Friday, March 22, 2013


Visions of Daughters of Albion
British Museum
Plate 2, Copy O

All of Blake's imaging of the fall is away from unity into division; none more so than Vala's fall into love expressed through "the opposite sexes". The characteristics of the generated world are dualistic. What were easily reconciled contraries in Beulah become warring factions in Generation.

Milton, Plate 2, (E 96)
"Daughters of Beulah! Muses who inspire the Poets Song
Record the journey of immortal Milton thro' your Realms
Of terror & mild moony lustre, in soft sexual delusions
Of varied beauty, to delight the wanderer and repose
His burning thirst & freezing hunger! Come into my hand    
By your mild power; descending down the Nerves of my right arm
From out the Portals of my Brain, where by your ministry
The Eternal Great Humanity Divine. planted his Paradise,
And in it caus'd the Spectres of the Dead to take sweet forms
In likeness of himself. Tell also of the False Tongue! vegetated
Beneath your land of shadows: of its sacrifices. and
Its offerings; even till Jesus, the image of the Invisible God
Became its prey; a curec, an offering, and an atonement,
For Death Eternal in the heavens of Albion, & before the Gates
Of Jerusalem his Emanation, in the heavens beneath Beulah" 

Milton, Plate 4, (E 97)
"Beneath the Plow of Rintrah & the harrow of the Almighty
In the hands of Palamabron. Where the Starry Mills of Satan
Are built beneath the Earth & Waters of the Mundane Shell
Here the Three Classes of Men take their Sexual texture Woven
The Sexual is Threefold: the Human is Fourfold"        

Milton, Plate 35 [39], (E 135)
"but they
Could not behold Golgonooza without passing the Polypus
A wondrous journey not passable by Immortal feet, & none         
But the Divine Saviour can pass it without annihilation.
For Golgonooza cannot be seen till having passd the Polypus
It is viewed on all sides round by a Four-fold Vision
Or till you become Mortal & Vegetable in Sexuality
Then you behold its mighty Spires & Domes of ivory & gold        

And Ololon examined all the Couches of the Dead.
Even of Los & Enitharmon & all the Sons of Albion
And his Four Zoas terrified & on the verge of Death"

Milton, Plate 41 [48], (E 143)
Altho' our Human Power can sustain the severe contentions
Of Friendship, our Sexual cannot: but flies into the Ulro.

Jerusalem, Plate 29 [33], (E 175)
"And this is the cause of the appearance in the frowning Chaos[.] 
Albions Emanation which he had hidden in jealousy
Appeard now in the frowning Chaos prolific upon the Chaos
Reflecting back to Albion in Sexual Reasoning Hermaphroditic"

Quoting from Blake's Visionary Forms Dramatic, edited by Erdman and Grant; chapter by W. J. T. Mitchell, Page 62:
"In Blake's myth, the sexes do not exist as part of the ultimate reality, but are the product of pride and egotism: 'When the Individual appropriates Universality / He divides into Male & Female' (J 90:51-52). The danger is, according to Blake, that this sexual polarity will be mistaken for the final nature of things: 'when the Male & Female / Appropriate Individuality, they become Eternal Death' (J 90:52-53). That is, in terms of space and time, when space becomes an individual, an end in itself, it becomes a prison-house, the 'Mundane Shell' of matter which is mistakenly supposed to be independent of consciousness. In like manner, time becomes a nonhuman phenomena, an endless Heraclitean flux or the 'dull round' of a fatal, mechanistic determinism."

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