Of all the Christian spiritual leaders of the past
200 years this British poet would be placed near
the top by any enlightened Christian. God
was the primary theme and motif of his poetry, his
pictures, and his life. His poetry and pictures
contained his revelations of the reality of life,
ultimate reality, which we call God.
At three he ran screaming to his mother after the
sight of a grim punishing God in his window. A few
years later a similar vision embraced a roomful of
angels. Brought up in a Swedenburg and/or
Moravian climate he escaped the common
fallacies that go by the name of Christian
orthodoxy. But the first half of his life he
occupied wrestling with the Old Testament God.
With The Marriage of Heaven and Hell
he inverted the conventional values of good,
obedient, unimaginative church goers (more likely
to idolize and follow their minister than their God).
Blake called them angels, and called those who
ask questions, who think independently, who
With Songs of Innocence and Experience he
portrayed first the childlike, who have not met a
judging God, and second those who have tasted that fateful experience.
In his prophetic books Blake exhaustively pictured
the judging God, the Rulemaker and Enforcer
worshipped today by 'fundamentalist'
Christians and Muslims.
Through the years Blake gradually got free from
the baleful influence of a God of Control, used
mainly by the most powerful to control the rest
of us. He came to refer to him as Old Nobodaddy.
In the fullness of time Blake met the God introduced
to us by Jesus: the Loving Heavenly Father. The
gospel was a matter of forgiveness. Most of us have
to forgive (our) God, forgive our parents, our
spouses, most of all ourselves. Blake's First Vision of Light is the moment when he came into that glad awareness. Afterward the old negative ideas of Diety faded away to be replaced by the New Creation characterized by the Gifts of the Spirit.
Image from Songs of Innocence: Jesus and children in LITTLE BLACK BOY. Click on image for enlargement.