Remembering and celebrating Jack

C. S. Lewis, his worlds, and his faith.

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Remembering and celebrating Jack

Postby coracle » Nov 17, 2013 11:56 am

This week it is 50 years since the death of C.S.Lewis; he died on 22 November 1963.

I invite you to post a brief message here this week,of special memories or thoughts about 'Jack' and his writings.

I hope to combine these into something special. :)
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Re: Remembering and celebrating Jack

Postby johobbit » Nov 18, 2013 8:32 am

How on earth will I keep this brief? ;;) ... because of all the many authors I have read over the decades, I can truthfully say that C.S. Lewis has had the most impact, having been very influential in my life, almost daily, I would say, at some periods more than others. There are certainly those whose writings I treasure as well, but 'Jack' has been a significant part of my life since I was a preschooler (uh, 50 years ago!), starting at that time with my parents reading the Chronicles to me, for which I am forever grateful. Then, as I grew up, moving on to his marvelous Space Trilogy, as well as his amazing non-fiction (if I had to choose, A Grief Observed would be my favourite), although I not yet read everything he penned. Even to this day, when I dive into the Narnia Chronicles yet again, they become more precious with every read. As a child, I adored the stories; as an adult, I see the great depth, loving how they are so alive with spiritual truths in such a delightful, magical, and profound way, yet with such beautiful simplicity. For "a children's story which can be only enjoyed by children is not a good children's story". :D And, in our turn, we introduced our own children to the Chronicles when they were very young, sitting around outside on a summer's evening, all of us reveling in those amazing stories.

I thoroughly enjoy gobbling up biographies and radio programs on CSL, his and Warnie's own letters, and am thrilled that Clive Staples Lewis is possibly even more well-known today than he was in his own lifetime. I raise a mammoth toast to a man who grappled with some weighty things of God, Christ, and the Scriptures, and was able to present them to us in such a manner that keenly impacts our lives in such practical and marvelous ways. He loved the idea of Joy, and little did he know that this very same Joy-longing would be brought to me, and to thousands upon thousands of people 50 years after his death, and following.

For me, CSL wonderfully displayed his own words within the beloved tales he wrote: "The value of myth is that it takes all the things we know and restores to them the rich significance which has been hidden by the veil of familiarity". (One of my many favourite Lewis quotes.)

Further up and further in, Jack! I look forward to extensively chin-wagging with you in Aslan's Country!
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Re: Remembering and celebrating Jack

Postby shastastwin » Nov 19, 2013 12:02 pm

Okay. To be brief on this subject is quite a challenge, but here goes.

C.S. Lewis (it is sometimes difficult for me to think of him as "Jack" since I only know him through his books) is the one human responsible for the fact that I am a writer who dreams of publishing books that will mean something to people. In my middle school years, I started writing a novel from images because I had read of Lewis' beginning LWW from images. I haven't stopped writing and creating stories since. I will always be grateful to Lewis and his executors for the books that he wrote which have impacted my imagination, mind, and spirit, and for keeping his books available in a number of formats. The debt I owe here is a great one that I cannot begin to repay this side of heaven.
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Re: Remembering and celebrating Jack

Postby Pattertwigs Pal » Nov 19, 2013 12:27 pm

There has not been a time that my life was not somehow influenced by Lewis's works or life. As a baby I would not have understood this. I would only have seen our cat Clive as an interesting toy or as a pet. I would not have realized that he was named after a great author. I must have been in preschool or kindergarten when my parents read me The Chronicles of Narnia. From then on, they were special to me. This was about the time that the BBC did the miniseries. I fell in love with those as well. I often watched them when I was sick; and thus came to see them as comfort. They are still my first choice to watch when I am not feeling well. I remember trying to play Narnia with my friends, but they didn't do it correctly. Throughout my school years, Lewis or his works were the subject of several school assignments. When we had to write a letter to an author (living or dead) about why his books were important to us, I chose Lewis. Through the years, I have branched out to Lewis's other fiction works and non-fiction works. Yet, I never tire of Chronicles; as I grew, they grew. I am still learning from them and noticing new things. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe remains my favorite book.
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Re: Remembering and celebrating Jack

Postby Galadrielle » Nov 20, 2013 1:27 pm

I am 52 years old. When I was 50 years old, I started to read the Bible on my own for the very first time and am just now, 35 years after having accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior, getting to know Jesus. When I was 41 years old, my father John Angus entered Aslan's Country and became a Prince. When I was 7 years old, for the very first time, I entered Jack's world. Jesus: two years. My father: forty one years. Jack: A whopping FORTY FIVE YEARS! The man whose life and work has had the strongest impact on my life for the longest time is Jack. How did it all begin?

