Book #14 The Stranger

It’s probably going to take me a while to digest this one. Described as an existentialist masterpiece, this work by Albert Camus describes the plight of Meursault, a young man who finds himself involved in a senseless murder. I’m struck by the way Meursault seems so disconnected from reality, as if he is merely a passenger on a ship over which he has no control or influence. In this short novel, he experiences the death of his mother, he murders a man for no good reason, and he is condemned to die for the murder. However, through it all, he sees himself as unable to control any of it. He just floats along hopelessly. In his view, life is merely a series of events that occur, and we are spectators and not active participants. It reminds me of the words in the book of Ecclesiastes, “Meaningless! Meaningless!… Utter meaningless! Everything is meaningless.”

This book is a vivid picture of the utter hopelessness and despair of those who live without the hope of Christ.

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