C. S. Lewis quotes

  • The humans live in time but our Enemy (God) destines them for eternity.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Time #Enemy #Eternity

  • There have been men before … who got so interested in proving the existence of God that they came to care nothing for God himself… as if the good Lord had nothing to do but to exist. There have been some who were so preoccupied with spreading Christianity that they never gave a thought to Christ.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Men #Care #Christianity

  • For most of us the prayer in Gethsemane is the only model. Removing mountains can wait.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Prayer #Waiting #Mountain

  • This act [creation], as it is for God, must always remain totally inconceivable to man. For we--even our poets and musicians and inventors--never, in the ultimate sense make. We only build. We always have materials to build from. All we can know about the act of creation must be derived from what we can gather about the relation of the creatures to their Creator
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Men #Musician #Poet

  • The world does not consist of 100 percent Christians and 100 percent non-Christians. There are people (a great many of them) who are slowly ceasing to be Christians but who still call themselves by that name: some of them are clergymen. There are other people who are slowly becoming Christians though they do not yet call themselves so.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Christian #Names #People

  • The terrible thing, the almost impossible thing, is to hand over your whole self--all your wishes and precautions--to Christ. But it is far easier than what we are all trying to do instead. For what we are trying to do is to remain what we call "ourselves," to keep personal happiness as our great aim in life, and yet at the same time be "good.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Self #Hands #Wish

  • Adventures are never fun while you're having them.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Fun #Adventure #Religion

  • Mercy detached from justice grows unmerciful.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Justice #Mercy #Grows

  • If you live for the next world, you get this one in the deal; but if you live only for this world, you lose them both.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #World #Next #This World

  • Perhaps your own reiterated cries deafen you to the voice you hoped to hear
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Voice #Cry

  • when pain is to be born, 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.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Pain #Littles #Helping

  • Our experience is coloured through and through by books and plays and the cinema, and it takes patience and skill to disentangle the things we have really learned from life for ourselves.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Book #Play #Skills

  • 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.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Hands #Feelings #Natural

  • It is a happy moment when our desire crosses with the will of Heavenly Father.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Father #Desire #Moments

  • And so for a time it looked as if all the adventures were coming to and end; but that was not to be.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Adventure #Ends

  • Every natural love will rise again and live forever in this country: but none will rise again until it has been buried.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Country #Forever #Natural

  • Once in our world, a Stable had something in it that was bigger than our whole world.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Our World #World #Bigger

  • We live, in fact, in a world starved for solitude, silence, and private: and therefore starved for meditation and true friendship.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Wisdom #Loneliness #Silence

  • And above all, you must be asking which door is the true one; not which pleases you best by its paint and panelling…the question should never be: ‘Do I like that kind of service?’ but ‘Are these doctrines true: Is holiness there? Does my conscience move me towards this? Is my reluctance to move to this door due to my pride, or my mere taste, or my personal dislike for this particular door-keeper?
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Moving #Pride #Doors

  • If they are wrong they need your prayers all the more; and if they are your enemies, then you are under orders to pray for them. That is one of the rules common to the whole house.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Prayer #Order #House

  • I have received no assurance that anything we can do will eradicate suffering. I think the best results are obtained by people who work quietly away at limited objectives, such as the abolition of the slave trade, or prison reform, or factory acts, or tuberculosis, not by those who think they can achieve universal justice, or health, or peace. I think the art of life consists in tackling each immediate evil as well as we can.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Art #Thinking #Justice

  • Man approaches God most nearly when he is in one sense least like God. For what can be more unlike than fullness and need, sovereignty and humility, righteousness and penitence, limitless power and a cry for help?
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Humility #Men #Needs

  • Why love if losing hurts so much? We love to know that we are not alone.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Love #Hurt #Losing

  • Something of God... flows into us from the blue of the sky, the taste of honey, the delicious embrace of water whether cold or hot, and even from sleep itself.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Inspirational #Inspiring #Nature

  • We do not want merely to see beauty... we want something else which can hardly be put into words- to be united with the beauty we see, to pass into it, to receive it into ourselves, to bathe in it, to become part of it. That is why we have peopled air and earth and water with gods and goddesses, and nymphs and elves.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Nature #Air #Nymphs

