On Saturday, August 18th – our last day in Rome, we went to the Vatican museum. We saw the timeless works of Raphael, da Vinci, Rodin and of course, Michelangelo.
We took the time to appreciate the experience of standing before Raphael’s Transfiguration, Apollo Belvedere and the School of Athens. We stood and sat in the Sistine Chapel, necks extended, absorbing the sublime scenes painted by Michelangelo.
Seeing works of divine inspiration and timeless beauty was a transformative experience.
I was absorbed by the scene of God giving life to Adam.
God rides a cloud shaped as the corpus callosum – the structure in the human brain that connects the right and left hemispheres. Michelangelo was intimately familiar with anatomy. I wonder what he was trying to tell us.
God is within our own minds. We conceive of Him because He is a part of our very being. The eye with which we see God is the same eye by which He sees us. He is the creator and greater consciousness who makes us creative and conscious.
In our minds, we imagine God in our image just as the Greeks and Romans imagined their gods in human form, and their beauty – celebrated in sculpture – was human beauty. By doing this, we limit God, and limit ourselves.
We are more than our bodies and self-interested egos. We are a part of God (the transcendent) – one small aspect of His manifestation and His consciousness on Earth.
God remains beyond our limited human conception, but if we expand our awareness, our self-conception and the depth and breadth of our love, we may become more transparent to His transcendence.
Seeing great beauty – in art, in nature and in our lives – we can lose our normal awareness of separateness, become uplifted by transcendent beauty and feel our deeper connection. At the same time, we connect to and witness beauty without our egos and wish neither to hold or possess it.
This may be how God may see us – with compassion and love – and sees the beauty in us. When we feel this from others and when we love others in this way, we experience God most directly, and we realize that deeper, truer spiritual connection represented by God’s creation of Adam – our fingers approximated.
We see one another.