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C. S. Lewis Quotes

100+ of the best book quotes from C. S. Lewis
  1. #1
    “Suddenly the King leaned hard on his friend’s neck and bowed his head.
    ‘Jewel,’ he said, ‘what lies before us? Horrible thoughts arise in my heart. If we had died before today we should have been happy.’
    ‘Yes,’ said Jewel. ‘We have lived too long. The worst thing in the world has come upon us.’ They stood like that for a minute or two and then went on.”
  2. #2
    “The Bear lay on the ground, moving feebly. Then it mumbled in its throaty voice, bewildered to the last, ‘I--I don’t--understand,’ laid its big head down on the grass as quietly as a child going to sleep, and never moved again.”
  3. #3
    ″‘Yes,’ said Aslan, though [Eustace and Jill] had not spoken, ‘While he lay dreaming, his name was Time. Now that he is awake he will have a new one.‘”
  4. #4
    ″‘Excuse me,’ said the Cat very politely, ‘but this interests me. Does your friend from Calormen say the same?’
    ‘Assuredly,’ said the Calormene. ‘The enlightened Ape--Man, I mean--is in the right. Aslan means neither less nor more than Tash.’
    ‘Especially, Aslan means no more than Tash?’ suggested the Cat.
    ‘No more at all,’ said the Calormene, looking the Cat straight in the face.
    ‘Is that good enough for you, Ginger?’ said the Ape.
    ‘Oh certainly,’ said Ginger cooly, ‘Thank you very much. I only wanted to be quite clear. I think I am beginning to understand.‘”
  5. #5
    “A new idea came into Tirian’s head. He dropped his sword, darted forward, in under the sweep of the Tarkaan’s scimitar, seized his enemy by the belt with both hands, and jumped back into the stable shouting:
    ‘Come in and meet Tash yourself!’
    There was a deafening noise. As when the Ape had been flung in, the earth shook and there was a blinding light.”
  6. #6
    “I have come home at last! This is my real country! I belong here. This is the land I have been looking for all my life, though I never knew it till now.”
  7. #7
    “I’d rather be killed fighting for Narnia than grow old and stupid at home and perhaps go about in a bath-chair and then die in the end just the same.”
  8. #8
    “Tirian had never dreamed that one of the results of an Ape’s setting up a false Aslan would be to stop people from believing in the real one.”
  9. #9
    “Remember that all worlds draw to an end and that noble death is a treasure which no one is too poor to buy.”
  10. #10
    “Then he fixed his eyes upon Tirian, and Tirian came near, trembling, and flung himself at the Lion’s feet, and the Lion kissed him and said, ‘Well done, last of the Kings of Narnia who stood firm at the darkest hour.‘”
  11. #11
    “I overcame my fear and questioned the Glorious One and said, Lord, is it then true, as the Ape said, that thou and Tash are one? The Lion growled so that the earth shook ... and said, It is false. Not because he and I are one, but because we are opposites, I take to me the services which thou hast done to him, for I and he are of such different kinds that no service which is vile can be done to me, and none which is not vile can be done to him. Therefore if any man swear by Tash and keep his oath for the oath’s sake, it is by me that he has truly sworn, though he know it not, and it is I who reward him. And if any man do a cruelty in my name, then, though he says the name of Aslan, it is Tash whom he serves and by Tash his deed is accepted. Dost thou understand, Child? I said, Lord, Thou knowest how much I understand. But I said also (for the truth constrained me), Yet I have been seeking Tash all my days. Beloved, said the Glorious One, unless thy desire had been for me thou wouldst not have sought so long and so truly. For all find what they truly seek.”
  12. #12
    ″‘Peter, High King of Narnia,’ said Aslan. ‘Shut the Door.’
    Peter, shivering with cold, leaned out into the darkness and pulled the Door to. It scraped over ice as he pulled it. Then, rather clumsily (for even in that moment his hands had gone numb and blue) he took out a golden key and locked it.‘”
  13. #13
    “I have been wandering to find him and my happiness is so great that it even weakens me like a wound. And this is the marvel of marvels, that he called me Beloved, me who am but as a dog.”
  14. #14
    “‘Do you think I care if Aslan dooms me to death?’ said the King. ‘That would be nothing, nothing at all. Would it not be better to be dead than to have this horrible fear that Aslan has come and is not like the Aslan we have believed in and longed for? It is as if the sun rose one day and were a black sun.‘”
  15. #15
    “And then she understood the devilish cunning of the enemies’ plan. By mixing a little truth with it they had made their lie far stronger.”
  16. #16
    “No fear of that... Have you not guessed?... There was a real railway accident ... Your father and mother and all of you are--as you used to call it in the Shadow-Lands--dead. The term is over: the holidays have begun. The dream is ended: this is the morning.”
  17. #17
    “And has He spoke He no longer looked to them like a lion; but the things that began to happen after that were so great and beautiful that I cannot write them. And for us this is the end of all the stories, and we can most truly say that they all lived happily ever after. But for them it was only the beginning of the real story. All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at least they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story, which no one on earth has read: which goes on forever: in which every chapter is better than the one before.”
  18. #18
    “They have chosen cunning instead of belief. Their prison is only in their minds, yet they are in that prison; and so afraid of being taken in that they cannot be taken out.”
