Many are familiar with the miraculous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. This miraculous image appeared on the tilma of Juan Diego shortly after he saw Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico in 1531. When the image of Our Lady was miraculously imprinted on the cloth it became a large reason for the conversion of more than 5 million to the Catholic Faith. When the people heard about and saw the image, “the whole city was shaken by the event and so the Lord Bishop transferred the beloved Image of the Girl from heaven to the main church. She [the image] was taken from his private chapel to where everyone could see and wonder at her beloved figure. People came to acknowledge the divine [miraculous/supernatural] character of the ayate [the tilma].” (Francis Anson, Guadalupe – What Her Eyes Say, p. 53)
Many are also familiar with the miraculous aspects of the eyes of the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. A close examination of the eyes of the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe has revealed many miraculous features, including a microscopic image of a bearded man that can be seen within the eye of Our Lady. This is covered on our Creation and Miracles DVD. But it gets even more incredible. When a person looks at an image, the way that the eye works is that three different aspects of what one sees are contained in three different parts of the eye. This law, which was discovered by Purkinje and Samson, is called the Samson-Purkinje law:
“The Polish Purkinje and the Frenchman Samson, independently discovered this law that carries their names. Three images are formed in the human eye: one upright and brilliant in the anterior part of the cornea; a second one, seen deeper in the anterior part of the crystalline lens, is also upright but less brilliant; and the third one, in the posterior surface of the crystalline lens, is inverted, smaller, and with an immediate depth and brilliancy…” (Francis Anson, Guadalupe – What Her Eyes Say, p. 108)Well, the microscopic image of the “bearded man” that can be seen within the eye of the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe follows this law precisely:
“We are also talking of another impossible phenomenon: the image of the ‘bearded man’ appears three times in the eyes of the ayate [the tilma of Juan Diego], following the laws of Samson-Purkinje with mathematical precision. One image, four millimeters high and one millimeter wide, upright and brilliant, seems to come out of the cloth; a second one, of the same size, the deepest one and the least brilliant, can be perfectly distinguished at the bottom of the eye; and a third one, hardly a millimeter high, is located halfway between the other two and is inverted and displaced toward the left, as it happens in a living human eye… but this is just a piece of cloth.” (Francis Anson, Guadalupe – What Her Eyes Say, p. 109)Obviously, the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe is not a painting. It’s a miraculous image of Our Lady which God and Our Lady miraculously imprinted on Juan Diego’s tilma.
The significance of the discovery of the bearded man in the eye of the image is that Our Lady was looking at the bearded man, Juan Diego, when the image was imprinted on the cloth. That’s why his image appears three times in her eye just as it would in a living eye! Other aspects of the eyes show that they are like living eyes. It makes sense that heaven would leave the world with one miraculous and true image of Our Lord on a cloth (the Shroud of Turin) and one miraculous and true image of Our Lady on a cloth (the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe).
I want to talk about the miraculous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. On December 12, 1531, the miraculous image of the Virgin of Guadalupe appeared for the first time. According to the story, an Indian named Juan Diego was visited several times by the Virgin Mary. She told him to go to the bishop to build a chapel. However, the bishop did not believe Juan Diego. The bishop asked Juan Diego to tell the Virgin to give him a sign as proof that it was indeed the Mother of God who appeared to him. In response, the Virgin told Juan Diego that he would gather some roses and put them on his tilma to present them to the bishop. As soon as he did, the roses fell to the ground and the image of Guadalupe was miraculously printed on his tilma. It still exists to this day, 481 years later and can be visited in Mexico.
I want to talk about the miraculous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. On December 12, 1531, the miraculous image of the Virgin of Guadalupe appeared for the first time. According to the story, an Indian named Juan Diego was visited several times by the Virgin Mary. She told him to go to the bishop to build a chapel. However, the bishop did not believe Juan Diego. The bishop asked Juan Diego to tell the Virgin to give him a sign as proof that it was indeed the Mother of God who appeared to him. In response, the Virgin told Juan Diego that he would gather some roses and put them on his tilma to present them to the bishop.
As soon as he did, the roses fell to the ground and the image of Guadalupe was miraculously printed on his tilma. It still exists to this day, 481 years later and can be visited in Mexico. The first miraculous aspect of the image that I want to discuss is the fact that there is no sketch or drawing under the image. Infrared photography has shown that there is no sketch of the image of Guadalupe. This is a miracle, because as explained by Dr. Phillip Callahan, a biophysics researcher at the University of Florida, "it is inconceivable that a 16th century artist could have painted a portrait without first making a sketch of it." Sketching before painting a portrait goes back to antiquity. Therefore, the fact that there is such a delicate image with such precise details and characteristics, as well as appearing on a rough cactus fiber, is inexplicable when taken into account that it does not have a sketch.
