Paradise Mislaid

One of John Updike’s novels features a listless minister who spends most of his time at afternoon tea parties. Updike says this about the man’s spiritual condition: “God had become for him like a raisin under the car seat, there but forgotten.” In Paradise Mislaid, Jeffrey Burton Russell concludes that heaven has been similarly misplaced in modern Western culture. A vague notion of heaven remains, but its core meaning has long since been forgotten.

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