Monday, November 22, 2010

JFK, Aldous Huxley and CS Lewis

Today it's 47 years since these three men died. Most people will remember the day for JFK who I probably know least about - apart from what's speculated about his death.
Huxley painted a vision of a Brave New World, of what Neil Postman described as "amusing ourselves to death" (think #xfactor...) while Lewis invited us to step inside the sunbeam and look along it to see the reality by which we see everything. Each life has a legacy, though Lewis more than the others was able to offer substantial hope in the person of Jesus.


  1. I've been listening to Amusing Ourselves to Death, having recently re-read Brave New World, 1984 and the Screwtape Letters. Orwell and Huxley were much better at exposing the problems than finding solutions (read Huxley's later foreword to hope there).

    Anyway, result is, there's a lot more Lewis in my Christmas wish list than Huxley or Orwell. Lewis was strangely (and majorly) wrong on one or two doctrinal issues but what he saw, he saw more clearly than most of us.

  2. It's refreshing to engage with someone who is broadly on your team but to know they're off beam in places, they might just have some great insights to expose my blind spots.

  3. presumably you know of Peter Kreeft's fascinating Between Heaven & Hell in which he imagines a dialogue between Lewis, Kennedy & Huxley.

  4. Dave,

    "Lewis invited us to step inside the sunbeam and look along it to see the reality by which we see everything"

    This is definitely you reading your apologetic approach into Lewis.

    Lewis was much broader than that see here>. He wasn't simply presuppositionalist, and much of his most important work was done "outside of the story" arguing for the story.

  5. He was broader but its harsh to say he wasn't inviting us into the worlds he painted (by contrast to the bleak visions of Huxley, Orwell etc). I agree he did the outside work too.

    I enjoyed your appeal that we see the sun, and that by the sun we see everything - I'm not sure anyone is disputing that, and Lewis' genius is pushing us further than any of us might otherwise go.

    Still finding out what my "apologetics approach" is, and using various approaches I hope.