Blake seeks to provide the Golden String which can lead us through the labyrinth of our experience or his own poetry.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014


Genesis 2
[21] So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh;
[22] and the rib which the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man.
[23] Then the man said, "This at last is bone of my bones ad flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man."

Genesis 3
[2] And the woman said to the serpent, "We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden;
[3] but God said, `You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.'"
[4] But the serpent said to the woman, "You will not die.
[5] For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
[6] So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate; and she also gave some to her husband, and he ate. 

Wikipedia Commons
Large Color Printed Paintings
Satan Exaulting Over Eve
The name Satan does not appear in the book of Genesis. Eve's tempter is the serpent. We owe to Milton's Paradise Lost much of the imagery involving Satan in the Fall. Satan is rarely mentioned in the Old Testament outside of the book of Job where he is assigned by God the role of testing Job.
In Blake's picture Satan Exaulting Over Eve we see Eve lying prone with Satan in the air above her. Satan is the active figure, armed with spear and shield, held aloft by powerful wings, surrounded by energetic flames. Eve lies sleeping with the fruit in her hand and the serpent twining her body.

To Blake the two phases of man's consciousness, the active and passive, are balanced in the unified man. When man, through Creation, is divided from the unifying principle which is God, he undergoes a further division which can be expressed as various contraries, one of which is active and passive. The passive becomes the female or emanation or outer expression. The creation of Eve implies that the Fall has already been initiated because man has been divided from his emanation.

Although we may have been taught that the Fall was an event in which Eve ate the forbidden fruit, Blake sees the Fall as the accumulation of actions which draw man farther from the unity which he experienced in Eternity. 

Damon states in A Blake Dictionary that: "the division of the Emanation from the Individual is a split in the personality, a stage in the Fall of Man, symbolized in Genesis by the extraction of Eve from the side of sleeping Adam...
The separated Emanation takes the female form, an event which horrifies the Eternals. Man is left 'a dark Spectre', of perhaps only in his Spectre's power. Worse yet, the Emanation acquires a will of her own, which by definition is turned against her consort." (Page 121)  

Spectre of Urthona speaks to Shade of Enitharmon: 
Four Zoas, Night VII, Page 84, (E 359)
"This thou well rememberest listen I will tell
What thou forgettest. They in us & we in them alternate Livd
Drinking the joys of Universal Manhood. One dread morn
Listen O vision of Delight One dread morn of goary blood
The manhood was divided for the gentle passions making way
Thro the infinite labyrinths of the heart & thro the nostrils issuing
In odorous stupefaction stood before the Eyes of Man
A female bright. I stood beside my anvil dark a mass
Of iron glowd bright prepard for spades & plowshares. sudden down
I sunk with cries of blood issuing downward in the veins
Which now my rivers were become rolling in tubelike forms
Shut up within themselves descending down I sunk along,
The goary tide even to the place of seed & there dividing
I was divided in darkness & oblivion thou an infant woe
And I an infant terror in the womb of Enion
My masculine spirit scorning the frail body issud forth
From Enions brain In this deformed form leaving thee there
Till times passd over thee but still my spirit returning hoverd
And formd a Male to be a counterpart to thee O Love
Darkend & Lost In due time issuing forth from Enions womb
Thou & that demon Los wert born Ah jealousy & woe
Ah poor divided dark Urthona now a Spectre wandering
The deeps of Los the Slave of that Creation I created

I labour night & day for Los but listen thou my vision
I view futurity in thee I will bring down soft Vala
To the embraces of this terror & I will destroy
That body I created then shall we unite again in bliss"


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