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The Screwtape Letters

The Screwtape Letters

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The Screwtape Letters

avaliações:
4/5 (206 avaliações)
Comprimento:
164 página
2 horas
Lançado em:
Jun 2, 2009
ISBN:
9780061949043
Formato:
Livro

Descrição

Written by Scribd Editors

C.S. Lewis once again delivers with this masterpiece work of satire. Considered a classic, this tale has captivated readers worldwide with its unique and ironic portrayal of human life, as viewed by Screwtape, a senior tempter in the service of "Our Father Below." Somehow a perfect blend of comedy, seriousness, and originality, C. S. Lewis presents the written dialogue between the worldly old devil and his nephew, Wormwood.

Wormwood's current quest is to secure the damnation of an ordinary young man, and The Screwtape Letters give us insight into his trials and tribulations while attempting to secure this young man's soul for eternal suffering.

Is the young man able to cast off temptation, to save his soul from a hellbent demon all while having no idea of what is at stake? C. S. Lewis is at his finest in this charmingly delectable novel that challenges what it is to be human, and what exactly temptation means when viewed from both parties involved, those earth bound, and those bound below.
Lançado em:
Jun 2, 2009
ISBN:
9780061949043
Formato:
Livro

Sobre o autor

Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) was one of the intellectual giants of the twentieth century and arguably one of the most influential writers of his day. He was a Fellow and Tutor in English Literature at Oxford University until 1954, when he was unanimously elected to the Chair of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Cambridge University, a position he held until his retirement. He wrote more than thirty books, allowing him to reach a vast audience, and his works continue to attract thousands of new readers every year. His most distinguished and popular accomplishments include Out of the Silent Planet, The Great Divorce, The Screwtape Letters, and the universally acknowledged classics The Chronicles of Narnia. To date, the Narnia books have sold over 100 million copies and have been transformed into three major motion pictures. Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) fue uno de los intelectuales más importantes del siglo veinte y podría decirse que fue el escritor cristiano más influyente de su tiempo. Fue profesor particular de literatura inglesa y miembro de la junta de gobierno en la Universidad Oxford hasta 1954, cuando fue nombrado profesor de literatura medieval y renacentista en la Universidad Cambridge, cargo que desempeñó hasta que se jubiló. Sus contribuciones a la crítica literaria, literatura infantil, literatura fantástica y teología popular le trajeron fama y aclamación a nivel internacional. C. S. Lewis escribió más de treinta libros, lo cual le permitió alcanzar una enorme audiencia, y sus obras aún atraen a miles de nuevos lectores cada año. Sus más distinguidas y populares obras incluyen Las Crónicas de Narnia, Los Cuatro Amores, Cartas del Diablo a Su Sobrino y Mero Cristianismo.


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Amostra do Livro

The Screwtape Letters - C. S. Lewis

The cover of a book titled, “The Screwtape Letters” authored by C.S. Lewis is shown. The cover is painted into three sections in three colors, yellow, white, and red from top to bottom. The nib of a fountain pen is shown placed atop the letter “w” of the word screwtape, leaving ink spots. Ink spots are also visible at the top-left and bottom-right sections of the cover.

The Screwtape Letters

C. S. Lewis

with

Screwtape Proposes a Toast

The name of the publisher, “HarperCollins e-books” is shown, with its logo as a stylized set of flames atop waves.

Dedication

To J. R. R. Tolkien

Epigraph

The best way to drive out the devil, if he will not yield to texts of Scripture, is to jeer and flout him, for he cannot bear scorn.

LUTHER

The devil . . . the prowde spirite . . . cannot endure to be mocked.

THOMAS MORE

Contents

Cover

Title Page

Dedication

Epigraph

Preface

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Chapter 20

Chapter 21

Chapter 22

Chapter 23

Chapter 24

Chapter 25

Chapter 26

Chapter 27

Chapter 28

Chapter 29

Chapter 30

Chapter 31

Screwtape Proposes a Toast

Preface

Screwtape Proposes a Toast

About the Author

Also by C. S. Lewis

Copyright

About the Publisher

Preface

I have no intention of explaining how the correspondence which I now offer to the public fell into my hands.

