Concerning the body, CS Lewis suggests that Christians have tended to oscillate uneasily between contemptuous denigration and extravagant deification, whereas what is required is glad and obedient acceptance. In his book The Four Loves, he says that broadly speaking there are three different views of the body. There are “the Neo-pagans—the nudists and the sufferers from the Dark Gods, to whom the body is glorious”. Then there are those ascetic Pagans who called it the “tomb of the soul”, along with some Christians to whom the body is “a sack of dung”. And, thirdly, we have the view of Francis of Assisi, expressed by calling his body “Brother Ass”—useful and sturdy, but obstinate and in need of the stick.
In your book, Love Your God With All Your Mind, you criticize contemporary Western culture for being anti-intellectual and image-dominated. This is a fairly serious charge. What do you mean by it?
This article was published in Issue #292 (January 2003).
No one approaches an emotionally and politically charged issue like refugees out of disinterested neutrality. The very labels we attach, whether asylum seekers or illegal immigrants, puts us for or against refugees from the moment we open our mouths. In such a climate, it is only fair that I disclose the standpoint from which I approach the subject, by way of reminder that for many of us certain topics in Christian ethics, as well as being academically challenging, are highly personal. (more…)