A next miraculous aspect of the image of Guadalupe that I want to discuss is about its resistance. The tilma is made of a rough cactus fiber. This type of fabric normally disintegrates between 15 to 30 years, however the image of Guadalupe is now remaining for 481 years without any crack of fading or even slits in the face or in the main image. This is a miracle. This is even more extraordinary when one considers that the image has been exposed to candle smoke for many years, something that would accelerate the deterioration process. In fact, there have been attempts to imitate the image of Guadalupe, but they have failed.
"A famous example was that of an opponent to the appearance of name José Ignacio Bartolache ... In order to try to discredit the miraculous nature of the image, he made an exact copy in a burlap material and with great announcement they hung it in the chapel built where the Virgin Mary appeared. However, at age 7, the painting became so discolored that it was difficult to see it so that on June 8, 1796, it was silently placed in the sacristy. "
This quote is taken from the book "Mother for a New World: Our Lady of Guadalupe" [Mother for a New World: Our Lady of Guadalupe], by Brother Herbert Leie, page 394. Then, there have been attempts to reproduce imitations of the image but they have failed miserably. With respect to the miraculous resistance of the image, the following quote is relevant. It comes from the aforementioned Dr. Phillip Callahan, he points out that:
"The mantilla is a dark turquoise blue. This presents us with an inexplicable phenomenon because all these pigments are known to be subject to discoloration, especially in temperate climates. The wall paintings of the Mayan Indians are very discolored. The blue cloak of the tilma of Guadalupe, however, is bright enough as if it had been painted a week ago. "
So the colors are miraculously fresh and bright. There is also another incredible fact:
"In 1778, a considerable amount of nitric acid was spilled on the image of Guadalupe. The worker fled in terror thinking he had seriously damaged the most precious treasure of his country, but, to everyone's astonishment, only slight spots appeared that can still be seen in the upper right corner ".
This quote comes from the book "The Tilma and its miraculous image: a handbook on Guadalupe" [TheTilma and Its Miraculous Image: a manual on Guadalupe], by Janet Barber, pages 61 through 62.
There is also the fact that in 1921 a bomb was hidden among some flowers that were placed on the altar under the image of Guadalupe. The bomb exploded and severely damaged a crucifix, however, the glass that contains the image of Guadalupe miraculously did not suffer any damage.
Another miraculous aspect of the image is about the stars. Some people have concluded that the stars, as well as the rays of the sun and the moon, were added and that the original image was simpler. Dr. Phillip Callahan is someone who holds this opinion. He still believes that the image is miraculous, but that the original image was simpler. I think he is wrong on this point for two reasons. In the first place, Dr. Juan Homero Hernández and Fr. Mario Rojas Sánchez discovered in 1983 that the stars in the image correspond exactly to the constellations of the winter sky of December 12, 1531.
What is very interesting is that the constellations appear as seen from outside the heavens, in other words, they look the other way. It is as if we had an image of someone looking from outside the universe. It is a picture of heaven and earth, from the moment when Juan Diego saw the Virgin. That becomes even more surprising when one considers that the flowers in Our Lady's tunic correspond to the volcanoes in Mexico. This is discussed in detail on page 77 of the book "Handbook of Guadalupe," published by the Academy of the Immaculate. In other words, the inner part of the miraculous image, which has many facets in its way of instructing and causing admiration, represents the earth, and the turquoise mantle on the outside with the stars of the constellations miraculously represent the sky. It is an image of the encounter between heaven and earth when the Virgin appeared to Juan Diego on December 12, 1531; miraculously captured and still present in a cactus fiber, almost 500 years later.
But what is even more surprising is that the stars only appear on the mantle of the image and not on the tunic, and as I said, the stars that appear correspond to the constellations in the sky on the day of December 12, 1531. But if people superimposed the image of Our Lady to that day's sky, it would coincide with the stars where they would appear if their tunic had been filled with stars; this makes the miracle even more wonderful. Because the constellation corona-borealis means crown of the north, represents a crown that would appear right on the forehead of Our Lady. That means that Mary has a crown and that she is the queen of heaven. The constellation of Virgo, which means virginal purity, appears over the area of your heart, signifying your immaculate and virginal heart. And the constellation Leo, the lion, appears on his belly. The lion represents Jesus Christ who is the Lion of the tribe of Judah. This means that Christ the King is present in his womb, and there is still more. All this shows us the divine intelligence and certainly infinite that is behind this miraculous production. In addition to all those facts, the second reason why I think Dr. Callahan is wrong to say that the stars were added, is that he says that the stars were added in the seventeenth century. However, we know that this is not true because there is a copy of the image of the Virgin of Guadalupe of 1570 that was used in Lepanto. This image corresponds precisely to the image we now see. This means that if the stars were added, they had to have added them between 1531 to 1570, which is very unlikely. In addition, there is a famous painting of the image of the civil code. This goes back perhaps a few years after the appearance of Our Lady in 1531. And this painting shows the sun's rays and corresponds mostly to the image we have now. All this proves that the stars and the rays of the sun and the moon were part of the original image.