There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them. They themselves are equally pleased by both errors and hail a materialist or a magician with the same delight. The sort of script which is used in this book can be very easily obtained by anyone who has once learned the knack; but ill-disposed or excitable people who might make a bad use of it shall not learn it from me.

Readers are advised to remember that the devil is a liar. Not everything that Screwtape says should be assumed to be true even from his own angle. I have made no attempt to identify any of the human beings mentioned in the letters; but I think it very unlikely that the portraits, say, of Fr Spike or the patient’s mother, are wholly just. There is wishful thinking in Hell as well as on Earth.

In conclusion, I ought to add that no effort has been made to clear up the chronology of the letters. Number 17 appears to have been composed before rationing became serious; but in general the diabolical method of dating seems to bear no relation to terrestrial time and I have not attempted to reproduce it. The history of the European War, except in so far as it happens now and then to impinge upon the spiritual condition of one human being, was obviously of no interest to Screwtape.

C. S. LEWIS

MAGDALEN COLLEGE,

5 JULY 1941

1

My dear Wormwood,

I note what you say about guiding your patient’s reading and taking care that he sees a good deal of his materialist friend. But are you not being a trifle naïve? It sounds as if you supposed that argument was the way to keep him out of the Enemy’s clutches. That might have been so if he had lived a few centuries earlier. At that time the humans still knew pretty well when a thing was proved and when it was not; and if it was proved they really believed it. They still connected thinking with doing and were prepared to alter their way of life as the result of a chain of reasoning. But what with the weekly press and other such weapons we have largely altered that. Your man has been accustomed, ever since he was a boy, to have a dozen incompatible philosophies dancing about together inside his head. He doesn’t think of doctrines as primarily ‘true’ or ‘false’, but as ‘academic’ or ‘practical’, ‘outworn’ or ‘contemporary’, ‘conventional’ or ‘ruthless. Jargon, not argument, is your best ally in keeping him from the Church. Don’t waste time trying to make him think that materialism is true! Make him think it is strong, or stark, or courageous—that it is the philosophy of the future. That’s the sort of thing he cares about.

The trouble about argument is that it moves the whole struggle on to the Enemy’s own ground. He can argue too; whereas in really practical propaganda of the kind I am suggesting He has been shown for centuries to be greatly the inferior of Our Father Below. By the very act of arguing, you awake the patient’s reason; and once it is awake, who can foresee the result? Even if a particular train of thought can be twisted so as to end in our favour, you will find that you have been strengthening in your patient the fatal habit of attending to universal issues and withdrawing his attention from the stream of immediate sense experiences. Your business is to fix his attention on the stream. Teach him to call it ‘real life’ and don’t let him ask what he means by ‘real’.

Remember, he is not, like you, a pure spirit. Never having been a human (Oh that abominable advantage of the Enemy’s!) you don’t realise how enslaved they are to the pressure of the ordinary. I once had a patient, a sound atheist, who used to read in the British Museum. One day, as he sat reading, I saw a train of thought in his mind beginning to go the wrong way. The Enemy, of course, was at his elbow in a moment. Before I knew where I was I saw my twenty years’ work beginning to totter. If I had lost my head and begun to attempt a defence by argument I should have been undone. But I was not such a fool. I struck instantly at the part of the man which I had best under my control and suggested that it was just about time he had some lunch. The Enemy presumably made the counter-suggestion (you know how one can never quite overhear what He says to them?) that this was more important than lunch. At least I think that must have been His line for when I said ‘Quite. In fact much too important to tackle at the end of a morning,’ the patient brightened up considerably; and by the time I had added ‘Much better come back after lunch and go into it with a fresh mind,’ he was already half way to the door. Once he was in the street the battle was won. I showed him a newsboy shouting the midday paper, and a No. 73 bus going past, and before he reached the bottom of the steps I had got into him an unalterable conviction that, whatever odd ideas might come into a man’s head when he was shut up alone with his books, a healthy dose of ‘real life’ (by which he meant the bus and the newsboy) was enough to show him that all ‘that sort of thing’ just couldn’t be true. He knew he’d had a narrow escape and in later years was fond of talking about ‘that inarticulate sense for actuality which is our ultimate safeguard against the aberrations of mere logic’. He is now safe in Our Father’s house.

