The Greatest Possible Distance

“God created through love and for love. God did not create anything except love itself, and the means to love. He created love in all its forms. He created beings capable of love from all possible distances. Because no other could do it, he himself went to the greatest possible distance, the infinite distance. This infinite distance between God and God, this supreme tearing apart, this agony beyond all others, this marvel of love, is the crucifixion. Nothing can be further from God than that which has been made accursed.

This tearing apart, over which supreme love places the bond of supreme union, echoes perpetually across the universe in the midst of the silence, like two notes, separated yet melting into one, like pure and heart-rending harmony. This is the Word of God. The whole creation is nothing but its vibration.” Simone Weil Waiting for God

The painting is by Matthias Grunewald (c.1470-1528). The elongated limbs of Christ are intended to convey his agony. On the left is John and Mary (the mother of Christ) and Mary Magdalene. On the right is John the Baptist with the lamb pointing back to Christ. Grunewald painted this piece for the Monastery of St. Anthony which had a hospital. It was there to show those who were sick that Christ understood and shared their suffering (source of information-Wikipedia Isenheim Altarpiece).



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