Sunday, December 20, 2020

Losing the ability to think

Alan Jacobs on two of C.S. Lewis's essays, "The Inner Ring" and "Membership":
“The Inner Ring” is about how you lose your ability to think when you are connected to the wrong people. That is, when you are connected to people whose approval you desire, but who demand from you obedience and strict adherence to a narrow set of ideas, you will not learn to think well. In fact, you will stop thinking, because thinking might alienate you from that inner ring that you so desperately want to belong to. By contrast, when he talks about membership, he explores St. Paul’s notion of the many members of the body of Christ, the many organs of the body of Christ. What is essential to understanding those organs of the body is that each of them has a distinctive function. Therefore, there is an extraordinary diversity among them. But all of them are contributing to the health of the body. And when that’s the case, you don’t expect everyone to sound exactly like you who is a member of the same body. You expect there to be some degree of difference. You expect them to have some variety of possibilities that each of them is embodying—all of which are measured by the way that they contribute to the overall health of the body. ....
Online Conversation | Crisis & Christian Humanism with Alan Jacobs

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