C.S.Lewis has always been big in our life together. I quote Screwtape (5) more than anything else, but the one that shaped me was The Great Divorce (6). Very short-- it shaped my vision and feelings about life - now and hereafter.
Lewis' mentor George MacDonald was mine, too.
Many of his novels have recently been published. They are simplistic, but Lilith (7) we read over and over--a sort of adult Narnia.
(Most of these books are short. My experience has usually been that short books have more to say to me than long ones.)
The atheistic psychiatrist, Eric Fromm's The Art of Loving (8) crystallized in my mind the fundamental truth of Christianity: Loving God, self, and neighbor (everybody) all happen to the same degree. In other words you can't do any one of them without doing the others in equal measure.
I could name many others but I'll pass to one I've celebrated in at least one of my posts:
"Can the pope speak infallibly?", William Stringfellow was asked at an ecumenical gathering. Reply: "Any Christian who speaks in conformity to the gospel speaks infallibly." An Ethic for Christians and other Aliens in a Strange Land (9) was something I didn't want to hear at the moment, but I never got away from it. (Barth said Stringfellow was the one we should be listening to: I'm beginning to understand why David liked Barth, maybe.)
I like Stringfellow; I've lived his life, although in a very partial way. I met him at about 50 and got from him something that had been growing stronger within me for many years: permission to challenge the Establishment.
We all have the gospel within us, and if we conform to it no fear, nor pride, nor ego can hurt us--we're safe!!!