While exploring Jerusalem together, my visiting grandsons and I discovered this by chance!
We just happened to wander into the library of the Givat Ram campus of the Hebrew University.
Measuring 16 x 6 meters/yards, this creation is among the largest stained glass windows ever made.
Mordechai Ardon was one of the great painters of Israel. Towards the end of his life the message of peace became his focus, and he addressed his work to war-weary Israel. The theme of his window, executed in 1980-84 for the National Library of Israel, is the prophet Isaiah's vision (Isaiah 2:2-4) of eternal peace at the End of Days.
In the photo above, broken modern weapons and shells are turned into spades. "They shall beat their swords into ploughshares and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more."
"And many peoples shall come and say: 'Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.' " The left panel depicts the roads taken by the nations on their way up to Jerusalem. Each road is marked by the verse, "Come let us go up to the mountain of the Lord…" in several different languages and alphabets including Latin, Greek, and Arabic.
The red middle panel is my favorite.
At the bottom is Jerusalem's city wall as mentioned in Isaiah. But look carefully! The wall is not of stone; it is a spiritual wall, the Scroll of Isaiah itself, which was discovered at Qumran among the Dead Sea Scrolls!
The parchment floating above the "wall" reads "And they shall beat their swords into ploughshares."
The network of blue circles and lines is the Kabbalistic Tree of Sefirot, a symbol of the mystical Divine Presence (Shechinah) over the city. The composition of Sefirot made of concentric circles is also derived from the Book of Zohar.
and the main research-level Humanities Library of the Hebrew University.
As the Philately Service wrote when it issued stamps of Ardon's windows,
"The close connection between the subject of the windows - Jerusalem - and their position in the library, the hall of the eternal spirit of Jewishness and Humanism, is obvious. It was the artist himself who chose this place for his creation and it was the place itself which gave him inspiration."
Here is the entire stained glass window in a photo from the Library website.
The assembling was carried out by master-craftsman Charles Marc at the "Atelier Simon" in Rheims, France. It took two years to complete.
Although nearly 90, Mordechai Ardon participated actively in the execution of his great work.
Other guided tours of beautiful places in the world will be available from tonight at the friendly meme That's My World Tuesday. You're welcome to join or visit.