Art of Persistence

"The art of love ... is largely the art of persistence." -Albert Ellis

Monday, January 19, 2009

Puddleglum on Wish Fulfillment

"Suppose we have only dreamed, or made up, all those things - trees and grass and sun and moon and stars and Aslan himself. Suppose we have. Then all I can say is that, in that case, the made-up things seem a good deal more important than the real ones. Suppose this black pit of a kingdom of yours is the only world. Well, it strikes me as a pretty poor one. And that's a funny thing, when you come to think of it. We're just babies making up a game, if you're right. But four babies playing a game can make a play-world which licks your real world hollow. That's why I'm going to stand by the play-world. I'm on Aslan's side even if there isn't any Aslan to lead it. I'm going to live as like a Narnian as I can even if there isn't any Narnia."

-from The Silver Chair, by C.S. Lewis

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Thursday, January 01, 2009

Take Care When Reading the Chronicles of Narnia

You can get into a lot of trouble by thinking too much about these books. It just struck me that 2 Kings and 2 Queens ruling in Narnia simultaneously fits more with an Orthodox understanding of Church Hierarchy than a Roman understanding. Then it hit me that the High King's name is Peter. Is this Roman? Then the thought came to me that Aslan said, "Once a King or Queen in Narnia, alway a King or Queen in Narnia." Does this mean that Lewis was a Calvinist?

The fact is that Lewis did not write these books as allegories, though they do have some allegorical elements. If you want to know what Lewis thought of the Roman or Presbyterian churches, you'll have to get that from his non-fiction writings. For his final thoughts, you'll have to visit him in Narnia in the eschaton.

These are children's books. It seems that the lessons he wanted to teach are very clear (and not always about religion). If you're itching to get into an allegory, try his Pilgrim's Regress.