To defeat doubt in our lives we must be able to identify and incorporate all kinds of evidence. If we are not careful the Naturalist will deceive us and confuse us, eventually leading us to be defeated by doubt. The following story by C.S. Lewis illustrates how this happens:
Trapped in the dark kingdom of Underland in Narnia, the children of C.S. Lewis's The Silver Chair engage in a most frustrating conversation with the witch, the queen of Underland. The children try desperately to describe to the queen the scenes and certainties of Narnia; they speak of the sun and the moon, of the stars--and of Aslan.
The witch responds with the cunning deconstructionism of a postmodern wordsmith.
"What is this sun that you all speak of?" she asks. "Do you mean anything by the word? And Aslan, what a pretty name! What does it mean?"
Struggling with the weight of an enchanted fog over their minds, the children try their best to explain: "The sun is like a lamp, only far greater and brighter..." And of Aslan: "He is a lion--the great Lion...a little bit like a huge cat, with a mane."
To this the witch counters with the sweetest of laughs, "You see? You have seen lamps, and so you imagined a bigger and better lamp and called it the sun. You've seen cats, and now you want a bigger and better cat, and it's to be called a lion... Look how you can put nothing into your make-believe without copying it from the real world... Put away these childish tricks... There is no Narnia, no sky, no sun, no Aslan."
In the 1950s, C.S. Lewis lived in a world that denied the reality of the supernatural and seemed to only believe in the natural world. Things haven’t changed much, have they? The naturalists tell us, like the witch, that this world is the only thing that is real.
Question: Have you been deceived by the naturalist? Can you point to tangable evidence that this physcial world is not the only real thing? How could C.S. Lewis' illustration help?
C.S. Lewis, The Silver Chair (New York: Collier, 1970), 157.