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A comparison of lewis who accepts god and freudwho rejects him

Get the latest updates straight to your inbox. Lewis, both prevalent in our culture today, present diametrically opposed interpretations of who we are our identitywhere we come from our biological and cultural heritageand our destiny. First, let us lay the groundwork for our discussion by asking three questions. Who is Sigmund Freud? And, what is a worldview? Few men have influenced the moral fabric of our civilization more than Sigmund Freud and C.

Freud was the Viennese physician who developed psychoanalysis.

  1. We have considered the contrasting worldviews of two prolific minds. First, Lewis gradually became aware that most of the great writers he had been reading for years were believers.
  2. He once said he thought of it every day of his life, which is really unusual. But Lewis would disagree with that.
  3. You did good this way even to me. One view claims that the universe is an accident and our existence a matter of chance.
  4. Lewis also wrote about mortality. Freud and Lewis also discussed the sources of morality and conscience.
  5. After reading the book, Freud reminded his physician of a promise he had made to help ease his passing when the time came.

Many historians rank his findings with those of Planck and Einstein. His theories proffer new understanding of how our minds work.

His ideas per-vade several disciplines including medicine, literature, sociology, anthropology, history, and law. How we interpret human behavior in law and literary criticism is strongly influenced by his theories. His concepts so permeate our language that we use terms like repression, complex, projection, narcissism, Freudian slip, and sibling rivalry without realizing their origin.

Because of the unmistakable impact of his thought on our culture, scholars refer to this century as the "century of Freud. In light of what we now know, Freud is continuously criticized, discredited, and vilified; yet his picture keeps cropping up on the covers of our magazines and front-page articles in newspapers like the New York Times.

Recent historical research has intensified the interest in the controversies surrounding Freud and his work. As part of an intellectual legacy, Freud vehemently advocated a secular, materialistic, atheistic philosophy of life. Lewis won international recognition long before his death in 1963, his scholarly and popular books continue to sell millions of copies a year and his influence continues to grow.

Today, the sheer quantity of personal, biographical and literary books on Lewis; the vast number of C. Lewis societies in colleges and universities; the C. Lewis periodicals and journals; as well as the relatively recent play and movie on his life all attest to the ever-growing interest in this man and his work. As a young faculty member at Oxford, Lewis changed from a secular, atheistic worldview to a spiritual one; a worldview that Freud regularly attacked, but which Lewis embraced and defined and described in many of his writings after his conversion.

Both Lewis and Freud possessed extraordinary literary gifts. Freud won the Goethe prize for literature in 1930. Conflicting Worldviews Now, on a comparison of lewis who accepts god and freudwho rejects him the question of defining "worldview. The rest of the time when we are alone we have the radio or the television on anything to avoid being alone with ourselves.

Pascal maintained the sole reason for our unhappiness is that we are unable to sit alone in our room. He claimed we do not like to confront the reality of our lives; the human condition is so basically unhappy that we do everything to keep distracted from thinking about it. The broad interest and enduring influence of the works of Freud and Lewis result less from their unique literary style than from the universal appeal of the questions they addressed; questions that remain extraordinarily relevant to our personal lives and to our contemporary social and moral crises.

From diametrically opposed views, they talked about issues such as, "Is there meaning and purpose to existence? We cannot even, from our scientific point of view, address the question of whether or not there is meaning to life. Thus Freud devised the "pleasure principle" as one of the main features of our existence.

Lewis, on the other hand, said meaning and purpose are found in understanding why we are here in terms of the Creator who made us.

Our primary purpose is to establish a relationship with that Creator. Freud and Lewis also discussed the sources of morality and conscience. Everyday we get up and make a series of decisions that carry us through the day. Those decisions are usually based on what we consider to be right: Now, Freud said our moral code comes from human experience, like our traffic laws. We make the codes up because they are expedient for us. In some cultures you drive on the left, in others you drive on the right.

But Lewis would disagree with that. He said that while there are differences in cultures, there is a basic moral law that transcends culture and time. This law is not invented, like traffic laws, but is discovered, like mathematical truth.

'Freud's Last Session' at Ashland Contemporary Theatre

So Freud and Lewis had an entirely different understanding of the source of moral truth. Lewis and Freud also talked about the existence of an intelligence beyond the universe; Freud said "No," Lewis said "Yes. Freud claimed miracles contradict everything we have learned through empirical observation; they do not really occur. If there is any evidence, the philosophy that you bring to that evidence determines how you interpret it. Freud and Lewis both spoke at length about human sexuality.

Freud considered all love a kind of sublimated sexuality even love between friends. Lewis said that anybody who thinks that friendship is based on sexuality has never really had a friend. They also discussed the problem of pain and suffering.

The origin and types of wrestling today

Freud was enormously bothered by this problem, and Lewis wrote some wonderful books that help explain the problem of suffering that we all experience. The Problem of Pain [Macmillan, 1944] is a very cerebral discussion of the issue. People in my field say it is the finest work on the process of grief. And, of course, they both discuss what Freud called "The painful riddle of death.

