Like Blake’s four zoas, the three gods of Gibran’s mythology represent prevailing tendencies in the human soul, in a state of internal turmoil and conflict. After the Fall, the soul, enslaved by its terrestrial nature, is still imprisoned in an ego that is yet to travel the road towards becoming a god, according to Gibran’s philiosophy The condition that Blakes defines as “Selfhood”, to describe the act by which the Ego places itself above everything, thus drawing away from divine vision, is the state of the first Earth gods, firstly because it glorifiies his negative Ego and, secondly, because it places his egotistical ambition above any other consideration In Blakian mythology, which is much more complex in character, the god of Reason, a demiurge that is juxtaposed to imagination, and hence to vision, is defeated and thus the Fall is turned into an Apocalypse, and finally into a rebirth. To abstract reason based on measured control and moral laws, Blake juxtaposes a visionary mythology, founded on imagination and full of inexhaustible elements, since man himself and his desire are infinite, as Blake argues in There Is No Natural Religion: “The desire of Man being Infinite, the possession is Infinite and himself Infinite.”
If in Blake’s mythology it is Urizen or Reason that is defeated with the triumph of Los, the incarnation of the spirit of prophecy, in Earth Gods, both the instincts of ambition and those of annihilation are transcended by love, which, however, does not suppress them. Thus, the third god becomes also the god of mediation. In this manner, conflicts, in Gibran’s work, are always reconciled by resorting to a positive dialectic, which in its attempt at synthesis does not suppress any of the elements, but rather transcends them. Just as in Blake reconciliation ends up including all the principles, because if Reason belongs to the dimension of the Fall and to the horizon of limits, on the other hand, it is propelled by its vocation to eternity and emancipation, While perceived as inhabiting the realm of temporality, Reason has in itself a tendency towards infinity. Like Blake’s hero, the third god reverses the principle of illusion by turning it into the principle of love, which is nothing else but the principle of infinity. It is figure of the Redeemer, source of creation and transformation, which in many ways calls to mind the lamb of Songs of Innocence, a symbol of mildness and deliverance. In fact Blake’s three gods represent principles that coexist in the human spirit, just as the lamb in Songs of Innocence and its equivalent, the tiger, in Songs of Experience are nothing more than opposite states in the human spirit. Their interdependence is not at denied, as it represents unity and transcendence. Therefore, one can say that both for Blake and Gibran the vision of infinity does not rely on the annihilation of one pole by the other, but rather rests in the eternity of their contradiction. Thus, both poets’ mythology seems to argue that everything is infinite because it contains both its own identity and its own alterity.
As in Blake, Gibran’s inspiration has also transcended and repudiated his Platonic idealism of the early years, confining itself in a rather gnostic type of vision. Just like Plato, both Blake and Gibran reject earthly reality, but while Plato condemns the body as an absolute obstacle to the condition of infinity and thus as a prison for the soul, thus destined to annihilation, for Blake resurrection grants the body its divine form, while for Gibran, thank to the process of divinization of the Ego, the body can reacquire its original dignity and thus overcome its condition of limit.
L’homme n’est pas une entité statique mais il est dynamiquement stratifié. Du pygmy-self au god-self il y a tout un travail à faire, toute une libération à vivre, ce que nous appelons: divinization. Le point de départ de l’homme étant le moi-pygmée, il ‘atteindra’ son moi-divin, toujours horizon, grȃce à deux efforts. L’un, personnel et collectif, l’autre cosmique.
A parallel can be drawn to Blake’s book Milton, another prophetic text more explicitly containing Blake myth of the Fall, revolution and resurrection. A personalize vision of Fall and Redemption, the book narrates a journey toward spiritual salvation, in which its protagonist, John Milton, accepts to return to the world in order to solve the contradiction between the two notions of eternity and mortality
And Milton said: “I go to Eternal Death! The Nations still
Follow after detestable Gods of Priam, in pomp
Of warlike selfhood contradicting and blaspheming.
When will Resurrection come to deliver the sleeping body
From corruptibility? (…)
I will go down to self annihilation and eternal death,
Lest the Last Judgement come and find me unannihilate.
