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Old 09-23-2002, 04:01 PM   #81
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I am of the mind that one cannot truly understand her own religion deviod of knowledge of others. Just my thoughts, of course...
I read myths and stuff for the simple fact that they make good stories and are a good tool for getting into the minds of other people...quite useful to an actress. I escpecially love Greek myths...

And I would like to give another kudos: to everyone who is being openminded and willing to see another side of the story. If there is one thing that irritates me, its closed mnds and stereotypes. Also, to the Christians, and to everyone who follows their beliefs devoutly, and finally to Craban, whom I am still praying for. I appreciate your graciouness in teh matter of prayer. The last person I told I would pray for sent me a strongly worded email about that subject. [img]smilies/frown.gif[/img] (Hes stil on my list as well.)
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Old 09-23-2002, 04:15 PM   #82
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InklingElf, and all, I was reading earlier up the thread, and i was wondering if any of you have charaters in Narnia that remind you of characters in Middle-Earth, and why. (Mithadan and/or the Barrow Wight will certainly want us to explain Why, and that's half the fun.)

I'll start.

Reepicheep reminds me of Boromir! Valiant to a fault, a little too obsessed with hopeless last stands and glory charges, and always willing to stand up in a meeting (impromptu or otherwise) and go on and on about the neccessity of military action and maintainging one's honor.

I love them both, of course.
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Old 09-23-2002, 05:38 PM   #83
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Tinnu,

I'm afraid that you misunderstood my post. I wasn't trying to say that one should not listen to Dr. Hoeller! Quite the contrary, actually. My warning was simply that Dr. Hoeller calls himself a Christian, but according to our historical understanding of Christianity, he is not. He is often very unclear on that point. My view of Hoeller is based largely on a thorough reading of his books. So its pretty obvious that I’ve listened to the man, myself.

Thus, my warning is not for people to close their minds. Rather, it is an invitation for people to listen and read with critical ears and eyes. Just for the record I would never bad mouth Professor Campbell! His work on myth is utterly fantastic! (Myth is a story or collection of stories that attempt to (or do) express spiritual or religious truths. I can proudly say I’m a professed believer in the Christian Myth!) Putting Campbell and Hoeller on the same level? Well, personally, I think that’s a huge disservice to Professor Campbell. While Campbell looks at all mythology, including Christianity, with objectivity and the eye of the scientist, Hoeller looks at mythology with a subjective agenda.

When I used the word “pagan” I intended the more common usage of the word… a polytheism that’s tradition is pre-Christian European. I could have just as easily used the word “heathen”. No judgement of any type was intended. It was meant to be an example. Just because one reads and is fascinated by a certain mythology or many (as in the case of Tolkien) does not make them an adherent of the spiritual or religious truths that these mythologies express. Tolkien, just because he utilized these myths, doesn’t mean that he’s a polytheist who secretly worshiped Njord. Likewise, just because an agnostic writes a book about a Methodist minister, doesn’t make her anything more or less than an agnostic. In the same way, just because I can perceive a gnostic theme in something that Tolkien wrote, that does not make Tolkien an advocate of gnosticism.

I really was surprised by and interested in the lecture you provided, and did listen to it carefully. Hoeller, though, makes it seem as though Tolkien was a closet gnostic. That’s simply contrary to what he has said, and what his friends and family has said about him: that he was a rather conservative minded Roman Catholic.

I agree wholeheartedly that ancient mythologies are important, especially for the Christian. All myth contains the seeds of truth, and no myth should be ignored, even a modern reconstruction such as Tolkien’s Middle Earth. Plus, they can be a lot of fun to read. I’ve gotten hours of enjoyment from reading and rewriting Celtic mythology! But it would be wrong of me to force a meaning onto these myths, especially a subjective meaning that these myths never intended to express, and pass it off for fact.

