Centuries have told us that life is a duality, and progression is a struggle. But the priests, the churches, the Christians (all of which are but HYPOCRITE written awry) have taught the soul that the regressive path is the path of right!
Life is the conquest of the old Adam in us, the conquest of the flesh, and of the devil; we are constantly struggling against the fatally easy sin of Sensuality.
This is the psychological lie of the dogmatic, inferior mind, the soft slimy illusion of the gaping- mouthed, ape-armed Christian. Blake called the voice which says "Energy, called Evil, is alone from the Body and that Reason called Good, is alone from the Soul" the voice of the Devil. He asserted the contrary to be true:
Energy is the only life and is from the Body, and Reason is the bound or outward Circumference of Energy.
WHAT IS THE TRUTH FOR THE ARTIST AND THE MADMAN?
He is faced with an all-consuming impulse of the mind AWAY from sensuality. He is faced with the awful realisation that the experiences of sex are completely without values like some empty vessel.
He sees that the epic struggle of the artistic life is to create and pour the permanent values of life into the perfect Chaldean vessel of sensual life. He finds himself face to face with the whole idea of a Christian society aiming slimily and viciously to prevent his realising the values of sensuality, which can only be won through sweat and the tears of despair. They must be won through horror, disgust and revulsion - through the drink - sodden mulatto Leanne Duval, through slave-trading in Africa, through the parsimony of the Mad Dean.
BUT A SOCIETY OF CHRISTIAN MORALS AND INHIBITIONS IS OUT TO DEFEAT HIM.
And his inner voice, the voice of his own WEAKNESS, is whispering like some mysterious waterfall, "the only permanent values are the values of the mind and the imagination."
By and large the artist can NOT fall a victim to 'the sins of the flesh'. His own experience of sex and the moral environment of this defeatist Christianism all urge him to renounce the flesh and the devil. If he does this then he is beaten an incomplete being and a creature of death.
WHAT MUST THE ARTIST AND THE MADMAN DO?
Firstly, he must be at one with the surrealists and revolutionaries in defeating a moral system and a moral society which expresses the victory of death, of the corruption of desire, of a masturbatory side-tracking of sexual life, so that its values cannot become real nor extend in the 'beauty of exuberance', beyond four suburban walls.
Blake and * shall be our prophets.
Then, through the message of his prophets, Milton, Donne, Blake and D.H. Lawrence, he must try, in spite of what he is and how devoid of values sensual experiences are to him, to win through to the liberty and beauty which must be in them.
That there is beauty to be found in 'the sins of the flesh' is the artist's act of faith. It is the force which leads the artist, perpetually and in all history, out of art into life.
The sexual act to him may seem fundamentally bestial or at least an unaesthetic business.
But his faith must be in the Bible of Blake, which says "the nakedness of woman is the work of God".
And the completeness is in the striving.
Let us strive to find the permanent values in our uncorrupted desires.
Let Blake be our Prophet!
But Peace is dear and cannot be bought with sleep, Any more than Birmingham can keep peace in steel: So as I lay between a dream and a sleep A tongue licked me, and I saw it was a sheep. "This green", it said, "this pleasant place Not yet is fit for the foot of Christ. How can your word or your sword sleep While the Thames is the sweat of the people."
Max Harris in A Comment, March 1941