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The Screwtape Letters, by C.S. Lewis Essay

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For my Lenten spiritual reading, I chose to read The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis. This book is about a junior demon, named Wormwood, who is learning how to tempt his “patient” and capture his soul, and is mentored by his uncle, a senior demon named Screwtape. Throughout the novel, Screwtape instructs his nephew how to exploit vices and how to how to twist his values so he will stray from god and into damnation. I initially chose this book because I liked the author, and because I’ve been told the book was a good read.
The subject of this novel is the senior demon instructing the junior demon, a tempter in training, on how to capture the man’s soul by using routine temptations of daily life. The first task Wormwood tries to perform is to keep his “patient” from attending church by using reason and logical arguments. He fails to keep him from becoming a Christian, but is told he can twist trains of thought to his favor, and giving him the idea of “real life”, or only worrying what effects him, and the physical and tangible aspects of life. He is also told the patient still has mental and bodily habits which could be used to his advantage. Another idea his uncle gives him is to make his patient to think of this fellow Christians as corrupt and hypocritical, and that religion itself is ridiculous. His next lesson is how to keep conflict between others, namely the patient’s mother, and how to influence him to pray based on conflicts and personal desires to render his prayers innocuous. His intention is also to keep him from the serious intention of praying altogether, or at least lead him to the prayer of a specific object, like the crucifix, the corner of his room, or inside his head, instead directly to God. He is told it is easi...


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... those who’s faith is being tested by temptation particularly, or those who don’t necessarily understand what temptation is, so they can ovoid it in the future.
All in all, the Screwtape Letters is a noteworthy book that can give Christian an insight to temptation, and may allow them to find their own weakness in temptation and how they can heal themselves and ovoid temptations, or how to stray from them and to God. This book helped me to explore my inner faith and personally helped me to understand my position in how I can ovoid the devil’s tricks and how to grow closer to God. Although C.S. Lewis intended this book to mostly fictional, it still helps one realize their faults or how they are being tricked into growing away from their faith in ways one could explain and understand.



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