I will discuss two of these themes. The God Question First, the existence of an intelligence beyond the universe what modern scientists refer to as the "God question. He told me recently that even in his field, scientists have become interested in the question of whether or not there is intelligence beyond the universe. He said this is a rather recent area of interest for them and that it has been provoked primarily by the acceptance of the Big Bang theory.

But once one accepts the idea that the universe had a specific starting point, one has to think about what occurred before. So physicists now are thinking about questions only theologians and philosophers thought about in the past. How we live our lives, how we end our lives, what we perceive, how we interpret what we perceive, are all formed and influenced consciously or unconsciously by one of these two basic assumptions.

With this in mind, Freud divided all people into "believers" and "unbelievers. Believers include the rest, whose belief ranges from merely an intellectual assent that someone or something is out there to those like Lewis, Augustine, Tolstoy, and Pascal who have had a life-transforming experience after which their faith becomes the primary motivating and organizing principle of their lives.

Freud came down clearly and strongly against the notion that there is "Anyone" out there. He described his worldview as secular and called it "scientific," and he claimed that no source of knowledge of the universe exists other than "carefully scrutinized observation what we call research. He stated that the notion of the universe created by a being "resembling a man but magnified in every respect, an idealized superman, reflects the gross ignorance of primitive a comparison of lewis who accepts god and freudwho rejects him.

Freud described the concept of God as merely a projection of the childish wish for the protection of an all-powerful father. He added that "religion is an attempt to master the sensory world in which we are situated by means of the wishful world which we have developed within us as a result of biological and psychological abnormality.

A year before he died, Freud wrote to Charles Sanger, "Neither in my private life nor in my writing have I ever made a secret of being an out-and-out unbeliever. Certainly he did refer to himself often as, "an infidel Jew," and he rejected outright the religious view of the universe, especially the Judeo-Christian view.

He certainly attacked this view with all his intellectual might and from every possible perspective. Yet, for some reason he remained preoccupied with these issues; he just could not leave them alone. He spent the last thirty years of his life writing about them. In an autobiographical study he said that these philosophical and religious issues interested him throughout his life from early youth.

You did good this way even to me. If it were anyone but Freud, who claimed even a slip of the tongue had meaning, we might be able to say this. How the devil do you reconcile all that we experience and come to expect in this world with your assumption of a moral world order?

On the contrary, the destinies of mankind can be brought into harmony neither with a hypothesis of a universal benevolence nor with a partial contradictory one of a universal justice. Earthquakes, tidal waves, complications make no distinctions between the virtuous and pious and the scoundrel or unbeliever. Often enough the violent cunning or ruthless man seizes the envied good things of the world and the pious man goes away empty.

Obscure, unfeeling, unloving powers determine our fate. The systems of rewards and punishments which religion describes to the government of the universe seems not to exist. I wonder how many of us have sometimes felt that way. Freud seemed to be unaware, of course, that in the Biblical worldview the government of the universe is temporarily in enemy hands.

I said that people like Phister would describe the presence of an evil power in the universe that might account for some of the suffering.

Anna seemed unusually interested in this notion and came back to it several times in our discussion. We must remember that Freud suffered considerably in his life, emotionally as a Jew growing up in an intensely Catholic-biased Vienna, and physically with an intractable cancer of the palate that he struggled with for sixteen years of his life.

Surgical procedures were not very well developed then and caused him a great deal of physical pain. So we need to keep that in mind when trying to understand how he felt. When thirty-three years old, by then a popular member of the Oxford faculty, Lewis experienced a profound and radical change in his life and in his thinking.

He rejected the materialistic and atheistic worldview and embraced a strong faith in God and eventually in Jesus Christ. This conversion from one worldview to the other began an outpouring of scholarly and popular works that have influenced millions of people.

How do people change their worldviews from one to another that is dramatically different? Lewis, this transformation happened over a long period of time. Nevertheless, his conversion was no less dramatic than Paul, Augustine, Tolstoy, Pascal, or many others.

These are some of the influences that stirred Lewis to change his worldview: First, Lewis gradually became aware that most of the great writers he had been reading for years were believers.

This began to make him think.

  1. Nine days later, Lewis took a trip by motorcycle with his brother. This reminds me of my medical students just beginning to practice medicine; very often they will call me to tell me their experiences on the ward.
  2. In some cultures you drive on the left, in others you drive on the right.
  3. Freud came down clearly and strongly against the notion that there is "Anyone" out there.
  4. When he was 23 years old he wrote a letter to his father on the death of an old teacher who was a friend to both of them. We are the only creatures on earth that can foresee our own death.
  5. When Freud lost a loved one through death, he felt utterly hopeless. First, let us lay the groundwork for our discussion by asking three questions.

He realized that this joy was not an end in itself, but a reminder of something or someone else.