Some are baffled by the fact that, while the face does not seem to show even a small crack or fading, the rays of the sun, stars and moon show evidence of desquamation. I have an opinion about this and I think that it fits with what we learn in Sacred Scripture regarding the stars and the sun and the moon. We are told in:
Luke 21, 33 "Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away".
Therefore, it makes sense that we see the evidence of the stars, the moon, the rays of the sun in the image vanishing because in reality the heavens will pass, but the Virgin herself and the main image that surrounds her and her face are incorruptible because she will shine forever in paradise. That could be the reason we see evidence of the discoloration of the stars, etc., but not the features or characteristics of the Virgin. The next miraculous aspect that perhaps is the most miraculous feature of all is about the eyes of the image. It is a fact that the image of a man with a beard in the eyes of the Virgin has been discovered. It was first discovered in 1928 and then in 1951, and was subsequently confirmed by modern science and intense research. The image of the man with the beard who has even hair corresponds to the image of Juan Diego, the Indian who originally saw the Virgin. In other words, the image of Juan Diego is captured microscopically in the eyes of the Virgin. Of course, no human painter could even conceive the need to place microscopic images of Juan Diego in the eyes of the Virgin only to be discovered later by the advances of modern science. Furthermore, it is simply impossible for any human painter to do this because the images are clearly too small to be painted. And the presence of these images in the eyes is most wonderful because the images correspond exactly to what happens in the human eye when you are seeing something. Jody Brant Smith, a non-Catholic who studied the image of Guadalupe along with Dr. Callahan, explains:
"Before I could understand the importance of his discovery I needed to know something about the physiology of the human eye. In particular, what is called the Purkinje-sanson principle. In simpler terms, the Purkinje-Sanson law says that when we see something, that something is reflected in each eye. Not only in one place, but in three different places. This triple reflection is caused by the curvature of the cornea of the eye. Two of the reflections are always on the right side and one is always upside down. " This is taken from the book "Not Made by Hands", by Thomas Sennott, page 58.
The reflections of Juan Diego in the eye of the Virgin correspond precisely with the law of Purkinje-Sanson. The multiple reflections are exactly where they would be in a human eye that looks at a person. In fact, the Purkinje-Sanson law shows that, when a human being sees something, due to the different angles of the curvature of the cornea, the different images reflected are apparently distorted to varying degrees and in the images in the eye of the Virgin. of Guadalupe, "there is a perfect placement according to this principle of distortion of the figures, even coinciding with the predicted curvature of the cornea". That is, the images appear exactly where they would appear in a human eye. That means that what we have in the image of Guadalupe that is still fresh today in the coarse cactus fiber is the visual reproduction of that celestial encounter of 1531. And this is true on many levels.
The miraculous image not only captures what Juan Diego saw, she captures the vision of the Virgin and the encounter between heaven and earth with the stars as they appeared in the sky of that day. But also in the microscopic recesses in the eye of the Virgin this incredible image captures exactly what the Virgin saw, in the same way it would be captured in your eye if you saw another person in your room. And there are still more.
"In 1981, Dr. José Tonsmann, a systems engineer, electrified the lovers of María de Guadalupe by announcing that his computerized enlargements of the photos of his eyes had revealed microscopically small figures that he suggests could be Bishop Zumárraga, Juan Diego, the interpreter Juan Gonzales, a black woman, an Indian relative, a small child and a man. "
In other words, this computer engineer, when he revealed the image of the eye, many times discovered the presence of practically a room full of people captured in the eye of the Virgin.
"Dr. Jorge Escalante Padilla, an ophthalmologist surgeon, considers that these reflexes belong to the type that has been described by Sherning on the posterior surface of the cornea and by Vogt and Hess in the center of the lens. Those reflexes are very difficult to detect. Dr. Escalante also reported the discovery of small veins in both eyelids of the image. In the 1970s, a Japanese optician who was examining the eyes fainted. When he recovered he said 'the eyes were alive and they were looking at him' ".
This is quoted in, "the latest scientific findings on the images in the eyes, a manual of Guadalupe" by Janet Barber p. 90 So this Japanese optician fainted because he thought the eyes were human and they were looking at him. We have many people captured microscopically in the recesses of the eye image: this is an undeniable proof that the image is miraculous. Only God can do such a thing.