[I have yet to read the rest of the many, MANY, posts that have gone up since I was last here. I felt it important to clarify my position as regards Hoeller, Campbell, and the virtues of an open mind. I’m going to start reading right now! [img]smilies/rolleyes.gif[/img] ]
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Old 09-23-2002, 07:14 PM   #84
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notice how in the C. of Narnia there are four children and in LotR there are 4 hobbits! lol! I think that's just coincidence, but many times the children do remind me a lot of the hobbits on the quest. I can see where you think Reepicheep is like Boromir, but I think Reepicheep is cooler (maybe cuz he's a mouse), and has a less corruptable heart. I think Caspian reminds me a tad of Aragorn. (?) Mr. Beaver and Mrs. Beaver remind me a little of Tom Bombadil and Goldberry, but maybe that's stretching it, and now your all starting to laugh at me. [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]
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Old 09-23-2002, 08:01 PM   #85
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Mithuial,

Caspian (as he was in Voyage) and Tirian were probably my favorite Narnians, and now you've got me thinking. Hmmm.

I think Tirian and Faramir, maybe, because of The Anticipation Of The End, and living in the shadow of The End. Faramir got out of it, but Tirian didn't. Tirian got to see the world drowning (through the door) like Faramir dreamed of (Numenor.)

Caspian: hmmm..... I want to say Amroth, for loving a woman across the sea... although Caspian did get to marry the star's daughter. Who else married a star's daughter? Earendil-> Elrond->Arwen. So, Aragorn, I guess. But it's not the same. Hmmm....

Caspian almost reminds me of Legolas, carefully building a boat, and sailing off in pursuit (sort of) of old comrades, to the ends of the world.

I'll have to think about his some more!!
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Old 09-23-2002, 09:39 PM   #86
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Silmaril

Shasta from The Horse and His Boy kind of reminds me of Pippin, mostly because he is so small and insignificant at the beginning of the story yet rises to save Narnia from invasion, just as Pippin plays his role to save Middle-earth and grows up in the process. Also, Shasta's feelings of insecurity and weakness remind me of how Pippin thinks of himself as "baggage" during his capture by the Uruk-hai. Puddleglum makes me think of Treebeard for some reason, maybe because both of them are kind of slow and solemn, although Treebeard isn't nearly as pessimistic.

[ September 23, 2002: Message edited by: ElanorGamgee ]
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Old 09-23-2002, 09:40 PM   #87
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Whooo... I'm glad we all ironed that out. As for the word "heathen", good grief, man! Heathen is the wrong word altogether. It means "strange" and "uncivilized." Please, I beg of you, when you use words to describe other people's religions to keep them in terms which are agreeable. We are, after all, "civilized" Christians, aren't we?

As for my favorite character in Narnia, it's Puddleglum the Marsh Wiggle. I found that it was he who lead Pole and Eustus (sic?) to find Caspian's son - and acted as a leader and scout though his fears were plain and his complaints many. By the time all are safe and sound, we've learned that not all Puddleglum's fears were false, and that he is filled with interesting wisdom.
Oh, and I have just recently been introduced to eel! It's most tasty. I would certainly like to take a nice afternoon by his wigwam to have some of his delicious eel stew!
[img]smilies/tongue.gif[/img]

[ September 23, 2002: Message edited by: Tirned Tinnu ]
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Old 09-24-2002, 05:03 PM   #88
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I love Puddleglum! And, I think I agree that Caspian is like Legolas. He has the whole Legolas personality. I always thought he was a tad elvish. I dunno. But I think even more so he's like a Dunedain; adventurous, but rather of choice than of need (unlike Aragorn) and he makes a good king. He also was a restorer just as Aragorn was. Caspian reestablished the Old Kingdom of Narnia with the Talking Beasts, etc. and Aragorn reestablished the rule of the Numemorean line. Yes, and I love Caspian, too!
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Old 09-24-2002, 09:35 PM   #89
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LOL!

One of my best friends in the Army put Heathenism his dog tags. He was serious too. Sigh... heathen doesn't always mean uncultured... it could actually mean just the plain old original meaning: someone who doesn't believe in the God of the bible.

