CSL Daily

Posted by on Jul 23, 2016

FACT OF THE DAY: While two dozen poems by Lewis were published in Punch, “Revival or Decay?” is the only non-fiction work published there. – – – QUOTE OF THE DAY: “All sorts of things will make a man brave for the time being. Alcohol, ignorance of the danger, anger, self-respect, human loyalty, and love […]

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Special Feature

Posted by on Jul 19, 2016

I’m so excited to share a discovery I made that I’m not waiting to publish it later (like some more respected scholars would do). Although I’ll probably released a revised version soon in The Babylon Bee or The Onion. As the title suggests, I’ve come across a fragment of what appears to be a previously […]

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All About Jack

Posted by on Jul 23, 2016

The following podcast is a PREVIEW of my interview with Walter Hooper. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Listen to Walter Hooper PREVIEW Interview ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Listen to All About Jack on iTunes Visit EssentialCSLewis.com Visit ScrewtapeCompanion.com

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Confirming Quotations

Posted by on Jul 9, 2016

This is part of a series exploring quotations attributed to C.S. Lewis that are questionable for one reason or another. Presently a new article is posted the first Saturday of each month. There is an “at a glance” page HERE to quickly see what has been posted so far in this series. Also, if you haven’t […]

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Recent Posts

Confirming C.S. Lewis Quotations (INTRODUCTION)

This is the official introduction to an occasional series exploring quotations attributed to C.S. Lewis that are questionable for one reason or another. There is an “at a glance” page HERE to quickly see what has been posted so far in this series. 

INTRODUCTION

Why Care?

The first thought some people have when they hear a quotations attributed to C.S. Lewis may not be by him, or that the quote as it is presented is too isolated from its context, is WHO CARES? Obviously, I do and in addition to many other that I know do, I hope you will as well.

Categories of Questionable Quotations

To make sure you are clear with what these mean, the following explanations should help:

  1. Not – those falsely attributed to Lewis. Someone else wrote it. Lewis may or may not have written something similar.

  2. Almost – it is either a paraphrase or missing some words or incorrect words, but usually no one else said it as far as we know.

  3. Not Quite – while Lewis wrote it, the quote when isolated means something other than intended (or has the potential to be misunderstood).

WELCOME!

WELCOME!
Sketch courtesy of Jef Murray

Sketch courtesy of Jef Murray

The purpose of Essential C.S. Lewis is to provide useful information to all types of C.S. Lewis fans. So, whether you are new to the works and writings of C.S. Lewis, or have been reading him for years, you should be able to find something new and/or interesting. Something just begun in 2013 are two new features. Below you will notice Jack in Retrospect and Quote of the Day. The first is a weekly column examining what was going on related to Lewis over the years that week. The quotes shared are from something he wrote (or was published) around the same time or month.  The four remaining elements: C.S. Lewis MinuteAll About Jack PodcastLewis Daily Quiz and Fact of the Day are the same as before (click on the links for details if you need it). Something else new is the ability to keep up with this site via Facebook. Please visit and like!

PREVIEW of Walter Hooper Interview 2016

Walter Hooper PREVIEWThe following podcast is a PREVIEW of my interview with Walter Hooper.

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Listen to Walter Hooper PREVIEW Interview

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CSL Daily 7/23

Q7-23

FACT OF THE DAY:

While two dozen poems by Lewis were published in Punch, “Revival or Decay?” is the only non-fiction work published there.

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“All sorts of things will make a man brave for the time being. Alcohol, ignorance of the danger, anger, self-respect, human loyalty, and love of God. But they’re not all equally good sources.”

The Anvil
(BBC Radio Broadcast aired 7/22/1943)

CSL Daily 7/22

 Q7-22

FACT OF THE DAY:

Lewis was a guest on “The Anvil” that was aired today (7/22) in 1943. This BBC radio program was recorded on the 19th.

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“If you will go to God just as you are, fully admitting that you care about Him very little, and put yourself in His hand, if you’re even ready to be made to care and leave Him to work, He’ll do the rest.”

The Anvil
(BBC Radio Broadcast aired 7/22/1943)

CSL Daily 7/21

 Q7-21

FACT OF THE DAY:

The poem known today as The Magician and the Dryad was first published in Punch on July 20, 1949.

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“The feeling of being, or not being, forgiven and loved, is not what matters. One must come down to brass tacks. If there is a particular sin on your conscience, repent and confess it. If there isn’t, tell the despondent devil not to be silly.”

Letter to Mary Willis Shelburne 7/21/1958
(Published in The Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis, Volume III)

CSL Daily 7/20

 Q7-20

FACT OF THE DAY:

Willing Slaves of the Welfare State was published today (7/20) in 1958 in The Observer. It was part of series on Is Progress Possible?

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“Progress, for me, means increasing goodness and happiness of individual lives. For the species, as for each man, mere longevity seems to me a contemptible ideal.”

Willing Slaves of the Welfare State (Published in The Observer on 7/20/1958)

CSL Daily 7/19

Q7-19

FACT OF THE DAY:

On this date in 1943 “The Anvil” (a BBC radio program) recorded its show with Lewis as one of the guests.

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“The safest road to Hell is the gradual one—the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts.”

The Screwtape Letters XII
(Published in The Guardian on 7/18/1941)

32nd Screwtape Letter Fragment Discovered

I’m so excited to share a discovery I made that I’m not waiting to publish it later (like some more respected scholars would do). Although I’ll probably released a revised version soon in The Babylon Bee or The Onion.

