Tag Archives: Screwtape Letter

Keep Him Distracted or Sentimental

I came to this lost letter between two tempters late this season. Justin Wainscott found it somewhere and offers it to us for the useful instruction it has. The senior tempter advises his pupil not to try to turn his charge against Christmas all together, but to weakness his reflection on any of the details.

Keep him distracted as much as possible. “Keep him overly committed to all sorts of things (yes, even good things). Make sure he goes to every party and feels obligated to go out and purchase a gift for each one. Make sure he attends concerts and dinners and charity events. If his calendar isn’t full, you’ve failed.”

Failing that, keep him sentimental. “By all means, let him sing and be merry. Hell knows we have made good use of those kinds of things just as much as we have misery and gloom.”

Failing that, he has one more suggestion, all of which make for good advice for the coming year.

Photo by Jeswin Thomas from Pexels

Did Lewis Write Screwtape in a Larger Fictional Context?

Do you view C.S. Lewis’ The Screwtape Letters as a standalone work? A Pilgrim in Narnia has discovered something that may indicate Lewis intended his collection of demonic letters to be part of a larger fictional context.

The Screwtape Letters begins with a letter of its own. “I have no intention of explaining how the correspondence which I now offer to the public fell into my hands. There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils.” Your copy of this work attributes this letter to Lewis himself, but one early edition attributes it to someone else, a character from another of Lewis’s works. Brenton Dickieson spells out more details here.