be untruthful in any way, and she brings with her the wisdom and knowledge of the Other Side.
In this book you will find many things that will “rattle your cage,” “rock your boat” and “shake your tree” . . . in other words there are many things about Christ’s life that I know to be true that fly in the face of the traditional teachings of Christianity. But truth is truth and you can feel it tangibly within your soul if you open yourself up to it. Close off from truth or don’t acknowledge it and you will find yourself a slave to the powers of deception and lies and your soul will spiritually suffer. Christ said, “The truth will make you free” (John 8:31); but you have to accept the truth for it to make you free. I’m as free as a bird flying on the four winds . . . are you?
Birth and Childhood
THE LIFE OF Jesus Christ has been a topic of more books than anyone could count, let alone read. What I propose to do in this book is to give you real and researched facts according to the latest findings of scholars as well as information from the Other Side by my guide, Francine. In many cases they agree and in some cases they disagree; but the information will be put forth objectively so that the reader can come to his or her own conclusions. Much of the information from Francine is more than thirty years old and has been kept in safekeeping until the time was right for its release. Let me preface the following information right now so that there is no confusion—by no means is any information given in this book meant to ever discredit the divinity of our Lord. I have always and still do believe in the divinity of Jesus Christ, and none of the information put forth in this book in my opinion threatens that.
I just think it’s timely to not only show the true story of Christ and his mission, but also how he lived and died as well as the true message he wanted to bring. In the telling of Christ’s life, we will not just touch upon the three years of his life that most people know about, but we will also address the “lost years” of Jesus as well as other years that no one knows about.
The reader, as I always say, is welcome to take with him what he wants and leave the rest, but keep an open mind as to what I am about to relate about our Lord. I do feel in my heart that many of the facts and research will back up the knowledge that I will be giving, and then from your heart and soul you can make your own deductions.
* * *
Let’s start at the beginning . . . Christ was not born in a manger. It’s true that when he was born the Romans were taking a census and villages and cities were crowded with those who had to register according to the law. But even with the overcrowding, there were still rooms to be had at inns for the wealthy. Joseph was a direct descendant of the royal house of David (Matthew 1:1–16) and had to register both himself and his wife, Mary, at Bethlehem, which was called the city of David. Both Mary and Joseph were from royal and wealthy Judaic families and consequently Jesus was born in an inn and not in a stable with animals lying about. You must realize, contrary to what many teachings try to say, Jesus did not come from a poor, illiterate family.
The people of Bethlehem welcomed Mary and Joseph with great fanfare, and the fact that these two royal families had come together to produce an heir was quite a marvelous event. Israel at that time was a collection of small communities where word traveled fast through heralds and traveling minstrels. Most everyone quickly became aware of his birth and was thrilled. Many hoped that Christ was the Savior, for the prophecies of the ancient prophets said a king of royal lineage would grow up and free them from Roman bondage.
When Christ was born in the inn, the word spread that these two people of royalty possibly gave birth to the Savior that prophecy foretold. Do you suppose, as portrayed in the Gospel of Luke, that a poor peasant family would have been admitted into the high temple to present Christ after he was born to be blessed and sanctified? No, because you had to give offerings and money to be admitted. So a royal family presented Christ at the temple. This was a country of small communities, and like all communities people of like class stay together. These royal, wealthy families would socialize together, help each other, and have intermarriages between them, and that’s how they all knew each other. Let’s face it . . . we don’t hobnob with Queen Elizabeth or even the Hiltons or Rockefellers. They keep to their own circles. The same as it is now, it was then.
Because Joseph was of royal lineage, he was not poor. He was an expert craftsman who attracted people from far and near to have him design and make their custom furniture. It would have been an honor for a customer to buy a magnificent design from a person with a royal bloodline. My spirit guide, Francine, says that Joseph had as many as thirty expert workers who helped build and sell his designs.