So tell me... is there a politically correct enough name out there? Perhaps we should call them... ummm... how about "many male/female supreme being respecters". [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]
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Old 09-25-2002, 12:20 AM   #90
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*Tinnu snorts*
Irm, what about their religion of choice, like...Wiccans, Druids, Nature-Worshippers, Santerians, New-Agers, Polytheists, Gardnerians, Gaians,...should I go on? I see that Christians are vehemently upset at being called by other denominational names... *sigh* nice of you to joke, anyways. I like a good *SNORT!* every once in a while. [img]smilies/tongue.gif[/img]
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Old 09-25-2002, 04:56 AM   #91
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Quote:
Heathen is the wrong word altogether. It means "strange" and "uncivilized
on the other hand, "civilization" means only "art of living in a town", and who told you all of us are towners? [img]smilies/rolleyes.gif[/img]
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Old 09-25-2002, 04:58 AM   #92
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Returning to Tolkien and C. S. Lewis: "How about those retired stars!" Do Coriakin and/or Ramandu remind you of anybody in Tolkien's works?

Puddleglum... sometimes Boromir behaved like that-- gloomy, I mean... Although, actually, one could describe Bilbo like that. Frequently complaining about his lack of teakettle and homey fireplace, but in the end, leading and coming to the forefront.

[ September 25, 2002: Message edited by: mark12_30 ]
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Old 09-25-2002, 11:52 AM   #93
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mark12_30: yes, hhmmm Peter reminds me of Aragorn in a way who else?
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Old 09-25-2002, 03:07 PM   #94
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Coriakin and Ramandu remind me of Tom in a way...
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Old 09-25-2002, 05:30 PM   #95
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Very fun question! Coriakin reminds me of Gandalf in his personality and how he treats his one-legged Mumph-a-somethings: crusty but kind. However, Ramandu does NOT remind me of Saruman in the least-- maybe of Elrond, though, because of the serene wisdom, long memory, beautiful and wise daughter, which would make Caspian a bit like a young Aragorn. I love the comparison between Boromir and Reepicheep! Reep's my favorite character-- I was so happy for him when he went over that wave at the end of the world. Rillian's maybe something like Faramir in getting trapped in his own mind by bad magic and needing help to get out. Puddleglum and Bilbo-- brilliant! Like that one.

[ September 25, 2002: Message edited by: Nar ]
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Old 09-25-2002, 08:45 PM   #96
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Monopods... Dufflepuds!!! They remind me (a little) of The Gaffer, or I suppose closed-minded hobbits, except that the gaffer often comes out with real pithy wisdom, while the dufflepuds just have a running inane commentary. But the attitudes seem similar to me.

Coriakin and Gandalf-- good one! Love the Ramandu/Elrond connection, complete with daughter and prince.

[ September 25, 2002: Message edited by: mark12_30 ]
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Old 09-26-2002, 12:24 PM   #97
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aaarrrgghh-sorry everyone for not posting for such a long time!-School you see.... Well on Lewis' chracters and Tolkien's -ummm Lucy would be like Frodo and Edmund sort of like Boromir... [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]
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Old 10-12-2002, 08:13 PM   #98
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Alright!-I'm now officialy mad that I wasn't here for a VERY long time! Anyway something just came into mind...My mom bought me this book on The Chronicles of Narnias' morals etc... I loved it! it brought the essence of what Lewis was trying to express in his books...Have you read it?
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Old 10-12-2002, 08:17 PM   #99
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Hello everyone! Glad this thread is going again-and Yes Arie I loved it very much aswell! I liked the fact it had allot of quotes that I can relate to
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Old 10-29-2002, 02:10 PM   #100
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I have a questioin-that I hope will not cause controversy-just wondering about the events in The Lord of the Rings-I heard some people talk about the book itself and the events in the Bible...WHat events in the Bible or any other book has a relation to Tolkien's work?
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Old 10-29-2002, 02:21 PM   #101
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Hail and Well Met, Inkling Elf!

* bows an introductory greeting * [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

To answer your question, here are slightly-amended copies of two posts I made in a thread called "Seasonal Symbolism."

1)Two obvious Biblical references, nay dates, that come to mind:

December 25 - The Fellowship of the Ring sets forth from Rivendell.

March 25 - The Ring is destroyed at Mt. Doom.

A journey from Christmas to Good Friday, perhaps?

