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Old 06-05-2002, 01:48 AM   #29
Shade of Carn Dm
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Wow-- I’ve read all the comments here, more or less agreed with nearly all of them, and found myself writing out a completely different theory! I have hope that it is not entirely incompatible with what’s been expressed, however. (I hope this post makes sense to somebody; I found myself crawling out of bed to write it because it was rattling around in my head so much.)

All the references, both here and in the essay, to a feeling of doubleness seem very apt to me. There’s obviously a certain disjuncture between Frodo and the world, particularly the world of the Shire. Actually, I think it’s the Ring. It removes its wearer from physical experience. Frodo describes this experience eloquently on the way up Mount Doom: "no taste of food, no feel of water, no sound of wind, no memory of tree or grass or flower, no image of moon or star are left to me--I begin to see it even with my waking eyes, and all else fades." It causes the wearer to fade to the world and the world to fade to the Ringbearer, and the things that are lost are precisely the things that are valuable in Shire-life—-small, physical, constant joys, and they don’t come back when the Ring is destroyed. Frodo sacrificed his ability to live in the Shire long before he sailed away from it. I wonder if he knew what he was doing when he accepted the Ring.

However, Frodo’s fading, as I believe Child once pointed out in another thread, fills him with light. Because of various grounding factors—I think mostly determination in his quest and love for his companions—his fading did not empty him out the way it did Gollum; instead, he seems to have been, for lack of a more appropriate word, purified. As Naaramare pointed out, he becomes less hobbit-like, which is to say, less in touch with hobbit (worldly) things. In this sense his fading seems to me to be very like that of the Elves, who recede from the world as it changes and leave when their tasks in it are finished.

Now this is strange, because it would mean that the Ring, in Frodo, functions on both the Good and the Evil sides of things. Perhaps what occasions these changes is not the Ring itself, but Frodo’s struggle with it. He became part of this battle itself? This idea is not totally clear in my mind yet, so, please, feel free to play around with it, or anything else I say for that matter. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

Anyway, as Naaramare was saying, part of him is lost, and permanently. The positive side of this, I suppose, is that in the West he will be able to become whatever that other part of him is—transformation rather than death.

Now the one thing I can’t figure out is Sam, who was capable of shifting between the spiritual or the mundane at any moment, and who was "meant to be sound and whole." But that’s another discussion. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

--Belin Ibaimendi

[ June 05, 2002: Message edited by: Belin ]
"I hate dignity," cried Scraps, kicking a pebble high in the air and then trying to catch it as it fell. "Half the fools and all the wise folks are dignified, and I'm neither the one nor the other." --L. Frank Baum
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