Common threads run through many Western religious traditions, from ancient Sumerian myth through the folktales of medieval Europe. Sir James Frazer explored these threads in his landmark work The Golden Bough, and this new work by Stifyn Emrys continues the journey. The Phoenix Principle examines figures such as Jesus, Merlin, Moses and Robin Hood within their historical and mythical contexts. Read about Mary Magdalene, the Queen of Sheba, King Arthur, Gilgamesh and Enkidu in a comprehensive look at a ritual tradition that spanned oceans and continents, centuries and millennia. Embark on a journey of discovery as classical myths, historical accounts and faerie tales are mined to reveal the universal theme behind them: the principle of regeneration. This is the essence of the Phoenix Principle. It is thing less than the tradition that supported ancient kings in their kingdoms, preserved bloodlines through the ages and gave birth to modern western religion. It linked monarchs to their land and guided the epic struggle between the king and his chosen successor - between wizard and knight, between sun and shadow. Journey back to the Garden of Eden, then forward with Gilgamesh and to the mystical isle of Dilmun, with Jason and his crew on the Argo, with Mary Magdalene to the garden tomb and with Arthur's knights in search of the Holy Grail. Much of what you uncover along the way will be surprising; some things may even be disturbing. Those who enjoyed Sir James Frazer's Golden Bough will find much of interest in the tapestry of myth, political intrigue and pagan ritual woven together in The Phoenix Principle.
Stifyn Emrys is a veteran journalist and educator who has written on subjects as diverse as history, religion, politics and language. He has served as an editor for fiction and non-fiction projects and is the author of three books: The Gospel of the Phoenix, Requiem for a Phantom God and The Phoenix Principle. The author has lectured occasionally on the pagan origins of Christianity and continues to research the development of religious traditions. He has worked as an editor, columnist, educator and reporter and serves as editor of young adult novels Epidemic and Sanctuary, the first two installments of the Mad World series. He lives in California with his wife, stepson, one cat and one dog.