Peace if possible. Truth at all costs. ~ Martin Luther

Revisiting “The Great Divorce” [Book Review]

the great divorceIf you’ve never read “The Great Divorce” by C. S. Lewis, it is a powerful book. It’ s been years since I last cracked this old classic open, but just recently I picked it up and was enthralled all over again.

Anyone who enjoyed Lewis’s other famous work, “The Screwtape Letters”, will love this book. It’s NOT a book about marriage, if you assumed that from the title. Like Screwtape, it is an allegory in which the writer dreams that he boards a bus on a drizzly afternoon and embarks on an incredible voyage through Heaven and Hell.

Now, if you start reading at chapter one you may feel quite bewildered for a number of pages. Let me suggest two helps:

#1. A key to the book is found in the preface when Lewis writes, “I think earth, if chosen instead if Heaven, will turn out to have been, all along, only a region in Hell: and earth, if put second to Heaven, to have been from the beginning a part of Heaven itself.”

And then #2. However much benefit you derive from reading it through for the first time, the second time you read it will almost certainly be richer than the first.

Beyond these hints I don’t want to say too much and risk spoiling it for you. The book is full of insights that you’ll be able to pause and savor. I highly recommend you read it!