In his book "The Spear of Destiny", Trevor Ravenscroft tells the history of the Lance of Longinus, the spear that pierced the side of Christ as he hung from the cross. He traces this spear through history and shows it to have been in the possession of some of the most influential people in history. His teacher was Walter Stein and so much of the book concentrates on Hitler and his obsession with this object. In this book the Grail is presented as the knowledge to use this spear in some supernatural way. No evidence is presented and no cross-referencing of any of the other literature available. It is simply stated. Ravenscroft claims that there are two ways to achieve this knowledge. Either through the use of "black arts" or by a much harder route of "learning the abc's of magic". These particular quotes are from the introduction to Wolfram Von Eschenbachs 'Parzival'.
Once this knowledge is obtained some power that is present in the spear can be used for good or evil. The use is determined by the method that the user gained the knowledge of the Grail.
The nature of the Grail, within a specific text, is difficult to decipher. However, when one considers more than one literary piece, the Grail's nature becomes confused, conflicting, and seemingly irreconcilable. Perhaps we should ask what Cretien de Troyes meant by the "Graal". Unfortunately this question appears unanswerable as we only have one document, and that unfinished, for answers. There can be little doubt that the Grail is an elusive idea. It has taken, and will continue to take, many different forms in many people's minds.
The Holy Grail and its quest is a legend that has had a powerful impact on our civilization and culture. The Grail itself is...