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ICSE > ICSE Articles > Psychology > Michael Angelo and Jesus

Michael Angelo and Jesus

If you have been angry with somebody and you have been fighting with somebody and then you come to see me, naturally you will be far away from me. That’s why Jesus says if you go to the temple to pray and you remember that you have hurt somebody, insulted somebody, that you are angry at somebody or if you have angered somebody, first go and ask to be forgiven, only then come to pray; otherwise, you will not be able to relate with God. First go and apologize. First clear things.
It happened when Michelangelo was working in the Sistine Chapel... He was making a painting of Jesus. The painting was almost complete – just the last finishing touches – but he was finding those last finishing touches very difficult. Jesus was not coming out Jesus-like; something was missing in Jesus’ face – that softness, that feminineness was not there, that love quality was not there. He tried and tried for days, and then he remembered that he had quarrelled with a friend and he was carrying it in himself. 

And then he remembered the saying of Jesus, that if you go to pray and you are not feeling good about a friend or a brother, then first go and ask forgiveness. He rushed out of the chapel, went to the friend, asked his forgiveness and told the whole story. ’For days together I have been working, but I cannot bring out Jesus’ face as it should be. Something angry remains in it’ – because something was angry inside him. 

If there is anger and hard feeling and you are going to paint, your hands will paint, your painting will represent you, your painting will basically reflect you. And the day he asked forgiveness and was forgiven, he came into a totally different mood. And just a few minutes’ work, and the painting was complete. And it is one of the most beautiful paintings of Jesus. Just a few strokes and the painting came alive and Jesus surfaced, because now Michelangelo’s heart was in tune.

Date Posted: December 14, 2010

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