Thu, 30 December 2010
I was yanked by the hair by this passage from The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis. It’s hard to read without the uneasy feeling that Lewis looked down his nose at the working classes and the uneducated, but grappling with that feeling is part of the joy of reading and marveling at it. Above all he is calling for us to become individuals, just as Sardello does, and to allow the same in others.
I think this has great implications for our politics as well as for our spirituality. It makes me sad that so much of what Lewis suggested could happen is happening today, when, as Yeats wrote, the best lack all conviction and the worst are full of passionate intensity. At the same time, to see the situation summed up so well by such a masterful devil as Screwtape is a treat. I’ve abridged this while reading, so please find the book and read “Screwtape Proposes a Toast” through for yourself.