Saturday, August 29, 2009

Visions of Jung and Blake

After returning from a long, near fatal illness C G Jung
experienced a state where visions absorbed his nightly
pursuits. MEMORIES, DREAMS, REFLECTIONS
(PG 295,296)


"We shy away from the word "eternal," but I can describe
the
experience only as the ecstasy of a non-temporal state
in which
present, past, and future are one. Everything
that happens in
time had been brought together into a
concrete whole. Nothing
was distributed over time,
nothing could be measured by temporal
concepts. The
experience might best be defined as a state
of feeling, but
one which cannot be produced by imagination.
How
can I imagine that I exist simultaneously the day before
yesterday, today, and the day after tomorrow? There would
be
things which would not yet have begun, other things
which
would be indubitably present, and others again
which would
already be finished and yet all this would be
one. The only
thing that feeling could grasp would be
a sum, an iridescent
whole, containing all at once
expectation of a beginning,
surprise at what is now
happening, and satisfaction or
disappointment with the
result of what has happened. One is interwoven
into an
indescribable whole and yet observes it with complete
objectivity."

Milton, Plate 32 Erdman says of this image "Knowing it will be impossible to receive the full inspiration of Milton by the mind alone, Blake has to go and catch a falling star."

Blake's experience of visions, which must have been
similar to Jung's,
are conveyed to us in a totally
different way. Jung used an
intellectual, objective
way to describe an emotional, subjective experience.
Blake involves us in his experience by evoking
suggestive images to allow
us a perception of the
non-temporal, simultaneous, interwoven wholeness.


An example from Blake's MILTON, plate 39:

"Suddenly around Milton on my Path, the Starry Seven
Burnd terrible! my Path became a solid fire, as bright
As the clear Sun & Milton silent came down on my Path.
And there went forth from the Starry limbs of the Seven: Forms
Human; with Trumpets innumerable, sounding articulate
As the Seven spake; and they stood in a mighty Column of Fire
Surrounding Felphams Vale, reaching to the Mundane Shell, Saying
Awake Albion awake! reclaim thy Reasoning Spectre. Subdue

Him to the Divine Mercy, Cast him down into the Lake
Of Los, that ever burneth with fire, ever & ever Amen!
Let the Four Zoa's awake from Slumbers of Six Thousand Years"

2 comments:

kema said...

Hi dear friends! I'll pursue the Jung-Blake connection. Blake, of course, requires a lifetime, and also pushing other matters out of the way. How amazing, Ellie, that you have come round to Blake at last.

Kema

Larry said...

Kema wrote: "Blake, of course, requires a lifetime, and
also pushing other matters out of the way."

Well, yes and no; perhaps sporadically. Truthfully for the last couple of months she has devoted about 8 hours a day on that, about what I did in 1982.

2. Tennis perhaps more than Blake.

3. Quakers!

4. Family -- grandchildren! How's your children?