Log24

Thursday, June 28, 2018

All in Plato

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:32 AM

"It's all in Plato" — C. S. Lewis

See too Platonic in this journal —

Counting symmetries with the orbit-stabilizer theorem

Monday, August 25, 2014

Plato Thanks the Academy

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 AM

(Continued)

See Shadowlands in this journal.
The film so titled was directed by Richard Attenborough,
President of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art,
who reportedly died on Sunday, August 24, 2014.

It’s all in Plato, all in Plato:
bless me, what do  they
teach them at these schools!”
— C. S. Lewis

Monday, April 25, 2011

Poetry and Physics

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:00 PM

One approach to the storied philosophers' stone, that of Jim Dodge in Stone Junction , was sketched in yesterday's Easter post. Dodge described a mystical "spherical diamond." The symmetries of the sphere form what is called in mathematics a Lie group . The "spherical" of Dodge therefore suggests a review of the Lie group Ein Garrett Lisi's poetic theory of everything.

A check of the Wikipedia article on Lisi's theory yields…

http://www.log24.com/log/pix11A/110425-WikipediaE8.jpg

       Diamond and E8 at Wikipedia

Related material — Eas "a diamond with thousands of facets"—

http://www.log24.com/log/pix11A/110425-Kostant.jpg

Also from the New Yorker  article

“There’s a dream that underlying the physical universe is some beautiful mathematical structure, and that the job of physics is to discover that,” Smolin told me later. “The dream is in bad shape,” he added. “And it’s a dream that most of us are like recovering alcoholics from.” Lisi’s talk, he said, “was like being offered a drink.”

A simpler theory of everything was offered by Plato. See, in the Timaeus , the Platonic solids—

Platonic solids' symmetry groups

Figure from this journal on August 19th, 2008.
See also July 19th, 2008.

It’s all in Plato, all in Plato:
bless me, what do  they
teach them at these schools!”
— C. S. Lewis

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Permanent

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:35 AM

A counterbalance to this morning's New York Times  story (see previous post) on a leftist Columbia University seminar might be C.S. Lewis's famous quote "It's all in Plato."  Unfortunately, a search for discussions of this quote yields, as the top result, a typically shoddy Christian polemic.

From a Christian professor at Seattle Pacific University

"Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) can serve us well as a negative example. Nietzsche's 'new morality' was 'mere innovation,' according to [C.S.] Lewis  [Christian Reflections ]. Nietzsche announced through Zarathustra (and numerous other ways) the relativity of all values and moralities, saying that each people had adhered to a different scheme of values worked out solely in connection with local conditions. 'Nothing is true, everything is permitted,' states Nietzsche, quoting one of Dostoevsky's characters."

No source is given for either the Nietzsche quote or the alleged Dostoevky quote.

This is from a web page titled "In Defense of the Permanent Things." The Christian professor is, according to a far better scholar, permanently wrong. See Note 8 on pages 586-587 of Walter Kaufmann's Basic Writings of Nietzsche  (Random House, November 28, 2000).

One hopes that a more capable scholar, such as Lewis himself* was, might at some point attack the Columbia University leftist nonsense— and Nietzsche— by quoting a more damning passage, such as

" 'Everything is false! Everything is permitted!' "

(from Kaufmann's edition of The Will to Power , Random House, 1968, page 326)

This version of the "Everything is permitted" quote is much more directly related to Nietzsche's relativism, as seen in this image of Kaufmann's edition—

   (Click to enlarge.)

http://www.log24.com/log/pix10B/101128-WillToPower326-327-sm.jpg

* Or Steven Michels of Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT.
  See his "Nietzsche, Nihilism, and the Virtue of Nature"— in particular, note 29.
 

Friday, August 10, 2007

Friday August 10, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 10:31 AM

The Ring of Gyges

10:31:32 AM ET

Commentary by Richard Wilhelm
on I Ching Hexagram 32:

"Duration is… not a state of rest, for mere standstill is regression.
Duration is rather the self-contained and therefore self-renewing
movement of an organized, firmly integrated whole, taking place in
accordance with immutable laws and beginning anew at every ending."

