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Screwtape comes to America

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Screwtape comes to America – American Thinker

April 9, 2022


C.S. Lewis’ 1942 satirical Screwtape Letters is probably the best literary work of its kind in describing how evil and the devil take root, undetected, in the life of human beings. Our tendency is to think of evil as overt, obvious, and easily discerned. We believe we are smart enough to spot it but Lewis rightly warns us that we are not.

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In this classic primer, Uncle Screwtape, a Senior Devil, writes a series of letters to his nephew Wormwood, a Junior apprentice Tempter, discipling him how to surreptitiously tempt a Christian man (“The Patient”) away from God. It is a revelatory tour de force by Lewis, who admitted it gave him no pleasure to write Screwtape. The book was supposed to be light satire but is actually deadly serious and is treated as such by literary critics and Christians worldwide.

In America, evil is often overlooked because it does not come in a red velvet body suit, tail and horns. Still, evil is everywhere being mistaken for good. For example: 

It is funny how mortals always picture us as putting things into their minds: in Reality our best work is done by keeping things out…. turn their gaze away from Him [God] towards themselves. Keep them watching their own minds and trying to produce feelings there by the action of their own wills.

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Many are so self-absorbed that there is no room for God or anything else. In fact, our culture is set up to deliberately turn attention away from God inward toward one’s own feelings. America’s TikTok culture reflects this perfectly.

Here is the scary part: Lewis wrote in his Preface to Screwtape Letters the following to describe where evil is conceived:

The greatest evil is not now done in those sordid ‘dens of crime’ that Dickens loved to paint. It is not done even in concentration camps and labour camps. In those we see its final result. But it is conceived and ordered (moved, seconded, carried, and minuted) in clean, carpeted, warmed, and well-lighted offices, by quiet men with white collars and cut fingernails and smooth-shaven cheeks who do not need to raise their voice.

The greatest evil for America is incubated by the globalist one-world BlackRock-ers in places like Davos. The CDC, WEF and the EU have not escaped contamination, either. We are mistakenly looking for evil in the discernible and the conspicuous. But it is being clandestinely hatched undetected in slick private jets and plush private offices.

Screwtape cautions Wormwood not to be obvious, but rather to hide his ominous intentions from “The Patient” and instead to take the veiled clandestine approach:

Murder is no better than cards if cards can do the trick. Indeed the safest road to Hell is the gradual one — the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts…

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Let people believe that nothing is really happening, or if it is happening, it is not really important.  Few thought it was alarming when baby steps were taken decades ago to legislate reparations in America. We said, “This will never go anywhere.” We are now saying the identical thing while reparations are being implemented under our noses and under other names — “Critical Race Theory,” “Diversity, Equity, Inclusion,” “No Bail” arrests and unprosecuted shoplifting sprees.

Screwtape gives Wormwood the following advice regarding The Patient:

Keep pressing home on him the ordinariness of things. Above all, do not attempt to use science (I mean, the real sciences) as a defence against Christianity. They will positively encourage him to think about realities he can’t touch and see. There have been sad cases among the modern physicists. If he must dabble in science, keep him on economics and sociology; don’t let him get away from that invaluable “real life.”

The more a culture believes only in what is provable through science, the less likely its members are to seek truth in transcendence because the trail might possibly lead to God. The “sad cases” refer to the many scientists, especially physicists, who have inadvertently been led to God precisely and surprisingly through their scientific endeavors. The ordinariness of things like single-celled animals, finding marine fossils high in the mountains, or gazing at distant galaxies often lead many a hard scientist to the sublime and the transcendent. That is a huge loss for secular humanism.

The Left emphasizes “follow the science” because science is their god. Such a mindset squirms uncomfortably that we are made in God’s image. This nervous intransigence gives rise to the wanton killing of babies in utero and out. After all, babies are not made in God’s image because God does not exist.

But God does exist, and foul forces far more experienced than Wormwood are everywhere tempting humans without being detected. A furious Screwtape, Wormwood, and other evils are at this moment hounding Americans away from what is good and Godly toward that which is profane, angry and vindictive. We remain unaware of Screwtape’s nihilistic, perverse plans at our peril.

Image: HarperCollins

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