Esoteric Interpretation of the Mona Lisa

Goddess visions are quite frequent in religious and mythological stories, such as those of Parmenides and Empedocles. Similarly, visions of beautiful women are reported in both entheogenic studies as well as near death experiences (see link in comments).

The features most often mentioned in connection to the goddess vision are her beauty, enigmatic smile and difficulty in getting a clear look at her face. This corresponds to the typical description of the Mona Lisa:

"The ambiguity of the subject's expression, frequently described as enigmatic, the monumentality of the composition, the subtle modeling of forms and the atmospheric illusionism were novel qualities that have contributed to the continuing fascination and study of the work."

While it is believed Mona Lisa was a real woman named Lisa, the wife of Francesco del Giocondo, she could have simply been the model upon which Da Vinci tried to paint his goddess. This would explain why this painting was so important to Da Vinci and why he continued to work on it until his death.

To Da Vinci, she might have been the Madonna goddess or "Black" Madonna known as Mary Magdalene. A shortened form of the name Madonna is Mona, which corresponds to the word "moon." Traditionally, moon deities have been associated with entheogenic plants, particularly mushrooms which grow at night.

Given that most philosophers used entheogenic plants to explore reality and Leonardo himself was willing to take chances dissecting human cadavers and studying Kabbalist material that the Church would consider heresy, it is not unlikely that Leonardo experimented with psychotropic plants.