The Sistine Secrets

In My Library

Italy remains one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world.  And near the top of every tourist’s list is a visit to the Sistine Chapel.  But what tourists fail to appreciate is that Michelangelo’s masterpiece – the largest fresco painting on earth located in the holiest of Christian shrines – bears not one single Christian image!  (Rabbi) Benjamin Blech and Roy Doliner unravel the mystery in their book, The Sistine Secrets.  The authors contend that Michelangelo was influenced by the Jewish teachings absorbed by his sponsors.  In addition, he felt a certain enmity towards the Church and general and Pope Julius II in particular.  Accordingly, he included a wide variety of “Old Testament” images in his art, along with hidden Hebrew letters and subversive images.  The authors “decode” all this for the reader.  Blech and Doliner claim that the entire masterwork was Michelangelo’s attempt at expressing his theology that all people are bound together with common ancestry, in fellowship and true brotherhood.  After reading this book, one cannot see the Sistine Chapel in the same way again.



Words to Live By

What lies behind you and what lies ahead of you pales in comparison to what lies inside you.

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

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