I was finally able to read all of the Narnia books back in high school, when my dad gave in and let me order a copy through Amazon. Now, ordering from Amazon is pretty expensive because usually shipping costs just as much (if not more than) the book that you ordered. So I made sure that the books that I ordered were not locally available (bookstores in the Philippines back then weren't so great) and they were books that I really wanted. I ordered a complete set of the Narnia Chronicles together with a boxed set of The Lord of The Rings. I didn't even know it was an omnibus edition until it arrived. I regret nothing though because it's a beautiful copy. Here, I even took some pictures so you can see them:
"It wasn’t until I recently read the Narnia books again that I came to understand that C.S. Lewis is trying to re-create what the religious feel about the Holy. Narnia experiences can best be understood using discussions involving Otto’s Mysterium-Tremendum-Fascinosum and Marcel’s idea of hope."
And I proceeded to give specific examples to show how Narnia is C.S. Lewis’ way of spreading the God story the way he understood it. Here's another snippet:
"In Narnia, Aslan is the King of the wood, the son of the great Emperor-beyond-the-Sea, which can be compared to the Wholly Other for us. He is the creator, the savior, the absolute being. Otto describes the religious experience of the Holy as something that fills the believer with tremor and fascination. This can be applied to Aslan who seems terrifying at times, being a ferocious lion and all that but he can also be as playful as a large cat. Another aspect of the Holy or the numen is that we only have the courage to view the Holy through the vantage point of our finitude, because the Holy lies beyond our comprehension. This is repeatedly seen across the whole span of the chronicles. People in Narnia did not question Aslan’s actions nor did they seek to understand him as anything but something that lies beyond what they understand. The mere mention of his name already evokes feelings that people have no way of understanding. When his name is first mentioned by the Beavers to the four Pevensie children, they felt a strange feeling come over them. Without knowing why, they longed to see him yet at the same time, were afraid of the prospect of doing so. He comes and goes as he pleases because after all, it’s not as if he is a tame lion. The Mysterium aspect of the human experience of the Holy involves the Wholly Other as something that is beyond the sphere of familiar and fills us with blank wonder and astonishment."
What the heck was I talking about back then?! I can't even remember. I'm sure it made perfect sense while I was writing it. I have no idea what grade I got for the paper though since I only have an electronic copy. I believe it was a philosophy of religion class. I just love that I've reread the series several times since I first discovered it - I think that's the mark of a true favorite: how you can still enjoy reading the book over and over again.
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