  • All joy... emphasizes our pilgrim status; always reminds, beckons, awakens desire. Our best havings are wantings.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Joy #Desire #Pilgrim

  • Love, in its own nature, demands the perfecting of the beloved.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Demand #Beloved

  • To please God… to be a real ingredient in the divine happiness… to be loved by God, not merely pitied, but delighted in as an artist delights in his work or a father in a son- it seems impossible, a weight or burden of glory which our thoughts can hardly sustain. But so it is.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Father #Real #Son

  • Be sure that the ins and outs of your individuality are no mystery to Him; and one day they will no longer be a mystery to you.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Wisdom #Individuality #One Day

  • No justification of virtue will enable a man to be virtuous. Without the aid of trained emotions the intellect is powerless against the animal organism. I had sooner play cards against a man who was quite skeptical about ethics, but bred to believe that ‘a gentleman does not cheat’, than against an irreproachable moral philosopher who had been brought up among sharpers.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Believe #Men #Animal

  • Falling in love is something that happens to us, being is love is something we do. No passion is self preservatory.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Falling In Love #Passion #Love Is

  • The pain I feel now is the happiness I had before. That's the deal.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Happiness #Pain #Grieving

  • Not that I am (I think) in much danger of ceasing to believe in God. The real danger is of coming to believe such dreadful things about Him. The conclusion I dread is not 'So there's no God after all,' but 'So this is what God's really like. Deceive yourself no longer.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Real #Believe #Thinking

  • In great literature, I become a thousand different men but still remain myself.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Men #Different #Literature

  • The death of a beloved is an amputation.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Bereavement #Amputation #Beloved

  • if you do one good deed your reward usually is to be set to do another and harder and better one.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Deeds #Rewards #Good Deeds

  • God has not been trying an experiment on my faith or love in order to find out their quality. He knew it already. It was I who didn't. In this trial He makes us occupy the dock, the witness box, and the bench all at once. He always knew that my temple was a house of cards. His only way of making me realize the fact was to knock it down.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Order #House #Quality

  • When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Healing #Men #Desire

  • By the very act of arguing, you awake the patient's reason; and once it is awake, who can foresee the result?
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Arguing #Patient #Argument

  • The castle of Cair Paravel on its little hill towered up above them; before them were the sands, with rocks and little pools of salt water, and seaweed, and the smell of the sea and long miles of bluish-green waves breaking for ever and ever on the beach. And oh, the cry of the seagulls! Have you ever heard it? Can you remember?
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Beach #Sea #Smell

  • I do not think that all who choose wrong roads perish; but their rescue consists in being put back on the right road. A sum can be put right: but only by going back til you find the error and working it afresh from that point, never by simply going on. Evil can be undone, but it cannot 'develop' into good. Time does not heal it. The spell must be unwound, bit by bit, 'with backward mutters of dissevering power' --or else not.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Thinking #Errors #Evil

  • Emeth speaking of Aslan, "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...And since then, O Kings and Ladies, 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
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Dog #Kings #Long

  • The task of the modern educator is not to cut down jungles but to irrigate deserts. The right defence against false sentiments is to inculcate just sentiments. By starving the sensibility of our pupils we only make them easier prey to the propagandist when he comes. For famished nature will be avenged and a hard heart is no infallible protection against a soft head.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Heart #Cutting #Tasks

  • Most of us, I suppose, have a secret country but for most of us it is only an imaginary country. Edmund and Lucy were luckier than other people in that respect.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Country #People #Secret

  • There is no other day. All days are present now. This moment contains all moments.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Moments

  • The sane would do no good if they made themselves mad to help madmen.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Mad #Helping #Sane

  • When I lay these questions before God I get no answer. But a rather special sort of 'No answer.' It is not the locked door. It is more like a silent, certainly not uncompassionate, gaze. As though He shook His head not in refusal but waiving the question. Like, 'Peace, child; you don't understand.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Children #Doors #Special

  • Those of us who are blamed when old for reading childish books were blamed when children for reading books too old for us.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Children #Book #Reading

  • But I will not tell you how long or short the way will be; only that it lies across a river. But do not fear that, for I am the great Bridge Builder.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Lying #Bridges #Rivers

