150. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

New Warhorn Media post by Jake Mentzel:

Hey I’m enjoying the Narnia episodes. Few thoughts:

A. Great elfish Elvis. They wouldn’t have gotten me to do that but you’re a great sport. My kids were quite confused. But we couldn’t turn away.

  1. The Narnia/planets/pagan gods connections are pretty interesting. Ward’s Planet Narnia - I found it fairly compelling as well as strangely edifying. A great marriage book as well, somehow. Though it may make Lewis seem a little bit weirder. I wouldn’t say that Lewis initially set out too write seven books about the seven planets and they’re corresponding gods, but I think he was aware of the connections and many were on purpose.

D. With Narnia pushing back the schedule (and it sounds like we have Little Women coming up - which is cool), I wouldn’t mind if the Chabon book is, shall we say, not overly dwelt-upon. That book just never passed the smell test for me. I actually put it down about 2/3 through. Very imaginative. Pretty interesting at times. I like the way he hangs his plot on real historical events and figures. But he also includes some grossness. I don’t know where it’s going but I grew weary in finding out. Just a suggestion. Your show and I’ll listen and donate either way.

Keep up the great work!

A. I was so happy.
2. I’m glad you found Ward helpful and whatnot. I think you’re probably right that he wasn’t being too intentional about it, though.
D. We ditched Chabon, but I don’t know how many places we’ve said it. Nathan scouted it out and decided it was too icky. We replaced it with Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie, which we’re holding to. You have to remember that Shakespeare isn’t likely to give us a full month, so we’re pretty sure we’ll need the content–even with extended Narnia and Little Women being thrown in.

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Was really saddened by this episode. I thought Brandon and I were friends, and then in the first couple of minutes he says that if someone offered him Turkish Delight he’d know they were an enemy.


Listening now and have to stop to say-

Tolkien’s slow descriptive passages are there to give the reader a break from the action before hitting us right between the eyes again. It’s purposeful.

Am I putting words in Tolkien’s mouth? yeah

Am I right anyway? yeah


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I agree that if you read this as an allegory it falls apart, especially in regards to the atonement. However, I don’t think Lewis intended this to be read as an allegory. Lewis did write an allegory ( The Pilgrim’s Regress ) and it reads very differently than the Chronicles or Ransom Trilogy (granted, the Chronicles falls apart even as a “supposal” work in a few places, as you rightly point out).

I think Lewis was trying to do something similar to what Kierkegaard was trying to do: smuggle Christianity back into Christendom. There were a lot of people (and still are a lot of people) that think they know Christ when they don’t. As a result, they harden their hearts to presentations of the Gospel or think they are believing the Gospel when they are not. I think Lewis wanted to create a character in Aslan that would be a “type” of Christ; someone that would point towards who Christ is and even demonstrate some of His work, but who in no way embodies the fullness of Christ (and honestly, what fictional character can even come close to embodying the fullness of Christ!). This character, because he is fictional, can hopefully break down some hardness of heart and make belief in the real Christ plausible. If you push Aslan too far, his character quickly breaks down. But in the same way men like David and Joshua act as types and point towards Christ, but if you were to treat them as analogous and not typological, they would quickly break down too. However, if you treat Aslan as a character that gives us a very small, limited glimpse of the fullness of Christ, then I think he is a successful character.

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