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William Blake and Religion Research Paper

… William Blake and Religion

William Blake's religious and mystical imagination, expressed in writing such as the Marriage of Heaven and Hell or the illustrations he did for Dante's Inferno and Milton's Paradise Lost, appears all the more remarkable when considered in the religious and political context of the time. Blake presents an incisive critique of organized religion (embodied in his case by the Church of England), while celebrating the transcendent, expressive potential of mystical and religious thought. Building off of the prophetic, visionary work of Emanuel Swedenborg, who in his book Heaven and Hell claimed to have visited and cataloged the details of heaven, hell, and everything in between, Blake constructs his own interpretation of Christian mythology that explicitly condemns the elements of religion that…. [read more]

William Blake -1827) Was an English Poet Essay

… William Blake (1757-1827) was an English poet, painter, and printer who was largely ignored during his time, but is now considered to be one of the seminal figures in British romantic poetry. Blake not only produced poems, but also drawings and paintings that explored a rather unconventional side of the psychology of the mind and human existence. He was irreverent, considered insane by many of his contemporaries, and yet his combination of mysticism and skepticism seems to find a resonance in modern audiences (Jones, 2005). When we read his poetry knowing that he often said that every person had the potential to elevate themselves to the same level of divinity as Jesus, and that Satan, far from being the evil creature of Christian lore was…. [read more]

William Blake's Holy Thursday Term Paper

… Blake shows us what is obvious to naked eye i.e. children going to the Church to praise the Lord without any worries in their hearts or minds. They are happy and this is what the poet focuses on entirely. We are not told about the social condition of these children who are actually poor and some even orphan as is clear from given footnotes. Blake was one of those who did not believe in established religion. Part one of Holy Thursday doesn't reveal his own religious beliefs because they have been saved for the second part. In the second Holy Thursday, we come across a very harsh and Blake world of the same children. Things have suddenly changed for the worse; Children are no longer…. [read more]

William Blake Was Never Fully Thesis

… Just as Mercy, Pity, Peace and Love can exist within divinity, "The Human Abstract" states that Pity would not exist without the presence of those to pity; Mercy would not be a divine quality if all men were equally as happy and merciful. "The Human Abstract" addresses some of the four negative human qualities in "A Divine Image": Cruelty, Jealousy, Terror and Secrecy -- which along with Pity and Mercy are grown in the "Human Brain" (Blake 43). In "The Human Abstract," Mutual Fear will bring about Peace until Selfishness is born out of this quietness whereby Cruelty cyclically springs forth. Just the same as the human dress, form, face and heart all possess the apparent antithesis of divinity in "A Divine Image," "The Human…. [read more]

William Blake's Milton-Transformation Term Paper

… Blake was trying to stay true to his own beliefs when he wrote this poem and thus offered a clear explanation of why he opposed Miltonic Christianity. John Milton has been loved and admired by millions of his unique poetic skills but critics have often attacked his religious beliefs. The reasons for this criticism have already been mentioned above. Blake's poem was grounded in those reasons and his vision of Milton offered a better version of not exactly original John Milton but the views that he supported and advocated in his works.


Edward Robert Friedlander, M.D, WILLIAM BLAKE'S MILTON:

MEANING AND MADNESS, Department of English Literature, Brown University, 1973, revised 1986

Edmund Burke, A Philosophical Enquiry into the Origin of our Ideas of the…. [read more]

Tyger Blake's "The Tyger" William Essay

… Innocence is converted to experience. (Paley 541)

Furthermore, Blake references the War in Heaven in "The Tyger," which further supports the concept that God created both creatures yet cast one from his kingdom, as he did Satan. According to Christian belief, and as was depicted in John Milton's Paradise Lost nearly 100 years before, the War in Heaven was a conflict between Satan and his followers and God and his army during which Satan was subsequently cast out of Heaven and thrust into the bowels of Hell (Milton). Blake ties this into his poem and wonders, "When the stars threw down their spears/And water'd heaven with their tears:/Did he smile his work to see?" (line 17-19). If "he who made the lamb" also made the…. [read more]

