good reads.

The Problem Of Pain- C.S. Lewis

When pain is to be borne, a little courage helps more than much knowledge, a little human sympathy more than much courage, and the least tincture of the love of God more than all (preface).

If the universe is so bad, or even half so bad, how on Earth did human beings ever come to attribute it to the activity of a wise and good creator (3).

Elements of religion:
1.experiencing numinous awe.
-Either a mere twist in the human mind, corresponding to nothing objective and serving no biological function, yet showing no tendency to disappear from that mind at it’s fullest development in poet, philosopher or saint: or else it is a direct experience of the really supernatural, to which the name Revelation might be given.
2.consciousness of a moral law at once approved and disobeyed.
– It is either inexplicable illusion, or else revelation.
3. When the numinous power to which they feel awe is made guardian to the morality to which they feel obligation.
-It may be a madness congenital to man and oddly fortunate in it’s results– or it may be revelation.

To ask to whether the universe as we see it looks more like the work of a wise and good creator or the work of chance, indifference, or malevolence, is to omit from the outset all the relevant factors in the religious problem. Christianity is not the conclusion of a philosophical debate on the origins of the universe: it is a catastrophic historical event following on the long spiritual preparation of humanity which I have described. It is not a system into which we have to fit the awkward fact of pain: it is itself one of the awkward facts which have ti be fitted into any system we make. In a sense, it creates, rather than solves, the problem of pain, for pain would be no problem unless, side by side with our daily experience of this painful world, we had received what we think a good assurance that ultimate reality is righteous and loving (14).


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