Some thoughts on the grail.
Myth is important in the context of archetypes but you need to have your feet firmly on the ground. It is the stuff drugstore romance novels. Certainly there is no is definitive historical physical entity that could be named the “holy grail”.In days gone by the use of myth was generally accepted and used but they were aware of its use and did not read the myth as a reality but rather as allegory.
To my mind and according to Guenon [also known as ʿAbd al-Wāḥid Yaḥyá [al-Mālikī, al-Ḥāmidī ash-Shādhilī], a truly great esotericist, the Holy Grail is a symbol related to the symbol of the Heart and the idea of the center. Thus, questing for and finding the Grail is in ONE level, striving for and achieving ACTUAL (as opposed to virtual, as Guenon says very correctly, that if you go under an initiation ceremony you are not necessarily initiated for real) Initiation in the Sphere of Tipharet and becoming a complete man again (in opposition to a fallen man).
The actual problem with the grail seekers is that there must be several dozen people or organizations around the world right now who claim to have possession of the true and holy grail, the real cross that was used to crucify Jesus, the real tears of Mary, etc. etc. And goodness knows what is really in the chapel of the Church of Saint Mary of Zion in Axum, Ethiopia. The only thing we do know is that whatever is there has been there for quite some time (since at least 1270CE) and that the holders of that particular trinket are very zealous about protecting whatever it is that they have. But I’m not quite willing to allow that it is the artifact constructed by some guy named Moses since that personage is obviously a myth as well.
If certain groups of esotericists want to play the game of “you are only a real esotericist if you know what our definition of the holy grail is”, then there is no one to stop them, but it certainly is a silly game that is far beyond anything that might be remotely relevant to anyone who is seeking the mystical experience of god. It might be an interesting mind game to ponder, but I suspect that the creator of the universe does not spend a lot of time thinking up clever ways to keep the identity of the holy grail tightly held with within specific esoteric circles just to show how clever one can be if one has the power to create the universe.
There is a great book that was published some years back entitled “Historians’ Fallacies” by David H Fischer. The author discusses the logic of historical thought and one of his central ideas is that we tend to believe that anyone who is engaged in a historically significant act will know at the time that they are engaged in a historically significant act and will therefore be meticulous about writing an accurate and complete account of their activities so that posterity will know every possible detail. The truth is, in the annals of humanity there have been many crucial moments in history for which accurate information is not available because no one thought to get out their iPad and write a blog about what they were doing. The Templar’s of the past are dead. It seems obvious that they had some secrets – but one thing about secrets is that they are only secrets if you don’t tell someone else. Apparently the Templar’s understood that principle.
Life is a journey, you don’t get to start at the end.