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 C. S. Lewis Quotes
82 Famous Quotes by C. S. Lewis
11/29/1898 - 11/22/1963
Also Known As:  
N. W. Clerk     Clive Staples Lewis     C.S. Lewis
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About C. S. Lewis

It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird: it would be a jolly sight harder for it to learn to fly while remaining an egg. We are like eggs at present. And you cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary, decent egg. We must be hatched or go bad.

Change Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Aim at heaven and you get earth thrown in. Aim at earth and you get neither.

Earth Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Has this world been so kind to you that you should leave with regret? There are better things ahead than any we leave behind.

Heaven Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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It is only our bad temper that we put down to being tired or worried or hungry; we put our good temper down to ourselves.

Temper Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make man a more clever devil.

Value Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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It is safe to tell the pure in heart that they shall see God, for only the pure in heart want to.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Feast of the Birth of John the Baptist Continuing a short series on authenticity: There, right in the middle of our lives, is that which satisfies the craving for inequality, and acts as a permanent reminder that medicine is not food. Hence a man's reaction to Monarchy is a kind of test. Monarchy can easily be "debunked"; but watch the faces, mark well the accents, of the debunkers. These are the men whose tap-root in Eden has been cut: whom no rumour of the polyphony, the dance, can reach -- men to whom pebbles laid in a row are more beautiful than an arch. Yet even if they desire mere equality, they cannot reach it. Where men are forbidden to honour a king, they honour millionaires, athletes, or film-stars instead: even famous prostitutes or gangsters. For spiritual nature, like bodily nature, will be served; deny it food and it will gobble poison.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Can we believe that God ever really modifies His action in response to the suggestions of men? For infinite wisdom does not need telling what is best, and infinite goodness needs no urging to do it. But neither does God need any of those things that are done by finite agents, whether living or inanimate. He could, if He chose, repair our bodies miraculously without food; or give us food without the aid of farmers, bakers, and butchers, or knowledge without the aid of learned men; or convert the heathen without missionaries. Instead, He allows soils and weather and animals and the muscles, minds, and wills of men to cooperate in the execution of His will... It is not really stranger, nor less strange, that my prayers should affect the course of events than that my other actions should do so. They have not advised or changed God' s mind -- that is, His overall purpose. But that purpose will be realized in different ways according to the actions, including the prayers, of His creatures.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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I believe in Christianity as I believe that the Sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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I wish they would remember that the charge to Peter was "Feed my sheep", not "Try experiments on my rats", or even "Teach my performing dogs new tricks".

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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The task of the modern educator is not to cut down jungles, but to irrigate deserts.

Education Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man.

Pride Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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How incessant and great are the ills with which a prolonged old age is replete.

Age Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Feast of Joseph of Nazareth The vice I am talking about is Pride or Self-Conceit: and the virtue opposite to it, in Christian morals, is called Humility. You may remember, when I was talking about sexual morality, I warned you that the centre of Christian morals did not lie there. Well, now we have come to the centre. According to Christian teachers, the essential vice, the utmost evil, is Pride. Unchastity, greed, drunkenness, and all that, are mere flea-bites in comparison: it was through Pride that the devil became the devil: Pride leads to every other vice: it is the complete anti-God state of mind.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art... It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival.

Friendship Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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If, as I can't help suspecting, the dead also feel the pains of separation (and this may be one of their purgatorial sufferings), then for both lovers, and for all pairs of lovers without exception, bereavement is a universal and integral part of our experience of love.

Bereavement Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Feast of Anskar, Archbishop of Hamburg, Missionary to Denmark and Sweden, 865 Is not the popular idea of Christianity simply this, that Jesus Christ was a great moral teacher and that, if only we took his advice, we might be able to establish a better social order and avoid another war? Now, mind you, that is quite true; but it tells you much less than the whole truth about Christianity, and it has no practical importance at all. It is quite true that, if we took Christ's advice, we should soon be living in a happier world. You need not even go as far as Christ. If we did all that... Confucius told us, we should get on a great deal better than we do. And so what?... If Christianity only means one more bit of good advice, then Christianity is of no importance. There has been no lack of good advice for the last four thousand years. A bit more makes no difference.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Part of every misery is, so to speak, the misery's shadow or reflection: the fact that you don't merely suffer but have to keep on thinking about the fact that you suffer. I not only live each endless day in grief, but live each day thinking about living each day in grief.

