(Fwd) [coinherence-l] What did CW, Tolkien, CSL, make of life?
- I've forwarded this from the Charles Williams forum since it concerns all the
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Date sent: Sat, 09 Aug 2008 14:05:07 -0400
Subject: [coinherence-l] What did CW, Tolkien, CSL, make of life?
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I've again looked up and read Richard Sturch's article, 'Common Themes Among
Inklings', Charles Williams: A celebrations, ed. Brian Horne, 1995. Thanks,
Richard!! (Get this book, all!) My question in light of our sehnsucht
discussion is, What did the Inklings think of life, and life's aesthetic?
must know that for centuries the church has been and still is struggling with
this now- considering 'veil of tears' teaching about this life, and preaching
longing for death and eternity in God's presence vs. the affirmation of the
great aesthetic of life. Noted, at least in my church experience, that we're
hearing more and more "For the beauty of this earth" praise and celebration.
Certainly Williams spoke of the salutary beauty of love on this earth. Lewis
loved his nature walks, his libations, his books and his friends. Tolkien?
Their characters learn about cosmic things through life experience, no? But
for them, is beauty on earth something cherished or fraught with the
oppression of evil? So which way does the balance swing with these Inklings?
Life? Death and Paradise? Or both in some way? How? And is what they wrote
and thought still relevant (I'd say yes, of course). More to the question,
what they wrote life affirming?
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- --- In email@example.com, "Steve Hayes" <hayesstw@...> wrote:
> ...I think these Inklings would not have agreed 100% on your
> for them, is beauty on earth something cherished or fraught with the
> oppression of evil? So which way does the balance swing with these
> Inklings? Life? Death and Paradise? Or both in some way? How?
> And is what they wrote and thought still relevant (I'd say yes, of
> course). More to the question, is what they wrote life affirming?
questions, but that they would all agree to the following
statement: Life is a good thing, created by God for us to
enjoy; however, it is not the ultimate good, but rather
a preview of the ultimate good. Further, it is (unlike the
ultimate good) damaged or tainted by evil. Nonetheless, it
is salutary to enjoy those aspects of this life which may
be enjoyed lawfully.
To borrow a bit of CW's terminology, I believe that all
three of these Inklings were followers, to greater or
lesser extents, of the Way of Affirmation -- this is
Thou (though neither is this _fully_ Thou).
And, yes, what they wrote is life-affirming, Williams'
work most of all.