  • The incalculable winds of fantasy and music and poetry, the mere face of a girl, the song of a bird, or the sight of a horizon, are always blowing evil’s whole structure away.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Girl #Song #Wind

  • I have no duty to be anyone's Friend and no man in the world has a duty to be mine. No claims, no shadow of necessity. Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art, like the universe itself (for God did not need to create). It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things which give value to survival.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Art #Philosophy #Men

  • People who bore one another should meet seldom; people who interest one another, often.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Friendship #People #Should

  • In Gethsemane the holiest of all petitioners prayed three times that a certain cup might pass from Him. It did not.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Three #Might #Cups

  • The modern habit of doing ceremonial things unceremoniously is no proof of humility; rather it proves the offender's inability to forget himself in the rite, and his readiness to spoil for every one else the proper pleasure of ritual.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Humility #Inability #Forget

  • I think I am beginning to understand why grief feels like suspense. It comes from the frustration of so many impulses that had become habitual. Thought after thought feeling after feeling action after action had H. for their object. Now their target is gone. I keep on through habit fitting an harrow to the string then I remember and have to lay the bow down. So many roads lead through to H. I set out on one of them. But now there's an impassable frontier-post across it. So many roads once now so many culs de sac.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Grief #Frustration #Thinking

  • and a charge of lying against someone whom you have always found truthful is a very serious thing; a very serious thing indeed.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Lying #Serious #Truthful

  • In Science we have been reading only the notes to a poem; in Christianity we find the poem itself.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Reading #Miracle #Christianity

  • A moderated religion is as good for us as no religion at all—and more amusing.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Amusing

  • It is always the novice who exaggerates.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Novices

  • 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. Man is not the centre. God does not exist for the sake of man. Man does not exist for his own sake. "Thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created." We were made not primarily that we may love God (though we were made for that too) but that God may love us, that we may become objects in which the divine love may rest "well pleased".
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Men #Love Is #Long

  • But the most obvious fact about praise -- whether of God or anything -- strangely escaped me. I thought of it in terms of compliment, approval, or the giving of honor. I had never noticed that all enjoyment spontaneously overflows into praise. ... The world rings with praise -- lovers praising their mistresses, readers their favorite poet, walkers praising the countryside, players praising their favorite game. ... I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment; it is its appointed consummation.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Player #Thinking #Games

  • No great wisdom can be reached without sacrifice.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Sacrifice #Great Wisdom #Without Sacrifice

  • Children have one kind of silliness, as you know, and grown-ups have another kind.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Children #Kind #Silliness

  • Nothing will shake a man-or at any rate a man like me-out of his merely verbal thinking and his merely notional beliefs. He has to be knocked silly before he comes to his senses. Only torture will bring out the truth. Only under torture does he discover it himself.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Silly #Men #Thinking

  • A sum can be put right: but only by going back till you find the error and working it afresh from that point, never by simply going on.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Inspiration #Errors #Working It

  • The Christians are right: it is Pride which has been the chief cause of misery in every nation and every family since the world began.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Christian #Inspiration #Pride

  • ‎"Don't bother too much about your feelings. When they are humble, loving, brave, give thanks for them; when they are conceited, selfish, cowardly, ask to have them altered. In neither case are they you, but only a thing that happens to you. What matters is your intentions and your behavior
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Selfish #Humble #Conceited

  • For in grief nothing "stays put." One keeps on emerging from a phase, but it always recurs. Round and round. Everything repeats. Am I going in circles, or dare I hope I am on a spiral? But if a spiral, am I going up or down it? How often -- will it be for always? -- how often will the vast emptiness astonish me like a complete novelty and make me say, "I never realized my loss till this moment"? The same leg is cut off time after time.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Grief #Cutting #Loss

  • Can a mortal ask questions which God finds unanswerable? Quite easily, I should think. All nonsense questions are unanswerable. How many hours are in a mile? Is yellow square or round? Probably half the questions we ask - half our great theological and metaphysical problems - are like that.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Thinking #Yellow #Squares

  • When you have reached your own room, be kind to those Who have chosen different doors and to those who are still in the hall.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Inspirational #Doors #Different

