Myth and Meaning (02:14)
At Magdalen College in 1931, C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and Hugo Dyson attend a dinner organized by Lewis in which they discuss religion and myth.
Myth in Reality (07:04)
The discussion between Lewis, Tolkien, and Dyson resulted in Lewis' conversion to Christianity and inspired much of his fictional work. Scholars discuss what the conversation between the three academics meant and how it changed the course of literary history.
Christianity and the Imagination (08:57)
Tolkien explained to Lewis the relationship of myth and Christianity from within the religion, and challenged him to evaluate myth as true or false within the context of historical fact. Tolkien and Dyson concluded that Christianity had many elements similar to other myths throughout history, but held up against historical scrutiny.
Mythology and Beauty (05:58)
Rev. Dr. John Polkinghorne talks about the ways in which people can see and perceive reality; beauty and art are an important window to view the world. The scholars talk about ways people can view and understand their reality; Lewis wrote "Meditation in a Tool Shed."
Lewis' Mythical Writings (04:21)
In "On Fairy Stories," Tolkien asserts the Gospels contain a fairy story with mythical marvels. Tolkien likely shared these thoughts with Lewis and Dyson at Magdalen College. In "Surprised by Joy," Lewis acknowledges Christianity as truth.
Nature and Imagination (03:59)
Many pastoral and idyllic scenes can be found throughout the history. Tolkien and Lewis spoke through their work and were not attention-seeking; Tolkien worked on the mythology of "The Lord of the Rings" for most of his adult life.
Sub-Creation and Mythopoesis (07:10)
Narnia and Middle Earth share a longing for the vanished pastoral landscape and a world with more than just humans. Lewis believed the intellect needs the imagination to understand truths within reality. The scholars reference essays in which Tolkien and Lewis describe their opinions on imagination.
Imagination and Ritual (06:47)
Ritual is a tangible enactment of myth which is directly born out of the imagination. Scholars debate whether ritual or myth created religious philosophies and practices. Many scholars believe Christian symbols and beliefs define the plot and characters of "The Chronicles of Narnia.
Rational Human Faith (03:07)
The word and idea of faith are complicated to define. For Lewis, faith informed his entire vision of reality. Hid friends convinced him Christianity was myth and fact, but many experience god and faith in a different way.
Impact of Lewis' Conversion (04:30)
Lewis and Tolkien’s works were created through their experience of myth and enhanced by imagination. Scholars discuss what the authors would have agreed was the true myth later in their lives, and how their beliefs helped enhance their mythical worlds
Credits: Tolkien & Lewis (00:58)
Credits: Tolkien & Lewis
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