Saturday, July 18, 2020


British Museum
HAND                                      JERUSALEM
To come before the machinery of the law under the threat of imprisonment, focuses the attention on one's vulnerability. Blake was not immune to the feeling that he had been unjustly accused and might be unjustly punished. He knew of several good and just men who had spent time in prison: among them the apostles Peter and Paul, Fox, Bunyan, Milton, Paine and his publisher friend Joseph Johnson. Being a prophet and a poet Blake reacted by incorporating his experiences and his emotional reactions to his precarious situation into his poetry. When we read the names 'Skofeld and Kox' in Jerusalem we know that Blake was not referring just to two men who accused him, but to the organization of government which can deprive a man of his liberty. He may lose his freedom by being sent to prison, or by being forced to endure the insecurity of anxiety, suspicion, hostility, and isolation through being the accused. Blake's own acquaintance with the troubles of man formed the framework of his prophetic poetry and impelled him to look for a way for man to escape from his predicament . 

The predicament of man facing the troubles of his outer world was not the only difficulty.  The clash with the law and its implications revealed to Blake painful fractures in his own psyche which he realized would plague him continually if he could not arrive at a spiritual solution. 

The accusers and judges whom Blake encountered at his trial became for a time more real to him than the world of spirit and imagination which was his milieu. They were able to divide his psyche so that he could not distinguish his projections from his identity which was his true self.

If he could not gain release from being captive to his own faulty reasoning by gentle means, he would try to enlist their energies to use against them. By this means he only succeeded in resorting to using the weapons of war to oppose what was essentially a mental not a physical fight.  

Condensed from Plates 7,8 and 9 of Jerusalem:
"Scofiel, Kox, Kotope, & Bowen
To separate a Law of Sin

Los answer'd
I know that Albion hath divided me

Thou art my Pride & Self-righteousness: I have found thee out:   
Thou art reveald before me

but now I am living

strike thou alternate with me: labour obedient
Hand & Hyle & Koban: Skofeld, Kox  &  Kotope, labour mightily
In the Wars of Babel & Shinar,"

Jerusalem, Plate 7, (E 150)
"Vala comes from the Furnace in a cloud, but wretched Luvah
Is howling in the Furnaces, in flames among Albions Spectres,
To prepare the Spectre of Albion to reign over thee O Los, 
Forming the Spectres of Albion according to his rage:
To prepare the Spectre sons of Adam, who is Scofield: the Ninth
Of Albions sons, & the father of all his brethren in the Shadowy
Generation. Cambel & Gwendolen wove webs of war & of
Religion, to involve all Albions sons, and when they had         
Involv'd Eight; their webs roll'd outwards into darkness
And Scofield the Ninth remaind on the outside of the Eight
And Kox, Kotope, & Bowen, One in him, a Fourfold Wonder
Involv'd the Eight--Such are the Generations of the Giant Albion,
To separate a Law of Sin, to punish thee in thy members.         

Los answer'd. Altho' I know not this! I know far worse than this:
I know that Albion hath divided me, and that thou O my Spectre,
Hast just cause to be irritated: but look stedfastly upon me:
Comfort thyself in my strength the time will arrive,
When all Albions injuries shall cease, and when we shall         
Embrace him tenfold bright, rising from his tomb in immortality.
They have divided themselves by Wrath. they must be united by Pity 
Jerusalem, Plate 8, (E 151)
"Thou art my Pride & Self-righteousness: I have found thee out:   
Thou art reveald before me in all thy magnitude & power
Thy Uncircumcised pretences to Chastity must be cut in sunder!
Thy holy wrath & deep deceit cannot avail against me
Nor shalt thou ever assume the triple-form of Albions Spectre
For I am one of the living: dare not to mock my inspired fury 
If thou wast cast forth from my life! if I was dead upon the mountains 
Thou mightest be pitied & lovd: but now I am living; unless
Thou abstain ravening I will create an eternal Hell for thee.
Take thou this Hammer & in patience heave the thundering Bellows
Take thou these Tongs: strike thou alternate with me: labour obedient
Hand & Hyle & Koban: Skofeld, Kox  &  Kotope, labour mightily
In the Wars of Babel & Shinar, all their Emanations were
Condensd. Hand has absorbd all his Brethren in his might
All the infant Loves & Graces were lost, for the mighty Hand
Plate 9
Condens'd his Emanations into hard opake substances;
And his infant thoughts & desires, into cold, dark, cliffs of death.
His hammer of gold he siezd; and his anvil of adamant.
He siez'd the bars of condens'd thoughts, to forge them:
Into the sword of war: into the bow and arrow:                   
Into the thundering cannon and into the murdering gun
I saw the limbs form'd for exercise, contemn'd: & the beauty of
Eternity, look'd upon as deformity & loveliness as a dry tree:
I saw disease forming a Body of Death around the Lamb
Of God, to destroy Jerusalem, & to devour the body of Albion     
By war and stratagem to win the labour of the husbandman:

The infection represented by the processes of becoming involved in the system of anger, fear, retribution and condemnation is not easily limited. It spreads to those who observe it, and as they attempt to flee from its consequences, they take it with them.

