William Blake's Jerusalem Explained.

Chapter 2: Plate 44

With one accord in love sublime, & as on Cherubs wings
They Albion surround with kindest violence to bear him back
Against his will thro Los's Gate to Eden: Four-fold; loud!
Their Wings waving over the bottomless Immense: to bear
Their awful charge back to his native home: but Albion dark,
Repugnant: rolld his Wheels, backward into Non-Entity
Loud roll the Starry Wheels of Albion into the World of Death
And all the Gate of Los, clouded with clouds redounding from
Albions dread Wheels, stretching out spaces immense between
That every little particle of light & air, became Opake
Black & immense. a Rock of difficulty & a Cliff
Of black despair; that the immortal Wings labourd against
Cliff after cliff, & over Valleys of despair & death:
The narrow Sea between Albion & the Atlantic Continent:
Its waves of pearl became a boundless Ocean bottomless,
Of grey obscurity, filld with clouds & rocks & whirling waters
And Albions Sons ascending & descending in the horrid Void.

But as the Will must not be bended but in the day of Divine
Power: silent calm & motionless, in the mid-air sublime.
The Family Divine hover around the darkend Albion.

Such is the nature of the Ulro: that whatever enters;
Becomes Sexual, & is Created, and Vegetated, and Born.
From Hyde Park spread their vegetating roots beneath Albion
In dreadful pain the Spectrous Uncircumcised Vegetation,
Forming a Sexual Machine; an Aged Virgin Form.
In Erins Land toward the north, joint after joint & burning
In love & jealousy immingled & calling it Religion
And feeling the damps of death they with one accord delegated Los
Conjuring him by the Highest that he should Watch over them
Till Jesus shall appear: & they gave their power to Los
Naming him the Spirit of Prophecy. calling him Elijah

Strucken with Albions disease they become what they behold;
They assimilate with Albion in pity & compassion:
Their Emanations return not: their Spectres rage in the Deep.
The Slumbers of Death came over them around the Couch of Death
Before the Gate of Los & in the depths of Non Entity
Among the Furnaces of Los; among the Oaks of Albion.

 
Man is adjoind to Man by his Emanative portion:
Who is Jerusalem in every individual Man: and her
Shadow is Vala. builded by the Reasoning power in Man
O search & see: turn your eyes inward: open O thou World
Of Love & Harmony in Man: expand thy ever lovely Gates,

They wept into the deeps a little space at length was heard
The voice of Bath, faint as the voice of the Dead in the House of
                                                              Death

Plate 44: Analysis.

With one accord in love sublime, & as on Cherubs wings
They Albion surround with kindest violence to bear him back
Against his will thro Los's Gate to Eden: Four-fold; loud!
Their Wings waving over the bottomless Immense: to bear
Their awful charge back to his native home: but Albion dark,

1-5

The expansion cycle outward from the finite meets the inward compression cycle of Eden at the gate of Los. The process is psychophysical. The energies of Eden intend toward the finite and thereby toward death; "sick & pale" they stood, to "also go to death's vale".

At the gate, the sons of Eden try to re-orientate their whole conscious focus or their existential intention, toward bringing Albion back into an infinite vision of life and love. With "one accord in love sublime, & as on Cherubs wings" they encompass Albion "with kindest violence to bear him back/Against his will thro Los's Gate to Eden". Their existential intentionality seeks to reverse that of Albion.

Their self-transcendence, each within and without each, gathers each in each other: "Four-fold! Loud! /Their Wings waving over: the bottomless Immense: to bear/Their awful charge back to his native home".

Repugnant: rolld his Wheels, backward into Non-Entity
Loud roll the Starry Wheels of Albion into the World of Death
And all the Gate of Los, clouded with clouds redounding from
Albions dread Wheels, stretching out spaces immense between
That every little particle of light & air, became Opake
Black & immense. a Rock of difficulty & a Cliff
Of black despair; that the immortal Wings labourd against

6-12

The negative reciprocity is clear. This is about will, intensity and it is about power. In the infinite the four living zoas totalise their will to draw Albion back out from his closed inner collapse into negation. By contrast, in the finite Albion and his reactor negate all possibilities: "Albion dark/Repugnant! /rolled his Wheels backward into Non-Entity". The ideal, infinitely realised motion of the living zoas in Eden is negated by the inverted motion of the finite zoas of Albion's inner universe for "Loud roll the Starry Wheels of Albion into the World of Death".

Viewed from "the Gate of Los", now "clouded with clouds redounding from/Albion's dread Wheels", the finite world of negation condenses into absolute opacity. Emptiness and immensity, "spaces immense", stretch between "every little particle of light & air" which darkened entirely and "became Opake/Black & immense". There is no light or air. The opaque vacuum condenses into "a Rock of difficulty & a Cliff/Of black despair". This is Albion's opaque world of death.

Cliff after cliff, & over Valleys of despair & death:
The narrow Sea between Albion & the Atlantic Continent:
Its waves of pearl became a boundless Ocean bottomless,
Of grey obscurity, filld with clouds & rocks & whirling waters
And Albions Sons ascending & descending in the horrid Void.

