The Ladder of Divine Ascent "Sinai" Orthodox Icon
This is the most famous of all the Ladder icons and was painted during the 12th century at St. Catherines Mt. Sinai monastery.
This subject is an iconographic representation from the ascetical treatise The Ladder of Divine Ascent written by St. John Climacus in the the 7th century. Specifically as applied to monasticism, this book deals with the struggle for virtue in the fight against the passions. The book and the icon draw allegory in this struggle through the image of a ladder which is climbed one rung at a time and which begins in this world and ends in the next. Of course, this icon is dearly loved throughout the Orthodox church as its application is well known to all Christians.