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William Blake


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I read Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience in my class and was wondering if anyone else here is a fan of William Blake. I really love his work both his poems and illustrations. I'm also fascinated by the fact that he claimed to see angels all throughout his life, the first time when he was 8 and saw a tree of angels. Throughout his life he said the angels encouraged him to write and read his works. He was an avid Christian who believed that the prominent churches of the time were of the Devil because they did not give man joy. Many people think he was visionary others think he was mad.

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I read Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience in my class and was wondering if anyone else here is a fan of William Blake. I really love his work both his poems and illustrations. I'm also fascinated by the fact that he claimed to see angels all throughout his life, the first time when he was 8 and saw a tree of angels. Throughout his life he said the angels encouraged him to write and read his works. He was an avid Christian who believed that the prominent churches of the time were of the Devil because they did not give man joy. Many people think he was visionary others think he was mad.

tyger.jpg

I'm not sure what this has to do with LDS apologetics, but Blake is definitely awesome:

THE LAND OF DREAMS

Awake, awake my little Boy!

Thou wast thy Mother's only joy:

Why dost thou weep in thy gentle sleep?

Awake! thy Father does thee keep.

"O, what land is the Land of Dreams?

What are its mountains, and what are its streams?

O Father, I saw my Mother there,

Among the lillies by waters fair.

Among the lambs clothed in white

She walked with her Thomas in sweet delight.

I wept for joy, like a dove I mourn -

O when shall I return again?"

Dear child, I also by pleasant streams

Have wandered all night in the Land of Dreams;

But though calm and warm the waters wide,

I could not get to the other side.

"Father, O Father, what do we here,

In this land of unbelief and fear?

The Land of Dreams is better far

Above the light of the Morning Star."

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William Blake is fascinating. I wrote a couple of papers on him for my English classes back at San Jose State, and have quoted him a number of times in some FARMS essays. The recent FARMS Review 19/1 mentions a Masters Thesis done that compares Joseph Smith and Blake. Scott Card's Alvin Maker series has the Taleswapper character quoting the proverbs of Hell from the Marriage of Heaven and Hell on several occasions, as a way of suggesting Taleswappers identity.

Blake died in 1827, which is just a tad early. Since he is famous for the marginalia he wrote in the books he read, I do wish he had lived another few years, long enough to have done some marginalia in a Book of Mormon. Northrop Frye's book on Blake's symbolism, Fearful Symmetry, constantly brings my mind, Lehi's discourse on opposition in all things, and Joseph Smith's comment that "by proving contraries, truth is made manifest."

Kevin Christensen

Pittsburgh, PA

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The following from Blake inspired an empire of would-be saints:

And did those feet in ancient time

Walk upon England's mountains green?

And was the holy Lamb of God

On England's pleasant pastures seen?

And did the Countenance Divine

Shine forth upon our clouded hills?

And was Jerusalem builded here

Among these dark Satanic mills?

Bring me my bow of burning gold:

Bring me my arrows of desire:

Bring me my spear: O clouds unfold!

Bring me my chariot of fire.

I will not cease from mental fight,

Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand

Till we have built Jerusalem

In England's green and pleasant land.

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I'm not sure what this has to do with LDS apologetics, but Blake is definitely awesome:

Yeah maybe this wasn't the best place to post this. I just see a lot of parallels between Blake and the LDS faith. So I guess to make it fit I could ask whether you agree or disagree with that.

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Yeah maybe this wasn't the best place to post this. I just see a lot of parallels between Blake and the LDS faith. So I guess to make it fit I could ask whether you agree or disagree with that.

I have it on good authority that Blake was a long-time friend of Solomon Spaulding; and once was seen making a clandestine moonlight visit to Sidney Rigdon's home.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

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William Blake was one of the primal inspirations for James Joyce's magnificent ideas in Finnegan's Wake, and Ulyssus, which said book, Ulyssus was voted the book of the last CENTURY. I am working my way through both, have been for quite some time. When I finish I shall have rearrived back at Howth Castle and environs..........(HCE, Here Comes Everybody, since we are all about what the book is all about)......

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