The whole title of this book is what drove me to order it! “The Question of God – C.S. Lewis and Sigmund Freud Debate God, Love, Sex, and the Meaning of Life” by Dr. Armand M. Nicholi, Jr.
Wow! What a read. I like to keep track in my reading journal how long I read each time I sit down with a book. Even though this book is only 244 pages long, it took me over ten hours to read it. I stopped a lot to think and write my thoughts down more often in this book than most books I read. There was just so much resonating in my heart!
Two big takeaways for me this time. Freud strikes me as a “sad, sad little man” unable to see outside of his own self. I just cannot imagine what it was like for him and I wouldn’t wish that worldview on anyone. I know. Probably not the kindest thing to say or the most insightful, but it’s the feeling I had throughout the book. Every time I read how Freud wrote about and viewed life and human nature I cringed at the sheer sadness of it. How could someone so intelligent have such a limited view of the world?
“Freud explained that when the child grows up ‘he knows, to be sure, that he is in possession of greater strength, but his insight into the perils of life has also grown greater, and he rightly concludes that fundamentally he still remains just as helpless and unprotected as he was in childhood, that faced by the world he is still a child.”” It’s just so sad to think that his relationship with his earthly parents so wounded him that he grew into an adult, took the analogy of God as Father, put them together and then tried to convince everyone around him that they should be feeling the same way. The whole book goes on through Freud’s life in this way. He seems angry and resentful that he was ever born, that the world did not appreciate his genius, and that everyone and every thing was out to hurt him. I felt sorry for him.
The other thing was that I really love C.S. Lewis and need to read more of his books first hand. I’ve read several, but there are so many that I haven’t read in their entirety. The first one of his books that I will read next is “A Grief Observed.” Another book I need to add to my list is G.K. Chesterton’s “Everlasting Man”.
One more thing before I go. I have pages of notes that mean little to me as soon as the day after I finish a book. I think I need to start taking my time and writing better notes. I may not always have the book to refer back to and even if I have the book, I frequently read a note I don’t understand, look back at the page I was referring to, and still don’t understand what I was thinking. That’s not good!