In his new earthly presence, Milton must confront binary divisions in the world, the disparities between positive and negative, the opposite poles of Good and Evil. The originality of his enterprise consists in the fact that there is no final annihilation , i.e., eternal death, but is rather a necessary transition to overcome the opposite poles of the contradiction. Thus the Fall flows into an Apocalypse and the order is restored after the Revolution. By reincarnating as a man, Milton inhabits a body destined to undergo death, to be born again into a new dimension, an immortal on, and freely accepts the ordeal of annihilation in order to redeem himself. Milton then embodies Blake’s thesis of the function of poetic genius, the element that allows for the final encounter between two extreme poles, death and life, the Fall and Salvation. “That the Poetic Genius is the true Man”, declares Blake in All Religious Are One., while in Milton he defines “the eternal all-protecting Divine Humanity.”
Evidently Milton is Blake himself, and for Gibran the figure of poetic genius coincides with his figure of the poet-prpphet, the archetype of perfect humanity, which by constantly divinizing himself guides the others on the way to emancipation. However, if Blake’s hero must annihilate himself in order to be born again as eternal, Gibran’s hero has no need for such test, because man, according to Gibran, becomes divine through an individual process of purification. In Gibran’s universe of reconciliation there is no longer a separation between the human Ego and the divine one, as there is no dichotomy between time and space, between today and tomorrow. In fact, in The Prophet, he says
Like a procession you walk together towards your god-self.
And in The Madman, in a parable titled God, Gibran expresses with these words his theory of divinization of the Ego:
My God, my aim and my fulfilment; I am thy yesterday and thou art my tomorrow. I am thy root in the earth and thou art my flower in the sky, and together we grow before the face of the sun.
Once the neoplatonic doctrine of time as a limit to the cycle of becoming is repudiated, time is able to free itself of its condition and assume a prophetic role in embracing the notion of infinity. In fact in the section devoted to time, upon being asked: “what of Time?”, Gibran’s Prophet responds with this teaching:
you would measure time the measureless and the immeasurable. (…) yet the timeless in you is aware of life’s timelessness, and know that yesterday is but today’s memory and tomorrow is today’s dream .
According to this logic, today has in store a recollection of the past, but is also looking towards tomorrow as it prophetises the future with the exhortation: “and let to-day embrace the past with remembrance and the future with longing.” For Blake, time overturns the process of degradation set in motion by the Fall, thus becoming a cathartic element. Blake considers this the result of divine mercy, because as time frees itself it also frees the soul from any physical confinement taking it back to its eternal status which is not subjected to any temporal or spatial law. In fact, in Milton time become s the sole vehicle capable of guaranteeing rebirth, as he writes, “Time is the mercy of Eternity; without Time’s swiftness, which is the swiftest of all things, all were eternal torment.”
Thus, the myth of origin assumes in Blake the form of a primordial split that occured after the Fall and the presumption of recovering the lost unity and a final reconciliation with divine form. as a matter of fact, in The Divine Image all that is human ends up assuming a divine form: “and all must love the human form,” because “there God is dwelling too.” If in Neoplatonic tradition, opposite states of being such as spirit and matter, good and evil, soul and body cannot at all be reconciled, both for Gibran and for Blake instead those states, precisely on account of their opposition, have mutual functions and partake of the same divine principle. Such dialectic of opposites is the thesis expounded in The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, in which light and darkness, earth and heaven, the high and the low are reconciled and find their primeval lost unity. Following his predecessor’s steps, Kahlil Gibran in The Prophet declares: “life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one.” In fact in the various sections of this work, everything contains within its opposite, for example love at the same time “crowns” and “crucifies” you ”, l happiness and pain are inseparable and if for Almustafa, the protagonist of The Prophet, “your joy is your sorrow unmasked”, the proverbs of Blake’s hell had already remarked that “joys laugh not! Sorrows weep not!” Passion and reason too, in spite of their apparent difference, are dialectically complementary: in fact according to Gibran “reason, ruling alone, is a force confining; and passion, unattended, is a flame that burns to its own destruction”, just like Blake who includes “Reason and Energy” in the dialectics of opposites, necessary for progress:
Without Contraries is no progression. Attraction and Repulsion, Reason and Energy, Love and hate, are necessary to Human existence.
From these contraries spring what the religious call Good and Evil. Good is the passive that obeys Reason. Evil is the active springing from Energy.