Jerusalem, Plate 32 [26], (E 178)
"The Seven Nations fled before him they became what they beheld
Hand, Hyle & Coban fled: they became what they beheld            
Gwantock & Peachy hid in Damascus beneath Mount Lebanon
Brereton & Slade in Egypt. Hutton & Skofeld & Kox
Fled over Chaldea in terror in pains in every nerve
Kotope & Bowen became what they beheld, fleeing over the Earth
And the Twelve Female Emanations fled with them agonizing.

Jerusalem, Plate 46 [32], (E 195)
"Los was all astonishment & terror: he trembled sitting on the Stone
Of London: but the interiors of Albions fibres & nerves were hidden
From Los; astonishd be beheld only the petrified surfaces:    
And saw his Furnaces in ruins, for Los is the Demon of the Furnaces;
He saw also the Four Points of Albion reversd inwards
He siezd his Hammer & Tongs, his iron Poker & his Bellows,
Upon the valleys of Middlesex, Shouting loud for aid Divine.

In stern defiance came from Albions bosom Hand, Hyle, Koban,     
Gwantok, Peachy, Brertun, Slaid, Huttn, Skofeld, Kock, Kotope 
Bowen: Albions Sons: they bore him a golden couch into the porch
And on the Couch reposd his limbs, trembling from the bloody field. 
Rearing their Druid Patriarchal rocky Temples around his limbs."

This passage seems to consider the difficulty of attempting to correct the inner reaction to solving the problem of anger and judgement. However, without simultaneously giving love and not hate to the poor souls whom one find unacceptable, the task is impossible. 

Jerusalem, Plate 67, (E 220)
"Hiding Albions Sons within the Veil, closing Jerusalems
Sons without; to feed with their Souls the Spectres of Albion
Ashamed to give Love openly to the piteous & merciful Man
Counting him an imbecile mockery: but the Warrior           
They adore: & his revenge cherish with the blood of the Innocent
They drink up Dan & Gad, to feed with milk Skofeld & Kotope
They strip off Josephs Coat & dip it in the blood of battle"

When one's perspective is changed and one views Albion's land from above, it is seen as a shadow, and the sons of Albion have no substance. External appearances are illusions but seem real when you enter into the shadowy image they present. Looking within yourself you find your own heaven and earth through your visionary imagination.
If one is unable to distinguish between the spiritual realities and their corporeal shadows, one is in the grip of th false reasoning power or Satan.

Milton, Plate 14 [15], (E 108)
"I in my Selfhood am that Satan: I am that Evil One!              
He is my Spectre! in my obedience to loose him from my Hells
To claim the Hells, my Furnaces, I go to Eternal Death."

Jerusalem, Plate 71, (E 224) 
"And above Albions Land was seen the Heavenly Canaan
As the Substance is to the Shadow: and above Albions Twelve Sons
Were seen Jerusalems Sons: and all the Twelve Tribes spreading
Over Albion. As the Soul is to the Body, so Jerusalems Sons,
Are to the Sons of Albion: and Jerusalem is Albions Emanation  
What is Above is Within, for every-thing in Eternity is translucent:
The Circumference is Within: Without, is formed the Selfish Center
And the Circumference still expands going forward to Eternity.
And the Center has Eternal States! these States we now explore.

And these the Names of Albions Twelve Sons, & of his Twelve Daughters
With their Districts. Hand dwelt in Selsey & had Sussex & Surrey
And Kent & Middlesex: all their Rivers & their Hills, of flocks & herds:
Their Villages Towns Cities Sea-Ports Temples sublime Cathedrals;
All were his Friends & their Sons & Daughters intermarry in Beulah
For all are Men in Eternity. Rivers Mountains Cities Villages,
All are Human & when you enter into their Bosoms you walk
In Heavens & Earths; as in your own Bosom you bear your Heaven
And Earth, & all you behold, tho it appears Without it is Within
In your Imagination of which this World of Mortality is but a Shadow."

Jerusalem, Plate 90, (E 250)
"And his Maternal Humanity must be put off Eternally
Lest the Sexual Generation swallow up Regeneration
Come Lord Jesus take on thee the Satanic Body of Holiness

So Los cried in the Valleys of Middlesex in the Spirit of Prophecy
While in Selfhood Hand & Hyle & Bowen & Skofeld appropriate    
The Divine Names: seeking to Vegetate the Divine Vision
In a corporeal & ever dying Vegetation & Corruption
Mingling with Luvah in One. they become One Great Satan"

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