Eyewitness account of an Outcasting

By Austin George Loomis (aloomis@whale.st.usm.edu)


[From William Blake's _The Marriage of Heaven and Hell_, the fifth and last Memorable Fancy. Punctuation and spelling as in the original.]

"Once I saw a Devil in a flame of fire. who arose before an Angel that sat on a cloud. and the Devil utterd these words.

"The worship of God is. Honouring his gifts in other men each according to his genius. and loving the greatest men best, those who envy or calumniate great men hate God, for there is no other God.

"The Angel hearing this became almost blue but mastering himself he grew yellow, & at last white pink & smiling, and then replied,

"Thou Idolater, is not God One? & is not he visible in Jesus Christ? and has not Jesus Christ given his sanction to the law of ten commandments and are not all other men fools, sinners, & nothings?

"The Devil answer'd; bray a fool in a morter with wheat. yet shall not his folly be beaten out of him: if Jesus Christ is the greatest man, you ought to love him in the greatest degree; now hear how he has given his sanction to the law of ten commandments: did he not mock at the sabbath, and so mock the sabbaths God? murder those who were murderd because of him? turn away the law from the woman taken in adultery? steal the labor of others to support him? bear false witness when he omitted making a defence before Pilate? covet when he pray'd for his disciples, and when he bid them shake off the dust of their feet against such as refused to lodge them? I tell you, no virtue can exist without breaking these ten commandments: Jesus was all virtue, and acted from impulse: not from rules.

"When he had so spoken: I beheld the Angel who stretched out his arms embracing the flame of fire & he was consumed and arose as Elijah.

"Note. This Angel, who is now become a Devil, is my particular friend: we often read the Bible together in its infernal or diabolical sense which the world shall have if they behave well.

"I have also: The Bible of Hell: which the world shall have whether they will or no."

Would anyone care to guess at the Choir of the ex-Angel? (The Band of the Devil is fairly fairly obvious, I suspect.)

Austin Geroge "Energy is Eternal Delight" Loomis, MiSTie #84029


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