Thursday, 27 October 2011

Mere Christianity: A sort of review.

http://dontconform.files.wordpress.com/2011/01/lewis_mere_l.jpg

(Massive book cover for those who have never seen one before)

 

He's a clever man, that C.S Lewis and I will give him that. No wonder Christians throw Mere Christianity at any willing atheist or agnostic, because a man of his intelligence gives people more reason to listen or read.

About half a year ago my born again Christian friend bought me a copy. This was after many debates we had had and I guess she felt that if I was using logic then she would show me Christian logic. She admitted atheists are smart, but said they are also stubborn and ignorant. So trying not to be stubborn or ignorant and pretending I fell under the "smart atheist" category I obliged to read it.

Before I get to that, there is something I have to admit. When I was told C.S Lewis was a former atheist, I automatically felt disappointed. I thought why would someone who has escaped mythological thinking and can look at life with rationality and reason (especially as he was born in 1898) and then to sink into the dogmatic practices of the Christian religion.  However, I have since accepted that I do not know everything, one day I could find myself slipping into "dogmatic practices" after all if I knew everything, why would I be here; reading. To quote someone on a forum I frequent, when I asked if any atheists had converted to a religion, a member replied “I feel anyone who is truly atheist and has learned of all the hypocrisies and badness in religion could never unlearn that." That is to say, could never follow religion again.  I would be inclined to agree if I were to have asked that question before I started this blog. Now I am no longer so sure.

Anyway... on to the book.  After several attempts of reading it, I finally gave in a purchased the audio book for £6.99 the other night! I couldn’t believe what I was doing but I was curious. I knew from what I had actually read that he was a clever man, and articulated his points well, yes using LOGIC and REASON as us atheists like to go on about so much. He delves into the usual morality issues and extends from there into tangents; I mean chapters on faith, forgiveness, sexual morality, marriage etc. He does cover these topics well, and seems to have answers for everything, I myself who is nowhere near as smart as he is, found me easily debunking some of his ways of rationalising religious ideas.

 

I won’t go into too much depth I would recommend reading it or (as I preferred) listening to it, but I don't think it is the conversion book Christians hope. Sure for a Christian I can see how they (who already believe what he is saying) can see that his logical way of explanation could be favourable to an atheist, but they forget the atheist is listening out for that which they may over look.

It helps to explain the beliefs Christians already have but not to reinforce how he came to change his way of thinking, or why he devotes himself to christ and not any other religion.

Still for his time C.S Lewis appears forward thinking, but it hasn't swayed me.