Before we go any further, though, let’s get into the conception of Jesus by Mary. The premise of a virgin birth by Mary is hotly contested by biblical scholars. Liberal scholars take the view that the virgin birth of Jesus was pure mythology based on other pagan religions of the time. In Greek mythology, Zeus supposedly impregnated the virgin Danae by taking the form of a shower of gold, and the result was Perseus. He did the same with the virgin Semele, using a bolt of lightning, and the result was Dionysius. Horus, a major god of the Egyptian religion, was born of the virgin Isis and, coincidently, was also supposedly born in a stable. Mithra, the main god in Mithraism, which was a major religion of Rome, was conceived when God in the form of light entered a virgin. Myrrha was a virgin who gave birth to Adonis in Phoenician mythology. As you can see, the concept of a virgin birth was not new, and its mythology permeated throughout cultures at the time.
Only the gospels of Matthew and Luke mention the virgin birth, and both are dated by scholars after the Gospel of Mark and the Epistles of Paul. Neither Mark nor Paul mentions the virgin birth. Many scholars ask why not? Matthew bases his virgin birth story on the prophecy of Isaiah (Isaiah 7:14); but that prophecy clearly states that the name of the child will be Immanuel, not Jesus. Many scholars believe that this prophecy actually refers to another child later on in Isaiah (Isaiah 8:3–4) and is not a prophecy concerning the Messiah. In fact, as we will see later on, many of the so-called prophecies concerning the Messiah are very dubious and have blatantly been misinterpreted. I am not saying this, but biblical scholars are. Paul in Galatians (4:4) says, “But when the time had fully come, God sent his son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem under the law, that we might receive the full rights of sons.” Most scholars say that the message here is that Jesus was a normal Jewish child called by God. If indeed Mary was a virgin, why not say so? Instead, he used the term woman.
As we will see throughout this book (as well as others on Jesus), many of the facts of Christ’s life are based on the Bible. That is well and good to a point. After all, for many years it was the only source we had that had any substantial accounts of even a portion of Jesus’ life. But most people have not done a lot of research on the Bible and how it came into being, just as they have not researched how Christianity came into being. The Bible is considered a holy book and the word of God by many Christians, but as many scholars have pointed out, the Bible can contain errors, inconsistencies and downright falsehoods!
We must remember that historically the Bible did not take its form until the Council of Nicaea in 325 A.D. That is some three hundred years after the life of Christ. Now, three hundred years is a long time, but on top of that we must also realize that it was put together by the early Catholic Church and was edited, rewritten, purged of what the early Church deemed heretical, and manipulated for their own agenda. Do you realize that even today no one knows who actually wrote the four gospels of the New Testament!
Biblical scholars believe that Matthew, Luke and Mark were written by the same writer, for the writing style is similar, as are the stories, and that John was written by another writer because the writing style is different and also brings in new portions of Christ’s life. I don’t know about you, but I envision a little monk about a hundred or so years after Christ writing these stories that we know as the gospels of the New Testament. I am not going to go into a long treatise on how the Bible was written or put together other than to say that as far as the New Testament is concerned, its beginnings and writings are highly suspect, highly prejudicial, and were formulated and edited by the early Christian Church. In other words, as usual, man put his hand in it and messed it all up.
The Bible was written and edited in a time of extreme ignorance, in which the general populace was basically uneducated and illiterate. The early Christian Church was also at that time in the throes of formulation, with constant infighting and politics coming into play as Pauline Christians (those following the beliefs of Paul), Jewish Christians (those following the beliefs of Christ’s brother James), and Gnostic Christians (those following the premise of gnosis) vied for position and power within the Church structure. It all came to a head and was finally decided when the Roman emperor Constantine adopted Pauline Christianity as the Roman state religion in the early fourth century.
When Christians claim that the Bible is their source of truth for making extraordinary claims such as the virgin birth, then they must realize that the educated people of today (we are no longer dealing with an uneducated populace) demand extraordinary proof. The old adage that “if it’s in the Bible, it must be true” does not persuade all the followers anymore. Biblical scholars have found too many errors, lies and inconsistencies in the Bible for it to remain an unchallenged and only source for truth. Too many archaeological discoveries have been made that back up their findings and even put a whole new light on the time of Christ.
I do not depend upon the research of obviously biased Christian scholars, for their work is tainted with their beliefs; nor do I accept the biased work of skeptics or anti-Christian scholars. I always try to find more objective scholars who don’t have an ax to grind one way or the other and who are really just looking for the truth. In this day and age, sometimes they are hard to find.