Related material

The Ring of the Diamond Theorem

Jung and the Imago Dei

Log24 on June 10, 2007:

 

WHAT MAKES IAGO EVIL? some people ask. I never ask. —Joan Didion

Iago states that he is not who he is. —Mark F. Frisch


"Not Being There,"
by Christopher Caldwell
,
from next Sunday's
New York Times Magazine:

"The chance to try on fresh identities was the great boon that life online was supposed to afford us. Multiuser role-playing games and discussion groups would be venues for living out fantasies. Shielded by anonymity, everyone could now pass a 'second life' online as Thor the Motorcycle Sex God or the Sage of Wherever. Some warned, though, that there were other possibilities. The Stanford Internet expert Lawrence Lessig likened online anonymity to the ring of invisibility that surrounds the shepherd Gyges in one of Plato's dialogues. Under such circumstances, Plato feared, no one is 'of such an iron nature that he would stand fast in justice.'Time, along with a string of sock-puppet scandals, has proved Lessig and Plato right."


"The Boy Who Lived,"
by Christopher Hitchens
,
from next Sunday's
New York Times Book Review:

On the conclusion of the Harry Potter series:"The toys have been put firmly back in the box, the wand has been folded up, and the conjuror is discreetly accepting payment while the children clamor for fresh entertainments. (I recommend that they graduate to Philip Pullman, whose daemon scheme is finer than any patronus.)"

I, on the other hand,
recommend Tolkien…
or, for those who are
already familiar with
Tolkien, Plato– to whom
"The Ring of Gyges" may
serve as an introduction.

"It's all in Plato, all in Plato:
bless me, what do they
teach them at these schools!"
C. S. Lewis

Monday, June 25, 2007

Monday June 25, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 3:00 PM
Object Lesson
 
“… the best definition
 I have for Satan
is that it is a real
  spirit of unreality.”

M. Scott Peck,
People of the Lie

“Far in the woods they sang
     their unreal songs,
Secure.  It was difficult
     to sing in face
Of the object.  The singers
     had to avert themselves
Or else avert the object.”

— Wallace Stevens,
   “Credences of Summer”


Today is June 25,
anniversary of the
birth in 1908 of
Willard Van Orman Quine.

Quine died on
Christmas Day, 2000.
Today, Quine’s birthday, is,
as has been noted by
Quine’s son, the point of the
calendar opposite Christmas–
i.e., “Anti-Christmas.”
If the Anti-Christ is,
as M. Scott Peck claims,
a spirit of unreality, it seems
fitting today to invoke
Quine, a student of reality,
  and to borrow the title of
 Quine’s Word and Object

Word:

An excerpt from
“Credences of Summer”
by Wallace Stevens:

“Three times the concentred
     self takes hold, three times
The thrice concentred self,
     having possessed

The object, grips it
     in savage scrutiny,
Once to make captive,
     once to subjugate
Or yield to subjugation,
     once to proclaim
The meaning of the capture,
     this hard prize,
Fully made, fully apparent,
     fully found.”

— “Credences of Summer,” VII,
    by Wallace Stevens, from
    Transport to Summer (1947)

Object:

From Friedrich Froebel,
who invented kindergarten:

Froebel's Third Gift

From Christmas 2005:

The Eightfold Cube

Click on the images
for further details.

For a larger and
more sophisticaled
relative of this object,
see yesterday’s entry
At Midsummer Noon.

The object is real,
not as a particular
physical object, but
in the way that a
mathematical object
is real — as a
pure Platonic form.

“It’s all in Plato….”
— C. S. Lewis

Friday, December 15, 2006

Friday December 15, 2006

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:02 AM

 Putting the
X
in Xmas

“It’s all in Plato, all in Plato;
bless me, what do they
teach them at these schools?”

