Tuesday, December 31, 2002

Tuesday December 31, 2002

Filed under: General — m759 @ 3:17 PM

To Sir Anthony Hopkins
on His Birthday

From “The Wardrobe Wars,” by Paul Willis:

“I was back at Wheaton for a conference just a couple of years ago. During a period of announcements, a curator from the Wade Collection invited the conference participants to visit the collection and see the many books and papers that had belonged to Lewis and his associates. At the end of her announcement, she told us, ‘We also have the wardrobe that served as the original for the one in the Narnia Chronicles.’

There it was, that definite article again. In a remarkable display of maturity I put up my hand and said, ‘Excuse me, but the wardrobe is at Westmont College in Santa Barbara.’

The woman gave me a long, hard look of the ‘we are not amused’ variety. That was all. I wasn’t able to find her after the session was over to clear things up.

Not that we could have, really. Of course, if pressed, I suspect we would both admit the wardrobe we are really concerned with exists only within the covers of a book, and that not even this wardrobe is so important as the story of which it is a part, and that the story is not so important as the sense of infinite longing that it stirs within our souls, and that this longing is not so important as the One—more real than Aslan himself—to whom it directs us. But that would be asking too much of either the curator or myself. To worship at our respective wardrobes, whether they be in Jerusalem or Samaria, is indeed to live in the shadowlands. And that is where we like it.

Lewis himself would doubtless say that the physical wardrobes in our possession are but copies of a faint copy. He might even claim, to our horror, that no single wardrobe inspired the one found in his book. Then he might add under his breath, like the professor in The Last Battle who has passed on to the next life, ‘It’s all in Plato, all in Plato: bless me, what do they teach them at these schools!'”

1 Comment

  1. Yep, Plato said it all, so why are we still writing, I wonder.

    Comment by SuSu — Tuesday, December 31, 2002 @ 3:27 PM

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