Blake's "The Chimney Sweeper Research Paper

… In the poem, Blake uses religious imagery to emphasize the chimneysweepers' innocence. For instance, he describes Tom Dacre as having "white hair…that curl'd like a lamb's back" (Blake, Songs of Innocence, 6). Furthermore, Blake continues to highlight the narrator's innocence by analyzing his unconscious thoughts. Even when the narrator is dreaming, he believes that God will save him. The narrator comments that he dreamed "that thousands of sweepers…were all of them lock'd up in coffins of black" until an angel "open'd the coffins & set them all free" (11-14). Not only does the chimneysweeper draw parallels between the chimneys that can be considered to be coffins, but he also references the Christian belief of Jesus Christ's resurrection and ascension into heaven.

On the other hand,…. [read more]

John Milton and William Blake Research Paper

… Religiously, William Blake was not atheistic as many historians have suggested. Rather he opposed organized religion and the exclusionary nature of certain practices. He supposedly bragged that he had only been to church three times in his life: his baptism, his marriage, and eventually he would attend his funeral service (Harris 1). What bothered him about the different sects of Christianity was that there was no wiggle room for those who disagreed with certain aspects. Many people accept the will of the Church without questioning whether the dictums are right or wrong. He said once, "Active Evil is better than Passive Good." By this he meant that those who make a choice against the will of the Church have at least considered the merit of…. [read more]

Blake Poems William Term Paper

… He puts the two together to demonstrate the complexity of God. Deeply religious, he wants us to think about the nature of a God who could -- and would feel a need to -- create both the lamb and the tiger. This brings us back to art. Engravings are a kind of drawing, lines that divide space. There is the line, and there is that which is not the line, which is the empty space. Just as the paper would be a blank sheet without the line, the line cannot exist without the blank sheet. Perhaps Blake is trying to show us that both good and evil must exist in the world, or we will not be able to see the good. We certainly wouldn't…. [read more]

William Blake's Painting Binding Satan From Heaven Thesis

… William Blake's Painting "Binding Satan from Heaven"

William Blake's "Binding Satan from Heaven"

The battle of good and evil is a constant struggle seen in religions all over the world. Within Christianity it is represented between the fight between God and his former right hand man, Satan. The painting by William Blake represents Satan's loss and banishment out of heaven, but also the representation of Satan as a dangerous monster who is responsible for the sins of mankind. With Arch Angel Michael's restraint of the monster, we as men are one step closer to regaining the grace of God.

Within the Bible, Satan proves to be the direct cause of all of humanity's grief and despair. He is the reason good Christians are tempted into…. [read more]

Voltaire's Candide (Blake and Kazin Term Paper

… This is in direct contradiction to the vows of poverty taken by those in that religious order -- the thievery notwithstanding. Voltaire also introduces a Jesuit colonel who has homosexual tendencies, but primarily because these tendencies border on pederast behavior. The narrative winds through Paraguay where we are met with the infamous slice of history, that of the Conquistadors. (Caddy, 1991) These rulers and colonialists destroyed most of original South American culture in the hope of spreading Catholicism "We shall give the King of Spain's troops a warm reception." (p. 199, Voltaire) They also brought diseases for which the natives had no immunity. There are several instances where the religious carried out inhumane campaigns of religious oppression against those who did not strictly follow the…. [read more]

Eastern Religion, Eastern Mysticism Term Paper

… And the magic and wizardry in the stories is something of a story in itself.

The popularity of the movies, in particular, can be attributed to the American pop culture's love of magic, and mystery, and characters that can fly and have powerful magic potions and spells in their bags of tricks. But with that love of magic by the movie-going pop culture in America, there has come some criticism.

Jacobs point out that there are people in his midst, Christians, ("some of whom are dubious...") who believe that the movie "makes magic so funny and charming" that it is disturbing. The movies and books "don't exactly support the Christian view of things," he writes. "Such novels could at best encourage children to take a…. [read more]

William Blake Was Born Term Paper

… Thel speaks with things that are, like herself, natural, modest, gentle, and seemingly insignificant, such as the lily that is 'breathing in the humble grass' that feeds grazing animals and nurtures the worm, and is thus an intrinsic part of God's great system of creation, as are the cloud, the 'Clod of Clay' and the worm (Poems 39-40). At the end Thel goes into the earth itself to hear the voice of her own grave -- a dramatic way of illustrating her descent from a form of Paradise into ordinary life. The point for Blake is that innocence must also be fertile -- it must express the natural energies of creation and divinity.

