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Into the Region of Awe: Mysticism in C. S. Lewis

3.94  ·  Rating Details ·  69 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
C. S. Lewis is generally thought of as a commonsense Christian, one who offers theology that is understandable and morality that is practical. And yet, when writing about Narnia to a class of fifth graders who asked if it were possible to visit Aslan's country, Lewis replied that the only way he knew of was through death but then added this curious qualifier: "Perhaps some ...more
Hardcover, 207 pages
Published May 21st 2005 by IVP Books (first published April 21st 2005)
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Dec 09, 2008 Donald rated it it was ok
C. S. Lewis, by his own estimation, was not a mystic. The forthright admission of this fact is not enough to stop David C. Downing, professor of English at Elizabethtown College and author of two very useful works on Lewis, Planets in Peril: A Critical Study of C. S. Lewis’s Ransom Trilogy and The Most Reluctant Convert, from writing an entire book on Lewis and mysticism. To accomplish this feat, Downing must maintain the thesis that “Despite this disclaimer, Lewis must certainly be one of the m ...more
Apr 06, 2016 loeilecoute rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spirituality
I came across this book in the manner that apparently "random" occurrences happen synchronistically--somehow in doing an internet search on spiritual issues, in particular mysticism, I began to come across citations of CSLewis as a leader in spiritual thought during his lifetime. I have only known him as the author of the The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, the book from which the movies about Narnia are derived, which are near and dear to my heart. I was drawn to this book by its title: 'In t ...more
Feb 27, 2013 Lisa rated it really liked it
In reading books on spiritual formation, I came across many that were labeled mysticism. I did not enjoy, understand or appreciate most of what I read. When I saw this book in downloadable form from the public library, I was intrigued. CS Lewis' writing has keenly influenced my faith. I finished the book in record time. There was so much to ponder that I find writing about the book difficult yet necessary.
I found that just as I have had to clarify my definition of spiritual formation to "Christi
Oct 16, 2011 Carrie rated it really liked it
"If you read history you will find that Christians who did the most for the present world are just those who thought the most of the next. It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world, that they have become so ineffective in this. Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in; aim at earth and you will get neither." CS Lewis

This work was a welcome change and is heavier reading than I have been reading of late. It is a critical analysis the Christian writer C. S. Lewis
Brian Eshleman
Oct 10, 2011 Brian Eshleman rated it really liked it
Shelves: sburg-mp3, faith
Great book. I hold C.S. Lewis in such high regard that I've taken to believing that his ideas sprang straight from his massive intellect and fell perfectly polished onto the page for the page. This author dug into the roots of Jack's ideas, actually seeing the passages he underlined and the evolution of his ideas.

Downing's command of the body of Lewis's work is also impressive. He can highlight how major themes come through in his fiction and nonfiction. He can cover centuries of ideas and find
Jen H.
Jan 14, 2014 Jen H. rated it really liked it
Excellent and balanced book on Lewis and mysticism. First listened to it on Audible. Enjoyed it so much that I bought a hard copy version. That said, I highly regard Don Williams views and Lewis expertise, and since his review is posted directly below mine, I'm considering a second reading of this book just to see if I agree with Williams.
Sep 10, 2016 Danae rated it did not like it
unfortunately, this one bored me. the author had some interesting points, but i think the book should have been a lot shorter. and he seemed to repeat himself a lot.

also, i was distracted by all of the "lewis's" thoughout the book. i think, technically, that's acceptable, but "lewis' " looks and sounds much less awkward.
May 09, 2009 Cathi rated it it was amazing
Awesome book! A glimpse into C S Lewis' own views on mysticism and what books he was influenced by.
Gene Coatney
Oct 16, 2013 Gene Coatney rated it it was amazing
so glad to have read this. It was actually very healing in it's way and a great call to what being a Christian really is, whether it is mystical for you or not.
Paul Patterson
Jul 25, 2012 Paul Patterson rated it it was amazing
Shelves: c-s-lewis

The best secondary source I have read about C.S. Lewis. Absolutely inspiring and instructive!
Feb 02, 2016 Diane rated it it was amazing
Really beautiful. Largely based on the mysticism of C. S. Lewis who was greatly inspired and whose works are on my list to read next.
Mar 15, 2015 Emily rated it really liked it
Particularly enjoyed the insights into Lewis's Out of the Silent Planet and Perelandra.
Dec 18, 2013 Bryan rated it really liked it
Book is not only about the mysticism of Lewis but about the subject in general which gives the view of Lewis a context. Well written.
Jan 13, 2015 Karen added it
I liked this so much I will get a copy for my personal library.
(Yes our little town library I L L provided the copy for me to read. Thank God for libraries!)
Thomas Grosh IV
Oct 13, 2012 Thomas Grosh IV rated it it was amazing
C.S. Lewis' "mysticism" demands more attention. Downing begins the conversation. I wish that this book had received more attention. A topic for an Emerging Scholars Network Blog post?
Valerie Edmands
Jul 19, 2013 Valerie Edmands rated it it was amazing
Have read biographies of Lewis as well as many of his books. This brings both together nicely and gives much food for thought.
Jeff rated it it was amazing
Apr 12, 2014
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Aug 04, 2012
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I am a professor of English at Elizabethtown College in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. This is on the edge of "Amish country," and I sometimes pass a horse and buggy on my way to and from campus.

I grew up in Colorado, went to college in Santa Barbara, CA, and earned my PhD from UCLA. I currently teach professional and creative writing at Elizabethtown, as well as a first-year seminar on quest nar
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“As his (C. S. Lewis's) good friend Owen Barfield once remarked, Lewis radiated a sense that the spiritual world is home, that we are always coming back to a place we have never yet reached.” 12 likes
“Though there are exceptions, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Taoism tend to stress desirable states of consciousness, escaping the fretful, self-aware state of mind that so often makes everyday living a burden. For mystics from the Abrahamic faiths, however, the inward odyssey is also an upward odyssey, a quest for personal and vital communion with an infinite Being.” 3 likes
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