Wednesday, March 14, 2012
C S LEWIS AND J R R TOLKIEN
She said her father didn't care much for C S Lewis' writings when compared to his own, but they were good friends to say the least. Priscilla, a church organist in her home parish in Oxford, said her dad lamented the fact that C S Lewis never became a Catholic although he certainly leaned in that direction with the Oxford Movement. (I'm sure today he'd join the Anglican Ordinariate!)
(The Oxford Movement began in 1833 under the leadership of John Keble, E.B.Pusey and John Henry Newman. These churchmen had in mind a return of the Anglican Communion to a 'Catholic' Church faithful to the Early Fathers and free of undue influence from the States. It reached its climax in 1845 with Newman's conversion to Catholicism.
Another movement which began in Oxford a century later and which has given us shelves of great books is that of The Inklings. This group of Christian friends, most of whom taught at Oxford University, included C.S.Lewis, J.R.R.Tolkien, and Owen Barfield. They met weekly in Lewis's rooms in Magdalen College to talk, drink, and read aloud whatever any of them was writing. They gathered as well on Tuesday mornings over beer and pipes in the Eagle and Child pub, or 'Bird and Baby' as it is known. Visitors to Oxford can usually find a seat in the snug little back room of the 'Bird and Baby' where photographs and other mementoes of The Inklings are displayed. When you are settled with a drink, you'll probably ask 'Why did they call themselves "Inklings"?' 'How did it all begin? The first question was answered by Tolkien who explained that they were 'people with vague or half-formed intimations and ideas plus those who dabble in ink.')
Currently I have a parishioner who each summer works as C S Lewis' home in Oxford, England. It is now a museum and hosts many wonderful events concerning his life. I had the privilege of visiting there a couple of summers ago.
This video is very good and helps us to understand much of the turmoil in the religious world that continues to persist today but born in the period of C S Lewis and J R R Tolkien's childhood. It helps to explain the post I have below this one too!