Thel is a long poem, but it is dwarfed by Blake's 'prophetic…. [read more]

William Blake Term Paper

… Called Poetical Sketches, it was largely a work of apprentice verse that imitated classical. In general, the poems in Poetical Sketches protested war and oppression.

In 1783 Blake published Songs of Innocence in 1779, his most popular collection. Songs of Experience followed in 1794. Both books were finely illustrated, with text and illustrations printed from copper plates, and pictures finished, by hand, in watercolour. Blake's once-illiterate wife, Catherine, helped him print these illustrated works.

Blake's most famous poem, 'The Tyger', appeared in Songs of Experience. The poem is about the nature of the creator. Blake is in awe and terror of God, and wonders how the creator could create the evil side of human nature, as well as good side of human nature.

Blake was…. [read more]

William Blake Is Usually Classified Research Paper

… Yet she also immediately shifts to likening the phallus to an infant, which of course is a natural progression, considering that childbirth only occurs after copulation. But even so, it is the attitude that Thel takes toward the available reality of sexual experience that is so shocking to us: she seems frankly disinterested. Yet we are not to interpet this necessarily as aversion to sex. Rather, Blake's two subsequent works -- the partial sequel Visions of the Daughters of Albion and the work of religious prose philosophy (with some interspersed poems) The Marriage of Heaven and Hell. In the former, Blake's heroine Oothoon -- whose name suggests Greek words for both "egg" and "goddess" -- is violently raped but who explicitly invokes a prophetic future…. [read more]

William Blake's "The Lamb Term Paper

… Blake wrote " 'those who are offended with any thing in this book would be offended with the innocence of a child & for the same reason, because it reproaches [them] with the errors of acquired folly' "(Erdman, 107). By examining the poem, we must consider the subject: the lamb, the very animal that has a predominant place throughout the Christian Bible. It is the "first symbol of God's created Innocence, and a demonstration of His care for creatures of earth. So divine care is reflected in the social practice of sending poor infants to the country….the whole pastoral tenderness is given a symbolic Christian identity. This God is…identified in the child and the lamb. He has crated and is protecting" (Gardner, 76). Consider the…. [read more]

William Blake's the Chimney Sweeper Term Paper

… Blake's The Chimney Sweeper

William Blake's poem "The Chimney Sweeper" -- a hopeful nursery rhyme style used to ironically highlight a child's reality of horror

Although our society is no longer dependant upon children to sweep our chimneys, and sacrifice their health and youth to this miserable task, William Blake's poem "The Chimney Sweeper" still has power over the attention of the viewer. This is because it makes imaginative use of the familiar tone of nursery rhyme, and deploys children's vocabulary and sing-song rhyme and diction to convey the horrible, limited circumstances of the speaker's life. The innocence, purity, hopes, and light of childhood and heaven are contrasted with the darkness of the soot and the physical, manual labor of chimney sweeping. Death will come…. [read more]

Imagination, Faith, and Reason Truth Essay

… Nothing that is spoken by Jesus Christ or that is spoken on behalf of the savior of mankind is to in any way questioned by any of the members of mere humanity. Here, the concept of truth is far less fluid than the truth that is discussed by the artists and the truth of the imagination. In the epistle, Peter writes: "Christ, our Passover, has been sacrificed in our place. Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old yeast, neither with the yeast of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth" (5:8-5:9). Because Jesus Christ has sacrificed himself in order to save humanity, at least that is what the Christians believe.