  19. #19
    “Tirian, with his head against Jewel’s flank, slept as soundly as if he were in his royal bed at Cair Paravel, till the sound of a gong beating awoke him and he sat up and saw that there was firelight on the far side of the stable and knew that the hour had come. ‘Kiss me, Jewel,’ he said. ‘For certainly this is our last night on earth. And if ever I offended against you in any matter great or small, forgive me now.’
    ‘Dear King,’ said the Unicorn, ‘I could almost wish you had, so that I might forgive it. Farewell. We have known great joys together. If Aslan gave me my choice I would choose no other life than the life I have had and no other death than the one we go to.‘”
  20. #20
    “Has not one of the poets said that a noble friend is the best gift and a noble enemy the next best?”
  21. #21
    “‘Yes,’ said Queen Lucy. ‘In our world too, a Stable once had something inside it that was bigger than our whole world.‘”
  22. #22
    “For the power of Man to make himself what he pleases means, as we have seen, the power of some men to make other men what they please.”
  23. #23
    “If man chooses to treat himself as raw material, raw material he will be.”
  1. #24
    “The whole point of seeing through something is to see something through it.”
  2. #25
    “A wholly transparent world is an invisible world. To ‘see through’ all things is the same as not to see.”
  3. #26
    “The final stage is come when Man by eugenics, by pre-natal conditioning, and by an education and propaganda based on a perfect applied psychology, has obtained full control over himself.”
  4. #27
    “There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.”
  5. #28
    “Love is not affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person’s ultimate good as far as it can be obtained”
  6. #29
    “Love is not affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person’s ultimate good as far as it can be obtained.”
  7. #30
    “Some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again.”
  8. #31
    “Being in love is a good thing, but it is not the best thing. There are many things below it, but there are also things above it. You cannot make it the basis of a whole life. ”
  9. #32
    “Love may forgive all infirmities and love still in spite of them: but Love cannot cease to will their removal.”
  10. #33
    “Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art…. It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things which give value to survival.”
  11. #34
    “Do not waste time bothering whether you “love” your neighbor; act as if you did. As soon as we do this we find one of the great secrets. When you are behaving as if you loved someone you will presently come to love him.”
  12. #35
    “If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world.”
  13. #36
    “To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.”
  14. #37
    “Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: “What! You too? I thought I was the only one.”
  15. #38
    “Being in love” first moved them to promise fidelity: this quieter love enables them to keep the promise.”
  16. #39
    “They can have this love for each other even at those moments when they do not like each other; as you love yourself even when you do not like yourself. They can retain this love even when each would easily, if they allowed themselves, be ‘in love’ with someone else. ‘Being in love’ first moved them to promise fidelity: this quieter love enables them to keep the promise. it is on this love that the engine of marriage is run: being in love was the explosion that started it.”
  17. #40
    “Love is something more stern and splendid than mere kindness.”
  18. #41
    “of course, ceasing to be ‘in love’ need not mean ceasing to love. Love in this second sense — love as distinct from ‘being in love’ — is not merely a feeling. It is a deep unity, maintained by the will and deliberately strengthened by habit; reinforced by (in Christian marriages) the grace which both partners ask, and receive, from God.”
  19. #42
    “To love at all is to be vulnerable.”
  20. #43
    “You have not chosen one another, but I have chosen you for one another.”
  21. #44
    “Gratitude looks to the Past and love to the Present; fear, avarice, lust, and ambition look ahead.”
  22. #45
    “Do not waste time bothering whether you “love” your neighbor; act as if you did. As soon as we do this we find one of the great secrets. When you are behaving as if you loved someone you will presently come to love him.”
  23. #46
    “And in fact, whatever people say, the state called ‘being in love’ usually does not last. If the old fairy-tale ending ‘They lived happily ever after’ is taken to mean ‘They felt for the next fifty years exactly as they felt the day before they were married,’ then it says what probably never was nor ever would be true, and would be highly undesirable if it were. Who could bear to live in that excitement for even five years? What would become of your work, your appetite, your sleep, your friendships?”
  1. #47
    “Affection is responsible for nine-tenths of whatever solid and durable happiness there is in our lives”
  2. #48
    “If any one age really attains, by eugenics and scientific education, the power to make its descendants what it pleases, all men who live after it are the patients of that power.”
  3. #49
    “Man’s final conquest has proved to be the abolition of Man.”
  4. #50
    “Human nature will be the last part of Nature to surrender to Man. The battle will then be won.”
  5. #51
    “What we call Man’s power over Nature turns out to be a power exercised by some men over other men with Nature as its instrument.”
  6. #52
    “Those who have attained everlasting life in the vision of God doubtless know very well that it is no mere bribe, but the very consummation of their earthly discipleship; but we who have not yet attained it cannot know this in the same way, and cannot even begin to know it at all except by continuing to obey and finding the first reward of our obedience in our increasing power to desire the ultimate reward.”
  7. #53
    “Just in proportion as the desire grows, our fear lest it should be a mercenary desire will die away and finally be recognized as an absurdity. But probably this will not, for most of us, happen in a day; poetry replaces grammar, gospel replaces law, longing transforms obedience, as gradually as the tide lifts a grounded ship.”
  8. #54
    “When God is our Holy Father, sovereignty, holiness, omniscience, and immutability do not terrify us; they leave us full of awe and gratitude.”
