C. S. Lewis, Brendan the Navigator, and Evelyn Underhill

In March I was one of several presenters at a symposium on C. S. Lewis and Joy Davidman sponsored by Brenau University and Grace Episcopal Church in Gainesville, GA. The theme of the symposium was "Love Letters to Jack, Love Letters to God." Here is the transcript of my talk, in which I weave together my love for C. S. Lewis — especially the Narnia stories — with two influences on him: Evelyn Underhill and St. Brendan the Navigator.Did "The Problem of Pets" Inspire Aslan?Our theme this we … [Read more...]

“They’ll Know We Are Christians By Our Love” — And These Gifts Make It Possible

One of C.S. Lewis's last, and best, books was called The Four Loves. Drawing from four different Greek words for love, the book celebrates affection, friendship, eros, and charity and considers the moral, ethical, and spiritual dynamics at play in each form of love.As worthy as Lewis's writing might be, I think Jesus offers his own take on "four loves" that considers not the dynamic of love so much as the object of our love. Here are two Biblical passages that illustrate Jesus's four lo … [Read more...]

“Just a touch of wildness” — or, How Evelyn Underhill schooled C. S. Lewis on the ways of God

One of my favorite contemplative authors from the early twentieth century — Evelyn Underhill — corresponded with another favorite author, C. S. Lewis.Underhill (1875-1941) was the leading English author on Christian mysticism in her day. Lewis (1898-1963) became renowned especially for his imaginative spiritual fiction.Several of her letters to him are preserved in The Letters of Evelyn Underhill, published shortly after her death in 1941. We learn from the letters that Lewis sent her … [Read more...]