2) For having done a brief bit of research, I wish to slightly amend my earlier comment.

According to a website called "From Bethlehem to Calvary," I should not have marked March 25th as Good Friday, but rather as Easter. (Though actually, while I am now proposing a connection between March 25th and Easter, I would still like to stand by Good Friday, due to all that Good Friday represents.)


quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"The Jesus-story, it will now be seen, has a greater number of correspondences with the stories of former Sungods and with the actual career of the Sun through the heavens - so many indeed that they cannot well be attributed to mere coincidence or even to the blasphemous wiles of the Devil! Let us enumerate some of these. There are (1) birth from a Virgin mother; (2) the birth in a stable (cave or underground chamber); and (3) on the 25th December (just after the winter solstice). There is (4) the Star in the East (Sirius) and (5) the arrival of the Magi (the 'Three King's); there is (6) the threatened Massacre of the Innocents, and the consequent flight into a distant country (told also of Krishna and other Sungods). There are the Church festivals of (7) Candlemas (2nd February), with processions of candles to symbolize the growing light; of (8) Lent, or the arrival of Spring; of (9) Easter Day (normally on 25th March) to celebrate the crossing of the Equator by the Sun; and (10) simultaneously the outburst of lights at the Holy Sepulchre at Jerusalem.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The above quote comes from the website at the following URL: http://www.netnews.org/bk/bethlehem/beth1019.html

And of course any speak soothly who say that the date on which Good Friday is commemorated varies from year to year.

* bows *

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Old 10-29-2002, 02:32 PM   #102
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My utmost greetings to you wise wanderer [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

aaaahhh yes I shall check that thread!-I understand this was a well researched topic...I believe the connection to Good Friday is quite possible.... and something has also come u on my mind....About the fligt to Bruinen-and this is a very obvious one i suspect-I sensed a connection to the Exodus. Do you have a comment on this?

::bows once again::

[ October 29, 2002: Message edited by: InklingElf ]
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Old 10-29-2002, 06:11 PM   #103
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Hullo again InklingElf,

I like your name, btw.

As for your seeing a connection between the flight to the Ford of Bruinen and the Parting of the Red Sea in which Pharoah's horses and charioteers eventually were drownded, thank you for pointing out this connection. And after the crossing of the Ford, there is a lengthy time of trial and purgation spent wandering deserted wastelands, eating manna/lembas. Now that you mention it, I can agree with you as to the similarities ... on my own, I'd never looked at it that way, so you've taught me something new. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

At your Service,

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Old 10-29-2002, 07:49 PM   #104
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Hi all. This is my first post here...I have loved reading this thread and seeing the different ways that we have all experienced Tolkien, Lewis, and others...

I am too, one of those people who get wrapped up in the story. I find myself often thinking unconsciously of the story, the characters...and I recently asked myself "how is it that Tolkien's middle-earth, his characters, get into my heart?" I don't really have an answer for this yet, except to say that we have an innate need for something beyond ourselves...and somehow Tolkien has tapped into that need to speak to our hearts. Perhaps it's the people we want to be. People that have depth of character and honor like Aragorn, that have the faithfulness of Sam, that have the wisdom of Gandalf.

As to the "theology" of Tolkien...he himself states that he detests allegory and that he never intended his writings to be allegorical. However, I think the power of his writing is that it is open to interpretation...it speaks to the heart of the reader. For example, I love classical literature. It moves me to the depths of my soul...I have sometimes felt guilty for being so moved by Tolkien or Dumas, yet not by the words of my Savior. But my husband (knowing my love), recently pointed out to me that I can experience and draw closer to God through literature (not to discount the necessity of God's word). In fact, many times after reading something - especially Tolkien - I find myself drawn to prayer and worship...furthermore, Tolkien's Lord of the Rings have given voice to many emotions and experiences that I could not otherwise voice.

Did he mean to be allegorical? No. Did he mean to thread his theology throughout his writings? Being a Christian, with a Christian worldview, of course he wrote out of this. However unlike Lewis who was deliberately writing a "Christian" book in the Narnia Chronicles, Tolkien was a Christian who was writing a story...

