These two graves don’t point towards Mecca, and the writing on the graves is in Hebrew, which is impossible on a Mohammedan grave – Hebrew is not their language. The name of Jesus is written exactly as it was pronounced by the Jews, Joshua. “Jesus” is a Christian conversion of the Jewish name. The grave is certainly of Jesus.
A family has been taking care of both graves – they are very close together in one place, Pahalgam – and only one family has been taking care of them down the centuries. They are Jews – they are still Jews – and I had to take their help to read to me what is written on the graves.
Moses had come to Kashmir to find a tribe of Jews that was lost on the way from Egypt to Jerusalem. When he reached Jerusalem his deep concern was the whole tribe that had got lost somewhere in the desert. When his people were established in Jerusalem, he went in search of the lost tribe, and he found the lost tribe established in Kashmir. Kashmiris are basically Jewish – later on Mohammedans forcibly converted them – and Moses lived with them and died there.
Jesus also went to Kashmir, because then it was known that Moses had found the lost tribe there. The doors of Judea were closed – he would be hanged again – and the only place where he would find the people who speak the same language, the people who have a same kind of mind, where he would not be a foreigner, was Kashmir. So it was natural for him to go to Kashmir.
But he had learned his lesson. He had dropped the idea of being the only begotten son of God; otherwise these Jews would crucify him too. He dropped the idea of being a messiah. He lived with his few intimate friends and followers in Pahalgam.
Pahalgam is named after Jesus, because he used to call himself “the shepherd” – Pahalgam means the town of the shepherd. So it was a small colony of Jesus and his friends, surrounding the grave of their forefather and the founder of Judaic tradition. Jesus remained a Jew to the very end; he never heard about Christianity.
But the followers who were left in Judea managed to create the story of resurrection. And there was no way to prove it this way or that. Neither could they produce Jesus – if he was resurrected then where was he? Nor could the other party prove what had happened. They had put such a big rock on the mouth of the cave that it was impossible for Jesus to have removed it, and there was a Roman soldier on duty twenty-four hours, so there was no possibility of anybody else removing the rock and taking the body.
But because Pontius Pilate was from the very beginning against crucifying Jesus…. He could see the man was absolutely innocent. He has some crazy ideas, but they are not criminal. And what harm does it do to somebody? If someone thinks he is the only begotten son of God, let him enjoy it. Why disturb him, and why get disturbed? If somebody thinks he is the messiah and he has brought the message of God…if you want to listen, listen; if you don’t want to listen, don’t listen. But there is no need to crucify the man.