"Downing is keenly responsible in his approach to Lewis's biography and background and candid
about Lewis's reservations about mysticism in his own theology; the author's affection for his subject ably informs
this sensitive reading of Lewis's life and writings. Highly recommended."Library Journal
C. S. Lewis is generally regarded as a commonsense Christian whose theology is understandable and practical.
And yet, from his memoir Surprised by Joy to The Chronicles of Narnia, from his nonfiction essays
to his letters, C. S. Lewis's works display a distinct sense of the mystical. In this book David C. Downing explores
the breadth of Lewis's writing, introducing us to the context of Christian mysticism in Lewis's day and the writers
who most influenced him.
Not an uncritical admirer of mysticism, Lewis's critique of mysticism is instructive to us in this day of eclectic religious
thought. Exploring Lewis's sense of the mystical can help us safeguard ourselves from false mysticisms even as it
opens the way to a full experience of God's very presence with us. In the end you may find yourself drawn, as Lewis
put it, "into the region of awe."
David C. Downing is a professor of English at Elizabethtown College in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania. He has written numerous articles on C. S. Lewis as well as Planets in Peril: A Critical Study of C. S. Lewis's Ransom Trilogy. His book on C. S. Lewis's journey to faith, The Most Reluctant Convert, was named one of Booklist's Best Religion Books of 2002.
Simon Vance, winner of Earphones Awards and the prestigious Audie Award in 2006, was born in England and worked for the BBC as a radio news announcer and as a narrator for the Royal National Institute for the Blind. Besides narrating, he is involved in numerous stage-acting projects in the United States and Europe.
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