  9. #55
    ″ A negative term has been substituted for a positive, and this is of more than philological importance. The negative ideal of Unselfishness carries with it the suggestion not primarily of securing good things for others, but of going without them ourselves, as if our abstinence and not their happiness was the important point.”
  10. #56
    “Now, if we are made for heaven, the desire for our proper place will be already in us, but not yet attached to the true object, and will even appear as the rival of that object.”
  11. #57
    “Our Lord finds our desires, not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”
  12. #58
    ″ If a trans-temporal, transfinite good is our real destiny, then any other good on which our desire fixes must be in some degree fallacious, must bear at best only a symbolical relation to what will truly satisfy.”
  13. #59
    “There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations - these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub and exploi.... But our merriment must be of that kind (and it is, in fact, the merriest kind) which exists between people who have, from the outset, taken each other seriously - no flippancy, no superiority, no presumption.”
  14. #60
    “If you asked twenty good men today what they thought the highest of the virtues, nineteen of them would reply, Unselfishness. But if you asked almost any of the great Christians of old he would have replied, Love. You see what has happened?”
  15. #61
    “All day long we are, in some degree helping each other to one or the other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all of our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics.”
  16. #62
    “The scriptural picture of heaven is therefore just as symbolical as the picture which our desire, unaided, invents for itself; heaven is not really full of jewelry any more than it is really the beauty of Nature, or a fine piece of music.”
  17. #63
    “The natural appeal of this authoritative imagery is to me, at first, very small. At first sight it chills, rather than awakes, my desire. And that is just what I ought to expect. If Christianity could tell me no more of the far-off land than my own temperament led me to surmise already, then Christianity would be no higher than myself.”
  18. #64
    “We are always falling in love or quarreling, looking for jobs or fearing to lose them, getting ill and recovering, following public affairs. If we let ourselves, we shall always be waiting for some distraction or other to end before we can really get down to our work.′
  19. #65
    “But there is one other important similarity between the schoolboy and ourselves. If he is an imaginative boy he will, quite probably, be reveling in the English poets and romancers suitable to his age some time before he begins to suspect that Greek grammar is going to lead him to more and more enjoyments of this same sort.”
  20. #66
    “The promises of Scripture may very roughly be reduced to five heads. It is promised, firstly, that we shall be with Christ; secondly, that we shall be like Him; .... The first question I ask about these promises is: “Why any of them except the first?” Can anything be added to the conception of being with Christ? For it must be true, as an old writer says, that he who has God and everything else has no more than he who has God only.”
  21. #67
    “We live, in fact, in a world starved for solitude, silence, and private: and therefore starved for meditation and true friendship.”
  22. #68
    “It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest most uninteresting person you can talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare.”
  23. #69
    “Like a good chess player, Satan is always trying to maneuver you into a position where you can save your castle only by losing your bishop.”
  1. #70
    “Praise is the mode of love which always has some element of joy in it.”
  2. #71
    “The very nature of Joy makes nonsense of our common distinction between having and wanting.”
  3. #72
    “No soul that seriously and constantly desires joy will ever miss it. Those who seek find. To those who knock it is opened.”
  4. #73
    “Joy bursts in our lives when we go about doing the good at hand and not trying to manipulate things and times to achieve joy.”
  5. #74
    “Joy is the serious business of heaven.”
  6. #75
    “Child, to say the very thing you really mean, the whole of it, nothing more or less or other than what you really mean; that’s the whole art and joy of words.”
  7. #76
    “With my mother’s death all settled happiness, all that was tranquil and reliable, disappeared from my life. There was to be much fun, many pleasures, many stabs of Joy; but no more of the old security. It was sea and islands now; the great continent had sunk like Atlantis.”
  8. #77
    “If a thing is free to be good it is also free to be bad. And free will is what has made evil possible. Why, then, did God give them free will? Because free will, though it makes evil possible, is also the only thing that makes possible any love or goodness or joy worth having.”
  9. #78
    “The demand of the loveless and the self-imprisoned that they should be allowed to blackmail the universe: that till they consent to be happy (on their own terms) no one else shall taste joy: that theirs should be the final power; that Hell should be able to veto Heaven.”
  10. #79
    “Dearest Daughter. I knew you would not be long in coming to me. Joy shall be yours.”
  11. #80
    “Praise is the mode of love which always has some element of joy in it.”
  12. #81
    “If you want to get warm you must stand near the fire: if you want to be wet you must get into the water. If you want joy, power, peace, eternal life, you must get close to, or even into, the thing that has them. They are not a sort of prize which God could, if He chose, just hand out to anyone.”
  13. #82
    “I sometimes wonder whether all pleasures are not substitutes for joy.”
  14. #83
    “Into the void of silence, into the empty space of nothing, the joy of life is unfurled.”
  15. #84
    “Joy is never in our power and pleasure often is.”
  16. #85
    “When we are such as He can love without impediment, we shall in fact be happy.”
  17. #86
    “All Joy reminds. It is never a possession, always a desire for something longer ago or further away or still ‘about to be’.”
  18. #87
    “Those who put themselves in His hands will become perfect, as He is perfect- perfect in love, wisdom, joy, beauty, health, and immortality. The change will not be completed in this life, for death is an important part of the treatment. How far the change will have gone before death in any particular Christian is uncertain.”
  19. #88
    “Either the day must come when joy prevails and all the makers of misery are no longer able to infect it, or else, for ever and ever, the makers of misery can destroy in others the happiness they reject for themselves.”