C. S. Lewis

Apparently they teach them nihilism, empty rhetoric, and despair, as reflected in Borges, Baudrillard, and Benjamin, according to the art review below from today’s New York Times.  Let us hope that the late Peter Boyle, who died on Tuesday, Dec. 12, has moved beyond these now– singing “Heaven, I’m in Heaven,” rather than “Puttin’ on the Ritz.”

Ritz and Heaven

Black, White, and
Read All Over

by Randy Kennedy
in The New York Times
Friday, Dec. 15, 2006

“In one of Jorge Luis Borges’s best-known short stories, ‘Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote,’ a 20th-century French writer sets out to compose a verbatim copy of Cervantes’s 17th-century masterpiece simply because he thinks he can, originality perhaps not being all it’s cracked up to be.

He manages two chapters word for word, a spontaneous duplicate that Borges’s narrator finds to be ‘infinitely richer’ than the original because it contains all manner of new meanings and inflections, wrenched as it is from its proper time and context….”

[An artist’s version of a newspaper is]….

“a drawing of a copy of a version of what happened, holding a mirror up to nature with a refraction or two in between.  In a way that mixes Borges with a dollop of Jean Baudrillard and a heavy helping of Walter Benjamin, the work also upends ideas….”

The Work:

Pennsylvania Lottery
December 2006
Daily Number (Day):

Borges,
Menard’s Quixote, and
The Harvard Crimson
Mon., Dec. 11:
133
Baudrillard
(via a white Matrix)
Sun., Dec. 10:
569
Benjamin and
a black view of life in
“The Garden of Allah”
Sat., Dec. 9:
602

Click on numbers
for commentary.

Borges and Benjamin are
  referenced directly in the
  commentary. For Baudrillard,
  see Richard Hanley on
  Baudrillard and The Matrix:

“There is nothing new under the sun. With the death of the real, or rather with its (re)surrection, hyperreality both emerges and is already always reproducing itself.”  –Jean Baudrillard

Related material:

To Be,”

The Transcendent Signified,”

and…

Postmodern Religion


.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Wednesday November 22, 2006

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Windmill and Diamond

From “Today in History,”
by The Associated Press:

On this date:

In 1965, the musical
“Man of La Mancha”
opened in New York.

In 1975, Juan Carlos
was proclaimed
King of Spain.

Today’s birthdays:

… Movie director
Arthur Hiller is 83….

Hiller directed the 1972 film
of “Man of La Mancha.”

A quotation from that film:

“When life itself seems lunatic,
who knows where madness lies?”

Adapted from Log24 entries of
Jan. 5, 2003, and Feb. 1, 2003:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix06B/061122-TimeEternity.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

One can approach these symbols in either a mathematical or a literary fashion. For a mathematical discussion of the symbols’ structure, see Theme and Variations. Those who prefer literary discussions may make up their own stories.

 
“Plato is wary of all forms of rapture other than reason’s. He is most deeply leery of, because himself so susceptible to, the literary imagination. He speaks of it as a kind of holy madness or intoxication and goes on to link it to Eros, another derangement that joins us, but very dangerously, with the gods.”
 
Rebecca Goldstein in
    The New York Times,
    December 16, 2002 
 
“It’s all in Plato, all in Plato;
bless me, what do they
teach them at these schools?”
 
— C. S. Lewis in
The Narnia Chronicles

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Saturday September 23, 2006

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM

“A corpse will be
transported by express!”

Under the Volcano,
by Malcolm Lowry (1947)


Dietrich


Minogue

“It has a ghastly familiarity,
like a half-forgotten dream.”

 — Poppy (Gene Tierney) in
The Shanghai Gesture.”

Temptation


Locomotive

The Star
of Venus


Locomotion

Joan Didion, The White Album:

“We tell ourselves stories in order to live….

We interpret what we see, select the most workable of multiple choices. We live entirely, especially if we are writers, by the imposition of a narrative line upon disparate images, by the ‘ideas‘ with which we have learned to freeze the shifting phantasmagoria which is our actual experience.

