Ah, Renaissance Italy! What a time to have lived:- Leonardo Da Vinci, Michaelangelo, the Medici's, Raphael, Florence, St. Peter's built. It was the age of grand projects and innovation, never before seen. Today we are going to examine one of those famous projects; the painting of the Sistine Chapel in St. Peter's. This will be from the perspective of Life Cycles 'Year of Broken Pathways'. This is also totally new and has never been done before, even though we have moved on some 500 years.
Michaelangelo was born March 6th, 1475 and it was in his age 24 first adult 'Year of Revolution' (March,1499 to March,1500), that he gained renown as a sculptor, when he completed the 'Pieta'; a depiction of the body of Jesus on the lap of his mother Mary after the crucifixion. One of his contemporary's said of the work:- "It is a miracle that a formless block of stone could ever be reduced to a perfection that nature is scarcely able to create in the flesh". His reputation from this led onto being selected to complete the statue of David in Florence.
Where to next at his turning point in his age 31 'Year of Broken Pathways'? Remember the essence of this year is that the path we have been travelling on since age 24 gets broken and we are handed a challenge or new direction, that will essentially take the rest of the 12 year Life Cycle to complete. This is a new concept and I illustrate by taking the lives of the famous or those mentioned in news stories. So 'Life Cycles' is based on biographical analysis, making it much more factual than any other esoteric theory. Though it isn't quite science, it's a lot closer to it than anything else. It's not a belief system:- there is no "trust me I'm a guru" element in this.
OK, so we're looking at events when Michaelangelo was 31 (March,1506 to March,1507). The first evidence we have of Pope Julius requesting Michaelangelo to paint the Sistine Chapel ceiling was from a letter dated May 10th, 1506. Meanwhile Julius's chief architect Bramante discouraged this idea, saying Michaelangelo was not a painter but a sculptor and this would be technically difficult for him and he doubted his courage to do this giant work. Michaelangelo himself had doubts because he didn't concentrate on painting and regarded sculpting as the higher art form (famously arguing with Leonardo Da Vinci who replied:- "At least I don't spend my whole day covered in dirt and dust!").
When Michaelangelo returns to Rome in early 1506 out of funds for Julius's Tomb, he gets dismissed by the Pope and returns to Florence. Such is their fiery relationship, that Julius threatens to wage war on the whole of Florence unless Michaelangelo returns to Rome, which he does. Once Michaelangelo hears that Bramante doen't think he's up to the Sistine ceiling, he immediately drops other things and says he'd do it. These two then began a very famous and bitter feud that ran for years. You see it's all about ego for these very opinionated individual's.
There is no doubt that all this happened when he was 31. There is no doubt that it altered his direction in a very important way. There is no doubt that the sequence of events had a fateful character, seeming as if it were pointing Michaelangelo towards the Sistine Chapel ceiling. There is also no doubt that this was a huge challenge and led on to the rest of the years of this cycle (until his age 36 'Year of Revolution'-March,1511 to March,1512). It meets every criteria of 'Life Cycles'.
Michaelangelo began work on the Sistine ceiling in 1508 and hired five assistants. The work was done in fresco, which is an incredibly difficult and daunting process, involvong 336 assorted figures. Only the most confident and talented painter could do this, which was one of the greatest artistic feats of the Renaissance or indeed any period of time. He certainly proved Bramante wrong in a big way. He also had a very impatient Pope Julius, continually trying to hurry him up and demanding to see what he'd done. It would be an understatement to say that he had an uphill struggle to face.
How did this fascinating story end and why does it represent a triumph for 'Life Cycles' analysis? How is the Sistine Chapel ceiling related to the Pieta? What was so similar about events in 1499 and in 1511? Well the answer is that I'll tell you the full story in my next book:- "The Life Cycles Revolution" currently being written. You see 'Life Cycles' analysis is unnervingly accurate, sometimes down to the month as well as the year. Is your whole life written in code? Or does this only happen to the famous? You didn't paint the Sistine Chapel? No, but challenges and uphill struggles are the stuff of life. Anyone's life. Yours and mine. Until next month:- "May the cycles always bring you good fortune"