On the other hand, "ophthalmologists have testified that although the eyes are opaque, both eyes in the image show depth and fill with light when the ophthalmoscope light is pointed inside them. They affirm that it is impossible to paint such reflections in eyes that offer so little space with the Virgin looking down and in a material as coarse as the cloth. " This is from the same source that we just quoted.
The scientific findings about the eyes of the image leave no doubt that the image is of divine origin. And it was created by God to leave to the world an invaluable gift: a photo of that encounter of the Mother of God with Juan Diego.
The next miraculous aspect that I want to discuss refers to the face of the Virgin. It is remarkable that at some distance Our Lady seems to be a Native American, but at another distance she seems to have a lighter skin, and in fact, of European descent. This miraculous characteristic is intended to show the unity of two peoples, who were then gathered together as one in the true faith of Christ, in the new nation that had just got rid of the Aztec diabolic culture. In fact, Dr. Philip Callahan explains that the image manages to produce that effect, of appearing to be of different colors at different distances, only because of a miraculous feature that we see in nature. He says:
"At a distance of 6 or 7 feet, the tone of the skin becomes what might be an 'Indian-olive' tone, a green-gray tone. It seems that in some way the gray and white pastel of the pigment of the face and hands is combined with the surface of the rough cloth. This technique would be an impossible achievement of human hands. However, this often occurs in nature, in the coloring of the feathers of birds, and in the scales of the butterflies and the elytra of the brightly colored beetles. "
So what he is saying is that this miraculous feature of changing colors at different distances is something we see in the nature of beetles and in the feathers of birds and in the scales of butterflies. And that happens in the tilma and in a miraculous way the pigment combines with the rough surface of the fabric to give it a different effect. However, it remains beautiful and delicate at any distance. This is simply a miracle! And no human artist could have achieved an effect like that. It was created by God, just as he created the scales of butterflies. The next miraculous feature I want to mention concerns temperature. It is remarkable that no matter what the ambient temperature is, the image is maintained at a temperature of 36.5 degrees Celsius or 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit (which is the normal temperature of the human body). This is quoted in Janet Barber, "The Tilma and her Miraculous Image".
As a result of the miraculous image, 8 to 9 million people were baptized into the Catholic faith in the years following its appearance in 1531. It is also worth mentioning that Martin Luther, who for his rebellion against the Catholic Church and his creation of a new type of false Christianity, gave birth to countless sects that plucked five million people from the Catholic Church, he was born in 1483. Hernán Cortés was born only two years later, in 1485. Hernán Cortés was the man who overthrew the Aztec empire, making possible the miraculous conversion of millions that was facilitated by the image of Guadalupe. The most important event in Luther's life was happening almost exactly at the same time that Hernán Cortés managed to overthrow the Aztec empire. It is as if, at the same moment when millions of people were being torn from the true Church in Europe, God was composing it by introducing twice as many people in the New World. The image of Guadalupe is one of the most prodigious miracles in human history. Maybe God did it in Mexico because the Aztec empire was undoubtedly the most evil culture in human history. He wanted to counteract that level of evil with a greater good. The image testified to the truth of the Catholic faith, because in her message Our Lady addressed the people to the bishop of the Catholic Church of the time and to the traditional Catholic faith: that those who seek the truth and those who love the truth and those who they love Christ, they embrace this message and the only true faith of Jesus Christ, the Catholic faith.
Another miraculous aspect of the image of Guadalupe refers to the reading of the image:
"The Indians saw something in the image of Our Lady that the Spaniards did not understand. At that time the Indians wrote in hieroglyphics. So for them, the image was a hieroglyphic letter. The fact that the natives read the image is the most important in understanding the purpose of the apparitions of Our Lady. For the Indians the image represented a beautiful lady standing in front of the sun, a sign that to them was greater than Huitzilopochtli, who was associated with the sun and whom they worshiped. The half-moon or moon under her feet showed that her moon god, Tezcatlipoca, was less than nothing, since She was standing on it. The stars they so admired were only a part or a portion of their mantle. In her throat was a brooch with a small black cross in the center, reminding them that this was the emblem of the Spanish friars and that there was one greater than Her. " This comes from Father Herald Rahm, "Am I Not Here", p. 56
As we can see, the intelligence - which built the miraculous image of Guadalupe, which conveyed exactly the message that the Indians needed to hear and see to bury their false notions about God and their idolatrous practices - was infinite and beyond any human can imagine . The reading of the image caused many Indians to abandon their idols and convert to the Catholic faith.
Taken from MHFM
Lea este mismo artículo en Español aquí: La Imágen Milagrosa de La Virgen de Guadalupe