After much delay, here is the second Screwtape Letter:
Well done young one! You have fanned the flame of fanaticism into a full-blown wild fire! Before you get too pleased with yourself, however, we must now carefully direct this passion. The best course of action at this point is to direct your patient into a strong sense of escapism.
We all know that the Maker created these beings much differently than he created us. We, Wormwood, are celestial beings meant for the heavens. They are not. In fact, they were created for the hideous blue-green ball they call earth. If, using fanaticism and poor end-times theology, we can move the attention from this world to the world to come, we have won no small victory!
Perhaps a bit more specifics here may help you in your quest. I have noticed from your correspondence that your subject continues to paint. By focusing his attention on escaping from this world to another, his painting will take one of two directions. It will either devolve into an over-romanticised myopic of a past that never really existed ( a sort of Rockwell-Redux), or he will abandon the painting entirely. Either one of these is acceptable.
The first option is in vogue in many circles of the enemies followers. They have so trivialized art and aesthetics that they have created mountains of what we demons call, Jesus Junk. It is an incredible sight, they have created stores that are wall to wall with this hackneyed, trite art. We have successfully eradicated true beauty in the church since the 1800’s. It has been a beautiful time. Long ago, when you were still cleaning the smokestacks of hell, we had to fight against imaginations inflamed with the beauty of creation and the stories of scripture and history. The music of the enemy had the potential, along with their architecture, to transport the average churchman to another plain. We, by introducing this eschatology of escapism, have bled the church of this. We invented a phrase, “Polishing the Brass on the Titanic”. It has worked wonders in dissuading followers of the way from creating beauty and art.
Above all, just remember the idea is to pull his focus from this world and keep it on endless study on misinterpretations of the world to come. If you can keep him convinced that the future is a spiritual world, disconnected and disembodied from the physical, we will be just fine. Tell Nefarii I send my regards.
Smirking in anticipation of Demise,
Your Uncle, Newtape