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Old 08-07-2003, 08:39 AM   #1
Finwe
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Sting Varda, over-protective mother?

I was re-reading the Silmarillion and Lord of the Rings the other day, and it seems like Varda is one of those over-protective mothers. Even when Manw doesn't really want to help the Elves, and after the Valar gave up their Guardianship, she still keeps "helping" the Elves and protecting them. Of course, it could be the topic of many rows on Taniquetil, but isn't a queen supposed to go along with the king in the matter of judgments/punishments and things? She seems like one of those mothers who always claim her kids are perfect little angels and would do anything to protect them.
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Old 08-07-2003, 01:54 PM   #2
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Sting

You're describing Varda as if she were some listless middle-class housewife with nothing better to do than spoiling her brats in between doing the laundry loads.

This is like comparing Tulkas to some tempramental heavyweight man-child and Nienna to a high-school outcast who forgot to take her Prozac.

Varda was a Valar, and each Valar served his or her own purpose in Tolkien's work. The Valar as a (forgive the corny word) team complimented each other and balanced each other's actions. They were individuals, each with his or her own sphere of influence, working toward similar purposes through different means.

And, having read the Sil twice, I cannot recall that Tolkien ever included some sort of nasty marital spat between Manw and Varda, in which she defied something she was "supposed to agree with..." Tolkien never wrote much about the inner-workings of their marriage, and whether or not they threw dishes at each other, and such.
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Old 08-07-2003, 02:25 PM   #3
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Sting

All right, all right. I admit, I did have this mental picture of Varda as a Middle-earthian over-stuffed housewife sitting doing laundry loads in between spoiling her kids. [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]

But I would like to know more about Manw and Varda's marriage.
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But Melkor also was there, and he came to the house of Fanor, and there he slew Finw King of the Noldor before his doors, and spilled the first blood in the Blessed Realm; for Finw alone had not fled from the horror of the Dark.
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Old 08-07-2003, 02:54 PM   #4
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Here's what the "Valaquenta" says about their marriage:
Quote:
Manw and Varda are seldom parted...
...if Varda is beside him, he sees further...
And if Manw is with her, Varda hears more clearly...
That sounds like a pretty close marriage to me!
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Old 08-07-2003, 11:11 PM   #5
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Quote:
A queen is supposed to agree with the king, but I thought Varda had quite a power of her own, like a ruling queen of sorts
In light of Varda's union with Manwe, I imagine it to be more like a relationship involving two remarkably intelligent individuals, who have their own decisions and biases. Though they may not meet eye to eye on certain things, they remain as a couple who are still in love with each other (by that, I mean they still recognize their differences in spite of...)

The disagreement that they have with whether or not they should aid the elves is something that works quite well with the relationship that they have.

Varda loves the elves. That's that. She's the creator of those she cannot leave.
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Old 08-07-2003, 11:35 PM   #6
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Sting

Well, Elbereth was most beloved of the Elves because it was she who took the heaviest labor of creating the stars and hollowing the Silmarils. I think it's only fair that she should be helping the Eldar despite of what the Noldor had done since she was their brightest hope against the evil deeds of Melko and Sauron. And she was also the mightiest of the Valarian Queens that's why it was not so hard for the Eldar to think that her light still lived in Middle Earth
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Old 08-07-2003, 11:39 PM   #7
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Sting

Cirilo, True love is like an empty coffin, huh? I'd like to understand the deeper meaning behind that. I can't quite grasp the relationship between Manwe and Varda aside from the fact that they dwelt together in the highest regions of Aman. Ano nga ba ibig mong sabihin? [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 08-08-2003, 03:00 AM   #8
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Sting

Quote:
She's the creator of those she cannot leave.
Varda didn't 'create' the Elves, she only loved them. As did all the Valar.

I cannot see your point, Finwe. Perhaps you could be more clear as to what issue exactly you are talking about? Varda's relationship with the Elves, particularly the Vanyar, existed because of her kinship with them; the Elves and the Valinorian Ainur, it is said, are in many ways similar beings. Either way, I cannot really say anything about this until I know what events your are referring to.

Noldorin-king, owing to the fact that you said it in a foreign language of some sort I did not understand that last part. [img]smilies/tongue.gif[/img] However I will talk about the rest of it. To understand spousal relationships between the Valar you have to consider one or two things. Obviously, their marriages were pretty unreproductive biologically; but it is here that JRRT, I think, has something to say about the deeper meaning of love. (sounds terribly soppy when I say it like that, but it is interesting so we may as well talk about it. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img])
Quote:
But when they desire to clothe themselves the Valar take upon them forms some as of male and some as of female (based upon the vision of the Children of Illuvatar); for that difference of temper they had even from their beginning, and it is but bodied forth in the choice of each, not made by the choice, even as with us male and female may be shown by the raiment but is not made thereby...
Male and female, then, are the two alternate forms of being that are present in the very essence of even the Ainur. Therefore maleness and femaleness go beyond the biological side of things, and are inherent qualities (one or the other) in all beings.