  20. #89
    “Dance and game are frivolous, unimportant down here; for “down here” is not their natural place. Here, they are a moment’s rest from the life we were placed here to live. But in this world everything is upside down. That which, if it could be prolonged here, would be a truancy, is likest that which in a better country is the End of ends. Joy is the serious business of Heaven.”
  21. #90
    “At the moment, then, of Man’s victory over Nature, we find the whole human race subjected to some individual men, and those individuals subjected to that in themselves which is purely ‘natural’ – to their irrational impulses.”
  22. #91
    “The being who stood to gain and the being who has been sacrificed are one and the same.”
  23. #92
    “Either we are rational spirit obliged for ever to obey the absolute values of the Tao . . . or else we are mere nature to be kneaded and cut into new shapes for the pleasures of masters who must, by hypothesis, have no motive but their own ‘natural’ impulses.”

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  1. #93
    “For magic and applied science alike the problem is how to subdue reality to the wishes of men.”
  2. #94
    “I am very doubtful whether history shows us one example of a man who, having stepped outside traditional morality and attained power, has used that power benevolently.”
  3. #95
    “The spring can’t last.”
  4. #96
    “The Christian says, ‘Creatures are not born with desires unless satisfaction for those desires exists. A baby feels hunger: well, there is such a thing as food. A duckling wants to swim: well, there is such a thing as water. Men feel sexual desire: well, there is such a thing as sex.”
  5. #97
    “If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world. If none of my earthly pleasures satisfy it, that does not prove that the universe is a fraud.”
  6. #98
    ″‘Child,’ said the Lion, ‘I am telling you your story, not hers. No one is told any story but their own.‘”
  7. #99
    ″‘In other words,’ it continued, ‘you can’t ride. That’s a drawback. I’ll have to teach you as we go along. If you can’t ride, can you fall?’
    ‘I suppose anyone can fall,’ said Shasta.
    ‘I mean can you fall and get up again without crying and mount again and fall again and yet not be afraid of falling?‘”
  8. #100
    “But one of the worst results of being a slave and being forced to do things is that when there is no one to force you any more you find you have almost lost the power of forcing yourself.”
  9. #101
    “Although Lasaraleen had said she was dying to hear Aravis’s story, she showed no sign of really wanting to hear it at all. She was, in fact, much better at talking than at listening... The fuss she made about choosing the dresses nearly drove Aravis mad. She remembered now that Lasaraleen had always been like that, interested in clothes and parties and gossip.”
  10. #102
    ″‘It is very true,’ said Edmund. ‘But even a traitor may mend. I have known one that did.’ And he looked very thoughtful.”
  11. #103
    ″‘My good Horse, you’ve lost nothing but your self-conceit. No, no, cousin. Don’t put back your ears and shake your mane at me. If you are really so humbled as you sounded a minute ago, you must learn to listen to sense. You’re not quite the great Horse you had come to think, from living among poor dumb horses. Of course you were braver and cleverer than them. You could hardly help being that. It doesn’t follow that you’ll be anyone very special in Narnia. But as long as you know you’re nobody special, you’ll be a very decent sort of Horse, on the whole.‘”
  12. #104
    ″‘Bree,’ said Aravis, who was not very interested in the cut of his tail,‘I’ve been wanting to ask you something for a long time. Why do you keep on swearing By The Lion and By The Lion’s Mane? I thought you hated lions.’
    ‘So I do,’ answered Bree. ‘But when I speak of THE Lion, of course I mean Aslan, the great deliverer of Narnia who drove away the Witch and the Winter. All Narnians swear by him.’
    ‘But is he a lion?’
    ‘No, no, of course not,’ said Bree in a rather shocked voice.
    ‘All the stories about him in Tashbaan say he is,’ replied Aravis. ‘And if he isn’t a lion why do you call him a lion?’
    ‘Well, you’d hardly understand it at your age,’ said Bree.”
  13. #105
    “The light was too bad now for Shasta to see much of the cat except that it was very big and very solemn. It looked as if it might have lived for long, long years among the Tombs, alone. It’s eyes made you think it knew secrets it would not tell.”
  14. #106
    “Aravis also had many quarrels (and, I’m afraid even fights) with Cor, but they always made it up again: so that years later, when they were grown up they were so used to quarreling and making it up again that they got married so as to go on doing it more conveniently.”
  15. #107
    “Shasta’s heart fainted at these words for he felt he had no strength left. And he writhed inside at what seemed the cruelty and unfairness of the demand. He had not yet learned that if you do one good deed your reward usually is to be set to do another and harder and better one.”
  16. #108
    “A dozen different plans went through his head, all wretched ones, and at last he fixed on the worst plan of all. He decided to wait till it was dark and then go back to the river and ... set out for Mount Pire alone, trusting for his direction to the line he had drawn that morning in the sand. It was a crazy idea and if he had read as many books as you have about journeys over deserts he would never have dreamed of it. But Shasta had read no books at all.”
  17. #109
    ″‘I was the lion ... I was the lion who forced you to join with Aravis. I was the cat who comforted you among the houses of the dead. I was the lion who drove the jackals from you while you slept. I was the lion who gave the Horses the new strength of fear for the last mile so that you should reach King Lune in time. And I was the lion you do not remember who pushed the boat in which you lay, a child near death, so that it came to shore where a man sat, wakeful at midnight, to receive you.‘”
  18. #110
    “Then Hwin, though shaking all over, gave a strange little neigh and trotted across to the Lion.
