Friday, February 22, 2013

Friday Feature: William Blake

Songs of Innocence by William Blake

To see a world in a grain of sand,
and a Heaven in a wild flower,
hold infinity in the palm of your hand
and eternity in an hour.
-William Blake, Songs of Innocence

As with so many artists William Blake received little recognition in his own lifetime.  Perhaps that is due to the truism stated by Dr. Wayne Dyer that "Society has a tendency to honor its living conformists and its dead non-conformists." And Blake would have been a radical thinker even for our century. Some of his most intriguing ideas for me are his radical concepts on marriage and the roles of women. I agree with Blake that many marriages are little more than "legal prostitution" and that such agreements should be based on "sacred natural love" as opposed to duty.

And then there is the beauty of his mystical visions on the nature of spirituality...

He who desires but acts not breeds pestilence.

Everything that lives is holy, life delights in life.

I am in you and you in me.

If the doors of perception were cleansed everything would appear to man as it is, infinite.


  1. I like the 3rd picture about Adam and Eve and consider using it as the front page of a book I wrote about marriage and sexuality. However, is it copy-righted and if so, where can I get permission to use it?
    Sorry to trouble you and many thanks in advance
    Rev. Anthony Hutjes

    1. Hi Anthony- William Blake lived from 1757-1827 so any of his work should be in the public domain. Our current U.S. copyright law (created in 1998) states that any work remains copyrighted 70 years past the artist's life or 120 years if the work is owned by a corporation (like Disney.) I am not a copyright lawyer but as far as my knowledge goes you should be free to use it for your book. Good luck!


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