If you ask me, it seems wholly fitting that Lewis would inwardly re-embrace the religion of his childhood in tandem with his "coming out" as a devotee of the make-believe and fairy tales of that same childhood. His whole philosophical life can be read as an attempt to recapture and cling to that lost time much in the same way he had by taking the name of poor Jacksie. He famously called Jesus Christ "the myth made fact" - as though he saw devotion to Christianity as the highest possible manner in which he could connect his real life to the myths and legends of his imagination. In other words, it could be argued that one of the great Christian thinkers of the 20th Century came to his faith in much the same way (and for much the same reason) as many present-day fans of fantasy-literature and RPGs often find themselves drawn to New Age or "neo-pagan" religions like Wicca.

But in spite of his reputation as a stoic defender of The Word, his approach to spreading it was quietly revolutionary in the world of the mid-20th Century. Conversion did not cure his skepticism - he rejected doctrinaire Creationism (today he'd be called a Theistic Evolutionist), referred to Biblical elements like The Flood as folklore and tweaked his Catholic mentor Tolkien by choosing the (even then) more liberal Anglican Church. In his speeches, books and radio addresses he pleaded for healing the still-bitter divides between differing Christian sects - a proud Irishman and son of Belfast, he'd have well known the grim results of sectarian conflict. Certainly, he was imperfect - his casual dismissals of the "competing" faiths of Islam and The East in general are sadly typical of English literature of the time. But even still, It's hard to imagine him finding much acceptance in the rigid world of today's Religious Right, and downright impossible to imagine any of the so-called "moral majority" uttering these words:

"A man who disbelieved the Christian story as fact but continually fed on it as myth would, perhaps, be more spiritually alive than one who assented and did not think much about it." - C.S. Lewis

As that quote suggests, Lewis' need to rework and re-examine his faith - even as he was embracing it - perhaps found its ultimate expression in Narnia. Following what he allegedly saw as a defeat in a Socratic Club debate with Elizabeth Anscombe, he turned from explicitly-theological writing and back toward his first love, children's literature, perhaps on the basis that a story that offered the same moral lessons without the burden of a specific "real" theology would be better received. After all, fairy tales of mysticism and the occult had brought him to The Light, why oughtn't it bring others?

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