Tuesday, September 18, 2012

E-nklings Cloud of Witnesses: Body, Soul and C.S. Lewis

No doubt you've seen this fashionable quote floating around the interwebs along with the memes, e-cards and other general gobbledy-gook.

“No, you don’t have a soul.  You are a soul.  You have a body.”

Allegedly this was written by C.S. Lewis, or so the quotsters on Facebook want you to believe. I've read a great deal of C.S. Lewis's works and have yet to come across this. And while he often broke his own rule of going beyond what he called mere Christianity, he was not one to deny body and soul, a common Gnostic heresy perpetuated in this quotation. Now, thanks to my friend, Pastor Timothy Winterstein at his blog Balaam's Ass (gotta love that) and another article I found on while doing some google research this myth has been put to rest. The latter even mentions that this may have been attributed to something that George MacDonald, one of Lewis's influences, had once said. Both mention this quote in its original locations by a fellow named Walter M. Miller.

I encourage anyone who has heard or read this quote to check out Pr. Winterstein's helpful insights into the error behind this quotation here.

This is why our junior high and high school English teachers spent so much time reminding us to cite and properly quote our sources.

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