Tag: Stephanie Ford

Crossing Over to God’s Side: Evelyn Underhill and the Problem of Security

by Stephanie Ford

On June 15, 1941, the British spiritual writer Evelyn Underhill, fragile from debilitating asthma, succumbed to a cerebral hemorrhage. Meanwhile, a youthful World War II raged outside—her fellow Brits engaged in the feverish struggle to stop the spread of German domination. For Underhill, however, the question of security had been settled long before bombs damaged her beloved home city of London. Some years earlier, the Anglican spiritual guide had gone against the grain of national loyalties: she had become a pacifist. Persuaded by contemplation on the meaning of the cross, Underhill had in her own words, “crossed over to God’s side.” She became convinced that the law of charity alone sufficed.

What were the sources of Underhill’s conversion to a security in love, unfettered by the gut-wrenching fear that must have welled up in anyone who endured … Read more