It is because of this sacrifice that all…. [read more]

Shakespeare and Blake Essay

… This description of Tom Dacre gives him attributes of innocence that is associated with religion. Blake further elaborates on this religious symbolism by stating that Tom Dacre dreamt "that thousands of sweepers…were all of them lock'd up in coffins of black.//And by came an angel who had a bright key/And he open'd the coffins & set them all free" (lines 12-14). This descriptive dream parallels religious writings in which Jesus Christ descends into Hell and released souls trapped therein. This parallel is further highlighted in the second half of Tom Dacre's dream in which the freed chimney sweepers "naked and white, all their bags left behind,/They rise upon clouds and sport in the wind [and] if he'd be a good boy,/He'd have God for his…. [read more]

Blake William Blake's Poem "The Lamb" Embodies Research Paper

… Blake

William Blake's poem "The Lamb" embodies the central theme of innocence.

The theme of innocence runs through the entire collection of poems, and is contrasted with the theme of experience

In the Lamb, William Blake uses symbolism, diction, and other poetic devices to convey a central Christian motif.

Body paragraph I: Christian Symbolism

Blake has been described as "a mystic enraptured with incommunicable visions," and the poet's affection for Christian imagery is related to this personal passion (Frye 3)

Christ as the Lamb of God is a central biblical motif and recurs frequently throughout the Christian gospels.

"The Lamb" includes questions posed to God as a Creator.

First Stanza: "Dost thou know who made thee?"

Last Line: "Little Lamb, God bless thee!"

Body paragraph…. [read more]

William Blake Was an English Essay

… He is described as a "little black thing among the snow," standing out from his surroundings. He has been forced into his position because his parents mistook his childish innocence as happiness, and "because [he] was happy upon the heath…They clothed [him] in the clothes of death, and taught [him] to sing the notes of woe" (46). Because his parents cannot see how unhappy he is and think that "because [he is] happy, & dance & sing/They think they have done [him] no injury" (46). Much like the poem in Songs of Innocence, the chimneysweeper cries out "weep, weep, in notes of woe," however he seems to imply that he should be pitied because knows the horrors to which he is subjected to. The chimneysweeper…. [read more]

Dante Alighieri "Inferno Term Paper

… Blake complains that the description of the Messiah is ambiguous. It is the name given to the archangel (eventually Satan) and Jesus Christ. There are some instances where the disgust factor is perpetrated through graphic (almost pornographic prose). Satan has incestuous relations with his daughter-Sin who bears the progeny Death. This triumvirate (Satan-Sin-Death) is very powerful and its taints are cast on humankind.

Milton's Satan functions as an antagonist or the anti-hero. Anti-hero's in most epics are looked on as rebels and they garner a measure of sympathy. Milton's Satan is shown as being possessed of a similar awareness in the long soliloquy in Book IV of Paradise Lost (IV:32-113). Consider the following extract:

Which way I flie is Hell; my self am Hell;

And…. [read more]

Percy Bysshe Shelley's Defense of Poetry Term Paper

… Percy Bysshe Shelley

In Representative Poetry Online (2006), Percy Bysshe Shelley emphasized the importance and function of poetry in our lives. It is noted that in a Defence of Poetry, he claimed that poetry is not only a form of artistic expression, medium of language, or an activity of leisure and amusement. He explains how poetry not only shows what is beautiful, but more importantly what is true.

Shelley also elevated Poetry as a medium that has its own utilitarian functions; particularly those that pertain to vital institutions in society that instigate change. Some of these institutions are in the areas of education, law-making, governance, and even religion. For example, the relationship of religion and poetry, specifically poems during the Romantic literature is reflected in…. [read more]

Paradise Lost in His Epic Poem Essay

… Paradise Lost

In his epic poem Paradise Lost, John Milton characterizes Satan in such a way that William Blake actually suggested that Milton was "of the Devil's party without knowing it." This is because in Blake's view, Satan was actually the true protagonist of Paradise Lost, as Milton presents him as a far more relatable and sympathetic character than one might believe. Although Milton's Paradise Lost is undoubtedly written from a Christian perspective, and thus implicitly marks Satan as villain and adversary, a close inspection of Milton's treatment of Satan reveals that he is far more complicated of a character than usually believed. In particular, Satan's speech in Book I presents him as a noble, compassionate character acting in defiance of an oppressive, restrictive God.…. [read more]

William Blake, Samuel Taylor Coleridge Term Paper

… He attributes our experiences with the world (Nature) that we live in as 'support' or helpful to helping humans create their own constructs of what is good and bad, right or wrong: "... no testimony can be admitted which is contrary to reason, reason is founded on the evidence of our senses." Thus, reason determines an individual's judgment on the goodness of an act, and ultimately shapes the concept of what is good within him/her.

