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Between Heaven and Hell: A Dialog Somewhere Beyond Death with John F. Kennedy, C. S. Lewis & Aldous Huxley Paperback – June, 1982

4.4 out of 5 stars 83 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 115 pages
  • Publisher: InterVarsity Press; No Edition Stated edition (June 1982)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0877843899
  • ISBN-13: 978-0877843894
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.6 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #781,601 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
November 22, 1963 was a day that all who were alive that day will remember. It was the day J.F. Kennedy was killed. But in the shadow of that famous death two other great men died that day, Aldous Huxley and C.S. Lewis. This book deals with those three famous men and a fictional dialog they would have sometime after life, but before a final judgment.

These three great men each believed in an afterlife but differently. Lewis in ancient western theism, Kennedy was a humanist, and Huxley believed in ancient eastern pantheism. Each also believed or practiced different forms of Christianity. Lewis was more mainline orthodox Christianity, Kennedy was a modernist or humanistic Christianity and Huxley an Orientalized or mystical Christianity.

The three men meet in a white mist or fog, they debate where they are, what they believe and where they think they will end up. Like many of Kreeft's books it is written as a dialogue, a conversation in three parts. They each present their world views, their view of the afterlife and their understanding of what their life meant. Yet each is open to the `truth' what truth really is and if it has eternal impact.

This is one of those fun light reads, written in a unique and engaging manner that will presenting the three most common views currently accepted in Christianity, and three of the common interpretations of Christianity in today's world. If you want to understand other streams of Christianity or the Christians around you this book will give you a clear, concise and humorous presentation of the three main approaches today.
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Format: Paperback
Between Heaven & Hell has a subtitle which reads, "A Dialog Somewhere Beyond Death with John F. Kennedy, C.S. Lewis & Aldous Huxley". Yes, this is a fictional trialog in "limbo" of the most important question in human history - Who is Jesus Christ? Many people are unaware that JFK, Lewis and Huxley all died within hours of each other on November 22, 1963. It seems the assassination of President Kennedy from either the grassy knoll or from the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository somehow managed to overshadow the deaths of the other two men. Go figure!
Much of the fictional discussion between these three characters revolves around their own writings although Kreeft employs a bit of literary license for the sake of argument. The fact that Kreeft is a Catholic doesn't affect the content of this book since the argument is essentially Lewis' straight, or "mere" Christianity. The position of JFK is that of a humanistic Christian in the sense of emphasizing "horizontal" social activity rather than "vertical" religious experience...religion without revelation. Kennedy portrays his view of Christ as that of a man become god. Huxley doesn't get the air time that Lewis and JFK get, but his contribution is significant. He represents the eastern pantheist position and reinterprets Christianity as a form of the universal philosophy of pantheism. In this view, Jesus was one of the great sages of history along with Buddha, Socrates, Confucius, Mohammed and the rest. Employing the Socratic method of question and answer, Kreeft slowly but surely uses Lewis' arguments to refute the views of Jesus being a lunatic, liar or just a great moral teacher.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Three men died on the same day in November, 1963: JFK, Aldous Huxley, and CS Lewis. The book is a fictional recreation of how their meeting might take place.
I would like to write my review in the form of a pros/cons list with the following premise: I really liked this book.

Cons: I think there are fewer than the pros by far, but my own view includes-
1.) Though I actually agree with Kreeft's portrayal of Kennedy overall as a philosophical dilletante compared to Lewis and Huxley, Kreeft could have been a little more generous to JFK.
2.) Kreeft is a little more philosophically specific than Lewis who wrote to more of a "lay" crowd.

1.) I disagree with previous reviews that say that the book misrepresented Lewis. Few people know the ins and outs of Lewis better than Kreeft. Consider these parallels as proof: A.) the aut deus aut homo malus argument is a direct recapitulation of the lunatic, liar, or Lord argument present in Mere Christianity and some of Lewis' other works.
B.) Those who say that Lewis believed that all cultures and religions were equal is not exactly correct. Lewis believed that pieces of truth were lodged in other religions, but did not believe that all religions were created equal. Again a close reading of the opening in Mere Christianity makes it clear that Lewis is an adamant Christian.
C.) The way in which Lewis believed that all people were equal was in their imperfection when confronting the holy reality of God. Huxley, on the other hand, adhered to a more pantheistic view of human nature that lumped the good and the bad in one ubiquitous whole.
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