Christian Humanism

The Wonder of G.K. Chesterton

By |2019-10-02T15:12:49-06:00October 2nd, 2019|Categories: Christianity, G.K. Chesterton, Imagination, Joseph Pearce, Literature, Senior Contributors, StAR|

What makes Gilbert Keith Chesterton so wonderful is that he is full of wonder. He doesn’t merely see trees, or clouds or sky; he sees glorious creatures charged with what Gerard Manley Hopkins called the grandeur of God. He sees that seeing is itself a miracle. “Give me miraculous eyes to see my eyes,” he [...]

The Earliest Days of the Inklings

By |2019-09-30T23:36:32-06:00September 30th, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, C.S. Lewis, Imagination, Inklings, J.R.R. Tolkien, Literature, Senior Contributors|

J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis talked, dined, drank, and walked together. And then, other friendships began to form around this critical one. Some arrived by chance, some by circumstance, and others by design. Eventually, they adopted a name: “The Inklings.” With the friendship of Tolkien and Lewis having grown into something almost preternaturally solid, [...]

Revisiting “The Fellowship of the Ring”

By |2019-10-04T12:56:45-06:00September 28th, 2019|Categories: Books, Culture, Film, J.R.R. Tolkien, Joseph Pearce, Literature, Senior Contributors|

As I pondered the artistic license that Peter Jackson had granted himself in one of the most important scenes from J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Fellowship of the Ring, I realized that a film adaptation of a literary work should not be expected to follow the literal letter of the original but should seek faithfully to [...]

“Out of the Silent Planet”: A Retrospective

By |2019-09-26T22:52:31-06:00September 26th, 2019|Categories: Books, Bradley J. Birzer, C.S. Lewis, Christianity, Imagination, Literature, Senior Contributors|

C.S. Lewis’s “Out of the Silent Planet” presents within the envelope of science fiction a moving story that considers the complexity of human nature and its relationship with the Creator. It would not be an exaggeration to claim that Lewis’s “Space Trilogy” made science fiction respectable, elevating it from what many had perceived as [...]

From Pagan Heroism to Christian Alliance: Tolkien’s “Beowulf”

By |2019-10-05T09:54:55-06:00September 24th, 2019|Categories: Beowulf, Books, Bradley J. Birzer, Great Books, J.R.R. Tolkien, Myth, Poetry, Senior Contributors|

J.R.R. Tolkien argued that while Christianity gave the heroes a new point upon which to focus, the enemies of the heathen gods remained, too, the enemies of the Christian God. Beowulf, by challenging all that is spawned in Hell, has, by default, become the ally of all that destined to Heaven. Inducted into the [...]

Revisiting “The Two Towers”

By |2019-10-05T09:03:45-06:00September 21st, 2019|Categories: Books, Culture, Film, J.R.R. Tolkien, Joseph Pearce, Literature, Senior Contributors|

I’ve just enjoyed the second of the three movie nights at a friend’s house watching the full extended editions of Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings. As I stated in my essay describing my experience of watching The Fellowship of the Ring for the first time in many years, it’s intriguing to see [...]

The Witness and Wisdom of C.S. Lewis

By |2019-09-28T09:49:34-06:00September 4th, 2019|Categories: C.S. Lewis, Christian Humanism, Christianity, Fiction, Joseph Pearce, Literature, Philosophy, Senior Contributors, StAR|

The great fruit of C.S. Lewis’s clarity is that he shows his readers that the great truths are knowable through the application of pure and simple common sense. He makes the truth seem so obvious and so inescapable that we feel that we must always have known it, at least subconsciously. Some time ago, [...]

Tolkien’s “The Children of Húrin”

By |2019-08-23T11:55:02-06:00August 22nd, 2019|Categories: Books, Bradley J. Birzer, Fiction, Imagination, J.R.R. Tolkien, Literature, Senior Contributors, Tolkien Series|

How does one account for J.R.R. Tolkien’s seeming ability to live inside of mythology? He read it, he translated it, and he absorbed it. After all these grand things, he rewrote it. Yet, no matter how deeply he delved into the profound and pervasive paganisms of pre-Christian cultures, he never lost his ability to [...]

J.R.R. Tolkien’s “Beren and Lúthien”

By |2019-08-02T23:19:30-06:00August 2nd, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Imagination, J.R.R. Tolkien, Literature, Senior Contributors, Tolkien Series|

J.R.R. Tolkien's story of Beren and Lúthien remains one of the most beautiful parts of Tolkien’s entire mythology. It matters profoundly in "The Lord of the Rings" and indeed also mattered profoundly in Tolkien’s own life. “The chief of the stories of The Silmarillion, and the one most fully treated is the Story of Beren [...]

The Batman and Tolkien’s Batman

By |2019-08-01T23:45:27-06:00August 1st, 2019|Categories: Christian Humanism, Dwight Longenecker, Fiction, Heroism, J.R.R. Tolkien, Literature, Senior Contributors, Superheroes|

While we continue to marvel at the steady stream of superheroes being pumped out in comics and movies, I am more interested in ordinary heroes. The ordinary hero is the man or woman behind the scenes. They are the ones who play the steady, supporting role. Natural second fiddles, they are the loyal retainers [...]

“The Pilgrim’s Regress”: The Allegory of C.S. Lewis’ Conversion

By |2019-08-02T11:41:05-06:00July 29th, 2019|Categories: Books, Bradley J. Birzer, C.S. Lewis, Christian Humanism, Christianity, Fiction, Inklings, Literature, Senior Contributors|

In “The Pilgrim’s Regress,” C.S. Lewis fictionally traces his own intellectual and faith journey. As Lewis wrote ten years after the book’s first publication, “All good allegory exists not to hide but to reveal: to make the inner world more palpable by giving it an (imagined) concrete embodiment.” During the thirty-one years that C.S. [...]

Was Owen Barfield an Inkling?

By |2019-07-25T22:12:31-06:00July 25th, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, C.S. Lewis, Christian Humanism, Friendship, Inklings, J.R.R. Tolkien, Literature, Senior Contributors|

Any right-thinking individual, then or now, would want to have Owen Barfield as a vital and central member of the Inklings. Yet placing Barfield within the Inklings is incredibly difficult, given that he attended fewer than ten percent of the total meetings, and could not name the beginning or the end of the group. [...]

Narnia on Stage

By |2019-07-19T17:01:45-06:00July 19th, 2019|Categories: Art, Beauty, C.S. Lewis, Christian Humanism, Culture, Joseph Pearce, Senior Contributors|

Although The Logos Theatre is a somewhat small apostolate, tucked away in the South, on the buckle of the Bible Belt, far from the madding crowds and the madness and mayhem of Broadway and Hollywood, it punches beyond its weight and, to switch metaphors, it lights candles of joy and beauty, dispelling with the [...]

World War I and the Inklings

By |2019-07-18T21:38:17-06:00July 18th, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, C.S. Lewis, Christian Humanism, Inklings, J.R.R. Tolkien, Literature, Senior Contributors, War, World War I|

The Great War destroyed much the Inklings had held true, personally and culturally. Each lost friends, and each felt the guilt that any survivor of a war feels. Many of them refused to talk about their own experiences, for good or ill. J.R.R. Tolkien, perhaps, provides the best example. Though not the best-known Inkling, [...]