A Few Example Posts:

  • "The End of Faith: A Short Response to Sam Harris"
  • See also:
  • "A Long Response to Sam Harris' The End of Faith, by Neil Shenvi"

  • "Is John Piper the Best Answer to Emergence and Postmodernism?"

  • "Captured"

  • "The Storm is Over"

  • "If Golfing Were the Pursuit of Moral Perfection"

  • 8.29.2005

    The Inner Ring

    Do you understand the unwritten rules of the group of people you want to join? --Not a formal joining where you send in your membership fee and get some sort of card or sticker identifying you to a group, but the unwritten rules of what it means to be in or to be out? From groups of playground friends in elementary school to the “in” group at the office or club, people intuitively know the power of the “Inner Ring.”

    C.S. Lewis gave an address to young people explaining to them the way of the world:

    “And of course everyone knows what a middle-aged moralist of my type warns his juniors against. He warns them against the World, the Flesh, and the Devil. But one of this trio will be enough to deal with today. The Devil I shall leave strictly alone...As for the Flesh, you must be very abnormal young people if you do not know quite as much about it as I do. But on the World I think I have something to say.” C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory (San Francisco, Harper Collins Publishers, revised 1980), 143.

    Lewis then discusses the phenomenon of “the Inner Ring” and how every person’s desire to be a part of this phenomenon is one of the “mainsprings of human action."

    He defines what the Inner Ring is and how it works--and how it relates to the idea of Friendship in general.

    The rest of the address attempts to warn young people how this mainspring of motivation in life can actually destroy one’s soul. He solemnly warns, “The quest of the Inner Ring will break your hearts unless you break it. (Weight of Glory, p.156)”

    This short address, only 17 pages, is both interesting and insightful. I only wish that Lewis could have described how to break the lust for the Inner Ring more fully.

    I want to encourage leaders of young people such as teachers, youth pastors, pastors, and especially parents to read this address. Lewis discusses an aspect of life of which we are all aware; however, he brings this aspect out into the light and puts words to the issue that help us understand more fully.

    If you have ever questioned why you feel hurt or elated at a way a group of folks has treated you, read “The Inner Ring.”

    If your young people wrestle with interpersonal relationships (or even if they don’t), read this address.

    If you want an understanding of what a major part of worldliness really is, read this short piece of work.

    It is extremely insightful.

    Find the Weight of Glory in which "The Inner Ring" is printed here.


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