'Love' as we know it probably has something to do with this. Male and female, it would seem -- as we see in the Valar -- are drawn to one another. In the Children of Illuvatar, as in animals (although they too may have some inkling of love), procreation is the result and apparently the reason for this; but according to Tolkien this love between male and female also has something to do with companionship and male-female 'difference of temper' attraction at the fundamental level. Thus, procreation is yet another wonderful aspect of these relationships.

Perhaps the Valar even had this, in a way. They did not procreate, but they certainly created many incredible things in their companionship. Also, in adition to this, there was their paternal/maternal guardianship and parentship of the Children -- who they, in a sense, brought up; this is obvious in the case of the Elves, and their light also spread to the Men of the Edain and kin at least.

Either way, it would seem that male and female 'tempers' are complimentary and naturally, fundamentally bound together at all levels.

[ August 08, 2003: Message edited by: Gwaihir the Windlord ]
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Old 08-08-2003, 08:52 AM   #9
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Varda didn't 'create' the Elves, she only loved them. As did all the Valar.
Thanks for teh correction again, Mr Windlord, sir. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
It's been a while since I last read the Sil.

Quote:
Male and female, then, are the two alternate forms of being that are present in the very essence of even the Ainur. Therefore maleness and femaleness go beyond the biological side of things, and are inherent qualities (one or the other) in all beings
What I'm getting here is that they are "beings" in the spiritual sense of the word meaning that they do not possess a physically "feminine" nor a physically "masculine" form. I may be too technical right there, but it's all for explaining it to myself (and for everyone else reading this) for a more concrete grasp...

Quote:
'Love' as we know it probably has something to do with this. Male and female, it would seem -- as we see in the Valar -- are drawn to one another
So procreation then, is not part of their relationship, or, a part of their love for one another. I get that. The most important thing there is that they work best when they are together. And when they are together, their dynamic as a "team" (for the lack of a better word) is a product of their relationship. (kinda makes me look forward to that kind of relationship [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img])

Yin and Yang, if you will.
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Old 08-08-2003, 11:46 AM   #10
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Nitpicking here but guys the word Valar is the plural term and Vala the singular. So when you refer to Varda alone should you not called her a Vala instead of a Valar? [img]smilies/tongue.gif[/img] [img]smilies/tongue.gif[/img] [img]smilies/tongue.gif[/img]
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Old 08-09-2003, 01:47 AM   #11
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Sting

Not particularly important, Arathiriel, but I suppose you are right. [img]smilies/rolleyes.gif[/img] Not that I am ever one of the mistaken you are referring to, though. [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]

Yes, the 'yin and yang' thing is a good analogy. You pretty much summed it up, I think Neferchoirwen; the quote
'What I'm getting here is that they are "beings" in the spiritual sense of the word meaning that they do not possess a physically "feminine" nor a physically "masculine" form.'
is true, the Valar can take on any form they want. In their humanoid form they model themselves, as it says in my quote, on the vision they had of the Children of Illuvatar; taking male or female bodies according to the nature of their spirits.
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Old 08-09-2003, 05:10 AM   #12
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About the marriage of the Valar, I don't think it's something like the marriage of Elves or Men. I personally think that the Valar paired themselves off depending on their contributions to Ea, if they complement each other. Or maybe it was Iluvatar's will that the Valar had their spouses as their spouses. You get it?

Like in the case of Manwe and Varda, doesn't it complement that Manwe controls the winds and Varda the stars? And their senses, Manwe's sharp sight and Varda's clear hearing, are at their best whenever they are together, as mentioned in the Sil.

Am I getting somewhere? Maybe not... [img]smilies/frown.gif[/img]

By the way, Noldorin King, I understood that!
Pareho tayo! [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]
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Old 08-09-2003, 11:12 AM   #13
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Sting

Quote:
that I am ever one of the mistaken you are referring to, though.
Oh but I am. Oh no. Dreadful errors that insult the spirit of this discussion. I think I'll go shoot myself after I finish this post.

Well, regardless of my later plans, I wish to reinstate the fact that Tolkien did not provide any particular detail to the married life of any Vala. The quote that Estelyn was kind enough to provide does, however, lead me to believe that Varda and Manw were not the bickering kind.

I think that implying that Varda did anything wrong in aiding the Elves in terms of her allegiance and obedience to Manw is to diminish her status as it was presented in the Silmarillion and to drag her down to ordinary "human" or "Elvish" level.
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Old 08-09-2003, 11:39 AM   #14
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Could it also be that Varda had no evil in her being and was unable to understand the concept of how evil can exist? Maybe she could only be what she was, only able to understand good.
I have often wondered if that was why it seemed the Valar seemed reluctant to take action against Melkor. Maybe they were unable to understand his inner being of evil, because it was a concept they could not comprehend.
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