One of the easiest historical connections that we can make to the Biblical Magi takes us to India of all places.
Now, of course, the Magi probably came from Persia ; although there are strong arguments for any land on the east side of the Jordan. There have been theories of Magi coming from Ethiopia and Yemen as well as Arabia, Persia and even China. But one connection most gravitate to in this kind of study is the search for the Magi, Gaspar.
Gaspar (also spelled Caspar) has been linked to a king in India named Gudaphares or Gondaphares. Gondaphares I was a representative of the Parthian house of SUREN and the founder of the Indo-Parthian Kingdom. He was a vassal of the ruling powers in Seistan. Most believe he ruled from 20-10 BC. although one king calling himself Gondophares is recorded on a rock inscription around 20 -46 AD. What we have found through modern research is that the name ‘Gondophares’ was a title held by many kings in the area.
“The name Gondophares is a latinization of Greek ΥΝΔΟΦΕΡΡΗΣ with gen. -ΟΥ, from Old Persian Vindafarna ‘May he find glory.’ Gondophares is ‘Gastaphar’ in Armenian. “Gundaparnah” was apparently the Eastern Iranian (Sistani) form of the name. In Pashto, the most widely spoken Eastern Iranian language, it is Gandapur, a surname and one denoting a certain tribal lineage amongst the Pashtoons of Pakistan and Afghanistan.”
The Apocryphal ACTS OF THOMAS names a king in INDIA, Gudnaphar who the apostle was sold to in slavery as a carpenter. The King’s brother Gad, thought dead, plead Thomas’ case when he used funds he was given charge over to build a palace to take care of the poor. Thomas departed to Madras where he is commemorated as the founder of a South Indian Christian community. There is a church there named in his honor.
Strangely enough, Gondophares is thought through legend to be a descendant of King David, a ‘Phares’ or ‘Perez’.
On top of this, there are direct connections between the Magi and India. Magadha is a state in India that has a reportedly deep history with the Magi.
“The term Maga or Magha, still used for some of the local people, particularly Magha Brahmanas, is thought by some to be derived from MAGI, a class of early Zoroastrian priests. This has led to the theory that Zoroastrians once settled here and were absorbed into Hinduism.”
The Religions of India by Roshen Dalal
Especially after the fall of the Parthian Empire and the onslaught of Ardishir I and the Sassanian Empire in the mid to late 3rd century AD, many of the traditional Magi who did not serve their new masters were scattered across the globe. It is not beyond the realm of possibilities that some fled to family ties in India.
There also seems to be a lot of scholastic research concerning connections between the Magi of India and Hebrews who were brought to Babylon in the Disporia as a part of their conquest. Here’s a sample:
“It was in that part of the Gangetic Valley now called Behar and anciently Magadha that these people who were the sons of the mother MAGA, the Persian Magi, became the Maghada, sons of the wonder-working mother of fire… But these people had started from Armenia, not only as the conquering sons of shelah, the magic wand, but also as the offspring of his son EBER, father of the Iberians, sons of the rivers, and of the HEBREW race. “
The Westminster Review