Monday, June 07, 2010


We are fortunate to have Northrup Frye's Fearful Symmetry as a Google book even though we are not able to read all the pages there. Click here to go to Chapter 5 of Fearful Symmetry.

In the first paragraph of Chapter 5, Frye delineates the relationship between the individual mind and mind of God. He refers to fallen man as the ego which perceives the general. As a part of the Universal Creator, man perceives or creates as a mental form. It is in the mind of the totality of creative power that we are able to perceive the particular. If we see through that seed of truth planted within us, we perceive this world as a 'single creature' fallen and redeemed. Frye states, 'This is the vision of God (subjective genitive: the vision which God in us has).'

This is the fourfold vision of which Blake speaks in a Letter to Thomas Butts, (E 722):

"Now I a fourfold vision see
And a fourfold vision is given to me
Tis fourfold in my supreme delight
And three fold in soft Beulahs night
And twofold Always. May God us keep
From Single vision & Newtons sleep"

Blake's idea that we must see not with but through the eye, is true at the level of vision as well; we are not to see the vision, or with the vision but through the vision to the transcendent reality which provides the vision and the means of apprehending it.

Auguries of Innocence, (E 520)
"This Lifes dim Windows of the Soul
Distorts the Heavens from Pole to Pole
And leads you to Believe a Lie
When you see with not thro the Eye
That was born in a night to perish in a night
When the Soul slept in the beams of Light."

No comments: