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Letter #131 Discussion: Of Elves and Men
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noWizardme
Tol Eressea


Sep 25 2013, 8:44am

Post #26 of 109 (261 views)
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Thoughts of a faded elf [In reply to] Can't Post



"Someone was singing - what was it - 'In every wood, in every Spring, there is a different green'? That's the kind of nonsense you believe when you're young. Can't say I've seen a different green for thousands of years. Anyway, the woods around here just don't seem to be like the old days, in Beleriand: now those were proper Springs! You want to see Green, and Spring - should have been alive then, I tell you.

"Can't say I hold with these modern songs anyway. Hardly worth visiting the Hall of Fire these days - the only good songs are the old ones, and they don't sing those right any more. And they're letting mortals in these days. I don't hold with that: they come here wanting our hospitality and then before you've even got to know them they've 'died' and it's down to us to dispose of what's left of them. Hardly worth bothering with, if you ask me, though I don't doubt they'll learn all they can from us before spoiling things so much that we all up and leave and go West.

"Don't learn from the past; that's what's wrong with these mortals. Take this war with Sauron now. I said to Elrond 'We tried it in the Second Age and it didn't work; it won't work now. Men'll undermine it, just like they did before.' But I dare say someone will do rather nicely out of it, they always do."



That's how I imagine it, anyway - a sort of spiritual illness causing loss of joy in the world and hope for the future. Nothing new is as good as it was in the past; everything has been tried and found wanting. New thoughts and ideas just aren't worth the bother any more. Effort is bound to be futile. Cynical schemes must be behind any attempt to do anything good.

You get glimpses of this even in Elrond ("many defeats, and many fruitless victories" or Galadriel ("fighting the long retreat"). But a bit of geopolitical scheming and a sense of duty can still cheer them up enough to take action; to use their experience practically by learning from the past.

Disclaimers: The words of noWizardme may stand on their heads! I'm often wrong about things, and its fun to be taught more....

"nowimë I am in the West, Furincurunir to the Dwarves (or at least, to their best friend) and by other names in other lands. Mostly they just say 'Oh no it's him - look busy!' "
Or "Hold off! unhand me, grey-beard loon!"


CuriousG
Valinor


Sep 25 2013, 1:19pm

Post #27 of 109 (229 views)
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Eternal old age? [In reply to] Can't Post

What you're describing seems to me how a real-world human feels when they grow old and feel estranged from the younger generation. Elves don't grow old on the outside, but they appear to on the inside. That endless old age feeling that the world has passed you by ("what's with kids these days wearing rings in their noses and covering their bodies with tattoos?") and will never swing around back to what you once enjoyed about it would be torture. So do Elves fade just because they do, or because of their reactions to the world? If they continuously thought that whatever was new was desirable, would they fade?

Another aspect of aging is accumulated grief. Losing people and things close to you racks up more pain than a thousand happy New Year's Eve parties. I think personal loss wears down immortals more than happiness can compensate, so that would seem to be another driver behind fading.

I'm with others on the thought that another aspect of the fading in ME is that no one likes being left behind by the crowd no matter your reasons for not joining them. (Wait, I'm going along with the crowd here...)


CuriousG
Valinor


Sep 25 2013, 1:22pm

Post #28 of 109 (232 views)
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I've thought that since 1st read [In reply to] Can't Post

Everything is spelled out for Elves about their fate. Men have to accept their fate without knowing what it is, so they have to take it with faith. If it really was a gift and not a curse, the Numenoreans wouldn't have taken the path they did. They might even have snickered at the Eldar."Ha ha, we get to leave Arda for some nice palm beaches in our next life, and your stuck here."

Elves seem to fall from lack of wisdom, whereas Men fall from lack of faith.


noWizardme
Tol Eressea


Sep 25 2013, 1:51pm

Post #29 of 109 (246 views)
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Old age is a risk factor, but not the whole thing [In reply to] Can't Post

I've met middle aged or younger people who have "faded". And I know some very un-faded old folks.

Complicating the situation for humans can be bodily decline (food isn't so tasty on declining taste buds; deafness makes conversation harder to follow), and
mental decline. And the stigma of those. I guess elves don't suffer those things, so go all "things just ain't what they used to be" in sound body and mind. Not sure whether that's better or worse!

And, yes: too much grief and regrets would make you fade.

Disclaimers: The words of noWizardme may stand on their heads! I'm often wrong about things, and its fun to be taught more....

"nowimë I am in the West, Furincurunir to the Dwarves (or at least, to their best friend) and by other names in other lands. Mostly they just say 'Oh no it's him - look busy!' "
Or "Hold off! unhand me, grey-beard loon!"


Brethil
Half-elven


Sep 25 2013, 5:29pm

Post #30 of 109 (222 views)
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Weariness and political action [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To


"Someone was singing - what was it - 'In every wood, in every Spring, there is a different green'? That's the kind of nonsense you believe when you're young. Can't say I've seen a different green for thousands of years. Anyway, the woods around here just don't seem to be like the old days, in Beleriand: now those were proper Springs! You want to see Green, and Spring - should have been alive then, I tell you.

"Can't say I hold with these modern songs anyway. Hardly worth visiting the Hall of Fire these days - the only good songs are the old ones, and they don't sing those right any more. And they're letting mortals in these days. I don't hold with that: they come here wanting our hospitality and then before you've even got to know them they've 'died' and it's down to us to dispose of what's left of them. Hardly worth bothering with, if you ask me, though I don't doubt they'll learn all they can from us before spoiling things so much that we all up and leave and go West.