You begin to see the point? Thanks to processes which we set at work in them centuries ago, they find it all but impossible to believe in the unfamiliar while the familiar is before their eyes. Keep pressing home on him the ordinariness of things. Above all, do not attempt to use science (I mean, the real sciences) as a defence against Christianity. They will positively encourage him to think about realities he can’t touch and see. There have been sad cases among the modern physicists. If he must dabble in science, keep him on economics and sociology; don’t let him get away from that invaluable ‘real life’. But the best of all is to let him read no science but to give him a grand general idea that he knows it all and that everything he happens to have picked up in casual talk and reading is ‘the results of modern investigation’. Do remember you are there to fuddle him. From the way some of you young fiends talk, anyone would suppose it was our job to teach!

Your affectionate uncle

SCREWTAPE

2

My dear Wormwood,

I note with grave displeasure that your patient has become a Christian. Do not indulge the hope that you will escape the usual penalties; indeed, in your better moments, I trust you would hardly even wish to do so. In the meantime we must make the best of the situation. There is no need to despair; hundreds of these adult converts have been reclaimed after a brief sojourn in the Enemy’s camp and are now with us. All the habits of the patient, both mental and bodily, are still in our favour.

One of our great allies at present is the Church itself. Do not misunderstand me. I do not mean the Church as we see her spread out through all time and space and rooted in eternity, terrible as an army with banners. That, I confess, is a spectacle which makes our boldest tempters uneasy. But fortunately it is quite invisible to these humans. All your patient sees is the half-finished, sham Gothic erection on the new building estate. When he goes inside, he sees the local grocer with rather an oily expression on his face bustling up to offer him one shiny little book containing a liturgy which neither of them understands, and one shabby little book containing corrupt texts of a number of religious lyrics, mostly bad, and in very small print. When he gets to his pew and looks round him he sees just that selection of his neighbours whom he has hitherto avoided. You want to lean pretty heavily on those neighbours. Make his mind flit to and fro between an expression like ‘the body of Christ’ and the actual faces in the next pew. It matters very little, of course, what kind of people that next pew really contains. You may know one of them to be a great warrior on the Enemy’s side. No matter. Your patient, thanks to Our Father Below, is a fool. Provided that any of those neighbours sing out of tune, or have boots that squeak, or double chins, or odd clothes, the patient will quite easily believe that their religion must therefore be somehow ridiculous. At his present stage, you see, he has an idea of ‘Christians’ in his mind which he supposes to be spiritual but which, in fact, is largely pictorial. His mind is full of togas and sandals and armour and bare legs and the mere fact that the other people in church wear modern clothes is a real—though of course an unconscious—difficulty to him. Never let it come to the surface; never let him ask what he expected them to look like. Keep everything hazy in his mind now, and you will have all eternity wherein to amuse yourself by producing in him the peculiar kind of clarity which Hell affords.

Work hard, then, on the disappointment or anticlimax which is certainly coming to the patient during his first few weeks as a churchman. The Enemy allows this disappointment to occur on the threshold of every human endeavour. It occurs when

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  • Everytime I read a C. S. Lewis book I look for the hidden religious undertones, the Christian symbolism, and the signs of his converted faith. In The Screwtape Letters, you don't have to look very far. But! Don't get me wrong, Lewis completely embraces it in this novel, and it is delightful in all the perfect ways. In some of his other works, he tries to hide hidden messages, hidden themes, and because of this it occasionally feels like he is trying to pull a fast one over on you. Not here. In fact, I would even go so far as to say that he's pulled back the blankets, stripped the sheets, and is showing you his true intentions from page one: this is what makes The Screwtape Letters so fun to read. If you've enjoyed any of his other works, if you enjoy comedy, if you enjoy experiencing humanity, I'd say give this book a try.

    Scribd Editors
  • Wildly entertaining, is probably the best way to describe this book. Even when it gets a bit serious, a bit sad, and a bit dramatic, it is still entertaining. Sometimes the humor was direct, literal jokes told through the characters. While at other times the humor was more discreet, funny in the same was as when you crash your car into a post on the way to work, and it is pouring rain, and the only thing you can do while you wait for help to arrive is just laugh at your own misfortune. Life throws curveballs, and reading 'The Screwtape Letters' shed some interesting comical light on exactly where those curve balls might be coming from. At the end of the day, I am quite pleased to have read this book, and would recommend it in the blink of an eye to anyone searching for an entertaining, occasionally enlightening book from a renowned author who has proven his ability to captivate more than once.