All the elements then are tightly connected one to the other in a kind of unity that transcends what appears to be difference, in so far as they derive from the same source and tend to constantly flow into it. All values can be turned upside down,a nd every principle is made possible by its opposite. In The Garden of the Prophet, Gibran states “the saint and the sinner are twin brothers”, supporting the ideas he had just expounded according to which good and evil are two coexisting principles and only imagination or vision can conceive the positive aspect of opposition, within a unified project..
From this acceptance of contradiction as the ultimate reality, a common consequence arises in the thought of both poets, i.e., the goodness and sacredness of all things. Every thing is sacred when it is itself, when it reveals itself for what it truly is, therefore, in the moment that it is left to its dialectical process, without repressing any act . For Blake: “each thing is its own cause and its own effect”, and this goodness of acts, when they are in opposition, is even present in the nature of man: “man is twofold being, one part capable of evil and the other capable of good.” The echo of this statement written in From Annotations to Lavater’s Aphorisms on Man is present also in some Gibran’s aphorisms, for example in his ideas about the coexistence of good and evil, expressed by the protagonist of The Prophet, who says: “what is evil but good tortured by its own hunger and thirst.” This theory which leads to the idea of the coexistence of opposites in god, assumes even more profound implications in the thought of the two visionaries. If for Blake“God is in the lowest effects as well as in the highest causes”, for Gibran “we are the breath and the fragrance of God. We are in God, in leaf, in flower, and oftentimes in fruit.” man becomes part of the whole, an organ that partakes of infinity.
The obvious affinities and analogies with Blake’s art and Gibran’s own overt appreciation for Blake induced Mary Haskell to express the following very bold theory, in a discussion on reincarnation:
“Blake died in 1827, and Rossetti was born in 1828; Rossetti died in 1882 and Gibran was born in 1883”
Sustained by his extraordinary visionary abilities that makes him a pioneer in Arab modernity, with his poetry, painting and mythology, Kahlil Gibran attempted to go beyond the rational limits of what is visible and push reality beyond the boundaries of logic and human reason in order to give it back its original innocence, in constant game of associations, reversals and messages to be decoded.  The originality of Gibran’s art was not immediately understood and accepted, and as in the case of his teacher, it raised strong reactions which often resulted in accusations of madness and heresy. In fact, for these very reasons, Gibran, the immigrant poet, gave up on his old dream to buy a plot of land in his birth village and to spend the last years of his life in his beloved Lebanon, as he confessed to his friend and comrade Mikhail Naimy: “There is danger, however, that the monks, once they discover who the prospective buyer is, would refuse to sell. For I, as you know, am an atheist in their eyes.” By working from the USA, Gibran, the bearer of the prophetic word, contributed to the creation of a new current in the history of Arab literature, opening the path to freedom of style and thought and to a kind of Romanticism unknown before in that tradition. Despite the fact that he experimented with different artistic genre, that he adopted two languages and pursued two different forms of figurative art, Gibran was always painfully aware of the incapacity of language to express his vision. That “winged word” that he never pronounced and of which he often spoke with his close friends is his poetry that sought to experiment with language itself, to empty it, to adapt it or to revolutionize it. Finally, by way of concluding, let me report the very words that Almustafa uses at the end of The Prophet to take his leave. He is aware he has not said the whole truth and thus promises he will return. That situation reflects the situation experienced by the author who is perhaps expressing the hope to have other lives in which he can complete his message, perhaps an impossible project for one who sees his message as the voice of infinity:
forget not that I shall come back to you.
A little while, and my longing shall gather dust and foam for another body.
A little while, a moment of rest upon the wind, and another woman shall bear me.
 Virginia Hilu, Beloved Prophet, The love letters of Kahlil Gibran and Mary Haskell, New York, Knopf, 1972, p.260.
 Adab al-Mahjar (lett. letteratura dell’esilio o dell’immigrazione) è un movimento letterario nato in America, tra il diciannovesimo e il ventesimo secolo, in seguito ad un’ondata di emigrazione di arabi provenienti dalla Siria e dal Libano.
 Jean-Pierre Dahdah, Gibran l’homme et l’oeuvre in Kahlil Gibran: Poète de la Sagesse, Question de Albin Michel : revue dirigée par Marc de Smedt, Paris, 1990, p.14.