  • 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.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Art #Civilization #Gnats

  • What began the change was the very writing itself. Let no one lightly set about such a work. Memory, once waked, will play the tyrant.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Memories #Writing #Play

  • Reality is harsh to the feet of shadows. But will you come?
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Reality #Feet #Shadow

  • When you are behaving as if you loved someone, you will presently come to love him. If you injure someone you dislike, you will find yourself disliking him more. If you do him a good turn, you will find yourself disliking him less.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Finding Yourself #Turns #Dislike

  • A concentrated mind and a sitting body make for better prayer than a kneeling body and a mind half asleep.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Prayer #Mind #Sitting

  • Everyone feels benevolent if nothing happens to be annoying him at the moment.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Annoying #Moments #Feels

  • Good and evil both increase at compound interest. That is why the little decisions you and I make every day are of such infinite importance. The smallest good act today is the capture of a strategic point from which, a few months later, you may be able to go on to victories you never dreamed of. An apparently trivial indulgence in lust or anger today is the loss of a ridge or railway line or bridgehead from which the enemy may launch an attack otherwise impossible.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Loss #Evil #Decision

  • If you had felt yourself sufficient, it would have been a proof that you were not.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Proof

  • 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.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Dog #Beloved #Wander

  • A dogmatic belief in objective value is necessary to the very idea of a rule which is not tyranny or an obedience which is not slavery.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Ideas #Slavery #Belief

  • Mere improvement is not redemption, though redemption always improves people
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #People #Redemption #Improvement

  • The typical expression of opening Friendship would be something like, 'What? You too? I thought I was the only one!
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Expression #Typical #Would Be

  • All get what they want; they do not always like it.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Want

  • Love is the great conqueror of lust.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #True Love #Love Is #Lust

  • It is easy to acknowledge, but almost impossible to realize for long, that we are mirrors whose brightness, if we are bright, is wholly derived from the sun that shines upon us.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Mirrors #Long #Shining

  • We may give our human loves the unconditional allegiance which we owe only to God. They they become gods: then they become demons. Then they will destroy us, and also destroy themselves. For natural loves that are allowed to become gods do not remain loves. They are still called so, but can become in fact complicated forms of hatred.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Giving #Hatred #May

  • I have come," said a deep voice behind them. They turned and saw the Lion himself, so bright and real and strong that everything else began at once to look pale and shadowy compared with him.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Strong #Real #Voice

  • Of Course God does not consider you hopeless. If He did, He would not be moving you to seek Him (and He obviously is)... Continue seeking Him with seriousness. Unless He wanted you, you would not be wanting Him.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Moving #Doe #Hopeless

  • The world does not need more Christian literature. What it needs is more Christians writing good literature.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Christian #Writing #World

  • Wrong will be right, when Aslan comes in sight, At the sound of his roar, sorrows will be no more, When he bares his teeth, winter meets its death, And when he shakes his mane, we shall have spring again.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Spring #Winter #Sight

  • You can begin as if nothing had ever gone wrong. White as snow.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #White #Snow #Gone

  • We know nothing of religion here: we only think of Christ.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Thinking #Christ

  • Heaven is reality itself. All that is fully real is Heavenly. For all that can be shaken will be shaken and only the unshakeable remains.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Real #Heaven #Remains

  • That thing is Freedom: the gift whereby ye most resemble your Maker and are yourselves part of eternal reality.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Reality #Makers

  • It has actually become very necessary in our time to rebut the theory that every firm and serious friendship is really homosexual.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Serious #Theory #Homosexual

  • Good, as it ripens, becomes continually more different not only from evil but from other good.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Evil #Different

  • 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.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Laughter #Humble #Blood

  • There is no neutral ground in the universe. Every square inch, every split second is claimed by God, and counterclaimed by Satan.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Squares #Religion #Atheism

  • And men said that the blood of the stars flowed in her veins
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Stars #Men #Blood

  • For me, reason is the natural organ of truth; but imagination is the organ of meaning. Imagination, producing new metaphors or revivifying old, is not the cause of truth, but its condition.
    -- C. S. Lewis

    #Imagination #Causes #Reason