    ‘Please,’ she said, ‘you’re so beautiful. You may eat me if you like. I’d sooner be eaten by you than fed by anyone else.‘”
  19. #111
    ″‘Why do you keep talking to my horse instead of to me?’ said the girl.
    ‘Excuse me, Tarkheena,’ said Bree (with just the slightest backward tilt of his ears), ‘but that’s Calormene talk. We’re free Narnians, Hwin and I, and I suppose, if you’re running away to Narnia, you want to be one too. In that case Hwin isn’t your horse any longer. One might just as well say you’re her human.’
    The girl opened her mouth to speak and then stopped. Obviously she had not quite seen it in that light before.”
  20. #112
    ″‘Please, your Majesty,’ said Shasta to King Edmund, ‘I was no traitor, really I wasn’t. And I couldn’t help hearing your plans. But I’d never have dreamed of telling them to your enemies.’
    ‘I know now that you were no traitor, boy,’ said King Edmund, laying his hand on Shasta’s head. ‘But if you would not be taken for one, another time try not to hear what’s meant for other ears. But all’s well.‘”
  21. #113
    “Do not by any means destroy yourself, for if you live you may yet have good fortune, but all the dead are dead like.”
  22. #114
    ″‘It was I who wounded you,’ said Aslan. ‘I am the only lion you met in all your journeyings. Do you know why I tore you?’
    ‘No, sir.’
    ‘The scratches on your back, tear for tear, throb for throb, blood for blood, were equal to the stripes laid on the back of your stepmother’s slave because of the drugged sleep you cast upon her. You needed to know what it felt like.’
  23. #115
    “When things go wrong, you’ll find they usually go on getting worse for some time; but when things once start going right they often go on getting better and better.”
  1. #116
    ″‘When this news was brought to me ...[I] caused my mare Hwin to be saddled and took with me a sharp dagger... And when my father’s house was out of sight and I was come to a green open place in a certain wood where there were no dwellings of men, I dismounted from Hwin my mare and took out the dagger. Then I parted my clothes where I thought the readiest way lay to my heart and I prayed to all the gods that as soon as I was dead I might find myself with my brother. After that I shut my eyes and prepared to drive the dagger into my heart.‘”
  2. #117
    ″‘You have appealed to Tash,’ said Aslan. ‘And in the temple of Tash you shall be healed. You must stand before the altar of Tash in Tashbaan at the great Autumn Feast this year and there, in the sight of all Tashbaan, your ass’s shape will fall from you and all men will know you for Prince Rabadash.‘”
  3. #118
    “There was not much difficulty in settling the matter once Eustace realised that everyone took the idea of a duel quite seriously and heard Caspian offering to lend him a sword, and Drinian and Edmund discussing whether he ought to be handicapped in some way to make up for his being so much bigger than Reepicheep.”
  4. #119
    ″‘Your Majesty’s tender years,’ said Gumpas, with what was meant to be a fatherly smile, ‘hardly make it possible that you should understand the economic problem involved. I have statistics, I have graphs, I have – ’
    ‘Tender as my years may be,’ said Caspian, ‘I believe I understand the slave trade from within quite as well as your Sufficiency. And I do not see that it brings into the islands meat or bread or beer or wine or timber or cabbages or books or instruments of music or horses or armour or anything else worth having. But whether it does or not, it must be stopped.’
    ‘But that would be putting the clock back,’ gasped the Governor. ‘Have you no idea of progress, of development?’
    ‘I have seen them both in an egg,’ said Caspian. ‘We call it Going bad in Narnia. This trade must stop.‘”
  5. #120
    “We have a strange illusion that mere time cancels sin. I have heard others, and I have heard myself, recounting cruelties and falsehoods committed in boyhood as if they were no concern of the present speaker’s, and even with laughter. But mere time does nothing either to the fact or to the guilt of a sin. The guilt is washed out not by time but by repentance and the blood of Christ: if we have repented these early sins we should remember the price of our forgiveness and be humble.”
  6. #121
    “The problem of reconciling human suffering with the existence of a God who loves, is only insoluble so long as we attach a trivial meaning to the word “love”, and look on things as if man were the centre of them.”
  7. #122
    “Where sky and water meet,
    Where the waves grow sweet,
    Doubt not, Reepicheep,
    To find all you seek,
    There is the utter East.”
  8. #123
    “Lucy looked along the beam and presently saw something in it. At first it looked like a cross, then it looked like an aeroplane, then it looked like a kite, and at last with a whirring of wings it was right overhead and was an albatross. It circled three times round the mast and then perched for an instant on the crest of the gilded dragon at the prow. It called out in a strong sweet voice what seemed to be words though no one understood them. After that it spread its wings, rose, and began to fly slowly ahead, bearing a little to starboard. Drinian steered after it not doubting that it offered good guidance. But no one except Lucy knew that as it circled the mast it had whispered to her, ‘Courage, dear heart,’ and the voice, she felt sure, as Aslan’s, and with the voice a delicious smell breathed in her face.”
