September 25, 2002

Gems from C.S. Lewis' "The Problem of Pain"
The golden apple of selfhood, thrown among the false gods, became an apple of discord because they scrambled for it. They did not know the first rule of the holy game, which is that every player must by all means touch the ball and then immediately pass it on. To be found with it in your hands is a fault: to cling to it, death. But when it flies to and fro among the players too swift for the eye to follow, and the great master Himself leads the revelry, giving Himself eternally to His creatures in the generation, and back to Himself in the sacrifice, of the Word, then indeed the eternal dance 'makes heaven drowsy with the harmony'.

Always it has summoned you out of yourself...if you attempt to cherish it, the desire itself will evade you. 'The door into life generally opens behind us', and 'the only wisdom' for one 'haunted with the scent of unseen roses, is work' (G. MacDonald). This secret fire goes out when you use the bellows: bank it down with what seems unlikely fuel of dogma and ethics, and then it will blaze.

"God loveth not Himself as Himself but as Goodness; and if there were aught better than God, He would love that and not Himself" (Theol. Germ., XXXII)

- CS Lewis, "The Problem of Pain"

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