Monday, March 22, 2010

Tolkien Study #5 - The Power of Love

Before I begin focusing and dissecting on the Silmarillion and events of the First age like I said I was going to do, I'm going to conclude with one final look at the Lord of the Rings story(though I may divide it into one or two separate posts). There is much to be found here, and though it was not the work of Tolkiens heart it is the most accessible of his writings (in my opinion).

The overall moral backing of the story is rooted firmly in love, camaraderie and mercy/pity. It is the great love between the Fellowship of the Ring that allows it to serve its part as the ultimate destruction of Sauron. Without the deep and binding love that each member of the Fellowship had for the other, despite their vast differences in size, strength and personalities, the Fellowship would have been nothing and the Ring would have gone back to Sauron. One could really say that it was love that was the ultimate destroyer of Sauron. This is probably most evident in the passage where Sam Gamgee literally picks up Frodo bodily and carries him Mount Doom.

Love is a powerful catalyst in the Middle-earth legendarium; indeed, it could be argued that love is THE catalyst in the legendarium, though perhaps some of it is misplaced. Feanors misplaced (or obsession) love for his jewels sets in motion not only a war spanning an entire age, but the reshaping of the entire planet Earth, as well as all the events recorded in the LOTR. However, it is the love of Tuor and Idril, a Man and an Elf, that allows for the salvation and redemption of both races at the end of the First Age. It is Faramirs arguably misplaced (yet still fiercely loyal) love to his father Denethor that almost kills him, yet it is the same quality of love that make his men respect him all the more as a captain of arms. It is the love beyond all hope of Beren and Luthien that results in one of the greatest and heroic feats in the entire history of the world of Arda (which I'll go into more detail later). For all the battles, conflicts and wars fought, it was love that was the primary mover of men and Elves.

1 comment:

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