Wednesday, January 31, 2007

(Re-)Reading C.S. Lewis

I started (re-)reading C.S. Lewis today. Or rather, since I couldn't find a copy of Mere Christianity, I started with what the local library had: The Screwtape Letters. It's been at least 20 years since I last read anything of his, but when I was in The Enemy's Camp, to borrow Screwtape's terminology, I had read everything that had been published by Lewis: The Narnia Chronicles, Four Loves, his sci-fi trilogy, various novels, The Great Divorce, collections of essays, and so on. For most of those twenty years, I didn't think about Lewis at all. Suffice it to say, that I had mercifully forgotten a great deal.

After reading the first two or three letters, I'm inclined to say that Lewis' presentation of Protestant Christianity is persuasive, if you don't think about it too much, or if you're not used to thinking about these kinds of things. I'm rereading him because he did play a role in my spending two years or so as an evangelical Christian. At the time, I thought he had persuaded me of the truth and value of being a Christian. Later, I realized that the Infection was something that given my upbringing I was bound to contract sooner rather than later. It had to be gotten out of my system.

I wanted to reread Lewis to provide a reality check for my reflections and characterizations of Christianity.

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