Or at least we do for a while. I am talking here about a time when I began to doubt the premises of all the stories I had ever told myself, a common condition but one I found troubling.”

From Patrick Vert,
The Narrative of Acceleration:

“There are plenty of anecdotes to highlight the personal, phenomenological experience of railway passage…

… a unique study on phantasmagoria and the history of imagination. The word originates [in] light-projection, the so-called ghost-shows of the early 19th century….

… thought becomes a phantasmagorical process, a spectral, representative location for the personal imagination that had been marginalized by scientific rationalism….

This phantasmagoria became more mediated over time…. Perception became increasingly visually oriented…. As this occurred, a narrative formed to encapsulate the phenomenology of it all….”

For such a narrative, see
the Log24.net entries of

From a Christian fairy tale:

Aslan’s last words come at the end of The Last Battle: ‘There was a real railway accident […] Your father and mother and all of you are–as you used to call it in the Shadow-Lands–dead. The term is over: the holidays have begun. The dream is ended: this is the morning.’….

Aslan is given the last word in these quiet but emphatic lines. He is the ultimate arbiter of reality: “‘There was a real railway accident.'” Plato, in addition to the Christian tradition, lies behind the closing chapters of The Last Battle. The references here to the Shadowlands and to the dream refer back to an earlier explanation by Digory, now the Lord Digory:

“[…] that was not the real Narnia. That had a beginning and an end. It was only a shadow or a copy of the real Narnia, which has always been here and always will be here: just as our world, England and all, is only a shadow or copy of something in Aslan’s real world. [….] Of course it is different; as different as a real thing is from a shadow or as waking life is from a dream. […] It’s all in Plato, all in Plato: bless me, what do they teach them at these schools!”

Joy Alexander, Aslan’s Speech

“I was reading Durant’s section on Plato, struggling to understand his theory of the ideal Forms that lay in inviolable perfection out beyond the phantasmagoria. (That was the first, and I think the last, time that I encountered that word.)”

Whether any of the above will be of use in comforting the families of those killed in yesterday morning’s train wreck in Germany is not clear.  Pope Benedict XVI, like C. S. Lewis, seems to think Greek philosophy may be of some use to those dealing with train wrecks:

“Modifying the first verse of the Book of Genesis, the first verse of the whole Bible, John began the prologue of his Gospel with the words: ‘In the beginning was the logos.‘ This is the very word used by the emperor: God acts, syn logo, with logos. Logos means both reason and word– a reason which is creative and capable of self-communication, precisely as reason. John thus spoke the final word on the biblical concept of God, and in this word all the often toilsome and tortuous threads of biblical faith find their culmination and synthesis. In the beginning was the logos, and the logos is God, says the Evangelist.”

Remarks of the Pope at the University of Regensburg on Sept. 12, 2006

Friday, December 16, 2005

Friday December 16, 2005

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 2:00 PM
Jesus vs. the Goddess:
A Brief Chronology

In 1946, Robert Graves published King Jesus, an historical novel based on the theory and Graves’ own historical conjecture that Jesus was, in fact, the rightful heir to the Israelite throne… written while he was researching and developing his ideas for The White Goddess.”

In 1948, C. S. Lewis finished the first draft of The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, a novel in which one of the main characters is “the White Witch.”

In 1948, Robert Graves published The White Goddess.

In 1949, Robert Graves published Seven Days in New Crete [also titled Watch the North Wind Rise], “a novel about a social distopia in which Goddess worship is (once again?) the dominant religion.”

Lewis died on November 22, 1963, the day John F. Kennedy was killed.

Related material:
Log24, December 10, 2005

Graves died on December 7 (Pearl Harbor Day), 1985.

Related material:
Log24, December 7, 2005, and
Log24, December 11, 2005

Jesus died, some say, on April 7 in the year 30 A.D.