As the title suggests, I’ve come across a fragment of what appears to be a previously undiscovered letter from Screwtape! I came across the unfinished piece while on an Inklings walk guided by Dr. Hal Poe. Another participant noticed something unusual while we paused between buildings and looked inside only to discover the filming of the Inspector Morse show. I met the actor (his name is not important to this tale) and we struck up a short conversation. Turns out he had on him this questionable written piece and freely gave it to me because he heard of my enhanced study guide called C.S. Lewis Goes to Hell. He assured me that his nephew found it at a secondhand bookshop in the back of a copy of The Screwtape Letters. I told this to Stan Shelley, noted collector and seller of Inklings items and he stormed off rather quickly…I’m sure to locate the bookstore (or it could have been to the toilet, as he had been drinking one of those big 32oz drinks from the local Sheets gas station).

The fragment in question is transcribed below, but I also need to say that I sent pictures of the handwritten piece to Dr. Charlie Starr, the nomad, and handwriting Lewis scholar. His statement to me was that he’d not only stop wearing his signature hat, but eat it, if someone else found it to not be authentic!

Dr. Don King, noted U.S. expert on Lewis’ poetry was upset with the finding because he feared it would overshadow an early poem he discovered the day before written by Lewis when he was just five. (Spoiler Alert) It’s rather short, I don’t know why it would be noteworthy…after all, it only says: “I’m a poet and I know it.”

I waited until about midnight to reveal the news to Dr. Hal Poe and his only comment before abruptly hanging up on me was, “This is embarrassing, next thing you know it will be revealed that Lewis and his wife, Joy were lovers of disco music.”

Without further ado about nothing (to quote Shakespeare, or was it his brother?):

My Dear Wormwood’s Father,

     I write to inform you of your son’s failure as I had already predicted to you. Ever since you married my sister and pushed your child from a previous marriage into the Training College, I warned you nothing good would come of it! But being a good brother I did what I could…I even gave him an easy assignment. As a result I do hope you aren’t seriously considering sending your other son, Snaggletooth through the college. And also… 

I’m afraid that is where the fragment ends. As you can guess, this discovery will surely change the shape of Lewis studies for many decades to come. That’s because others will no doubt visit Oxford and wonder around the streets in search of their random opportunity to find such a great treasure of fool’s gold as I have found.

CSL Daily 7/18

Q7-18

FACT OF THE DAY:

The twelfth letter from Screwtape was published on this date (7/18) in The Guardian in 1941.

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“The only thing that matters is the extent to which you separate the man from the Enemy [God]. It does not matter how small the sins are provided that their cumulative effect is to edge the man away from the Light and out into the Nothing.”

The Screwtape Letters XII
(Published in The Guardian on 7/18/1941)

CSL Daily 7/17

Q7-16

FACT OF THE DAY:

The classic “Meditation in a Toolshed” essay was published today (7/17) in The Coventry Evening Telegraph in 1945.

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“You get one experience of a thing when you look along it and another when you look at it.”

Meditation in a Toolshed
(Published in The Coventry Evening Telegraph on 7/17/1945)

CSL Daily 7/16

Q7-16

FACT OF THE DAY:

An collection of Lewis‘ essays called Timeless at Heart: Essays on Theology was published today (7/16) in 1987.  

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“We have seen that every moral judgement involves facts, intuition and reasoning, and, if we are wise enough to be humble, it will involve some regard for authority as well.”

from Why I Am Not A Pacifist
(Reprinted in Timeless at Heart on 7/16/1987)

CSL Daily 7/15

Q7-15

FACT OF THE DAY:

“It All Began with a Picture” was an essay published in Radio Times today (7/15) in 1960 telling how Lewis got the idea for Narnia

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“All my seven Narnian books, and my three science fiction books, began with seeing pictures in my head.”

It All Began with a Picture
(Published in Radio Times on 7/15/1960)

CSL Daily 7/14

Q7-14

FACT OF THE DAY:

Imagination and Thought in the Middle Ages is a talk Lewis gave on two nights in July, 1956 (on the 17th and 18th).

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“[Flippancy] is a thousand miles away from joy; it deadens, instead of sharpening, the intellect; and it excites no affection between those who practice it.”

The Screwtape Letters XI
(Published in The Guardian on 7/11/1941)

CSL Daily 7/13

Q7-13

FACT OF THE DAY:

Broadcast Talks was first released in the U.K. on this date (7/13) in 1942, containing the first two BBC radio series.

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“Whenever you find a man who says he does not believe in a real Right and Wrong, you will find the same man going back on this a moment later. He may break his promise to you, but if you try breaking one to him he will be complaining ‘It’s not fair’ before you can say Jack Robinson.”

Broadcast Talks
(Published on 7/13/1942)

CSL Daily 7/12

Q7-12

FACT OF THE DAY:

First and Second Things is an essay collection released on July 11, 1985 that actually contains material found in God in the Dock.

– – –

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

“Flippancy builds up around a man the finest armour-plating against the Enemy [God].”

The Screwtape Letters XI
(Published in The Guardian on 7/11/1941)

Joy and Poetic Imagination (Dr. Stephen Thorson)

Joy and Poetic ImaginationBefore Lewis embraced the Christian faith he had a lengthy debate with one of his friends, Owen Barfield about what would be considered involving subtle metaphysical and philosophical distinctions.  It became know as the “Great War.” These disagreements impacted Lewis a lot, but this topic isn’t often explored with much detail in biographies.  Joy and Poetic Imagination: Understanding C. S. Lewis’s “Great War” with Owen Barfield and its Significance for Lewis’s Conversion and Writings is a book by Dr. Stephen Thorson that examines the issue thoroughly. The following podcast is a brief interview with Stephen as well as a short talk he gave at the 2016 Taylor Colloquium.

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Listen to Joy and Poetic Imagination Interview

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