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After the medieval boom of tales about the grail and about King Arthur, these subjects vanished from common European literature. Only a couple of private allusions are left to be found with e.g. Dante or J. W. v. Goethe, who seem to have known something on the matter (cf. e.g. Goethe „Die Geheimnisse“ (The Secrets)).

 In the last century, the existence of the fortress of the grail rsp. its archetype were then re-discovered in the East by a spiritist medium (Blavatsky). Mme Blavatsky, who herself was obviously not an Initiate, and never had herself lived in Shambhalah, told us of spiritual super beings, whose knowledge and power surpasses all common science by far, who live behind the Himalayas and secretly guide the fate of this planet.

 Mme Blavatsky, who originally thought her story confirmed by a couple of occult phenomena taking place in her surroundings, was later exposed of manipulation (cf. records  of the Society of Psychical Research in London). Her pupils too went astray in many ways, and again it became quiet around the grail and its knights.

 Little later, the idea of a sort of „grail-precinct“ got again popularized by James Hiltons famous novel „The Lost Horizon“. Hilton describes Shangri-La, an idyllic Tibetan convent, hidden behind snowy mountaintops, where ageless people live a life dedicated to art, literature, music and science.

 Shangri-La became a common term in English language standing for any kind of hidden sanctuary or earthly paradise. Franklin D. Roosevelt named his rural domain after Hiltons idyllic monastery. It was only after his death that the place received its current name „Camp David“.

 The enormous effect of this novel, which can definitely be compared with the grail myth in its time, gives again rise to the question: Had „The Lost Horizon“ only been a romantic figment of imagination, or does the novel have more profound sources of which Hilton may not have been even aware?

 Nowadays, especially in Esoteric fields, the belief in wise and masterly beings living in the Himalayas is, still or again, wide spread, although only few people know what it is really all about.


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