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The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe

Summary

Chapter 15: Deeper Magic from Before the Dawn of Time

Summary Chapter 15: Deeper Magic from Before the Dawn of Time

Although Lewis clearly intended Aslan's story to suggest Christ's Passion (the Passion is the suffering, death, and resurrection of Christ), the two stories are not exactly parallel. Lewis repeatedly explained to his readers that he did not simply transplant the Gospel story into a new setting. Instead, he imagined what the life of a redeemer might be like if another world needed redemption. The most important difference between the stories is that Christ died to redeem all humankind, while Aslan dies to save one life. However, even this difference between Aslan's and Christ's stories reinforces the overall Christian message. In God's eyes, one human life is as significant as all human lives. The story of Aslan thus stands on its own to a certain extent, both reflecting and restating Christian themes.

There are other differences between the two stories. Aslan rises the morning after he is killed, whereas Christ lay in the tomb for three days, a highly symbolic number in Christianity. Aslan immediately whirls into action the moment after he rises, speaks to Susan and Lucy, and then storms the Witch's castle. Christ did not reveal himself to his disciples for a long time. In Narnia, once Aslan rises from the dead, the world returns to normal. The Christian legend explains that human beings must wait to go to heaven to experience such perfection. Jesus' resurrection was not immediately followed by a new social order and the abolishment of evil. Although Lewis refers to the Christian story, he adapts it to fit the fantasy world of Narnia. Thus, Lewis creates a unique variation on an ancient tale and preserves the individuality of the magic kingdom of Narnia.