By Stewart Goetz
whereas a lot has been written on Lewis and his paintings, nearly not anything has been written from a philosophical standpoint on his perspectives of happiness, excitement, ache, and the soul and physique. for that reason, nobody to this point has famous that his perspectives on those concerns are deeply fascinating and debatable, and-perhaps extra jarring-no one has but properly defined why Lewis by no means grew to become a Roman Catholic. Stewart Goetz's cautious research of Lewis's philosophical notion finds oft-overlooked implications and demonstrates that it was once, at its root, at odds with that of Thomas Aquinas and, thereby, the Roman Catholic Church.
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Extra resources for A Philosophical Walking Tour with C.S. Lewis: Why It Did Not Include Rome
As you perhaps know, I haven’t always been a Christian. I didn’t go to religion to make me happy. I always knew that a bottle of Port would do that. 89 If you want the comfort of happiness in this life for yourself, look elsewhere than to Christianity. So Lewis advised. Two points are relevant here. First, those who look for permanent happiness in this life are deceiving themselves (and, by implication, others). In an essay on the thought of William Morris, Lewis pointed out how the political left deceives itself if it thinks that enduring happiness is located in this world: The Left agrees with Morris that it is an absolute duty to labour for human happiness in this world.
Hedonistic Happiness 35 And physical pleasures can be mixed with mental pleasures. For example, in a letter to Mary van Deusen he wrote the following about physical and mixed pleasures: I feel strongly, with you, that there was something more than a physical pleasure in those youthful activities. Even now, at my age, do we often have a purely physical pleasure? Well, perhaps, a few of the more hopelessly prosaic ones; say, scratching or getting one’s shoes off when one’s feet are tired. I’m sure my meals are not a purely physical pleasure.
That Lewis believed this is evidenced by the fact that he could slide effortlessly from talking about the pleasures contained in the hubbub of everyday life (where that life surely includes virtuous activity) to talking about the happiness that is present in that life. . Whether there is, or whether there is not, in this world or in any other, the kind of happiness which one’s first experiences of cycling seemed to promise, still, on any view, it is something to have had the idea of it. 52 Lewis also affirmed the link between pleasure and happiness in the life of Paradisal man: Now Paradisal man always chose to follow God’s will.
A Philosophical Walking Tour with C.S. Lewis: Why It Did Not Include Rome by Stewart Goetz