Tag: Lewis

“Modern Men” & How They Think

C. S. Lewis wrote the essay “Modern Man and His Categories of Thought” in 1946. Now, some people, noting the date of that essay, will dismiss it immediately. After all, they might ask, “How can an essay from 1946 that talks about modern man have anything worthwhile to say to us in 2020?” That question, of course, rests on one’s definition of modern. As a historian, I have no problem seeing 1946 as modern because I compare that date with… Read more »

Perspective on the “Virus War” & Eternity

Along with probably all, or nearly all, of my professorial colleagues in the US and in many other countries, I am homebound now, completing my courses remotely. Is this something that is important to do in light of the current global pandemic? Shouldn’t we perhaps just drop all this “learning stuff” and devote our whole selves to the “virus war”? C. S. Lewis dealt with this same issue as WWII ramped up. Should the university continue teaching during the crisis?… Read more »

The Lord’s Continuing-Education Program

The Lord always has a continuing-education program for me. There are so many books I’ve never read (well, who can say otherwise?) that I need to delve into not only for head knowledge but for spiritual growth also. I seek to read resources that will do both. Here’s an update on what He is doing with me currently. I’ve now completed two-thirds of Dante’s The Divine Comedy. I’ve chosen the Dorothy Sayers translation because of my intense interest in her… Read more »

Mere Survival Is Not the Goal

“Let us suppose,” ventured C. S. Lewis, “that nothing ever has existed or ever will exist except this meaningless play of atoms in space and time: that by a series of hundredth chances it has (regrettably) produced things like ourselves.” What “things” does he mean? “Conscious beings,” he continues, “who now know that their own consciousness is an accidental result of the whole meaningless process and is therefore itself meaningless, though to us (alas!) it feels significant.” That disturbing supposal… Read more »

Lewis: “We Have Been Waked from a Pretty Dream”

When the atomic age dawned in 1945, the utter devastation of such a bomb awed the world, and many were driven to a fear that the entire world might be destroyed. C. S. Lewis lived through that initial shock but didn’t allow the fear to grip him. In an essay written in 1948, “On Living in an Atomic Age,” he brought his common-sense Christian mind to the topic. How should one live in an atomic age, he asks? “I am… Read more »

Narnia for Adults (and Other Maturing People)

Nearly every Wednesday evening since last September, I’ve been teaching a class at my church on The Chronicles of Narnia. Using the traditional order, I’ve completed The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, Prince Caspian, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, and The Silver Chair. Last Wednesday, we began The Horse and His Boy. When I started this spiritual journey (and that seems an appropriate description for it), I wondered if adults truly would see the depth C. S. Lewis… Read more »

The Iron-bound Prison of the Self

I’m a Protestant. I don’t believe in Purgatory. Yet I want to read Dante, so what can I do? Well, first, one can read Dante’s second volume of The Divine Comedy as a treatise that applies to this life also—God purges sin from our lives and we must respond properly. The second thing that helps me in this quest is that Dorothy Sayers, a writer I love, undertook to make a fresh translation of Dante back in the 1940s-1950s. It… Read more »