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C.S. Lewis for the Third Millennium : Six Essays on the Abolition of Man [Paperback]

By Peter Kreeft (Author)
Our Price $ 12.71  
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Item Number 126567  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   193
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.03" Width: 5.31" Height: 0.67"
Weight:   0.6 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Oct 31, 1994
Publisher   Ignatius Press
ISBN  0898705231  
EAN  9780898705232  
UPC  008987052319  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
C.S. Lewis for the Third Millennium : Six Essays on the Abolition of Man by Peter Kreeft

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More About Peter Kreeft

Peter Kreeft Peter J. Kreeft (Ph.D., Fordham University) was born in 1937 and is professor of philosophy at Boston College where he has taught since 1965. A popular lecturer, he has also taught at many other colleges, seminaries and educational institutions in the eastern United States. Kreeft has written more than fifty books, including The Best Things in Life, The Journey, How to Win the Culture War and, with Ronald Tacelli, Handbook of Christian Apologetics.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Not what it's cracked up to be  Oct 18, 2005
I normally enjoy Kreeft, and there are some merits to this book. His essay about whether the moral code can be abolished at all is very interesting.

That said, I got a book full of "Brave New World is upon us!" I don't disagree with that point, but I was hoping for more on "The Abolition of Man". If you're really looking for someone to tell you that the Brave New World is here, read this book, otherwise, get something else.
Tonic for our times  Jun 5, 2005
This book is a treat. One of the great Christian apologists, writers and thinkers of the last century is discussed by one of the best of this century. Peter Kreeft, Professor of Philosophy at Boston College, here gives us an introduction to the thought and influence of the great Oxford don.

Both authors are known for their clarity of mind, their prolific literary output, and their commitment to the truths of historic Christianity. And both authors have been known as fearless warriors against the prevailing secularism and relativism of our culture.

Indeed, a major target of Lewis's pen was modernism and all that it entails. The rejection of the sacred and the elevation of the secular was a defining feature of modernism. It meant the exaltation of human reason and the rejection of non-human revelation. Autonomous man, guided only by intellect, could usher in a perfect world, accompanied by science and technology. Such a utopian quest was doomed to failure of course, and many of Lewis's works were directed at this theme.

The Abolition of Man was a classic volume in this regard. So too was the third volume of his space trilogy, That Hideous Strength. The naïve and baseless belief of modernism that fallen reason, aided and abetted by science (really scientism), could create a new man and an earthly paradise has been the cause of more human misery and death than any other worldview.

The Judeo-Christian worldview, which gave rise to Western civilisation, has been repudiated, resulting in a host of heresies that beguile modern man. Kreeft lists twenty "isms" that Lewis waged war against, all the products of the modernist rejection of it transcendent roots. These include subjectivism, cultural relativism, utilitarianism, pragmatism, cynicism, hedonism, and secularism.

These destructive isms plaguing the West today are part of a much bigger sweep of history. Lewis argued that the history of Western civilisation has been characterised by two monumental spiritual revolutions, the first from pre-Christian to Christian, the second from Christian to post-Christian.

He argued that the second revolution was more radical than the first, just "as divorce is more traumatic than marriage". The second change is happening quicker and is more destabilising. As a result, the soul of Western civilisation is dying. The real question is how long and how deep this second revolution will run.

The first revolution however is the permanent one. It may appear to have been eclipsed for now, but our vantage point is limited. True, the new dark ages may continue for quite sometime. Writing six years before the new millennium, Kreeft could argue that we have two options: "Either we will build Gothic cathedrals again, from a restored faith, or we will build the Tower of Babel again, from a restored apostasy".

As a prophetic figure, Lewis could clearly see the stark choice facing the West. He knew that if we rejected the right choice, many more horrors would await us. But if we choose wisely, the new dawn will soon arise.

The six meaty essays in this book offer the way out of the spiritual, cultural and intellectual morass we find ourselves in. The prophetic vision and insight of Lewis needs to be captured again by a new generation. And this book is an ideal means by which that can happen.
Boring  Jun 6, 2004
I have read most of C. S. Lewis's works. I have read some Kreeft before and I enjoyed his writings. However, these essays are boring. I could not get through them. The essays have very little to do with what Lewis thought and a lot to do with what Kreeft thinks about. What's more after the first essay, I could care less what Kreeft thinks about. I would suggest that you reread "Abolition of Man" again and save your money.
Eclipse of the First Things  Jul 17, 2003
"Can the natural law ever be abolished from the heart of man?" Prof. Kreeft presents both sides of the argument, pitting Aquinas ("no") against C.S. Lewis ("yes").

I think it is a "loose" argument. Lewis in The Abolition of Man says there will be no men left. Natural law ceases to be because man ceases to be. Does that mean that Lewis' position is correct - that the natural law can be abolished? Well, one might argue that if man himself ceases to be a moral agent, he is no longer truly human.

Kreeft holds out the hope that Aquinas is correct, that man will awaken to his danger.

But, in this polity, a society where people decide how to order their lives together, we are facing a powerful tyranny of thought that has granted unto itself the obligation of making those decisions. That power asserts that the belief of "an ethic or morality that transcends human invention" is a "religious" notion - and that religion can play no part - indeed, must not be permitted to play a part - in the life of the polity.

This tyranny of thought is found in the judicial chambers of our government, in the US Supreme Court and its circuit courts. Surely, the reasoning behind many Court decisions over the past 50 years can be found in the list of 20 "heresies" Prof. Kreeft supplies.

This book is a very "uncomfortable" work - reading it, one should be concerned about the erosion of the polity, should be unhappy about it, should be ready to do something about it. That list of 20 failed philosophies is the most important and valuable part of this work, and possibly the most uncomfortable aspect of it: I am sure the reader would recognize many of his or her own personal beliefs (and those that have been presented to him or her in school or church) described somewhere in that list.

We don't stone prophets anymore - the Court just rules them inadmissible.

The occasional good or interesting idea manages to escape from a confused sea of mannered verbiage. This is the written essence of talk radio. The writer seems more intent on giving paternalistic viewpoints in annoyingly cute expressions than explaining. A poor choice for an intelligent person. Rather than look at ideas, set them down, weigh them, and discuss methodically, this book rants. Would make good bird-cage flooring, however, and may be commended for that. The subject matter of the book is of great concern; the treatment, however, is for the mass consumption of the fear prone. I want my money back. The book should be called Kreeft for the Third Millenium, but then, who would buy it.

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