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Thursday, January 04, 2007

C. S. Lewis on Knowledge of Ourselves

I come back to St. John: 'if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart'. And equally, 'if our heart flatter us, God is greater than our heart'. I sometimes pray not for self-knowledge in general but for just so much self-knowledge at the moment as I can bear and use at the moment; the little daily dose.

Have we any reason to suppose that total self-knowledge, if it were given us, would be for our good? Children and fools, we are told, should never look at half-done work; and we are not yet, I trust, even half-done. You and I wouldn't, at all stages, think it wise to tell a pupil exactly what we thought of his quality. It is much more important that he should know what to do next.
- from Letters to Malcom: Chiefly on Prayer

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