Lecture 2 – Second Hour
Parthia or India and the Teaching of Addai
Parthia or India?
a) A good criterion to understand the diverse tendencies of the authors is to realize that Edessa had its own version of the Apostolate of Thomas (i.e. India), while the rest of the East its different version (i.e. Parthia). Edessa indeed would reclaim the body of Thomas from India, as though he was the head of the apostolic mission to their region, and the fact of the tomb of the Apostle in Edessa in the 4th century is sufficiently documented (See Carmen 42 of St. Aphrem’s Carmena Nisibina, and the Memoirs of Egeria of the IV century).
b) Meanwhile, it is also a matter of historic fact that Parthia and India are adjacent regions and were ruled in the first Christian century by one royal dynasty, which make both traditions as completing each other.
c) The Silk Road, between China and the Mediterranean, was the most secure and popular travelling path between Judea and India; It passes through Babylonia up to the Gulf of Mayshan (Today’s Basra, in the Persian Gulf); this is clearly the way used by a prince searching for the Pearl as reported in Chapter 10; though it is possible that Thomas made more than one trip from Judea to India, with the possibility of using more than one path.
d) Very meaningfully, Thomas ended up martyred by the spears of the soldiers as ordered by the king, angry for Thomas having “bewitched” the ladies of the court, including the queen. A spear and an open chest become a mystical connection between the Lord and the disciple.
II. Addai and Mari:
- a)the Doctrine of Addai: (See pp. 3-17)
- b)Eusebius: (Ch.1:“A story about the Prince of Edessa: The story about Taddaeus is as follows:
- c)The Anaphora of Addai & Mari