Devin Brown, “A Life Observed: A Spiritual Biography of C.S. Lewis”

As the title advertises, this biography focuses on C.S. Lewis’s spiritual life; its method is largely to quote from Lewis’s own words and letters, and there is not a lot of authorial speculation.  So the book is straightforward and reliable, but there’s not much to surprise anyone already familiar with Lewis’s life and works.  Still a very enjoyable read, and inspiring — since that’s what Lewis and his spirituality were and are.

I do want to note a discussion at pages 52-53 of the role of fear in, especially, prompting initial steps toward belief.   You can read this passage here [link: ]. Lewis really sees nothing wrong with that, and neither did George MacDonald, one of Lewis’s influences.  In his own case, Lewis did not think his early fear was “more than was wholesome or even necessary,” and that it had three positive effects, namely that he began to pray, to read the Bible, and to obey his conscience.  I think all this is relevant in considering Pascal’s Wager; as I say in concluding my short essay, posted elsewhere on this site, “Why I Am a Christian (and You Should Be, Too), in 600 Words”:

Is all this too cold-blooded and calculating for a Christian?  Well, my aim is to persuade nonbelievers, and that fact is that you can’t persuade most nonbelievers except by appealing to their self-interest.  Once they believe, then they can begin shedding the cold-bloodedness, as Someone who shed His own blood for mankind taught us to do.