Related material:

Art Wars, April 7, 2003:
Geometry and Conceptual Art,

Eight is a Gate, and

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05B/051216-PlatoDiamond.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Plato’s Diamond

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05B/051216-Motto.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

— Motto of
Plato’s Academy

“Plato is wary of all forms of rapture other than reason’s. He is most deeply leery of, because himself so susceptible to, the literary imagination. He speaks of it as a kind of holy madness or intoxication and goes on to link it to Eros, another derangement that joins us, but very dangerously, with the gods.”
 
Rebecca Goldstein in
    The New York Times,
    three years ago today
    (December 16, 2002) 
 
“It’s all in Plato, all in Plato;
 bless me, what do they
teach them at these schools?”
 
— C. S. Lewis in
the Narnia Chronicles

“How much story do you want?”
— George Balanchine

Friday, December 9, 2005

Friday December 9, 2005

Filed under: General — m759 @ 5:01 PM
Fairy Tales

It’s all in Plato.”
— C. S. Lewis 

Talking Narnia to Your Neighbors
ChristianityToday.com
by Keri Wyatt Kent

“The summer Lindy Lowry was 20,
she rejected the Christian faith
she’d had since childhood–
dismissing it as a fairy tale
that made no sense
in a world full of evil.”

Tales from
The New Yorker:

       The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05B/051209-Cin.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

  “Brokeback Mountain” and

“The Chronicles of Narnia.”

  by ANTHONY LANE

Brokeback Mountain:

“This slow and stoic movie, hailed as a gay Western, feels neither gay nor especially Western….”

The Chronicles of Narnia:

“If the movie has to forgo Lewis’s narrative tone, with its grimly Oxonian blend of the bluff and the twee (‘And now we come to one of the nastiest things in this story’), that is fine by me. And, if there is Deep Magic, as Lewis called it, in his tale, it resides not in the springlike coming of Aslan but in the dreamlike, compacted poetry of Lewis’s initial inspiration—the sight of a faun….”

Concluding Unscientific Postscript

From The Circle is Unbroken,
a web page in memory of
June Carter Cash:

Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch (“Q”), quoting Socrates–

“By Hera,” says Socrates, “a fair resting-place, full of summer sounds and scents! This clearing, with the agnus castus in high bloom and fragrant, and the stream beneath the tree so gratefully cool to our feet! Judging from the ornaments and statues, I think this spot must be sacred to Acheloüs and the Nymphs.” 

See, too, Q’s quoting of Socrates’s prayer to Pan, as well as the cover of the May 19, 2003, New Yorker:

 

  For a discussion of the music that
Pan is playing (today’s site music),
see my entry of Sept. 10, 2002,
The Sound of Hanging Rock.”

Monday, January 10, 2005

Monday January 10, 2005

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 11:00 AM

Realism

In memory of Humphrey Carpenter:

"Aslan's last words come at the end of The Last Battle: 'There was a real railway accident […] Your father and mother and all of you are–as you used to call it in the Shadow-Lands–dead. The term is over: the holidays have begun. The dream is ended: this is the morning.' The final paragraph of the novel, which follows these words, functions as a coda; it is full of the conventions which signal the wrapping up of a story. This direct speech is the true climax of the Chronicles. Aslan is given the last word in these quiet but emphatic lines. He is the ultimate arbiter of reality: 'There was a real railway accident.' Plato, in addition to the Christian tradition, lies behind the closing chapters of The Last Battle….

'It's all in Plato, all in Plato: bless me, what do they teach them at these schools!' "

Joy Alexander, Aslan's Speech

See also From Tate to Plato (Nov. 19, 2004), Habeas Corpus (Nov. 24, 2004), and the Log24 entries of last Friday through Sunday.




 
"There was a real railway accident."

Wednesday, December 31, 2003

Wednesday December 31, 2003

Filed under: General — m759 @ 8:00 PM

In memory of
John Gregory Dunne,
who died on
Dec. 30, 2003
:

For further details, click
on the black monolith.

