1, The full bowing of the monks fore head to touch the ground, and that Islam took up the practice from Christians.
2, Mohamed saw his visions in a cave, now this sounds very similar to Thomas' Gospel and the vid.
3, I find it intriguing because years ago I was reading up on Mohamed, he married a widow who had Caravans and traded right up to Jerusalem (probably beyond) and the book suggested that he was taught by a Christian monk. So looking at points 1, 2 and 3 do we have a common thread? Imo we do, James' message/teachings and I would think methods too, were taken east. So probably Jesus's message and methods were passed on through James. And then I think to myself, hang on, how about John the Baptist? Jesus went to him for baptism, a gift, a transferring of knowledge of peace!
John was a real character, very famous and powerful that's why he was bumped off , there is a lot historical documentation, Josephus hadn't a good word for him. Well he was a turn coat and joined up with Vespasian against the Jews so it was propaganda really. So we seem to have lineage here, definitely some thing special going on imo.
4, Jesus said many times I shall 'give' you Peace, now in eastern mysticism/ history the greatest masters 'gave' enlightenment, a gift given.
Mathew 13.10 The disciples came to him and asked, "Why do you speak to the people in parables? He replied, "Because the knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been 'given' to you, but not to them”.
This relationship was very special. And a very special teacher.
I like Thomas because it offers a different view, a more mystical take and historically proven, James did become community leader and went on to be the first Bishop of the Jerusalem community and his gospel (he must have written more) was rejected and had to be hidden to survive? So we go to a living God not a book God, not some laws that we blindly except but a real experience we join with and feel. In the East its often called Yoga 'Union'. I have often discussed this and say that yoga is an out come, you achieve union, not you bought a yoga mat, yoga shoes, yoga trousers and contort your body, they turned it into an physical excersize system with some breathing, how about disabled people? Or what if they lost a limb, those ideas are wrong. In the spiritual super market, there,s always some one try to make quick buck.
Jesus gave the best answer, 'know a tree by the fruit it bears' taste it, not just read about it, Gnosis 'to know by experience'.
Anyway enough speculation, there is so much one can say on this topic.
The book 'James the brother of Jesus is 90% about James, Saul/Paul, John the Baptist and there is a lot of info of that time in it. Eisenman is/was Prof of middle east religions and archaeology at California State Uni, you can get a second hand copy on Amazon, it is listed at £9 to £16 and a Kindle version at £4. It is the best resource I have found for James and that period in Palestine.
For many Christians James maybe seen as lessening of Jesus in some way this is incorrect it highlights special links to others and that the great foundation Jesus created was very influential and in more ways than most know.
You mentioned Socrates, there is a very good theory offered by Pierre Grimes on Socrates works he offered a mystical thesis of the Republic/Socrates for review it was turned down, One reviewer said, 'In order to accept this we would have to throw away hundreds of years of philosophical thinking and I'm not doing that'.
Here's a interview called 'Training The Philosopher King' with Pierre Grimes. [www.youtube.com] he is very old in this interview. I think there are 2 or 3 others around this topic this might be the best not sure now been a long time since seeing them, so take your pick, if your interested.