    Scribd Editors

Avaliações de leitores

  • (4/5)
    A senior devil gives advice on tempting humans to his nephew, a junior devil
  • (5/5)
    A "what not to do" guide for Christians. Gotta love it.
  • (5/5)
    Written from the POV of a devil tempting a Christian. Very witty and funny, even if you're not a Christian, but sometimes you need some Christian background to be able to understand what he's talking about.
  • (4/5)
    A very good book for all those who want to understand, or to embark on a journey of spirituality. Many books have been written from the perspective of God, but not too many have been written from the perspective of demons.As an alternative manner of thought, it provides a delightful read, and poses many questions for us to think about
  • (4/5)
    Lewis adopts the old epistlatory technique to serve his ends of Christian apology, and with delightful results. Whether or not one accepts and agrees with Lewis's theology, his style and method win the reader's approbation.Screwtape is a senior demon in Hell writing advice to his protege on the front lines here on Earth. As Lewis himself remarked, once one hits upon the concept, the execution is fairly easy. Simply take standard moral advice and turn them inside out, upside down, or backwards.
  • (5/5)
    One of the great works of moral instruction of the past, or any century. Lewis' fame as an explicitly Christian apologist, has led to him being tremendously neglected as a moralist. He understands how our vices from ourselves, how easily we can be swept up in selfishness and pride ourselves on the flimsiest virtues. If you are reading this book honestly, you will at times find it very painful. It is also often very funny. Highly recommended, perhaps even more so for non-Christians (like myself).2.25.09"In the heat of composition I find that I have inadvertently allowed myself to assume the form of a large centipede."
  • (5/5)
    “The Screwtape Letters” was my first foray into the mind of C. S. Lewis and I found it interesting and timeless. Written at the height of WWII in 1942, Lewis’s warnings about the false hope and change of “social justice” and “self-esteem” (then referred to as parity of esteem) have unfortunately become fulfilled predictions. In “Screwtape Proposes a Toast” (added twenty years later) Lewis again points to the then (1962) disturbing trend of everyone being equal, this despite obvious and significant differences. No one can be – or at least can be thought of as being – better than another, and he goes on to reinforce the notion that salvation of Democracies (free people) lies in the salvation of the individual – not the collective. A very refreshing, enlightening and timeless read.
  • (4/5)
    The Screwtape Letters was a stimulating read from both a spiritual and an intellectual view. It is a series of letters sent by a Demon, Screwtape, to his nephew Wormwood (a junior tempter). The letters give a detailed description of the sort of temptations which demons try to side track humans, specifically Christians.This book fits into our English genre of Finding The Self very well. From a Christian perspective, it makes the reader think about how Satan is tempting each of us individually in our own lives. When Screwtape describes a scenario in his letters, the readers begins to think about similar situations in their own lives and how, perhaps, their choices might replicate what Screwtape is describing. That process makes the reader think about themselves, the actions they have done, the choices they have made, and what they will do in the future.I think that this is a must read for any Christian. However, that does not mean non-Christians should be wary of the book. It provides many good messages on morality which non-Christians can and should take to heart. And while the book is not something you would read simply for the enjoyment of the story, it is none-the-less good because of its intellectual nature.
  • (5/5)
    Excellent full-cast dramatization of this C. S. Lewis classic."Diabolical" Radio Theater at its best."The story is carried by the senior demon Screwtape played magnificently by award-winning actor Andy Serkis (“Gollum” in Lord of the Rings) as he shares correspondence to his apprentice demon Wormwood." (from audio jacket)4.5 ★
  • (5/5)
    Incisive, brilliant, and entertaining.
  • (3/5)
    A creative piece of Christian apologetics by one of the 20th century's greatest. This volume also includes the addendum "Screwtape Proposes a Toast," published in 1959. Of out all the Lewis I've read so far, I'm still most partial to The Abolition of Man. His writing in The Screwtape Letters is technically good as ever, but he doesn't here achieve the same excellence of style that he does elsewhere. And since I find all of his apologetical arguments weak, appreciation for good writing is one of the main reasons why I bother to read him at all. The Screwtape Letters is frequently clumsy, mechanical (Lewis admits in the preface that "the device of diabolical letters, once you have thought of it, exploits itself spontaneously"), and even gimmicky. Fortunately, the book is short and can be read in a couple hours so long as you don't feel guilty about skimming a bit.
