Shawn Haigins / Ashwin Sanghi
hawn Haigins is a pseudonym for the author of ‘The Rozabal Line’ (real name Ashwin Sanghi). A businessman by profession, Ashwin writes extensively on history, religion, and politics in his spare time. “The Rozabal Line” is Ashwin s first attempt at fiction. Shawn
We at the Tomb of Jesus website believe this to be the first published fictional book centering around the Jesus in India theory and the Rozabal tomb.
Ashwin has had several editions of the book published and enjoyed great success of the book. We have a few newspaper articles from August 2010:
1. Bombay Times: “Delve Into This Thrilling Novel”
2. The Hindu: “His first book interspersed with religion and history was lapped up by bibliophiles.”
3. Bangalore Mirror: Debutant Ashwin Sanghi weaves in the age-old theory of Jesus surviving crucifixion and being buried at the famed Rozabal shrine
The Rozabal Line – Published October 2007
The tomb of Rozabal in Kashmir has contained the body of a great saint called Yuz Asaf since 112 A.D. But who exactly was Yuz Asaf? And what special secret does the ancient tomb contain?
Father Vincent Morgan is unwittingly sucked into the Rozabal tornado when flashes of his own previous lifetimes reveal some uncomfortable truths about the life and death of Jesus Christ.
Vincent is soon caught in the crossfire of the battle between the Osama-bin-Laden inspired warriors of Islam, led by Ghalib-bin-Isar, and the fundamentalists of the Crux Decussata Permuta.
The secret held securely within Rozabal for two millennia threatens to upset the world’s balance of power. Should it ever be allowed to emerge at all?
Zipping around the world caught up in a whirlwind of events, people, religion and time, swinging back and forth among bygone eras, the present as well as the future, connecting and often reincarnating events and people, Rozabal keeps everyone guessing.
From Jesus to Muhammad; from the Crusades to 9/11; from the Vatican to the White House; from Skull & Bones to the Illuminati; from Buddhist meditation to past-life regression; from the Virgin birth to nuclear destruction; and from Mary Magdalene to Osama-bin-Laden; The Rozabal Line has it all, and more.
Sample the First Chapter
The author has made the first chapter of his book available to visitors of the Tomb of Jesus for free available here
More about the Author
You can find further resources and information about the author and the book at Shawn’s blog .
Exclusive Interview – Shawn Interviewed by the Tomb of Jesus Website
1. When did you first come across the theory of Jesus travelling to India?
The notion that Jesus may have indeed spawned a bloodline came to my attention in late 1999 when I read “Holy Blood Holy Grail” by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh, and Henry Lincoln. A couple of years later, I read Holger Kersten’s “Jesus Lived in India” and was fascinated with the idea that Jesus could have been inspired by Buddhism and that he may have drawn much of his spiritual learning from India. Kersten’s research was meticulous, and I was soon hooked!
2. What is your personal belief about the tomb in Kashmir known as Rozabal?
My personal belief is that it is irrelevant whether Rozabal is indeed the actual tomb of Jesus or not. For me, personally, Rozabal represents an “alternative story”. It is representative of the possibility that the story contained in the four canonical gospels may not be the entire truth. It is also symbolic of many facets of the Christian faith that have been obliterated down the ages. The fact that the lost tribes of Israel certainly had a connection with India, the fact that early Christianity drew inspiration from other faiths such as Buddhism, the fact that Jesus may have been one the greatest men that walked on earth, but a man nonetheless.
3. What were your main sources of information when researching the book?
I am neither scholar nor researcher, simply a paperback writer! But yes, I found that there was a wealth of information out there. Some of this information was available in excellent books that had covered various issues such as the Jesus in India hypothesis, the historical Jesus, and the interplay of mythologies and religious beliefs in the evolution of the character of Jesus. Books such as “Jesus Lived in India” by Holger Kersten, “Jesus in Kashmir: The Lost Tomb” by Suzanne Olsson, “The Fifth Gospel” by Fida Hassnain, “The Unknown Life of Jesus” by Nicolas Notovich and “The Lost Years of Jesus” by Elizabeth Clare Prophet were very important in building the framework of the story. Other books such as “The Christ Conspiracy: The Greatest Story Ever Sold” by S. Acharya and “The World’s Sixteen Crucified Saviours” by Kersey Graves were important from the angle of building the “alternative hypothesis” around the canonical Jesus. I found that the “Tomb of Jesus” website and several other online communities not only had a wealth of information but also had free-flowing opinions and views of readers and contributors. Many of these unproven comments helped me build the fictional element of The Rozabal Line around the fact.
