with Susanne Sklar
begins on July 11th (6, one-hour, sessions over 3 weeks)
Gregory Bateson, a pioneer in cybernetics and intersubjective thought, knew that if “you arrogate all mind to yourself . . . and you have an advanced technology your likelihood of survival will be that of a snowball in hell.” He aspired to be able to think like William Blake. Blake’s prophetic poetry contains a global spiritual, economic, and ecological vision that’s needed now more than ever.
Blake envisioned a world in which forgiveness and empathy are social structuring principles, where nature and culture interrelate, and divinity is seen in every person and creature, especially in the differences. His feminine-divine heroine, Jerusalem, orchestrates a multinational fair trade network, in which an ethic of cooperation can be more contagious than greed. Humanity needs such vision.
This six session Zoom course will give you a sampling of William Blake’s wisdom and beauty. You’ll be given links to various versions of his gorgeous illuminated books; and in every session you’ll hear the poetry that won’t only be explicated – it will also be discussed. Each of you may see how his spiritual and material wisdom can contribute to the new world we must create. Blake’s illuminated poetry is equipment for living.
1. Brief Introduction – Blake’s life and vision: human divinity is central.
Divine Image, The Lamb, The Tyger.
2. We are to live in and with God, to care for the “Little Ones”
Read: On Another’s Sorrow, The Chimney Sweeper, The Little Vagabond
3. Conflict is inevitable, but it can be creative
Read: The Clod & the Pebble, Marriage of Heaven & Hell (excerpts)
4. The Erotic is Holy
Read: The Chapel of Love, Visions of the Daughters of Albion
5. Ecology is Human-Divine
Read: Auguries of Innocence
6. Economics is Qualitative, it’s Art.
Read: Two excerpts from Jerusalem: the Emanation of the Giant Albion.
How can Blake’s vision help change the world?