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Thursday, December 24, 2009


Chorus of Angels

Since the first image we form of ourselves is that of a body, we may formulate the idea that at some point the spirit enters the body and begins to express itself through the body. But as Blake explains here, it is the bodies which are made for the spirits which pre-exist.

As Albion represents the Universal Man, Jerusalem represents the Universal Woman: the 'vast family wondrous in beauty and love.' Albion is fourfold, Jerusalem is unified: the expression of the Divine Vision within the Universal Man.

In this passage, Blake presents the idea that redemption begins when 'the Lamb of God' becomes visible within the Unified Spiritual Body which is Jerusalem. The song of the angels, sung when the birth of Jesus was announced to the shepherds, is echoed in Blake's verses at this point.

2:8-12 - "There were some shepherds living in the same part of the country, keeping guard throughout the night over their flocks in the open fields. Suddenly an angel of the Lord stood by their side, the splendour of the Lord blazed around them, and they were terror-stricken. But the angel said to them, 'Do not be afraid! Listen, I bring you glorious news of great joy which is for all the people. This very day, in David's town, a Saviour has been born for you. He is Christ, the Lord. Let this prove it to you: you will find a baby, wrapped up and lying in a manger.'
2:13-14 - And in a flash there appeared with the angel a vast host of the armies of Heaven, praising God, saying, 'Glory to God in the highest Heaven! Peace upon earth among men of goodwill!'"

Four Zoas: Night the Eighth, Page 103 (E376):

"Enitharmon wove in tears Singing Songs of Lamentations
And pitying comfort as she sighd forth on the wind the spectres
And wove them bodies calling them her belovd sons and daughters

Employing the daughters in her looms & Los employd the Sons
In Golgonoozas Furnaces among the Anvils of time & space
Thus forming a Vast family wondrous in beauty & love
And they appeard a Universal female form created
From those who were dead in Ulro from the Spectres of the dead

And Enitharmon namd the Female Jerusa[le]m the holy
she saw the Lamb of God within Jerusalems Veil
The divine Vision seen within the inmost deep recess
Of fair Jerusalems bosom in a gently beaming fire

Then sang the Sons of Eden round the Lamb of God & said
Glory Glory Glory to the holy Lamb of God
Who now beginneth to put off the dark Satanic body

Now we behold redemption Now we know that life Eternal
Depends alone upon the Universal hand & not in us

2:25-32 - "In Jerusalem was a man by the name of Simeon. He was an upright man, devoted to the service of God, living in expectation of the 'salvation of Israel'. His heart was open to the Holy Spirit, and it had been revealed to him that he would not die before he saw the Lord's Christ. He had been led by the Spirit to go into the Temple, and when Jesus' parents brought the child in to have done to him what the Law required, he took him up in his arms, blessed God, and said - 'At last, Lord, you can dismiss your servant in peace, as you promised! For with my own eyes I have seen your salvation which you have made ready for every people - a light to show truth to the Gentiles and bring glory to your people Israel.'"

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