4. When did you come across Mirza Ghulam Ahmad and his famous book ‘Jesus in India’
The first that I heard of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad and his book “Jesus in India” was when I read Kersten’s work. Holger Kersten had used many of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad’s opinions and material in his own book “Jesus Lived in India”. When I started working on “The Rozabal Line”, I naturally wanted to read Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad’s book first hand as it was considered by many to be the definitive work on the subject of Jesus having survived the crucifixion and having traveled to India. Most important- the book established several connections to the Qu’ran and this was fundamental to my story. I tried getting hold of the book on Amazon but it was unavailable at that time. I was finally able to get it from an old book dealer who has a shop on one of the pavements of Mumbai’s business district! It was Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad’s work that finally made the light bulb flash inside my head. If Jesus did indeed survive the crucifixion and settle down in Kashmir, would it not be logical for his present-day descendants to be Muslim? It was that flash of inspiration that eventually created “The Rozabal Line”.
5. Many associate the Rozabal with Ahmadi Muslims. Were you in contact with Ahmadis during your writing?
No. In fact, I hardly met anyone for research, Ahmadi or not. I only met “real people” for the fictional narrative. For example, I met with an astrologer to discuss planetary positions that would be discussed in the book; I met a regression therapist to discuss how past-life regression works; I met a member of the Indian security services to get an idea of issues surrounding the violence in Kashmir, but I did not meet religious scholars or teachers.
6. Did you have a particular mentor or guide during the writing of the book?
My grandfather would make me read one book each week and then write up a review (just so that he could be sure I’d actually read it). My love for books, while growing up, was inculcated by him and his brother. It was his earnest desire that I should write. My grandafther’s name was Ramprasad and his brother’s name was Ramgopal. You will notice that in “The Rozabal Line” there is the character of a wise old Hindu astrologer whose name is Pandit Ramprasad Ramgopal Sharma. It’s merely my way of acknowledging the two people who got me into the habit of reading and writing in the first place!
7. What are the most convincing pieces of evidence to support ‘Jesus in India’ from your point of view?
There are many. The carved “crucified feet” at the tomb and the references in the Bhavishya Mahapurana, are two among numerous others. But to my mind, the real reasoning lies in what happened before Jesus Christ was born, not after. It goes back to the possible linkages between Abraham and Brahma, Sara and Saraswati, the close linkages between the Sumerian civilization and the Indus Civilization, and the strong possibilities that the lost tribes returned to their spiritual home in India. All of this leads me to conclude that it would have been plausible as well as possible for Jesus to view India as a land of healing and learning.
8. What was / is the aim of your book?
My aim has remained one: to illustrate that in a world full of religious and political strife, deep down there is much more in common between world religions than we can ever imagine. If we can emphasize these commonalities, it could be a way to heal divisions.
9. Do you think the world will ever recognise Rozabal as the tomb of Jesus?
I think that the problem does not lie with the fact that it is “The Rozabal Tomb” but the fact that it is “a Tomb”. The mere fact that a Tomb of Jesus exists, is a problem because it goes against the very premise of a bodily resurrection. Thus, I think that it does not matter whether a purported tomb of Jesus is in Rozabal or, for that matter, in Talpiot. It is not the specific place where the tomb is located that causes the problem – it’s the fact that the place is a tomb that contains the mortal remains of a mortal man that is disconcerting for some.
10. How do you view Jesus? Was he trying to start a new religion? Was he the Messiah?
No- he certainly was not out to start a new religion. That seems quite definite. But was he the Messiah; was he the son of God? My view is yes, he was, but so are we all! Little streams , brooks and rivulets meet up the great rivers; the great rivers flow into the lakes and eventually meet up the great seas and oceans. Is the ocean greater than the river? In my world, both river and ocean are made up of the same essential ingredient – water. The essential spirit of human beings has the same essence as the divine.
11. How has your book been received?
The first version which was self-published by me under my pseudonym became available on Amazon.com, B&N, WHSmith and other online retailers around October-November last year (2007). Over the last 9 months, around 1000 books have been sold. I am given to understand that this is a significant number in the self-published world. Later this year (2008), by around September-October, the Indian paperback will be published by Tata-Westland Books. This should be available in all bookstores in the Indian sub-continent. Having a mainstream publisher promote the book to Indian audiences will make a substantive difference in reach and, consequently, volume.
12. What is next for the book? Any interest in making a film from it?
I have been approached by a couple of film-makers but I have been much more focused on getting the book into brick-and-mortar bookstores. I think that the overall story of “The Rozabal Line” lends itself to the thriller genre and I hope to see it on the silver screen at some point of time in the near future. For the present, I am working on a second (as yet untitled) novel in which the story revolves around the central tenet of karma.
13. What role do you think the Tomb in Kashmir has to play in world today?
As we speak, the strife in Kashmir has peaked once again. Why is it that some of the most beautiful lands in the world need blood to quench the land’s thirst? Rozabal has the potential of making the world press the pause button – a reflective, thoughtful, contemplative pause to ponder: What exactly are we all fighting for and is it worth it?
14. What was the hardest part of “The Rozabal Line” project?
The marrying of fiction and non-fiction is an extremely difficult task. It becomes even more difficult when religion is involved because one does not wish to offend the sensibilities of any given individual’s faith or personal belief. To walk that particular tight-rope was the most difficult bit in the evolution of “The Rozabal Line”.15. What has writing the book taught you?
That I can write!