  • (4/5)
    A very illuminating look at how we are constantly tempted in small ways. I recommend this to book to every Christian. My only complaint is that I wish it was longer!
  • (5/5)
    READING THIS FOR MY C.S. LEWIS CLASS!!OMG this is my favorite CS Lewis book of all-time!!! *fangirly time*Seriously, this book is incredible, eye-opening, memorable, a little creepy, and very insightful! If you like CS Lewis, or are interested in reading some of his more "grown-up" books, please please give this one a shot! I promise you, you'll never read anything else like it again.
  • (4/5)
    A good book that I would suggest to anyone. The premise of the book is a set of letters that Screwtape (a demon in the administrative department of hell) is writing to his nephew Wormwood (who is a demon new to the tempting job). At first the introduction of it made me wonder exactly how Lewis wrote these letters since it made me think that he did not write them himself at all but instead derived them from some outside source, this was not the case though. The letters were great to read and touched on every small aspect of temptations and the Christian life. There were many times I could see how these things have played themselves out in my life and made me want to re-evaluate many things. Along with the book being an easy read while still personally challenging it had many quotable quotes found within the pages. About every other letter there would be one line that would just jump out at me. Looking back I wish I had of written each of these down since they encapsulated the major points in the book to me at least. For instance, one set of advice Screwtape gave was "do not allow your patient (which was how they talked about the man to whom Wormwood was assigned) to pray in a fashion of not to who I think you are but to who you know you are". That's very fuzzy and I cannot quite get my words down in the way I would want them to be said. Secondly on the second part of the book, Screwtape proposes a toast, this was written several years after the letters and was included in the book I have. It was short, only a few pages long in the edition I have, but if I skipped it I do not feel as though I would have lost any value in reading the book. So if you do read this book and you are tired at that point, I would recommend not reading that part simply because I did not see much value in it and found that Lewis was trying very hard just to get something out on paper. Lastly in the way it was written, you will know that it was written in an old British proper language, but this did not hinder my ability into being able to read and understand the book
  • (3/5)
    If not for the fact that this is a satire in earnest, it would serve as a powerful absurdist invective against humanity. This book improved my view of Christians in general, but only because it points out that all the faults conspicuous in the rabidly faithful are equally well-represented in the uninformed agnostic, if less readily apparent.The sharp weapon of Lewis's rhetoric tears down humanity through all its self-righteous hubris, denial, misdirected hopes, and easy mistakes. However, one begins to develop the impression, slowly at first, that Lewis has nothing to offer in return. There are scarcely words of alternatives, let alone improvements.Lewis does give us a house which disgusts the devils and redeems the sinful, but this perfect representation of Christian values is just a lack of badness, not a profusion of goodness. It is 'suffused' by some sort of magical glow which infects the cat, but magical glows do not a life philosophy make. I got the impression that Lewis hoped to fill in the good parts later, but couldn't think of any.Human beings have a cognitive bias for avoiding punishment, even to the point where they will avoid a small punishment rather than seek a great reward. Perhaps this fear consumed Lewis, as it does so many people. That would explain why his books seem more concerned with avoiding small errors instead of seeking out grand achievements.Lewis said writing these letters was more difficult than any of his other books, and that he could not bring himself to write a sequel. I find little surprise in this, because one can see how, as the book goes on, Lewis more and more recognizes the failures of mankind but when he tries to express what makes him or his faith any different, cannot find anything to say.The 'suffusing glow' becomes a metaphor for Lewis's own righteousness, but whenever Lewis isn't basking in his own self-righteousness, he is ridiculing someone else's. Lewis' rhetoric is most deficient when he scorns one of man's many