12-17

The fourfold living zoas hold Albion suspended between two dimensions. Their "immortal Wings labourd against/Cliff after cliff & over Valleys of despair & death", and over a "boundless ocean bottomless/Of grey obscurity". The Divine circularity of infinitely realised motion is debased into "clouds & rocks & whirling waters/And Albion's Sons ascending & descending in the horrid Void".

But as the Will must not be bended but in the day of Divine
Power: silent calm & motionless, in the mid-air sublime.
The Family Divine hover around the darkend Albion.

18-20

There seems to be stasis: the energies of infinite and finite are opposed in a mutually antithetical counter-rotation about the gate of Los. This cannot be sustained without the fabric of creation itself torn apart and it was the fear of this that earlier brought the zoas to Albion's death couch. They feared "the loud-rending bars of the Creation" were "ready to burst", and the "wide world might fly from its hinges"; thus, "Man" may be "for ever possessed by monsters of the deeps/And Man himself become a fiend" (2: 40; 36-40).

That this be seen as impossible is made apparent to Eden: "the Will must not be bended but in the day of Divine/Power". Thus, reconciling all motions, "silent calm & motionless, in the mid-air sublime/The Family Divine hover around the darkend Albion". Albion's contingency shows that created being is not able to create or uncreate. It is free and so must always be free to seek autonomy. To Blake, desire for autonomy exhausts itself when being is revealed as being-unto-death. Then, as I will show, Albion will realise God is always within and without. Albion has yet to realise his contingency.

Such is the nature of the Ulro: that whatever enters;
Becomes Sexual, & is Created, and Vegetated, and Born.
From Hyde Park spread their vegetating roots beneath Albion
In dreadful pain the Spectrous Uncircumcised Vegetation,
Forming a Sexual Machine; an Aged Virgin Form.
In Erins Land toward the north, joint after joint & burning
In love & jealousy immingled & calling it Religion
And feeling the damps of death they with one accord delegated Los
Conjuring him by the Highest that he should Watch over them
Till Jesus shall appear: & they gave their power to Los
Naming him the Spirit of Prophecy. calling him Elijah

21-31

The world of finite procreation is sexually divided: "Such is the nature of the Ulro: that whatever enters: /Becomes Sexual, & is Created, and Vegetated, and Born". The living zoas must exude into the finite, such is the power of negation. The finite begins to form in sexual expression: "In dreadful pain the Spectrous Uncircumcised Vegetation/Forming a Sexual Machine: an Aged Virgin Form/In Erins land toward the north". The spreading cover of vegetative growth takes on human forms "joint after joint & burning/In love & jealousy immingled & calling it Religion". Life emerges out of opaqueness, darkness and airless rock. Appropriately it is the ‘north' or the nadir, the region of Los' prophetic influence that engenders growth.

The energies of Eden recognise Los as authentic prophet of God, and "feeling the damps of death they with one accord delegated Los" their power, authority and freedom, "conjuring him by the Highest that he should Watch over them/Till Jesus shall appear". In faith the energies "gave their power to Los/Naming him the spirit of Prophecy, calling him Elijah". Then they allow themselves to enter Albion in the form of continued consciousness of the city. They know they and he will be re-awakened, for their have the prophecy of Los as demonstration by faith.

Strucken with Albions disease they become what they behold;
They assimilate with Albion in pity & compassion:
Their Emanations return not: their Spectres rage in the Deep.
The Slumbers of Death came over them around the Couch of Death
Before the Gate of Los & in the depths of Non Entity
Among the Furnaces of Los; among the Oaks of Albion.

32-37

In accord with Blake's understanding of perception, the energies "become what they beheld; /They assimilate with Albion in pity & compassion". They do behold prophetic truth; they are moved by mercy and have acted in unity. Though their "Emanations return not" and their "Spectres rage in the deep", their divisions will be reconciled. Though the "Slumbers of Death came over them" in Eden "around the "Couch of Death " of Albion, they will be raised. Los will "watch". His prophetic energies are reshaped into an axis that reaches from "the Gate of Los" to "the depths of Non-Entity/Among the Furnaces of Los: among the Oaks of Albion". This axis thus stretches from the circumference, the gate in the infinite, to the furnaces in the centre, where it encounters infinity again.

Man is adjoind to Man by his Emanative portion:
Who is Jerusalem in every individual Man: and her
Shadow is Vala. builded by the Reasoning power in Man
O search & see: turn your eyes inward: open O thou World
Of Love & Harmony in Man: expand thy ever lovely Gates,

38-42

The structure of finitude is clear. Blake ensures the reader knows that the dislocation experienced is within a context unseen: "Man is adjoind to Man by his Emanative portion/Who is Jerusalem in every individual Man."

The emanation interlaces and interfuses all masculine potencies. Jerusalem is the substance and the shadow of Jerusalem is the finite potency of Vala. Vala is the materialised feminine formative reciprocal for masculine energies that reason from the finite "Reasoning power of Man". Hence, Blake's appeal "O search & see: turn your eyes inward: open O thou world/O love & harmony in Man: expand thy ever lovely gates".

They wept into the deeps a little space at length was heard
The voice of Bath, faint as the voice of the Dead in the House of
                                                              Death

43-44

Finally, emergent in Albion's disordered inner world, the voice of Bath is heard "faint as the voice of the Dead in the House of Death", or, in Albion's house and world of death.