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The trouble about argument is that it moves the whole struggle onto the Enemy's own ground. He can argue too; whereas in really practical propaganda of the kind I am suggesting He has been shown for centuries to be greatly the inferior of Our Father Below.

The first sentence makes perfect sense, it says that arguing will make the "Enemy" more defensive(of that nature). The second part: " whereas in really practical propaganda of the kind I am suggesting He has been shown for centuries to be greatly inferior", does not make sense.

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    It's relatively intricate phrasing by modern standards. You'll find it easier to parse if you imagine in really practical propaganda of the kind I am suggesting being a "parenthetical" element (i.e. - think of it as being in brackets, like this one). Jun 25 '16 at 19:45
  • Ok, thanks @FumbleFingers. That helped a little, but what about when it transitions to say "He has been shown for centuries to be greatly inferior of Our Father Below." What you said makes sense, but then that part mucks it up a bit for me. Jun 25 '16 at 19:50
  • C. S. Lewis is known for the screwy way he tapes together letters.
    – Hot Licks
    Jun 25 '16 at 19:53
  • Forget the parenthetical element, then you don't need to think about "transitions". You're just left with [The Enemy] has been shown ... to be ... inferior. What's problematic about that? Jun 25 '16 at 19:54
  • Ok that helps a lot, so what is it saying in relation to the rest of the sentence when it says, "whereas in really practical propaganda of the kind I am suggesting"? Jun 25 '16 at 19:56
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You are misunderstanding the first part: Screwtape does not say that the Enemy will be more "defensive" but that the struggle will be carried on "terrain" where the Enemy is stronger. God (says Screwtape) has the advantage in rational argument.

But in "practical propaganda"—that is, appealing to irrational motives —God is inferior to the Devil. "Practical propaganda" is therefore what Screwtape is suggesting: he advises Wormwood not to try to persuade The Patient that materialism is "true" (an appeal to logic) but to make him believe that materialism is "strong, or stark, or courageous — that it is the philosophy of the future" (an appeal to emotion).

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"The trouble about argument is that it moves the whole struggle onto the Enemy's own ground. He can argue too; " i.e. Logic and rationale find their source in God. Those are HIS tools. And if you use logic, then you are at an immediate disadvantage if you are trying to fight against Him.

"...whereas in really practical propaganda of the kind I am suggesting..." i.e. But in the art of creative embellishment (or outright lies)

"...He has been shown for centuries to be greatly the inferior of Our Father Below." i.e. God is handicapped by His insistence on always being truthful.

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