See, too, last year's entries
for Dec. 30 and 31:

"… 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!' "

Friday, July 25, 2003

Friday July 25, 2003

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 11:59 PM

Realism in Literature:
Under the Volcano

Mexican Volcano Blast
Scares Residents

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Filed at 11:13 p.m. EDT Friday, July 25, 2003

PUEBLA, Mexico (AP) — Mexico’s Popocatepetl volcano shot glowing rock and ash high into the air Friday night, triggering a thunderous explosion that panicked some residents in nearby communities.

Here are 3 webcam views of the volcano.   Nothing to see at the moment.

Literary background:

Malcolm Lowry’s Under the Volcano,

Plato, Pegasus, and the Evening Star,

A Mass for Lucero,

Shining Forth,

and, as background for today’s earlier entry on Platonism and Derrida,

The Shining of May 29.

Vignette

For more on Plato and Christian theology, consult the highly emotional site

Further Into the Depths of Satan:

“…in The Last Battle on page 170 [C. S.] Lewis has Digory saying, ‘It’s all in Plato, all in Plato.’ Now, Lewis calls Plato ‘an overwhelming theological genius’ (Reflections on the Psalms, p. 80)….”

The title “Further Into the Depths of Satan,” along with the volcano readings above, suggests a reading from a related site:

Gollum and the Mystery of Evil:

“Gollum here clearly represents Frodo’s hidden self. It is ‘as if we are witnessing the darkest night of the soul and one side attempting to master the other’ (Jane Chance 102). Then Frodo, whose finger has been bitten off, cries out, and Gollum holds the Ring aloft, shrieking: ‘Precious, precious, precious! My Precious! O my Precious!’ (RK, VI, 249). At this point, stepping too near the edge, he falls into the volcano, taking the Ring with him. With this, the mountain shakes.’ “

In the above two-step vignette, the part of Gollum is played by the author of “Further Into the Depths of Satan,” who called  C. S. Lewis a fool “that was and is extremely useful to his father the devil.”

See Matthew 5:22: “…whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.” 

Sunday, January 5, 2003

Sunday January 5, 2003

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 12:12 AM

Whirligig

Thus the whirligig of time brings in his revenges.
Twelfth Night. Act v. Sc. 1.

Twelfth night is the night of January 5-6.

Tonight is twelfth night in Australia; 4 AM Jan. 5
in New York City is 8 PM Jan. 5 in Sydney.


An October 6 entry:

Twenty-first Century Fox

On Sunday, October 6, 1889, the Moulin Rouge music hall opened in Paris, an event that to some extent foreshadowed the opening of Fox Studios Australia in Sydney on November 7, 1999.  The Fox ceremonies included, notably, Kylie Minogue singing "Diamonds are a Girl's Best Friend." 

 

Red Windmill

Kylie Minogue

For the mathematical properties of the red windmill (moulin rouge) figure at left, see Diamond Theory.

An October 5 entry:

The Message from Vega

"Mercilessly tasteful"
 — Andrew Mueller,
review of Suzanne Vega's
"Songs in Red and Gray"


In accordance with the twelfth-night
"whirligig of time" theme,
here are two enigmatic quilt blocks:

Devil's Claws, or
Hourglass Var. 3

Yankee Puzzle, or
Hourglass Var. 5

 
One can approach these symbols in either a literary or a mathematical fashion. For a purely mathematical discussion of the differences in the two symbols' structure, see Diamond Theory. Those who prefer literary discussions may make up their own stories.
 
"Plato is wary of all forms of rapture other than reason's. He is most deeply leery of, because himself so susceptible to, the literary imagination. He speaks of it as a kind of holy madness or intoxication and goes on to link it to Eros, another derangement that joins us, but very dangerously, with the gods."
 
Rebecca Goldstein in The New York Times,
    December 16, 2002 
 
"It's all in Plato, all in Plato; bless me,
what do they teach them at these schools?"
 
— C. S. Lewis in the Narnia Chronicles 

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!'”

Powered by WordPress