Just a few of my ramblings...it's nice to join in on a topic like this...I hope I didn't go too far off base.
 
Old 10-29-2002, 07:54 PM   #105
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Exactly. Tolkien didn't mean to refer to the Bible. It just kind of happened. At least that's what I've gathered from everyone else. [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]
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Old 10-30-2002, 01:54 AM   #106
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Hey all.

This is my first post here but Iv'e tryed to read up on what you've all been talking about. In her last post TolkienGurl said that she didn't think Tolkien intended for his christianity to permeate his books, it just happened.

I agree and would not be in the least bit surprised to find this to be the case. As a believer myself I have a hard enough time carrying on a conversation without mentioning my spiritual experiences let alone writing a book without saying anything.

I think that it is natural for a TRUE follower of Christ to refer constantly to their Saviour. Tolkien could have tried to prevent his spiritual beliefs from coming out and they probably still would have anyway.

That's just my thoughts on the subject. I've been pretty impressed by the quality of discussion here and am looking forward to participating.
 
Old 10-30-2002, 04:43 PM   #107
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-::bows:: welcome elvenchristian (hehehe cool name) I'm glad you like this thread-I'm pretty impressed by everyone my self

-Elanor-of-Lorien hello there too [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] glad you came by-I agree w/ your point of view a bit-because I can see that it isdeliberately a fantasy book-but I also believe Tolkien meant to have Theologyin his works....

-Gandalf_theGrey ::smile:: i'm glad-::bows to the Grey wanderer:: I hope you come by often to speak your views on Theology

-Tolkien Gurl-I also thank you for your view-but I also think Tolkien meant to put theology (ahem saying it again) in his work-It takes alot of brain power and research to include Theology in fantasy-whether it's hard to see or not...
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Old 10-30-2002, 04:56 PM   #108
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InklingElf: I haven't read a biography on Tolkien, so that was just my point of view. I didn't want to make an absolute statement, because I didn't really know the answer. Unless he actually said that, we shouldn't assume things because they may not be true. That's really cool if he did mean to incorporate the Bible into LOTR, Silm, etc. Next to it they are my favorite books! [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]

[ October 30, 2002: Message edited by: TolkienGurl ]
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Old 10-30-2002, 04:57 PM   #109
Arie
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wow!some pretty deep stuff here! anyway on Theology and why I think Tolkien really did mean to put ot in his writing
1. He was influenced by Lewis
2. He did it because he wanted to leave evidence that he is a christian

-Ultimately, that's pretty much it
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Old 10-30-2002, 06:33 PM   #110
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It's always fun, of course, to debate...

Seeing as how I don't know Tolkien personally *wink,wink*, I too, do not intend to make any absolute statements about what he did or did not intend to put in his writings (be it theology or otherwise).

But I will say it again, Tolkien was a Christian and therefore wrote from a Christian worldview. The worldview we each hold is sort of like a road map or glasses, if you will, which we view the world through. Of course his story will have the undertones of redemption, sacrifice, salvation, temptation...etc. The very things he believed strongly in.

But I digress again. Here's what the man himself said (don't remember where else I've read this, but this particular quote comes from the 1965 edition forward)

"The Lord of the Rings has been read by many people...and I should like to say something here with reference to the many opinions or guesses that I have received or have read concerning the motives and meaning of the tale. The prime motive was the desire of a tale-teller to try his hand at a really long story that would hold the attention of readers, amuse them, delight them, and at times maybe excite them or deeply move them. As a guide, i had only my own feelings for what is appealing or moving...As for any inner meaning or 'message', it has in the intention of the author none. It is neither allegorical or topical."

Someone said it above, but hobbitlore.com has a great biography on Tolkien...

So, the debate continues...
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Old 10-30-2002, 08:22 PM   #111
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I'm going to have to disagree with Arie on both her points.

First, although I'm not that educated on the subject, I believe that it was Tolkien who had a greater influence on Lewis' life, not the other way around. In CS Lewis' SURPRISED BY JOY he states that Tolkien was influential in his eventual conversion to christianity.