  9. #124
    “And suddenly there came a breeze from the east, tossing the top of the wave into foamy shapes and ruffling the smooth water all round them. It lasted only a second or so but what it brought them in that second none of those three children will ever forget. It brought both a smell and a sound, a musical sound. Edmund and Eustace would never talk about it afterwards. Lucy could only say, ‘It would break your heart.’ ‘Why,’ said I, ‘was it so sad?’ ‘Sad! No,’ said Lucy.”
  10. #125
    “Across the grey hillside above them – grey, for the heather was not yet in bloom – without noise, and without looking at them, and shining as if he were in bright sunlight though the sun had in fact gone in, passed with slow pace the hugest Lion that human eyes have ever seen. In describing the scene Lucy said afterwards, ‘He was the size of an elephant,’ though at another time she only said, ‘The size of a cart-horse.’ But it was not the size that mattered. Nobody dared to ask what it was. They knew it was Aslan.”
  11. #126
    “Narnian time flows differently from ours. If you spent a hundred years in Narnia, you would still come back to our world at the very same hour of the very same day on which you left. And then, if you went back to Narnia after spending a week here, you might find that a thousand Narnian years had passed, or only a day, or no time at all. You never know till you get there. Consequently, when the Pevensie children had returned to Narnia last time for their second visit, it was (for the Narnians) as if King Arthur came back to Britain as some people say he will. And I say the sooner the better.”
  12. #127
    “He had turned into a dragon while he was asleep. Sleeping on a dragon’s hoard with greedy, dragonish thoughts in his heart, he had become a dragon himself.”
  13. #128
    “I looked up and saw the very last thing I expected: a huge lion coming slowly towards me. And one queer thing was that there was no moon last night, but there was moonlight where the lion was. So it came nearer and nearer. I was terribly afraid of it. You may think that, being a dragon, I could have knocked any lion out easily enough. But it wasn’t that kind of fear. I wasn’t afraid of it eating me, I was just afraid of it – if you can understand.”
  14. #129
    “It would be nice, and fairly nearly true, to say that ‘from that time forth Eustace was a different boy.’ To be strictly accurate, he began to be a different boy. He had relapses. There were still many days when he could be very tiresome. But most of those I shall not notice. The cure had begun.”
  15. #130
    “On my coronation day, with Aslan’s approval, I swore an oath that, if once I established peace in Narnia, I would sail east myself for a year and a day to find my father’s friends or to learn of their deaths and avenge them if I could.”
  16. #131
    “One minute they talk as if I ran everything and overheard everything and was extremely dangerous. The next moment they think they can take me in by tricks that a baby would see through.”
  17. #132
    ″‘Can’t again,’ said Caspian. ‘What do you mean?’
    ‘If it please your Majesty, we mean shall not,’ said Reepicheep with a very low bow. ‘You are the King of Narnia. You break faith with all your subjects, and especially with Trumpkin, if you do not return. You shall not please yourself with adventures as if you were a private person. And if your Majesty will not hear reason, it will be the truest loyalty of every man on board to follow me in disarming and binding you till you come to your senses.‘”
  18. #133
    ″‘The king who owned this island,’ said Caspian slowly, and his face flushed as he spoke, ‘would soon be the richest of all kings of the world. I claim this land for ever as a Narnian possession. It shall be called Goldwater Island. And I bind all of you to secrecy. No one must know of this. Not even Drinian – on pain of death, do you hear?’
    ‘Who are you talking to?’ said Edmund. ‘I’m no subject of yours. If anything it’s the other way round. I am one of the four ancient sovereigns of Narnia and you are under allegiance to the High King my brother.’
    ‘So it has come to that, King Edmund, has it?’ said Caspian, laying his hand on his sword-hilt.”
  19. #134
    “You see, it’s only they who think they were so nice to look at before. They say they’ve been uglified, but that isn’t what I called it. Many people might say the change was for the better.”
  20. #135
    “In spite of the pain, his first feeling was one of relief. There was nothing to be afraid of any more. He was a terror himself now and nothing in the world but a knight (and not all of those) would dare to attack him. He could get even with Caspian and Edmund now....
    But the moment he thought this he realised that he didn’t want to. He wanted to be friends. He wanted to get back among humans and talk and laugh and share things. He realised that he was a monster cut off from the whole human race. An appalling loneliness came over him. He began to see the others had not really been fiends at all. He began to wonder if he himself had always been such a nice person as he had always supposed.”
  21. #136
    “Spying on people by magic is the same as spying on them in any other way.”
  22. #137
    “It was, however, clear to everyone that Eustace’s character had been rather improved by becoming a dragon. He was anxious to help.”
  23. #138
    ″‘Oh dear,’ said Lucy. ‘Have I spoiled everything? Do you mean we would have gone on being friends if it hadn’t been for this – and been really great friends – all our lives perhaps – and now we never shall.’
    ‘Child,’ said Aslan, ‘did I not explain to you once before that no one is ever told what would have happened?‘”

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  1. #139
    ″‘That’s all right,’ said Edmund. ‘Between ourselves, you haven’t been as bad as I was on my first trip to Narnia. You were only an ass, but I was a traitor.‘”
  2. #140
    “Every day and every hour the light became more brilliant and still they could bear it. No one ate or slept and no one wanted to, but they drew buckets of dazzling water from the sea, stronger than wine and somehow wetter, more liquid, than ordinary water, and pledged one another silently in deep draughts of it. And one or two of the sailors who had been oldish men when the voyage began now grew younger every day. Everyone on board was filled with joy and excitement, but not an excitement that made one talk. The further they sailed the less they spoke, and then almost in a whisper. The stillness of that last sea laid hold on them.”
