May 8 2013, 4:09am
The biosphere of Arda
(dang. photobucket shrank the image, as did the board. maybe i'll figure out a workaround later.)
The biosphere of Arda revolves around two races, the Firstborn (Eldar) and the Secondborn (the Edain). Each has not only a spiritual role to play but a physical one as well. The health and vigor of each of these races contributes to the health of Arda.
The Eldar came first. Blessed with the greater portion of wisdom, and skill, and health, and beauty. According to Tolkien, in Arda unmarred, it is theirs not to grow old physically, but that their fëar (spirits) burn more fiercely over time (spans of ages), and gradually spend the stuff of their hröar (bodies). It is considered unnatural for a member of the Eldar to die – to not return from the Halls of Mandos to Arda. They are meant to live eternally within Arda, for as long as Arda exists. Their fëar and hröar are, not just symbolically, but literally for Arda, youth, health through preservation. By their natures and by their wills they live in harmony with the music of Eru.
Though Middle-Earth for the most part lay in the Sleep of Yavanna, in Beleriand, under the peace of Melian, there was life and joy, and the bright stars shone as silver fires; and there in the forest of Neldoreth Lúthien was born, and the white flowers of niphredil came forth to greet her as stars from the earth. (The Silmarillion, “Of the Sindar”)
“There is a wholesome air about Hollin. Much evil must befall a country if it wholly forgets the Elves, if once they dwelt there.”
“That is true,” said Legolas. “But the Elves of this land were of a race strange to us of the silvan folk, and the trees and the grass do not now remember them. Only I hear the stones lament them: deep they delved us, fair they wrought us, high they builded us; but they are gone. They are gone. They sought the Havens long ago." (The Fellowship of the Ring,The Ring Goes South)
The Elves love Middle-Earth, and Middle-Earth returns that love. A new species of flower erupts in showers underfoot at the birth of Lúthien. The land and the stone still vibrate with health and happiness and longing at even the memory of Elves having dwelled with them. The Elves were meant to inhabit Middle-Earth, shepherd its life, provide healing, and stability. They awoke there, and were never meant to travel to Aman. Middle-Earth needed them.
And then the Secondborn awoke. If Elves are the Children of the Stars, the Edain are Children of the Sun. They awoke into a world that was still largely sleeping (the Sleep of Yavanna). But, as the Eldar are agents of preservation, the Edain are agents of change. Life (niphredil) and land (Hollin) responded to the Elves, but Middle-Earth also celebrates the arrival of the Secondborn.
From this time forth, were Reckoned the Years of the Sun. Swifter and briefer are they than the long Years of the Trees in Valinor. In that time the air of Middle-Earth became heavy with the breath of growth and mortality, and the changing and ageing of all things was hastened exceedingly; life teemed upon the soil and in the waters in the Second Spring of Arda, and the Eldar increased, and beneath the new Sun Beleriand grew green and fair. (The Silmarillion, “Of Men”)
The Sun is synonymous with the Edain, the Children of the Sun. They dawn on Middle-Earth together. But, even as the Sun and the Edain herald change and mortality, much that was in the Sleep of Yavanna awakens. The land and waters roil with new life, enough to be called the Second Spring of Arda. All of Beleriand grows verdant. Even the Eldar themselves are renewed and invigored by the influx of change and mortality – their numbers increase, even as their rhythm in Middle-Earth is hastened.
At this time, the two races live and are abundant in Middle-Earth. Their combined and shared gifts of wisdom, strength, endurance, and adaptability is the noontide of Middle-Earth, which basks in the light of the two peoples, the Children of the Stars and the Children of the Sun, much like Valinor was bathed in the light of the Two Trees.
aka. fili orc-enshield
the scene, as i understand it, is exceptionally well-written. fili (in sort of a callback to the scene with the eagles), calls out "thorRIIIIIIN!!!" just as he sees the pale orc veer in for the kill. he picks up the severed arm of an orc which is lying on the ground, swings it up in desperation, effectively blocking the pale orc's blow. and thus, forever after, fili is known as "fili orc-enshield."
this earns him deep respect from his hard-to-please uncle. as well as a hug. kili wipes his boots on the pale orc's glory box. -- maciliel
(This post was edited by Ataahua on May 8 2013, 7:13pm)