Wednesday, July 26, 2017


Wikipedia Commons
Illustrations to Milton's Paradise Lost
Illustration 6
Raphael Warns Adam and Eve
Genesis 2
[8] And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed.
[9] And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
[16] And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
[17] But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

The sixth Illustration to Paradise Lost shows Adam, Eve and the angel Raphael in the glorious garden of Eden. God knew that Satan had entered the earth and begun his attack on the 'human pair.' Thinking that Adam and Eve might prevent Satan's 'designs In them at once to ruin all mankind', God assigned Raphael to descend to the garden with a warning. Raphael's delivered the message that the happy couple could lose the idyllic situation they enjoyed if Satan could trap them with his deceit.

Adam looks at Raphael apprehensively; Eve, with an untroubled look, serves the lunch. Around the fruit laden tree in the background which is entwined by a serpent, Blake included symbolic animals:
elephant - strength
tiger - wrath
peacock - pride
horse - lust
donkey - beast of burden
ox - patience
birds of paradise - freedom
wading birds - transcend earth, water and air.
God did not place humanity on earth to be alone. Adam and Eve walked in the garden with God 'in the cool of the evening.' Guardian angels were dispatched to watch over them throughout the day and night.

Paradise Lost
John Milton
Book 5
Line 224
[God instructs Raphael]
  " Raphael, said he, thou hearest what stir on Earth
Satan, from Hell 'scaped through the darksome gulf,
Hath raised in Paradise; and how disturbed
This night the human pair; how he designs
In them at once to ruin all mankind. 
Go therefore, half this day as friend with friend
Converse with Adam, in what bower or shade
Thou findest him from the heat of noon retired,
To respite his day-labor with repast,
Or with repose; and such discourse bring on,
As may advise him of his happy state,
Happiness in his power left free to will,
Left to his own free will, his will though free,
Yet mutable; whence warn him to beware
He swerve not, too secure: Tell him withal
His danger, and from whom; what enemy,
Late fallen himself from Heaven, is plotting now
The fall of others from like state of bliss;
By violence? no, for that shall be withstood;
But by deceit and lies: This let him know,
Lest, willfully transgressing, he pretend
Surprisal, unadmonished, unforewarned.
So spake the Eternal Father,"

Book 5
Line 519
[Raphael to Adam and Eve]
"Son of Heaven and Earth,
Attend. That thou art happy, owe to God;
That thou continuest such, owe to thyself,
That is, to thy obedience; therein stand.
This was that caution given thee; be advised.
God made thee perfect, not immutable;
And good he made thee, but to persevere
He left it in thy power; ordained thy will
By nature free, not over-ruled by fate
Inextricable, or strict necessity:
Our voluntary service he requires,
Not our necessitated; such with him
Finds no acceptance, nor can find; for how
Can hearts, not free, be tried whether they serve
Willing or no, who will but what they must
By destiny, and can no other choose?
Myself, and all the angelic host, that stand
In sight of God, enthroned, our happy state
Hold, as you yours, while our obedience holds;
On other surety none: Freely we serve,
Because we freely love, as in our will
To love or not; in this we stand or fall:
And some are fallen, to disobedience fallen,
And so from Heaven to deepest Hell; Oh fall
From what high state of bliss, into what woe!"

The danger of falling away from the Divine Benevolence can not be taken lightly. Blake and Milton wanted to impress upon their readers the effort and care that God takes to keep his precious creation intact. Man is not meant to be divided from Man or God. Eternal vigilance is Man's responsibility.

Jerusalem, Plate 55, (E 204)  
"all equal share
Divine Benevolence & joy, for the Eternal Man
Walketh among us, calling us his Brothers & his Friends:         
Forbidding us that Veil which Satan puts between Eve & Adam" 
Four Zoas, Night IX, Page 133, (E 401)
And Many Eternal Men sat at the golden feast to see 
The female form now separate They shudderd at the horrible thing
Not born for the sport and amusement of Man but born to drink up all his powers
They wept to see their shadows they said to one another this is Sin
This is the Generative world they rememberd the Days of old

And One of the Eternals spoke All was silent at the feast 

Man is a Worm wearied with joy he seeks the caves of sleep
Among the Flowers of Beulah in his Selfish cold repose
Forsaking Brotherhood & Universal love in selfish clay
Folding the pure wings of his mind seeking the places dark
Abstracted from the roots of Science then inclosd around  
In walls of Gold we cast him like a Seed into the Earth
Till times & spaces have passd over him duly every morn
We visit him covering with a Veil the immortal seed
With windows from the inclement sky we cover him & with walls
And hearths protect the Selfish terror till divided all 

In families we see our shadows born. & thence we know | Ephesians
That Man subsists by Brotherhood & Universal Love     |    iii c.
We fall on one anothers necks more closely we embrace |   10 v   

Not for ourselves but for the Eternal family we live
Man liveth not by Self alone but in his brothers face            
Each shall behold the Eternal Father & love & joy abound

So spoke the Eternal at the Feast they embracd the New born Man
Calling him Brother image of the Eternal Father."

Ephesians 3
[8] Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this 
grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable 
riches of Christ;
[9] And to make all men see what is the 
fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath 
been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:
To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly 
places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God,
[11] According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord:
[12] In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him.

Once to Every Man and Nation
Author: James Russell Lowell (1845)

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