  3. #141
    “It was a large room with three big windows and it was lined from floor to ceiling with books; more books than Lucy had ever seen before, tiny little books, fat and dumpy books, and books bigger than any church Bible you have ever seen, all bound in leather and smelling old and learned and magical. But she knew from her instructions that she need not bother about any of these. For the Book, the Magic Book, was lying on a reading-desk in the very middle of the room.”
  4. #142
    “Man’s conquest of Nature turns out, in the moment of its consumption, to be Nature’s conquest of Man.”
  5. #143
    “Each new power won by man is a power over man as well. Each advance leaves him weaker as well as stronger.”
  6. #144
    “We shall in fact be the slaves and puppets of that to which we have given our souls.”
  7. #145
    “If nothing is self-evident, nothing can be proved. Similarly if nothing obligatory for its own sake, nothing is obligatory at all.”
  8. #146
    “It is not a theory they put into his mind, but an assumption.”
  9. #147
    “God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks to us in our conscience, but shouts to us in our pain: it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”
  10. #148
    “The creature’s illusion of sufficiency must, for the creature’s sake, be shattered […] And this illusion of sufficiency may be at its strongest in some very honest, kindly, and temperate people, and on such people, therefore, misfortune must fall.”
  11. #149
    “We regard God as an airman regards his parachute; it’s there for emergencies but he hoped he’ll never have to use it.”
  12. #150
    “By the goodness of God we mean nowadays almost exclusively His lovingness; and in this we may be right. And by Love, in this context, most of us mean kindness—the desire to see others than the self happy; not happy in this way or in that, but just happy. What would really satisfy us would be a God who said of anything we happened to like doing, ‘What does it matter so long as they are contented?’ We want, in fact, not so much a Father in Heaven as a grandfather in heaven—a senile benevolence who, as they say, ‘liked to see young people enjoying themselves’ and whose plan for the universe was simply that it might be truly said at the end of each day, ‘a good time was had by all’.”
  13. #151
    “Kindness, merely as such, cares not whether its object becomes good or bad, provided only that it escapes suffering.”
  14. #152
    “Until the evil man finds evil unmistakably present in his existence, in the form of pain, he is enclosed in illusion. Once pain has roused him, he knows that he is in some way or other ‘up against’ the real universe: he either rebels (with the possibility of a clearer issue and deep repentance at some other stage) or else makes some attempting at an adjustment, which, if pursued, will lead him to religion.”
  15. #153
    “When Christianity says that God loves man, it means that God loves man: not that He has some “disinterested”, because really indifferent, concern for our welfare, but that, in awful and surprising truth, we are the objects of His love. you asked for a loving God: you have one. The great spirit you so lightly invoked, the “lord of terrible aspect”, is present: not a senile benevolence that drowsily wishes you to be happy in your own way, not the cold philanthropy of a conscientious magistrate, nor the care of a host who feels responsible for the comfort of his guests, but the consuming fire Himself, the Love that made the worlds, persistent as the artist’s love for his work and despotic as a man’s love for a dog, provident and venerable as a father’s love for a child, jealous, inexorable, exacting as love between the sexes. How this should be, I do not know: it passes reason to explain why any creatures, not to say creatures such as we, should have a value so prodigious in their Creator’s eyes”
  16. #154
    “We are, not metaphorically but in very truth, a Divine work of art, something that God is making, and therefore something with which He will not be satisfied until it has a certain character.”
  17. #155
    “Human will becomes truly creative and truly our own when it is wholly God’s, and this is one of the many senses in which he that loses his soul shall find it”
  18. #156
    “And perhaps, by God’s grace, I succeed, and for a day or two become a creature consciously dependent on God and drawing its strength from the right sources. But the moment the threat is withdrawn, my whole nature leaps back to the toys: I am even anxious, God forgive me, to banish from my mind the only thing that supported me under the threat because it is now associated with the misery of those few days. Thus the terrible necessity of tribulation is only too clear. God has had me for but forty-eight hours and then only by dint of taking everything else away from me. Let Him but sheathe that sword for a moment and I behave like a puppy when the hated bath is over—I shake myself as dry as I can and race off to reacquire my comfortable dirtiness, if not in the nearest manure heap, at least in the nearest flower bed. And that is why tribulations cannot cease until God either sees us remade or sees that our remaking is now hopeless.”