Second, I think that if one wants to leave evidence of being a christian for after one is gone, then that person would write a book which addresses that issue directly. If I want people to know that I am a believer I will write a book on how I became one, not a fantasy that might be misinterpreted.

I don't think that Tolkien thought that if he put his beleifs in his stories that everyone would remember him for his christianity. He probably just wanted to write an entertaining story that all could enjoy, and it just happened that his beleifs crept into his writing
 
Old 10-31-2002, 01:30 AM   #112
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WoW! I've got alot to cover!

I really wish I was as good with words as most of you are, [img]smilies/frown.gif[/img] but I will say what I can...

Elanor,TolkienGurlandelvenchristian,you have said exactly what I feel within my heart every time I read Tolkien or Lewis.
Also,though Tolkien did greatly influence Lewis' salvation, afterwards you cannot tell who influnced the other the most, becuase in fact,they influenced each other!
Quote:
It was inevitable that Lewis and Tolkien meet,it was not inevitable that they should become friends ~The Magic Never Ends~
at the meetings of "the inklings" the group of authers had a unique opportunity to critique each others writings.
Hmm... as to my favourite book....in the Narnia series it is The Magicians Nephew,perhaps because I am so interested in creation,indeed it boggles my mind that God is so powerful...yet he is! Mere Christianityis such a great book I cannot even say whether i like it or not,it is simply great,Lewis is a geneous for writing a book so logical,it can hardly be dissagreed with-the reader is forced to believe it!!! The Lord of The Rings trilogy is the best of its kind,and really,I have to say that both Tolkien and Lewis remind me of Gandalf [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img] [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img] [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img] [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]
Hey! I had'nt thought of the comparison between Saul and Denethor...it is fascinating what the human mind is capable of!

WoW I cant believe I said this much...and I still have more to say!!!!!!!
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Old 10-31-2002, 12:27 PM   #113
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*waves a friendly greeting to elvenchristian*
Many people are misinterpreting Tolkien's books - even on this board! Some people have said that Tolkien was trying to use occultism, and influence people to follow that "religion." He took qualities from mythology, not occultism!

If Tolkien wanted to tell everyone that he was a Christian, he would have written books like C.S.Lewis did.

BTW, I'm going to read Lewis' books. Are they good? I've heard good things about Mere Christianity.

[ October 31, 2002: Message edited by: TolkienGurl ]
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Old 10-31-2002, 01:31 PM   #114
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-TolkienGurl-::nods:: I think I'll start to read Mere Christianity -I did a book report on Lewis once in 6th grade and -I included the book in my chronology
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Old 10-31-2002, 05:12 PM   #115
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Oh man TolkienGurl.

Are they good?

They're awesome. I just finished Mere Christianity, Surprised By Joy, and Pilgrim's Regress, an allegory of Lewis's search for christianity in the style of Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan [another book I reccomend]. I'm in the middle of God in the Dock right now and it is great. All of these are great books which I highly reccomend.

Later All.
 
Old 11-02-2002, 12:08 PM   #116
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Has anybody here read the book Finding God in the Lord of the Rings? I'm thinking of reading it and wanted to see what evryone thought about the book.
 
Old 11-02-2002, 12:09 PM   #117
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I've heard its really good. I have it but I haven't read it yet. Darn homework! [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 11-02-2002, 12:58 PM   #118
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-elvenchristian- :;nods:; yes I've read Finding God in the Lord of the Rings and thought that it was magnificentin exposing the Theological factors in the trilogy [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] -I think you'd enjoy it!
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Old 11-02-2002, 10:32 PM   #119
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Just a thought: If the "incorporation" of Christianity in Tolkien's books just "happened", was Tolkien aware of it? Did he not become aware of it before somebody pointed it out? Did he ever try to avoid it or re-write to make it less evident?

Perhaps someone with a better knowledge of Letters has anythng on this...?
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Old 11-04-2002, 07:45 AM   #120
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Quite the opposite happened, Carannillion; Tolkien rewrote passages of his books to make them more consistent with his Christian beliefs. In one of his letters, he says: "...and consciously so in the revision." You can read more in this thread of the same title.
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