faults, then calls it a virtue in the next chapter.For example, the book begins with the demon advising that humans should be encouraged to think of things as being 'real' without ever questioning what that means. The term 'real life' is meant to act as a self-justification for assumptions, not as an introspective view. This is 'bad' because 'real' has no meaning beyond the opinion of the user, and hence it can be used to justify anything.Then Lewis begins to talk about how the Christians should make sure to follow what is 'natural', but fails to define what 'natural' is supposed to mean. Like 'real', 'natural' can be used to justify any idea or position, but Lewis does not turn a skeptical eye to himself.This can hardly surprise, as Lewis maintains a philosophy of Duality. Dualism presents the 'with us/against us' ideal by which any two groups may grow to hate one another despite the fact that they have relatively few differences. As long as one defines the other as bad, there is no need to define the self as good, as in the Dualistic system, there is only good and evil, and you are either one or the other.Lewis often falls back on this defense, showing how some men are bad, how he is different from them, and then assuming 'different' equals 'better'. He uses rational, skeptical argument to show how flawed his opponent is, but tearing down others is not the same as raising yourself up.That being said, it would still be refreshing to meet a believer who had put as much thought and work into attempting to understand and explain themselves. It is rare to find thoughtfulness and skepticism, believer or no. Atheists and scientists can be just as troubled, flawed, and deluded as anyone else.The lesson I will pull from this is that it is important for me to concentrate on myself and my own growth, because worrying about everyone else didn't help Lewis, and it isn't going to help me, either. I must not simply tear down those who are different from me, since this doesn't prove that I am right, any more than a bully proves his superiority by his insults and threats.
  • (3/5)
    'The Screwtape Letters' was not an easy read for me. I thought the content and the perspective were interesting, but I don't think I fully understood everything so it was harder to appreciate it. I'll probably come back to this book in a few years.
  • (5/5)
    The Screwtape Letters was a really great story. It was insightful and convicting all the while being entertaining.Right off the bat, the unusual perspective had me hooked. A story about good, told from the perspective of evil; it's not something I would have ever thought of myself. Tucked between moments that made me laugh were also convicting reminders and insights on how sin finds its way into my life. I will definitely keep this book on my list of recommended reading.
  • (5/5)
    I often say that almost all of my theology comes from reading "The Narnia Suite," which I read for the first time at the age of eight, and more than a dozen times thereafter. I was particularly taken with The Last Battle, in which some people are very surprised indeed to learn that those they thought wouldn't be admitted into Aslan's Land because they fought on "The Wrong Side" of the aforementioned last battle, were in fact instantly admitted because it was their intention and their heart which was judged.When I was a little older, someone gave me a copy of "The Screwtape Letters," and I have read it probably a dozen or more times over the years as well. Brilliant, allegorical, hilarious in parts, and filled with gentle wisdom, it is a theological masterpiece. I recall the first time I the letter in which one devil brags that he will soon win his first soul for the devil because although the man continues to pray, he doesn't believe what he says any longer. The older, wiser devil releases a stream of invective and explains the younger devil is an idiot, because doesn't the know that "those are the prayers that God loves best!?" How relieved I felt, as a young person, that there was a possibility God might still embrace me, even with all my doubts. Just one of the many gifts Lewis's work offers to those of us searching for a deeper relationship with God.
  • (5/5)
    Excellent spiritual advice, memorable writing (sometimes extremely funny in a thoroughly deadpan way), and Calvin's first-grade teacher. I would say that the only problem with this book is that it isn't longer, but that would be a reflex -- it's diminuitive, at 209 pages of liberally-spaced type, but in that small space it does everything that it wants to, and then some. A masterpiece even by Lewis' standards.
  • (4/5)
    I don't consider myself a particularly religious person, but I enjoyed The Screwtape Letter immensely. It has a lot of great observations on life and what it means to be a person that can be enjoyed by everyone, not just the Christians or prospective Christians that Lewis was writing towards.