Samuel Taylor Coleridge offers a different view of the concept of melancholy compared to John Keats, despite their being both Romanticist poets of the 19th century. Coleridge offers a positive outlook at melancholic contemplation in "The Nightingale," where he centers his attention on how people get relief and brief happiness…. [read more]

Role of Nature and Culture in Sonnets by a Mickiewicz Essay

… Crimean Sonnets

Mickiewicz's Crimean Sonnets

Adam Mickiewicz was a Polish poet and political writer whose Crimean Sonnets provide a rich view of the Crimean peninsula in 1825. The sonnets were written on one of Mickiewicz's trips towards Odessa. The sonnets were well received by the public and eventually helped Mickiewicz to get a government position. Mickiewicz's sonnets provide an illustrative view of the Crimean landscape through

Edward Said has contended that orientalism is a Western "system of representations" that "constitutes, contains, and appropriates the Orient by speaking on its behalf and is thus by its very nature imperial" (Koropeckyj 661). That being said, it has also been argued that the socio-political and historical Crimea of the era is absent in Mickiewicz's Crimean Sonnets, and instead…. [read more]

Portfolio Studying Literature Is an Eye Opening Experience Term Paper

… ¶ … Eye Opening Experience

The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Taylor Coleridge

The Depiction of Satan

Thomas Pynchon's Concept of Hyper-Reality Novel: The Crying of Lot 49

Diotima's Speech in Plato's Symposium

Duchess of Malfi by John Webster

The range of options and prospects that literature presents to scholars makes it one of the most attractive forms of art. It prepares scholars adequately to face the challenges of life. In particular, the copious possibilities have opened my mind to fresh ideas alongside techniques for evaluating and reviewing works of literature. I also realized that the modern techniques have a bearing on scholars' discernment and perception of modern literature in comparison to the ancient or traditional literary works. However, my three-year study in…. [read more]

Cynthia Ozick Thesis

… American Jewish Writers have come a long way since WWII. There is even a literary movement that comprises all their works that is taught in schools today. In an interview with Katie Bolick, Cynthia Ozick explained why she was rejecting the appellative "woman writers," but did not reject being called "Jewish writer": "Jewish" is a category of civilization, culture, and intellect, and "woman" is a category of anatomy and physiology. it's rough thinking to confuse vast cultural and intellectual movements with the capacity to bear children" (Ozick).

Cynthia Ozick is an American Jewish female writer who has lived as a Child in Bronx, New York during the 1930s and went through every kind of discrimination possible, starting with patriarchal views that made the rabbi at…. [read more]

Death in "Do Not Go Essay

… As innocence and purity are often symbolically associated with lambs, they are often used as religious sacrifices. The lamb is described as having "Softest clothing wooly bright" and having "such a tender voice, / Making all the vales rejoice" (lines 6-8). Not only does Blake insinuate that the lamb is an innocent creature because of its physical descriptors, but also because of what it represents symbolically. This is illustrated through the rhetorical question, "Do you know who made thee?" And corresponding answer, "Little Lamb I'll tell thee:/He is called by thy name/For he calls himself a Lamb" (lines 12-14). Blake proceeds to describe characteristics that are found in the lamb and in God's son saying, "He is meek & he is mild/He became a little…. [read more]

Examine How the Speakers Attitude Changes Essay

… ¶ … Speaker's Worldview

William Blake's Worldview in "The Lamb"

William Blake's poem, "The Lamb," is one of twenty-three poems he published in his compilation, Songs of Innocence, and it may very well be the most famous of his poems in that work. Songs of Innocence was published to coincide with another compilation he wrote called Songs of Experience, and it was through these two collections of poems Blake would take a look from the outside at extreme examples of his opinion of the society at the time. In Songs of Experience, Blake criticizes the corruption in many areas of the society, and in Songs of Innocence, he pulls out illustrations of the positive aspects of society. In "The Lamb," Blake uses poetic techniques and…. [read more]

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