Misery Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Easter Our imitation of God in this life -- that is, our willed imitation, as distinct from any likenesses which He has impressed upon our natures or our states -- must be an imitation of God Incarnate. Our model is the Jesus, not only of Calvary, but of the workshop, the roads, the crowds, the clamorous demands and surly oppositions, the lack of all peace and privacy, the interruptions. For this, so strangely unlike anything we can attribute to the divine life in itself, is apparently not only like, but is, the divine life operating under human conditions.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Feast of John Vianney, Curè d'Ars, 1859 To excuse what can really produce good excuses is not Christian charity; it is only fairness. To be a Christian means to forgive the inexcusable, because God has forgiven the inexcusable in you. This is hard. It is perhaps not so hard to forgive a single injury. But to forgive the incessant provocations of daily life -- to keep on forgiving the bossy mother-in-law, the bullying husband, the nagging wife, the selfish daughter, the deceitful son -- how can we do it? Only, I think, by remembering where we stand, by meaning our words when we say in our prayers each night, "Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us." We are offered forgiveness on no other terms. To refuse it means to refuse God's mercy for ourselves. There is no hint of exceptions and God means what He says.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Feast of the Conversion of Paul If I say to you that no one has time to finish, that the longest human life leaves a man, in any branch of learning, a beginner, I shall seem to you to be saying something quite academic and theoretical. You would be surprised if you knew how soon one begins to feel the shortness of the tether: of how many things, even in middle life, we have to say, "No time for that", "Too late now" and "Not for me". But Nature herself forbids you [young people] to share that experience. A more Christian attitude, which can be attained at any age, is that of leaving futurity in God's hands. We may as well, for God will certainly retain it whether we leave it to Him or not.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Continuing a Lenten series on prayer: The primary object of prayer is to know God better; we and our needs should come second. ... The Notebooks of Florence Allshorn March 16, 2000 Continuing a Lenten series on prayer: I have called my material surroundings a stage set. In this I can act. And you may well say "act". For what I call "myself" (for all practical, everyday purposes) is also a dramatic construction; memories, glimpses in the shavinglass, and snatches of the very fallible activity called "introspection", are the principal ingredients. Normally I call this construction "me"' and the stage set "the real world". Now the moment of prayer is for me -- or involves for me as its condition -- the awareness, the reawakened awareness, that this "real world" and "real self" are very far from being rock-bottom realities. I cannot, in the flesh, leave the stage, either to go behind the scenes or to take my seat in the pit; but I can remember that these regions exist. And I also remember that my apparent self -- this clown or hero or super -- under his grease-paint is a real person with an off-stage life. The dramatic person could not tread the stage unless he concealed a real person: unless the real and unknown I existed, I would not even make mistakes about the imagined me. And in prayer this real I struggles to speak, for once, from his real being, and to address, for once, not the other actors, but -- what shall I call Him? The Author, for He invented us all? The Producer, for He controls all? Or the Audience, for He watches, and will judge, the performance?

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Commemoration of Mellitus, First Bishop of London, 624 The [Christian] "doctrines" are translations into our concepts and ideas of that which God has already expressed in language more adequate, namely the actual incarnation, crucifixion, and resurrection.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Feast of Thomas More, Scholar & Martyr, & John Fisher, Bishop & Martyr, 1535 Continuing a short series on topics of Christian apologetics: He would be a brave man who claimed to realize the fallen condition of man more clearly than St Paul. In that very chapter [Romans 7] where he asserts most strongly our inability to keep the moral law he also asserts most confidently that we perceive the Law's goodness and rejoice in it according to the inward man. Our righteousness may be filthy and ragged; but Christianity gives us no ground for holding that our perceptions of right are in the same condition. They may, no doubt, be impaired; but there is a difference between imperfect sight and blindness. A theology which goes about to represent our practical reason as radically unsound is heading for disaster. If we once admit that what God means by "goodness" is sheerly different from what we judge to be good, there is no difference left between pure religion and devil worship.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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Feast of Oswald, King of Northumbria, Martyr, 642 Meanwhile, little people like you and me, if our prayers are sometimes granted, beyond all hope and probability, had better not draw hasty conclusions to our own advantage. If we were stronger, we might be less tenderly treated. If we were braver, we might be sent, with far less help, to defend far more desperate posts in the great battle.

Christianity Quotes, by C. S. Lewis

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