Words about God and Life for the Attention Deficit Generation

Circles of Thorns

Circles of ThornsUsing the still, small and sombre image of Christ Mocked by Bosch as a basis, this book works around the painting in five ‘circles’ to explore the political, scientific, psychological and devotional world of early modern Europe and its implications for us today.

Unlike Bosch’s better-known, fantastical, ‘proto-surrealist’ paintings, Christ Mocked is small, still and sombre, and yet, with a little effort of knowledge and interpretation, it reveals a depth of understanding of both the Passion, and of human nature, that speaks as much to the twenty-first century as it did to the sixteenth.

By exploring the political, scientific, psychological and devotional world of early modern Europe, and applying those insights to our own time, the author shows how Bosch used his sophisticated artistic skills to convey a similarly sophisticated understanding of humanity. In Christ Mocked — a painting “500 years old but passionately modern” — Christ’s Passion is so portrayed as to make us reassess the cosmic significance of Christ’s death, and its profound implications for what we think it means to be human.

Read more on the Continuum website.

Buy from a range of online booksellers.


  1. Mark Thornton

    Dear Justin,

    Apologies for leaving a query on your blog, but couldn’t find an email contact.

    We are a small, independent bookshop in Abingdon, Oxfordshire (Mostly Books). Obviously we can’t compete with Everyone’s F.O.B.S – but we *would* like to stock your book 🙂

    We have an event coming up on Ash Wednesday (with Stephen Cottrell) and I feel our regular customers would be very interested in your book in the run-up to Lent.

    I can go through Orca Book Services if that is more convenient – but wondered if we might get the book directly from you in the first instance?

    Thanks for any help you can provide.

    Best regards,


  2. Justin Lewis-Anthony

    Dear Mark, thanks for the encouragement and interest. I have replied directly via email!

  3. The Rev. Canon Michael C. Buerkel Hunn

    Dear Justin+
    Loved the book, would like to talk further about stuff going on in the former colonies.

    The Rev. Canon Michael Hunn
    Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina

  4. Chris E

    Dear Justin+

    Saw your talk at Greenbelt at loved it – are you planning on giving it again any time in the future? As I have a number of friends who would be interested in attending and listening.

  5. Justin Lewis-Anthony

    Dear Chris

    How very kind of you. I’m happy (willing and able!) to give the Being Human talk again. It’s just a matter of finding the right forum (hard to take a lecture on tour, unlike stand-up!)

    Any suggestions?


  6. Chris E

    Dear Justin+

    I am unfortunately bereft of suggestions – perhaps it might be possible to include it as part of an affirming catholicism event?

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