Friday, September 23, 2011

The Screwtape Letters

"The Screwtape Letters" by C.S. Lewis was my book club book for September 2011.  I volunteered to host for the month.  Much of the letters' content was over my head while other parts genuinely resonated truth to me.  The methodology and principles are frighteningly applicable to the modern 21st century.  I wrote a few of my favorite quotes from book.  All I have are page numbers for references, which I know will vary by edition of the book.  I'll try to be more careful with my annotations in the future, if I make any.


"We want cattle who can finally become food; He wants servants who can finally become sons.  We want to suck in, He wants to give out.  We are empty and would be filled; He is full and flows over.  Our war aim is a world in which Our Fatehr Below has drawn all other beings ito himself:  The Enemy wants a worldfull of beings united to Him but still distinct" (37).

"You will find anything or nothing is sufficient to attract his wandering attention.  You no longer need a good book, which he really likes, to keep him from his prayers or him work or his sleep; a column of advertisements in yesterday's paper will do.  You can make him waste his time not only in conversation he enjoys with people whom he likes, but in conversations with those he cares nothing about on subjects that bore him.  You can make him do othing at all for long periods.  You can keep him up late at night, not roistering, but staring at a dead fire in a cold room.  All teh healthy and out-going activities which he want him to avoid can be inhibited and nothing given in return, so that at least he may say, as one of my own patients said on his arrival down here, "I now see that I spent most of my life in doing neither what I ought nor waht I liked" (59).

"When He talks of their losing their selves, He only means abandoning the clamour of self-will; once they have done that, He really gives them back all their personaility, and boasts (I am afraid, sincerely) that when they are wholly His they will be more themselves than ever" (65).

"The great thing is to make him value an opinion for some quality other than truth, thus introducing an element of dishonesty and make believe into the heart of whatever threatens to become a virture" (70).

"The Present is the point at which time touches eternity" (75).

"We want a whole race perpetually in persuit of the rainbow's end, never honest, nor kind, nor happy now" (78).

"In the humans the Enemy has gratuitously associated affection between the parties with sexual desire.  He has also made the offspring dependetn on the parens and given the parents an impulse to support it--thus producing the Family, which is like the organism, only worse; for the members are more distinct, yet also united in a more conscious and responsible way.  The whole thing, in fact, turns out to be simply one more device for dragging in Love" (95).

"Prosperity knits a man to the World.  He feels he is finding his place in it, 'while really it is finding its place in him'" (155).

No comments:

Post a Comment