I Call You Friends

By |2019-03-21T15:08:02-05:00March 21st, 2019|

What exactly is friendship? It’s a crucial question, one of the most important any of us will ever face—personally, politically, or theologically. But when do we ever, as adults, get a chance to think such a question through, especially in a context that allows friendship to blossom? In the ancient world, friendship was a high [...]

Can We Be Friends? Spirit, Duty, & Our Canine Companions

By |2018-12-01T10:05:00-05:00November 26th, 2018|

If people and dogs have common ground of a higher order than animal needs, it must be in the territory of the spirit. Spirit is, just as Aristotle says, where friendship is at home. Now among us humans, this capability of the spirit is both an accomplishment and a work in progress, and so [...]

The Death of Europe: Two Classic Films and the Great War

By |2018-12-13T23:45:16-05:00November 10th, 2018|

So incisive and troubling did the Nazis find Jean Renoir’s indictment of war and his embrace of the shared culture of Europe, that when the Wehrmacht invaded France and occupied Paris in the spring of 1940, Renoir’s film La Grande Illusion was among the first cultural artifacts Nazi officials confiscated… The Great War was a catastrophe for Europe. [...]

Cultivating Friendship in a Fractured Age

By |2018-11-02T10:25:36-05:00November 2nd, 2018|

What is friendship? Why is it important and why is it worth cultivating? These axiomatic questions form a significant part of the thought and writing of C. S. Lewis. In a letter to his lifelong friend, Arthur Greeves, Lewis touched upon the heart and meaning of friendship: The First [Universal Friend] is the alter [...]

Eating Alone: Aristotle and the Culture of the Meal

By |2018-10-05T12:17:36-05:00October 3rd, 2018|

Aristotle identified man’s eating habits as one of the cornerstones of civilization—one of two activities that highlighted the nature of man’s exquisiteness (and barbarousness). The importance of eating to the human condition should be self-evident to everyone. But what is the big deal about eating as it emanates from religion, the ancient philosophers, and the traditional way of life? [...]

Our Unknown Neighbors & the Fate of Community

By |2018-09-26T23:53:15-05:00September 27th, 2018|

The last Saturday morning in August, my wife noticed that some of our neighbors had a moving truck outside their home. After watching with the kids for a minute or two, she acknowledged that she had never seen the people before. I recognized the man, though I had never spoken to him—he seemed to purposefully [...]

Owen Barfield on C.S. Lewis

By |2018-07-13T08:50:50-05:00July 12th, 2018|

Owen Barfield on C.S. Lewis allows us to enter into the friendship of the two men in some mysterious and possibly mystical way. It is not just a testament to that friendship, it is a testament to friendship in general. “He stood before me as a mystery as solidly as he stood beside me [...]

The Brilliant Darkness of a Friday Afternoon

By |2018-03-30T00:39:40-05:00March 29th, 2018|

Not only did Jesus manifest Himself as the Logos so long desired in the pagan West on that Friday afternoon, but He also manifested Himself as the Christ, the true and eternal king. In some mysterious way, it was the death on Friday that revealed all of this, not the resurrection on Sunday… As [...]

How to Love and Cherish Our Friends

By |2019-02-12T17:57:26-05:00September 27th, 2017|

"Every human being, my dear, must thus be viewed according to what it is good for, for none of us, no not one, is perfect; and were we to love none who had imperfections this world would be a desert for our love. All we can do is to make the best of our friends: [...]

Tolkien’s Tea Club

By |2018-12-26T14:48:26-05:00July 7th, 2017|

Through the Tea Club he formed with his young classmates, J.R.R. Tolkien felt his first comradery among friends dedicated to something higher than themselves… Long before Tolkien began his own personal mythology, he had already lived a rather full life. Joy as well as tragedy had filled it. His father had passed away while [...]

C.S. Lewis & Friends

By |2016-10-25T23:39:06-05:00October 25th, 2016|

Friendship, or philia, is one of the “loves” that C.S. Lewis elucidates and celebrates in his book, The Four Loves, the others being familial love (storge), sexual love (eros) and Divine love (caritas or agape). Although not the greatest or highest of the loves, Lewis saw friendship as the noble coming together of those [...]

Jane Austen’s Love & Friendship

By |2016-04-07T10:37:11-05:00February 25th, 2016|

For all whom we love and value, for every friend and connection, we equally pray; however divided and far asunder, we know that we are alike before Thee and under Thine eye. May we be equally united in Thy faith and fear, in fervent devotion towards Thee, and in Thy merciful protection this night. —from [...]

C.S. Lewis & “Zulu” Campbell: The Best of Friends and Enemies

By |2016-02-12T15:27:55-05:00September 13th, 2015|

In this third and final essay about the relationship between C. S. Lewis and Roy Campbell, the “bearded poet” whom Lewis lampoons in The Pilgrim’s Regress, we will chart their troubled and mercurial relationship, which lurched, sometimes violently, between enmity and friendship. In the period between their initial meeting in Oxford as undergraduates at [...]