The most dreadful, the most beautiful

Reading Lewis always awakens in me a sense of awe at the beauty and other-ness of God. Scanning through what Lewis regarded as the favorite of all his works, Till We Have Faces, I came across these paragraphs describing the coming of god to judge the main character, Orual. Lewis’s brilliance in writing these kinds of narratives always makes reality feel more real.


*  *  *

The voices spoke again; but not loud this time. They were awed and trembled. “He is coming,” they said. “The god is coming into his house. The god comes to judge Orual.”

If Pysche had not held me by the hand I should have sunk down. She had brought me now to the very edge of the pool. The air was growing brighter and brighter about us; as if something had set it on fire. Each breath I drew let into me new terror, joy, overpowering sweetness. I was pierced through and through with the arrows of it. I was being unmade. I was no one. But that’s little to say; rather, Psyche herself was, in a manner, no one. I loved her as I would once have thought it impossible to love, would have died any death for her. And yet, it was not, not now, she that really counted. Or if she counted (and oh, gloriously she did) it was for another’s sake. The earth and stars and sun, all that was or will be, existed for his sake. And he was coming. The most dreadful, the most beautiful, the only dread and beauty there is, was coming. The pillars on the far side of the pool flushed with his approach. I cast down my eyes.



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