B12 Solipsism

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Michelangelo wears Kabbalah bracelet

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“The Sistine Secrets: Michelangelo’s Forbidden Messages in the Heart of the Vatican” (Benjamin Blech, Roy Doliner)

Could be another case of Dan Brownism (conspiracy theories created without much basis in fact, but fun), I don’t know enough about Michelangelo or Kabbalah to proclaim with any authority.

The ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, which the renaissance artist worked on for four years in the early 16th century, is actually a “bridge” between the Roman Catholic Church and the Jewish faith, according to The Sistine Secrets: Unlocking the Codes in Michelangelo’s Defiant Masterpiece.

The book, which is already on the New York Times bestseller list, is the work of Rabbi Benjamin Blech, an associate professor of Talmud at Yeshiva University in New York, and Roy Doliner, a tour guide at the Vatican.

Scanning through the arrangement of figures on the vast 14,000 square foot ceiling, the authors have found shapes that correspond to Hebrew letters.

For example, the book states, the figures of David and Goliath form the shape of the letter gimel, which symbolises g’vurah, or strength, in the mystical Kabbalah tradition.

[From Michelangelo 'hid secret code in Sistine Chapel' - Telegraph]

Making obscene gestures toward the Pope? Do tell…

The authors believe Michelangelo picked up his knowledge of Judaism while at the court of Lorenzo de Medici in Florence.

In addition, they say there are several attacks on Pope Julius II, who commissioned the work, embedded in the painting.

Disgusted with papal corruption, they think Michelangelo painted the prophet Zechariah in the pope’s likeness.

Behind him, one angel is “making an extremely obscene hand gesture at the back of his head.”

Written by Seth Anderson

June 23rd, 2008 at 12:28 pm

Posted in Arts,News-esque

Tagged with ,

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