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Old 04-25-2007, 05:54 AM   #26
Illustrious Ulair
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Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: In the home of lost causes, and forsaken beliefs, and unpopular names,and impossible loyalties
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davem is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.davem is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.
I think Tolkien is correct – up to a point. The Beowulf poet doesn't so much reflect the actual Pagan worldview so much as the Christian understanding of it. The Pagans weren't without hope – they didn't go around under a cloud, feeling depressed & hopeless. They were, like us post Christians for the most part, quite happy. However, they lived, again for the most part, in dangerous, violent times & didn't look much 'beyond the walls of the world' for hope or much else.

I think the same could be said of the Christian/religious understanding of the post-Christian/non relgious world view. It is not without hope, but it doesn't focus on anything beyond the world either during life or after death.

Turin doesn't look for hope or salvation from beyond the world, but faces the monsters within it with courage & determination – so, it isn't so much the tragic aspect of his story that makes it post religious – that's a side issue for the moment – it’s the fact that he doesn't look for any help to come from outside, for any divine intervention. He deals with his problems as best he can.

Tolkien may well have written from the perspective of a Christian looking back from a safe distance on a world without supernatural hope, or belief in a divine guiding hand, but what he has written is a work that lookedforward to a similar world.
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