Getting back to the virgin birth of Christ, Francine says that it was not a virgin birth and that Joseph impregnated Mary. Francine further states that this does not take away Jesus’ divinity because in reality God is the one who makes any impregnation possible for any child and chose Mary to be the mother of Christ—his direct report and messenger. That is probably a logical deduction in light of the fact that we all choose our own mothers and fathers when we incarnate, and I know of no virgin births that are on record as having taken place. Francine states that the writers of these gospels of Matthew and Luke used the mythology of virgin births to make the birth of Christ seem more divine and didn’t want the mythology of other religions’ virgin births superseding Christ’s birth.
The Bible actually confirms this in a way. According to Matthew and Luke, Mary and Joseph were supposedly aware of the divinity of the child who would be born to her and also that they were to name him Jesus. Now, if this were so, why would they question Christ’s actions? In Luke 2:42–51 we read about Christ in the temple at twelve years of age preaching to the teachers and how his parents, Mary and Joseph, had lost him and then found him preaching and rebuked him about his absence. I find verses 49–50 most interesting, especially where Jesus tells his parents he is here to do his Father’s business and they do not understand. Why would they not understand? Didn’t they know he was the Messiah and a divine messenger from God? Joseph knew from an angel in a dream (Matthew 1:18–24) and Mary knew from a visitation by the angel Gabriel (Luke 1:26–38). Do you now see how the Bible can be inconsistent?
Many religions seem to want an immaculate birth with no male intervention. Women were looked on as less than nothing at the time of Christ’s birth. It seems women were elevated when it was useful to the patriarchs of society, and when they were not needed women were seen as unclean. If you want to look at it spiritually, it’s always God’s hand that brings us into being. We come into an earthly life when we need to perfect ourselves for God or, as in the case of Christ, we are on a mission for God.
The reason that Joseph is depicted as confused in the Bible is because he was so much older than Mary and he thought it wasn’t possible for him to have children. Mary was only sixteen and he was close to forty, which in that day was very old. If you look at it in this light, we could all be conceived by God’s immaculate hand to make sure we got here on earth to learn. If God wants to make it happen, it will happen. It’s called divine intervention.
Look at Elizabeth, Mary’s sister, who gave birth to John the Baptist at an age when women were supposedly past the reproductive age. John was born about six months before Christ and was his cousin and eventually became the great prophet and baptizer who was the “voice crying in the desert.” John also foretold that Christ was the true messenger and Messiah. Both Christ’s and John’s families were prominent in the community because of their royal lineage, and many saw John as the possible Messiah.
Christ was born in the month of June, according to Francine. Early Christians had noted his birthday at various times, including during the months of May and April. The early Church fathers finally settled on December 25 because this was the high holy day for the Romans celebrating their sun god and it was their winter solstice (ours is December 21). Romans celebrated this holiday as a time of rebirth and renewal, so the Church, as they have in so many instances, took a pagan holiday and Christianized it. This is but one example that shows how the Church changed dates and times and facts to fit into their own political and moneymaking agendas; but we will get more into that later.
The Bible also tells us of the visit of the Magi at his birth and of the star of Bethlehem and angels visiting the shepherds proclaiming his birth. Again, Matthew and Luke give us these stories about his birth, while Mark and John are silent on the matter. In the Gospel of Matthew we learn of the Magi, or three wise men, who come from the East following a star and arrive at the court of King Herod and ask, “Where is he that is born king of the Jews? For we have seen his star in the east, and are come to adore him” (Matthew 2:2). Now, Herod was upset about this news because he was the king of the Jews and didn’t want any usurpers running around taking his crown. He tells the wise men to go find this child and come back to him with his whereabouts so that he can also adore him; but as we all know he intends to dispose of the child so that his supremacy is not threatened. The wise men go from the court of Herod and, following the star, come to Bethlehem (to fulfill a prophecy), where they find the Christ child and adore him and give him frankincense, gold and myrrh. We then are told that the wise men and Joseph both got messages in their sleep—the wise men to not return to Herod, and Joseph to flee to Egypt because Herod would kill Jesus if he didn’t. According to Matthew, Joseph and Mary take the child and flee to Egypt.