  19. #157
    “I must add, too, that the only purpose of the book is to solve the intellectual problem raised by suffering; for the far higher task of teaching fortitude and patience I was never fool enough to suppose myself qualified, nor have I anything to offer my readers except my conviction that when pain is to be borne, a little courage helps more than much knowledge, a little human sympathy more than much courage, and the least tincture of the love of God more than all. ”
  20. #158
    “There was a man born among these Jews who claimed to be, or to be the son of, or to be “one with”, the Something which is at once the awful haunter of nature and the giver of the moral law. The claim is so shocking—a paradox, and even a horror, which we may easily be lulled into taking too lightly—that only two views of this man are possible. Either he was a raving lunatic of an unusually abominable type, or else He was; and is; precisely what He said. There is no middle way. If the records make the first hypothesis unacceptable, you must submit to the second. ”
  21. #159
    “Try to exclude the possibility of suffering which the order of nature and the existence of free-wills involve, and you find that you have excluded life itself. ”
  22. #160
    “Over a sketch made idly to amuse a child, an artist may not take much trouble: he may be content to let it go even though it is not exactly as he meant it to be. But over the great picture of his life—the work which he loves, though in a different fashion, as intensely as a man loves a woman or a mother a child — he will take endless trouble—and would, doubtless, thereby give endless trouble to the picture if it were sentient. One can imagine a sentient picture, after being rubbed and scraped and re-commenced for the tenth time, wishing that it were only a thumb-nail sketch whose making was over in a minute. In the same way, it is natural for us to wish that God had designed for us a less glorious and less arduous destiny; but then we are wishing not for more love but for less. ”
  23. #161
    “A man can no more diminish God’s glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word “darkness” on the walls of his cell”
  1. #162
    “I have been trying to make the reader believe that we actually are, at present, creatures whose character must be, in some respects, a horror to God, as it is, when we really see it, a horror to ourselves. This I believe to be a fact: and I notice that the holier a man is, the more fully he is aware of that fact”
  2. #163
    “For you will certainly carry out God’s purpose, however you act, but it makes a difference to you whether you serve like Judas or like John.”
  3. #164
    “When we merely say that we are bad, the “wrath” of God seems a barbarous doctrine; as soon as we perceive our badness, it appears inevitable, a mere corollary from God’s goodness.”
  4. #165
    “We are not merely imperfect creatures who must be improved: we are, as Newman said, rebels who must lay down our arms. The first answer, then, to the question why our cure should be painful, is that to render back the will which we have so long claimed for our own, is in itself, wherever and however it is done, a grievous pain…Hence the necessity to die daily: however often we think we have broken the rebellious self we shall still find it alive.”
  5. #166
    “If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world. If none of my earthly pleasures satisfy it, that does not prove that the universe is a fraud.
  6. #167
    “The Christian says, ‘Creatures are not born with desires unless satisfaction for those desires exists. A baby feels hunger: well, there is such a thing as food. A duckling wants to swim: well, there is such a thing as water. Men feel sexual desire: well, there is such a thing as sex.”
  7. #168
    “Probably earthly pleasures were never meant to satisfy it, but only to arouse it, to suggest the real thing. If that is so, I must take care, on the one hand, never to despise, or to be unthankful for, these earthly blessings, and on the other, never to mistake them for the something else of which they are only a kind of copy, or echo, or mirage.”
  8. #169
    “I must keep alive in myself the desire for my true country, which I shall not find till after death; I must never let it get snowed under or turned aside; I must make it the main object of life to press on to that country and to help others to do the same.”
  9. #170
    “That’s one of the disappointments. I thought you’d meet interesting historical characters. But you don’t: they’re too far away. ”
  10. #171
    ″... But if there’s a real war why don’t they do anything? ... If they wanted to rescue us they could do it.”
  11. #172
    “That is why, at the end of all things, when the sun rises here and the twilight turns to blackness down there, the Blessed will say, “we have never lived anywhere except in heaven,’ and the Lost, “We were always in Hell.” And both will speak truly.”
  12. #173
    “There’s something in natural affection which will lead it on to eternal love more easily than natural appetite could be led on. But there’s also something in it which makes it easier to stop at the natural level and mistake it for the heavenly. Brass is mistaken for gold more easily than clay is. And if it finally refuses conversion its corruption will be worse than the corruption of what ye call the lower passions. It is a stronger angel, and therefore, when it falls, a fiercer devil.”
  13. #174
    “I gasped when I saw them. Now that they were in the light, they were transparent–fully transparent … They were in fact ghosts: man-shaped stains on the brightness of that air.”
  14. #175
    “Without that self-choice there could be no Hell. No soul that seriously and constantly desires joy will ever miss it. Those who seek find. To those who knock it is opened.”
  15. #176
    “The whole difficulty of understanding Hell is that the thing to be understood is so nearly nothing.”
  16. #177
    “The demand of the loveless and the self-imprisoned that they should be allowed to blackmail the universe: that till they consent to be happy (on their own terms) no one else shall taste joy: that theirs should be the final power; that Hell should be able to veto Heaven.”
  17. #178
    “No natural feelings are high or low, holy or unholy, in themselves. They are all holy when God’s hand is on the rein. They all go bad when they set up on their own and make themselves into false gods.”
  18. #179
    “Ye cannot fully understand the relations of choice and Time till you are beyond both.”
  19. #180
    You weren’t a decent man and you didn’t do your best.
  20. #181
    ″... If they leave that grey town behind it will not have been Hell. To any that leaves it, it is Purgatory. ”
  21. #182
    “They say of some temporary suffering, ‘No future bliss can make up for it,’ not knowing that Heaven, once attained, will work backwards and turn even that agony into a glory.”
  22. #183
    “What we called love down there was mostly the craving to be loved. In the main I loved you for my own sake: because I needed you…We shall have no need for one another now: we can begin to love truly.”
  23. #184
    “I seemed to be standing in a busy queue by the side of a long, mean street. ”
  24. #185
    “All Hell is smaller than one pebble of your earthly world; but it is smaller than one atom of this world, the Real World.”
  25. #186
    “You cannot love a fellow-creature fully till you love God.”
  26. #187
    “Those that hate goodness are sometimes nearer than those that know nothing at all about it and think they have it already.”
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