 Kahlil Gibran, A Self-portait, translated and edited by Anthony R. Ferris, London, Heinemann, 1974, p.90.
 Jean Gibran and Kahlil Gibran, Kahlil Gibran, His Life and World, Interlink Books, New York, 1998, p.183.
 Mikhail Naimy, Kahlil Gibran: a Biography, with a pref. by Martin L. Wolf, London, Quartet Books, 1988, pp.87-88.
 Mary Elizabeth Haskell, direttrice di una scuola per ragazze a Boston e con la quale Gibran ha avuto un rapporto di amicizia e di amore fino alla fine della sua vita, è stata una figura molto importante e determinante per la sua formazione linguistica in inglese, per lo sviluppo del suo pensiero e per la sua introduzione in alcuni ambienti intellettuali e culturali a Boston. La figura femminile è stata sempre decisiva per la carriera letteraria di Gibran, a cominciare da quella della madre, Kamila Rahme, donna coraggiosa e sensibile che da sola, dopo un rapporto conflittuale con il marito, ha aperto a Gibran e ai suoi fratelli le porte dell’immigrazione verso l’America.
 Virginia Hilu, Beloved Prophet, cit., p.100.
 Sergio Givone, William Blake, arte e religione, Milano, Mursia, 1978, pp.18-19.
 Ibidem, p.106.
 William Blake, Vala Or The Four Zoas in William Blake, Opere, a cura di Roberto Sanesi, Ugo Guanda Editore, Parma, seconda edizione 1991, p.464.
 Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet, with an introduction by Robin Waterfield, Penguin Classics, London, 2002, p.47.
 Kahlil Gibran, The Earth Gods, Alfred-Knopf, New York, 1966, p.3.
 Ibidem, pp.5-6.
 Ibidem, p.15.
 Ibidem, pp.6-8.
 Ibidem, p.10.
 Sergio Givone, William Blake, arte e religione, cit., p.108.
 William Blake, There is No Natural Religion in William Blake, Opere, a cura di Roberto Sanesi, cit., p.66.
 Joseph Al-Yammouni, La divinisation de l’homme in Kahlil Gibran: Poète de la Sagesse, Question de Albin Michel, cit., p.105.
 William Blake, Milton in William Blake, Opere, a cura di Roberto Sanesi, cit., p.564.
 William Blake, All Relgious Are One in ibidem, p.70.
 William Blake, Milton in ibidem, p.562.
 Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet, cit., p.47.
 Kahlil Gibran, The Madman, His Parables and Poems, Dover Publications, Inc. Mineola, New York, 2002, p.10.
 Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet, cit., p.70.
 Ibidem, p.71.
 William Blake, Milton in William Blake, Opere a cura di R. Sanesi, cit., p.608.
 William Blake, Songs Of Innocence in ibidem, p.90.
 Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet, cit., p.89.
 Ibidem, p.13.
 Ibidem, p.35.
 William Blake, The Marriage of Heaven And Hell in William Blake, Opere, cit., p.178.
 Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet, cit., pp.56-57.
 William Blake, The Marriage of Heaven And Hell in William Blake, Opere, cit., p.170.
 Kahlil Gibran, The Garden of The Prophet, cit., p.47.
 Sergio Givone, William Blake, arte e religione, cit., p.67.
 William Blake, From Annotations to Lavater’s Aphorisms on man, in William Blake, Opere, cit., p.60.
 Ibidem, p.54.
 Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet, cit., p.72.
 William Blake, From Annotations to Lavater’s Aphorisms on man, in William Blake, Opere, cit., p.58.
 Kahlil Gibran, The Garden of The Prophet, cit., p.41.
 Jean Gibran and Kahlil Gibran, Kahlil Gibran, His Life and World, cit., p.204.
 Adonis, At-Thabit wa al-Mutahawwil, Dar al-Fikr, Beirut, 1973, p.161.
 Mikhail Naimy, Kahlil Gibran: a Biography, cit., p.183.
 Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet, cit., p.107.
For information about Sana Darghmouni and to read the first part of the essay, go to http://www.thedreamingmachine.com/kahlil-gibran-and-blakes-reconciliation-of-opposites-part-i-sana-darghmouni/