I was a seven-year-old Brownie Scout and voracious reader, enrolled at an excellent Christian school that had chapel every day. My spare time was spent reading Gone With the Wind. How I wanted to be just like Scarlett O'Hara. One night, while my parents were at a PTA meeting, my babysitter, my four-year-old brother, and I were watching the Addams Family - my favorite show. My parents returned from their meeting, waited patiently for The Addams Family to end, and paid the sitter. Suddenly, my Dad boomed "Look what Father Edwards has lent us to enjoy!" Father Edwards was the School Chaplain and Assistant Pastor and he knew all about my love of books. Dad grabbed my brother, sat down in the big armchair, and patted the arm of the chair, motioning for me to perch on it. Then all of a sudden, he began to read the magic words that began The Magician's Nephew. I was completely mesmerized. But the rains came, and with it, Dad's work responsibilities as a flood control engineer, and our nightly reads came to a pause. I finished Gone With the Wind, and then I picked up the Magician's Nephew and finished IT. My parents, meanwhile, had bought me a Narnia set all of my own, and before long, I found myself in the realm of Queen Lucy. I stopped wanting to be like Scarlett and instead desired to be like Queen Lucy. I took up writing, and while the other girls wanted to be doctors and actresses and ballerinas, I soon learned that C.S. Lewis - my great hero even when I was seven - was a medievalist. That was what I wanted to be when I grew up. And so I did. Thirty years after my first step into Narnia - exactly thirty years later - I found myself in the magical land where it all began: Oxford. I had been awarded a scholarship to study philosophy with the C.S. Lewis Foundation's C.S. Lewis Summer Institute on the Centennial Year of Jack's birth, where there were intense moments of absolute joy to the point where I cried, and I, like Queen Lucy in The Last Battle, was even too happy to speak.
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Re: Remembering and celebrating Jack

Postby daughter of the King » Nov 20, 2013 2:20 pm

By the time I was learning to read, my older siblings had already read to pieces the family's first copies of The Chronicles of Narnia. We now have five (six?) different sets in the house. The BBC mini-series adaptation of The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe was a favorite Blockbuster rental for many years, and the Focus on the Family Radio Theater adaptations have been a favorite for long car rides. And, of course, the most recent film adaptations brought me to Narniaweb.

But The Chronicles of Narnia, as strange as this may sound, is not my favorite work by C.S. Lewis. That honor goes to Till We Have Faces, a story of love. Romantic love, sisterly love, the love between a parent and a child, jealous love, obsessive love, and perfect love are all described in its pages. The first time I read it, I was astounded by how much I identified with the protagonist. I hadn't (and still haven't) been in the situations Orual finds herself in, but I still felt very much like she was me or I was her. It wasn't until I grew up a little more that I realized that was one of the points of the story: we are all like Orual, or can be if we don't watch out. Till We Have Faces has remained my all-time favorite book to this day.

This past May, I lost two of my sisters in a horrific car accident. By the time I pushed past the initial bone-chilling numbness, I had already picked up Till We Have Faces. I suppose I subconsciously realized I needed the reminder that even though I loved them and hurt because they left me, there is Someone who loves them far more and far better than I ever could.
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Re: Remembering and celebrating Jack

Postby Movie Aristotle » Nov 20, 2013 11:07 pm

I think it is safe to say that there is no writer who has impacted me more than C. S. Lewis. I read The Chronicles of Narnia late in my childhood but it quickly kindled my imagination and made me think deeply on spiritual topics. The world of Narnia is such an beautiful, interesting, and inviting place that it firmly stands besides other great fantasy worlds like Middle Earth and Wonderland.

Although my introduction to Lewis was through Narnia, I soon found his other works just as interesting. The Screwtape Letters is a masterpiece of wit and perception, the Space Trilogy is sci-fi most imaginative and thoughtful, and the non-fiction works of Lewis always teach me something new or invite me to look at the world in a different, clearer way.

The more I read Lewis, the more I realize how wise this man was. His life and works are a valuable contribution to all future generations.
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Re: Remembering and celebrating Jack

Postby stargazer » Nov 21, 2013 1:56 pm

Unlike many here on the forum, I wasn't introduced to the writings of C.S. Lewis until I was an adult. If I remember correctly (it was a long time ago ;)) ), my first exposure was to non-fiction books like Mere Christianity and Miracles, both of which were influential in helping me understand Christianity and helped shape my theology.

I was introduced to The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe near the end of my university career and quickly devoured the whole series of Narnia books. Over the past 30+ years they've remained favorites as I've noticed new insights while rereading them, or drawn comfort from them in times of need.

The Horse and His Boy has long been a favorite Chronicle, the one I've reached for in times of joy and times of sorrow. I think this is because of its message of the loving sovereignty of Aslan - even in the lives of those who don't know him and thus are totally unaware of it. I think this is best summed up when he says:

"I was the lion…who forced you to join with Aravis. I was the cat who comforted you among the houses of the dead. I was the lion who drove the jackals from you while you slept. I was the lion who gave the Horses the new strength of fear for the last mile so that you should reach King Lune in time. And I was the lion you do not remember who pushed the boat in which you lay, a child near death, so that it came to shore where a man sat, wakeful at midnight, to receive you."
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Re: Remembering and celebrating Jack

Postby fantasia_kitty » Nov 23, 2013 10:42 am

This may be a little bit off-topic, but I just wanted to post how cool it was to see all of the people post about Lewis on FB yesterday. I had several friends who posted favorite quotes, or how thankful they were for Lewis and his Narnia books. :) And I don't want to discredit Kennedy's life in any way, shape, or form, but I could definitely tell which man impacted my friends' lives more. :)
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Re: Remembering and celebrating Jack

Postby baptist » Sep 29, 2016 6:43 pm

FACT OF THE DAY: A Grief Observed was published today (September 29) in 1961, but it wasn't until after his death that it was attributed to Lewis.
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