Monday, July 7, 2008

Mere Christianity

Last month while I was attending our Relief Society ward book club the woman sitting next to me leaned towards me and asked, "So what brings you here?"

What? Does she think I don't read? Did she say that because the last 2 months I did not get around to reading the book but attended anyway? Or maybe because when I was RS pres I did not attend at all. (our presidency meeting was the same night)

I really enjoy meeting with these women each month but it IS a book club, so I ought to read the book. I love to read, and read often, but I guess I have a tad problem with being told what to read. So I've decided to change things. This month's selection is Mere Christianity by CS Lewis. During last month's club meeting when the title was announced one of the women said, while she was looking at ME, I might add, "You might want to get started on this one right away."

I started on this book a few days ago, and finally after about 100 pages, I am hooked. At first I kept thinking as I was reading it, "So?" It is filled with all the logic I grew up on, nothing really new. From the chapter I read last night on Sexual Morality,
"Chastity is the most unpopular of the Christian virtues."

Yep, that about sums up the world today. And this book was written in the 1940s! Many religions seem to just push that virtue aside, just ignore it I guess. Like it is not part of their Ten Commandments anymore.

Also in this same chapter on Sexual Morality he states, "For any happiness, even in this world, quite a lot of restraint is going to be necessary; so the claim made by every desire, when it is strong, to be healthy and reasonable, counts for nothing. "

Oh, and his chapter on Morality and Psychoanalysis is thought provoking.
For example:
"When a man is getting better he understands more and more clearly the evil that is still left in him. When a man is getting worse he understands his own badness less and less. A moderately bad man knows he is not very good: a thoroughly bad man thinks he is all right."

Could this be because at that point he has lost the spirit, and along with this, his conscience? Does this explain why really evil people can just continue to do evil, no matter how much it hurts those around them?

He goes on to say, "...This is common sense really. You understand sleep when you are awake, not while you are sleeping. You can see mistakes in arithmetic when your mind is working properly: while you are making them you cannot see them. You can understand the nature of drunkenness when you are sober, not when you are drunk. Good people know about both good and evil: bad people do not know about either."

Any thoughts?


tyler said...

Intriguing, truly. I need to pick up some C.S. Lewis summer reading and get cracking...along with all of the other things that take up my time.

Dennis said...

You've inspired me to read the book.

Ammy said...

I loved how he said that you understand sleep when you are awake, not alseep and uderstand drunkennes when sober and not when you are drunk. Good people know about both good and evil and bad people do not know about either. It is something to think about. I think that sometimes when we are doing so good we can fall, and we need to be very careful, because Satan is real and he is strong and will get us at our weekest moment. And at that point we know we are doing bad but we continue to do it anyways and we don't care. But that is why we have repentence and I think someone who has lost the spirit thinks that they are too far gone to even confess and repent, they think they have no hope. But the amazing thing about repentence is EVERYONE has hope and EVERYONE can repent! I want to read this book now! Sorry, I kinda got long winded.