Tuesday, November 29, 2016

C.S. Lewis: Aiming For Heaven

Some day you will be old enough to read fairy tales
                                                                           C.S. Lewis

I was introduced to the mind of C. S. (Clive Staples) Lewis through a gift. My best friend gave me a copy of The Four Loves as medication for some perplexing developments in a relationship with Marti, the girl of my dreams at the time. Eventually, Marti moved on with a professor of English at UNC Chapel Hill. I was left with a life-long literary relationship with Lewis and can only trust that Marti found equal satisfaction. C.S. Lewis, one of the last century's leading scholars, novelists, and Christian apologists, was born on this day in 1898. Many readers likely know his name and even more know some of his work - The Screwtape Letters, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Space Trilogy, Mere Christianity - but many may not be familiar with the depth and breadth of his literary accomplishments.

C.S. Lewis                                                        National Portrait Gallery, London

mmersed the the world of the university scholar where he was a close friend and colleague of J. R.R. Tolkein, Lewis enjoyed the community but also appreciated his privacy. For that reason, very few interviews and recordings of the man survive. One tape still with us is a fifteen-minute talk he gave over BBC Radio during a three part series of presentations between 1942 and 1944. The recording reveals the great warmth, friendliness, and integrity of the man.

The talks soon appeared as three separate books shortly after World War II. In 1952, the series was edited into a single book, Mere Christianity. It's now considered a masterpiece in Christian apologetics.

If you cannot enjoy a Lewis book you simply haven't read enough of his work. And there is enough to accommodate readers as his Wikipedia bibliography has almost eighty entries of poetry, fiction, and non-fiction. Choose...and enjoy.

Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in. Aim at earth and you get neither

                                                                                C.S. Lewis

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