We Demand Windows

What then is the good of — what is even the defence for — occupying our hearts with stories of what never happened and entering vicariously into feeling which we should try to avoid having in our own person?…The nearest I have yet got to an answer is that we seek an enlargement of our being. We want to be more than ourselves. Each of us by nature sees the whole world from one point of view with a perspective and selectiveness peculiar to himself…We want to see with other eyes, to imagine with other imaginations, to feel with other hearts, as well as with our own…We demand windows.

C.S. Lewis, An Experiment in Criticism

Scott Cairns on the Power of the Text

So long as we understand our literary texts to be merely tokens referring to our prior ideas, we are denying the efficacious power and presence occasioned by our words…When we come to appreciate that our words have power, presence, and agency to shape our persons, we get a glimpse of the inexhaustible One in whom we live and move and have our being.  –Scott Cairns