In his book, The Screwtape Letters, C.S. Lewis gives us an account of our human condition from the perspective of a demon named Screwtape. The demon’s accounts are found in a series of letters written to his younger nephew Wormwood on how best to tempt a British man, called “the Patient,” into sin and, eventually, into Hell. Wormwood is an inexperienced devil, and Screwtape shares with Wormwood his knowledge, experience, and skill derived from his many years of tempting humans to abandon God. In preparation for the weekly gatherings, I have used a Study Guide created by the C.S. Lewis Foundation, the Spark Notes on the book, and a Study Guide of discussion questions by Alan Vermilye. John Cleese’s reading of the book is brilliant. This lesson is eight weeks.
In the letters, Screwtape shares with Wormwood his knowledge, experience, and skill derived from his many years of tempting humans to abandon “the Enemy” (i.e. God).
Another means of distracting the Patient from true prayer, Screwtape writes, is to have the Patient pray to something and not the Enemy.
Reflect on how war, suffering, or any other evil in human society can often be a means of turning people towards God. Also, reflect on how the modern world’s concealment of death and suffering can prevent us from turning fully towards God.
But is in the Dark Night of the Soul where transformation ultimately takes place. Think back to those dark places in your life when God appeared to be absent and see how you are now different on the other side.
Think through the issues that are present in any company that you keep. It is human nature to want to be liked by others and therefore to adopt their outlook on fundamental matters.
Nothingness is very strong: strong enough to steal away a man’s best years not in sweet sins but in a dreary flickering of the mind.
This week, we are reading through and discussing letters 13-16 of C.S. Lewis’s The Screwtape Letters. Letter 13 – Small Pleasures: In this letter, Screwtape berates Wormwood for allowing the Patient to experience a spiritual renewal or second conversion. As a result, an “asphyxiating cloud” has enveloped the Patient preventing…
This week, we are reading through and discussing letters 13-16 of C.S. Lewis’s The Screwtape Letters. Letter 15 – The Present: In this letter, Screwtape instructs his nephew on the differences between the past, the present, the future, and the eternal. According to Screwtape, it is only in the Present…
The Gluttony of Excess is easy to spot, the Gluttony of Delicacy is less easy to spot. We all want what we want, and we usually cannot see when we have crossed that line. Like most sins, this is much easier to see in others.
the line between attraction, affection, and the multiple uses of the word “love” is impossible to sort out. The goal of the demons is to take this situation and mold it and use it to draw us away from God. Instead of sexual attraction being the building block of a…
The issue of a “Christianity AND . . . ” and the difference between Love and mere Unselfishness
On the distractions and efficacy of prayer and the creeping worldliness of middle-age.
On the virtues of Courage and Endurance, and life upon death.