Michelangelo hid a secret code in the frescoes of the Sistine Chapel comprising mystical Jewish symbols and insults aimed at the Pope, according to a new book which was (surprise surprise) written by a Rabbi. This according to The West.com

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

Besides having one of the longest titles ever recorded, the book is on the New York Times best-seller list. Come on. Anything that nowadays speaks of secret codes against the Catholic Church is going to go big. I’m still trying to convince myself it’s because people love secret code stories rather than people hate the Church.

But anyway, scanning through the arrangement of figures on the 1300sqm ceiling, the Rabbi found shapes that correspond to Hebrew letters. For example, the figures of David and Goliath form the shape of the letter gimel, which symbolises g’vurah, or strength, in the mystical Kabbalah tradition.

Kabbalah is a set of ancient esoteric teachings which are meant to decode the inner meaning of the Tanakh, or Hebrew Bible, and to explain the reasons for Jewish religious observances.

Kabbalah is considered by its followers to be the true meaning of Judaism. It’s considered by many others to be kookery. One of their beliefs is while all human souls emanate from God, that at least part of the Gentile soul emanates from the “left side” of the Sefirotic structure (don’t know what that is) and that non-Jews therefore have a dark or demonic aspect to them that is absent in Jews.

In the chapel on the opposite wall to David and Goliath, the scene showing Judith and her handmaiden carrying the head of Holofernes, an Assyrian general, is in the shape of the Hebrew letter chet, which represents chesed, or the characteristics of “loving kindness”. “There are so many layers of meaning on meaning, and most of it is from the Jewish tradition,” Mr Doliner said.

Rabbi Blech said all the figures in the nine scenes on the ceiling were Jews. “He emphasises only Old Testament figures in the entire ceiling, and what he was trying to say was: Why have we ignored our true roots?” he said.

Did Rabbi Blech ask Michelangelo? Because I’d be careful about that Italian artist’s soul because I’m pretty sure it emanates from the “left side” of the Sefirotic structure (still don’t know what that is.)

The book adds that the tree of life in the fresco is not, as usually thought, an apple tree, but a fig tree according to ancient Jewish tradition. The authors believe the entire Sistine Chapel is a “lost mystical message of universal love” which was intended to be decoded.

Because you know us Catholics don’t believe in universal love.

The authors believe Michelangelo picked up his knowledge of Judaism while at the court of Lorenzo de Medici in Florence. In addition, they say several attacks on Pope Julius II, who commissioned the work, are 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.”

Critics of the book point out that there is no record in Michelangelo’s extensive and well-preserved writings of any secret code in the ceiling. Dr Arnold Nesselrath, a curator at the Vatican museums, said there was no way that Michelangelo could have painted any of the ceiling without the pope’s express consent.

I just keep hoping that people reading authors whose intent is to destroy and tear down Catholicism are intrigued enough to look into the real thing. We’ve got all sorts of paintings and statues that you could try to find something hidden in. Jesus said all sorts of riddles for you to consider like “You are Peter, and on this rock I will build my Church.” Figure that one out and your life will change.