    Favorite quote:

    "All mortals tend to turn into the thing they are pretending to be. This is elementary."
  • (5/5)
    An entertaining bit of fiction with a real world insight into the spiritual warfare behind our surface existence. If you choose to listen to a recorded version of this, be sure to get the one recorded by John Cleese: priceless.
  • (3/5)
    I enjoyed reading this book, especially because it took on such a different view of Christianity. CS Lewis does a great job at really contrasting God and the Devil. In church I have come to hear God referenced as 'Our Heavenly Father' and the devil as 'The enemy.'. This book shows it from the point of view where God has now become the enemy. I had never thought about in that way before. Just as God desires for humans to resist the temptations and sins given by demons, the demons desire for humans to cling to this temptation. While God is viewed as one who cares about others, the devil is one that only cares about himself. He feels that God has an alternate plan that he has not disclosed and the devil wants to find out what it is. He doesn't believe in hope or even love, only sin, desire, and selfishness. I felt that this was a really good book to read for someone who feels strong in their beliefs and can really take the time to analyze and think about this book.
  • (5/5)
    Or, How To Drive the Living Hell Out of Thoughtful Christians. As a moral theologian, this is Lewis at his absolute best. Unlike his other more theological works, here he gets to mix in fiction and fantasy with his musings, and he does so wonderfully. The "plot," as you probably know, is the temptation of a man by a Junior temptor who is given advice by his uncle and senior, Screwtape. Lewis lays bare many traps of modern thinking as well as the traps of ancient moral spirituality. (The Seven Deadly Sins were once the Eight Deadly Ideas, the point being that it is our thinking that gets in our way.)
  • (5/5)
    A unique approach but the plot is a little thin and the book is short
  • (5/5)
    I really am having a tough time thinking of what I can say about The Screwtape Letters. A masterpiece, really. It's like nothing I've ever read before. Completely witty and sobering at the same time.I am going to venture to say that it can mean vastly different things to different people. To those without a deep belief in or relationship with God it can mean something like this:A masterpiece of satire, this classic has entertained and enlightened readers the world over with its sly and ironic portrayal of human life from the vantage point of Screwtape, a highly placed assistant to "Our Father Below." At once wildly comic, deadly serious, and strikingly original, C.S. Lewis gives us the correspondence of the worldly-wise old devil to his nephew Wormwood, a novice demon in charge of securing the damnation of an ordinary young man. The Screwtape Letters is the most engaging and humorous account of temptation -- and triumph over it -- ever written.(Taken from readinggroupguides.com)To someone that sees themselves as a spiritual being and not only has faith in but considers themselves in a personal relationship with God the meaning likely goes much deeper. To a reader such as this - such as myself - it can be an enlightening voyage to 'the other side,' a way to gain advice about Christian living and avoiding falling into temptation, a startling description of oneself, a roundabout way to realize anew the gifts and blessings of God. It was all these things and more to me. I think I need to sit and let this one marinate a bit more. There will be a discussion on it tomorrow night and I'd love to come back after that time and write a bit more about my feelings on it. Sometimes it really helps to gain other's insights.
  • (5/5)
    Insightful and revealing. I learned so much about myself. A most read for all Christians
  • (5/5)
    Who among us has never wondered if there might not really be a tempter sitting on our shoulders or dogging our steps? C.S. Lewis dispels all doubts. In The Screwtape Letters, one of his bestselling works, we are made privy to the instructional correspondence between a senior demon, Screwtape, and his wannabe diabolical nephew Wormwood. As mentor, Screwtape coaches Wormwood in the finer points, tempting his "patient" away from God.Each letter is a masterpiece of reverse theology, giving the reader an inside look at the thinking and means of temptation. Tempters, according to Lewis, have two motives: the first is fear of punishment, the second a hunger to consume or dominate other beings. On the other hand, the goal of the Creator is to woo us unto himself or to transform us through his love from "tools into servants and servants into sons." It is the dichotomy between being consumed and subsumed completely into another's identity or being liberated to be utterly ourselves that Lewis explores with his razor-sharp insight and wit.
  • (5/5)
    This book is part of my C.S. Lewis collection. I went through a huge phase where I was just obsessed with anything and everything by him. While I don't agree with all of his theology, I do love his writing style and the things he has to say about faith. He was a good one.
  • (5/5)
    deep, thought-provoking, chilling
  • (5/5)
    Letters from an experienced devil (Screwtape,a tempter) to a new, young tempter (Wormwood). Screwtape attempts to instruct and correct Wormwood on the art of tempting his "patient" to keep him from the Enemy (God). Takes place during World War II. I found this to be a great read and well worth the wait to finally get my hands on a copy. The language is hard to concentrate on with much background noise. I read at night while my husband watches television and I found the television to be very distracting to me. I had my best reading sessions in complete silence, but that is just how I read. If you are easily distracted, be sure to read in quiet. The story holds some great lessons for Christian living.