Friday, December 10, 2010

Much Ado About Nothing Chapter 9: Part 4

Next we are introduced to Blake's concept of the spectre. The spectre is the divided aspect of a soul which becomes its other.

"I in my Selfhood am that Satan: I am that Evil One! He is my Spectre"

Much like Jung's concept of the shadow, the spectre casts its own negative across the external world, seeking to destroy its opposite. What Blake is saying here, from the voice of Milton, is that Milton at some point recognizes that the satan-principle is a portion of his own soul, that portion he has sacrificed to God, and by so sacrificing he has betrayed his own nature, his is as a poet of "the devil's party" without realizing it. That is to say, he was full of energy. Afterward, Milton beholds his shadow:

M14.36; E108| Then on the verge of Beulah he beheld his own Shadow;
M14.37; E108| A mournful form double; hermaphroditic: male & female
M14.38; E108| In one wonderful body. and he enterd into it
M14.39; E108| In direful pain for the dread shadow, twenty-seven-fold

According to Northrop Frye, Beulah is a place where lovers perceive their beloveds, Ulro is a mechanistic void where subjects perceive objects; and Eden is the dichotomy of creatures and creators.

The shadow is 27 fold, or 3^3; again a Hyper-Four. And Blake waxes mathematical in his very modern construction of the nature of infinity.

M15.21; E109| The nature of infinity is this: That every thing has its
M15.22; E109| Own Vortex; and when once a traveller thro Eternity.
M15.23; E109| Has passd that Vortex, he percieves it roll backward behind
M15.24; E109| His path, into a globe itself infolding; like a sun:
M15.25; E109| Or like a moon, or like a universe of starry majesty,
M15.26; E109| While he keeps onwards in his wondrous journey on the earth
M15.27; E109| Or like a human form, a friend with whom he livd benevolent.
M15.28; E109| As the eye of man views both the east & west encompassing
M15.29; E109| Its vortex; and the north & south, with all their starry host;
M15.30; E109| Also the rising sun & setting moon he views surrounding
M15.31; E109| His corn-fields and his valleys of five hundred acres square.
M15.32; E109| Thus is the earth one infinite plane, and not as apparent
M15.33; E109| To the weak traveller confin'd beneath the moony shade.
M15.34; E109| Thus is the heaven a vortex passd already, and the earth
M15.35; E109| A vortex not yet pass'd by the traveller thro' Eternity.

We know that in an infinite line, any single point can be taken as the center. So too each being upon the earth is an infinite vortex, and not the "three layer cake" of the of sky, earth, and hell. This is a construction of reality, which limits reality. Each globe in the sky is its own center; and each man and woman is their own center; and we too are the center of all being, so long as we respect that each person is a center and do not think ourselves the sole center of everything.

Also, heaven is not a place you go when you die, rather it is a passed eternity, a script which has already run its course. Earth is still in motion, still evolving into a new heaven which is collected in the mind of God, when its script has fully run its course. Thus to resolve the contraries is to destroy creation, to create a heaven which will then be taken into God so that a new script can run its course.
To be in Heaven is to be in Eternity, which means outside of time.

Four Universes round the Mundane Egg remain Chaotic
M19.16; E112| One to the North, named Urthona: One to the South, named Urizen:
M19.17; E112| One to the East, named Luvah: One to the West, named Tharmas
M19.18; E112| They are the Four Zoa's that stood around the Throne Divine!
M19.19; E112| But when Luvah assum'd the World of Urizen to the South:
M19.20; E112| And Albion was slain upon his mountains, & in his tent;
M19.21; E112| All fell towards the Center in dire ruin, sinking down.
M19.22; E112| And in the South remains a burning fire; in the East a void.

The four principalities of man, Urthona, which only mitigates itself via Los, Urizen, Tharmas and Luvah, who represent the four forms of intelligences. The four zoas, or energies of life, collapse into the void. Milton attempts to go toward the universe of Enitharmon and Los, but is headed off by Urizen. It is toward Beulah where Milton is headed, that place where the contraries are equally true, echoing Fish's aesthetic of the good physician.

M26.45; E124| And every Natural Effect has a Spiritual Cause, and Not
M26.45; E124| A Natural: for a Natural Cause only seems, it is Delusion
M26.46; E124| Of Ulro: & a ratio of the perishing Vegetable Memory.

For Blake, natural causes are an idiotic conscription of the soulless attributions of science. Spiritual is indistinct from mental. Bodies have no cause, minds cause. The ratio is by analog. Anything reducible to an analogy is reduced to the ratio.

Book One of Milton ends with the labors of Los against the facts of Urizen. Again, for Blake meaning, and understanding are a matter of attribution. We give meaning to the world around, we propose possibilities, we live in our imaginations. This is the language of Eden, the logic of the imagination, that we create the world around us, we perceive with our imagination; if the doors of perception were properly cleansed we would see the world around us, as if for the first time, in its infinite complexity, an unspeakable beauty that all life on earth rejoices in.

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