"Don't learn from the past; that's what's wrong with these mortals. Take this war with Sauron now. I said to Elrond 'We tried it in the Second Age and it didn't work; it won't work now. Men'll undermine it, just like they did before.' But I dare say someone will do rather nicely out of it, they always do."


That's how I imagine it, anyway - a sort of spiritual illness causing loss of joy in the world and hope for the future. Nothing new is as good as it was in the past; everything has been tried and found wanting. New thoughts and ideas just aren't worth the bother any more. Effort is bound to be futile. Cynical schemes must be behind any attempt to do anything good. Your world-weary (literally) dialogue rings true Furincurunir.

You get glimpses of this even in Elrond ("many defeats, and many fruitless victories" or Galadriel ("fighting the long retreat"). But a bit of geopolitical scheming and a sense of duty can still cheer them up enough to take action; to use their experience practically by learning from the past.
They may be an example of how one perseveres - despite the rise of Men, because of the political nature of their positions in ME, they still have 'subcreative' tasks at hand, still bale to function as they were born to: the energy and drive to still make change and take action, as you say. In one remaining realm...and once that is resolved, they leave as well.


Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply, and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!








Brethil
Half-elven


Sep 25 2013, 5:30pm

Post #31 of 109 (213 views)
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Great comparison CG! // [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Everything is spelled out for Elves about their fate. Men have to accept their fate without knowing what it is, so they have to take it with faith. If it really was a gift and not a curse, the Numenoreans wouldn't have taken the path they did. They might even have snickered at the Eldar."Ha ha, we get to leave Arda for some nice palm beaches in our next life, and your stuck here."

Elves seem to fall from lack of wisdom, whereas Men fall from lack of faith.


Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply, and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!








noWizardme
Tol Eressea


Sep 25 2013, 8:29pm

Post #32 of 109 (218 views)
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You kinda wonder what happens when Elrond and Galadriel step off the boat at the other end. And now the elves organize… [In reply to] Can't Post

Wink

Disclaimers: The words of noWizardme may stand on their heads! I'm often wrong about things, and its fun to be taught more....

"nowimë I am in the West, Furincurunir to the Dwarves (or at least, to their best friend) and by other names in other lands. Mostly they just say 'Oh no it's him - look busy!' "
Or "Hold off! unhand me, grey-beard loon!"


CuriousG
Valinor


Sep 25 2013, 8:55pm

Post #33 of 109 (212 views)
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Astronomy in MEarth [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't know how much to read into this, but the Sun is associated with Men while the Moon cherishes the memory of the Elves. The Sun was always more powerful--Morgoth attacked the Moon but didn't dare attack the Sun. And when both celestial bodies are in the sky during the say, the Sun outshines the Moon. Though either can eclipse the other, which is why I'm not sure how far to go with the comparison.


CuriousG
Valinor


Sep 25 2013, 9:04pm

Post #34 of 109 (203 views)
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Fading and glowing [In reply to] Can't Post

Interesting to bring up the Ulari. They've definitely faded, and when Frodo was stabbed with the Morgul-knife, he began to fade too.

But I don't think they were fading like Elves. Doesn't it sound funny to say, Gaffer-like, "Well, there's fading, see, and then there's fading." Even though the Elves in the 3rd Age had faded somewhat, when Glorfindel confronted the Nazgul at the Ford of Bruinen, Frodo saw him as a brilliant light, certainly something that the others in the real world didn't see. Gandalf explained that Glorf. was revealed in his wrath and power on the other side of things, and that he had power against the Seen and the Unseen. So in a sense, Glorf. was a shining star in the faded world. So is there more than one faded world?

It also seems that Elves can fade but not come under Sauron's dominion as a result, whereas the Nazgul had no other path to follow. Is it the same kind of fading? Is there a neutral Elf-fading and an evil Man-fading? And does this have anything to do with my laundry, where everything fades, turning me into Curious the Grey?


elaen32
Gondor


Sep 25 2013, 9:22pm

Post #35 of 109 (195 views)
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I agree with you here CG [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
What you're describing seems to me how a real-world human feels when they grow old and feel estranged from the younger generation. Elves don't grow old on the outside, but they appear to on the inside. That endless old age feeling that the world has passed you by ("what's with kids these days wearing rings in their noses and covering their bodies with tattoos?") and will never swing around back to what you once enjoyed about it would be torture. So do Elves fade just because they do, or because of their reactions to the world? If they continuously thought that whatever was new was desirable, would they fade


Tolkien says of the elves of the third age, that "they tried nothing new but became obsessed with fading" (sorry if not exact quote- haven't got book to hand). We see this in many old people in RL- a lot of reminiscence and "things ain't what they used to be". Also a feeling of knowing what they enjoy and like, so why should they look for new things all the time. For the elves, most of their time is spent in reminiscing- they sing ancient songs and tell ancient tales of their past, they have few dealings with Men and other races on the whole. Compare this with older people in RL who live in retirement homes, spending leisure time talking about the old days- singing songs of their youth and not having much contact with younger people, except, perhaps, their grandchildren. One can continue the comparison further, in that both groups are aware that they are being superseded- by Men in the case of the Elves, and by the younger generations in the case of elderly people. This must be a rather depressing thought.
On the other hand, do all Elves fade equally? After her speech to Frodo by her mirror, Galadriel says "I WILL fade and pass into the West...." At that point has she finally conceded the long defeat? Has she resisted "fading" up until that point, maybe with the hope that she can increase her influence and power in ME?


Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!



Dame Ioreth
Grey Havens


Sep 25 2013, 10:34pm

Post #36 of 109 (193 views)
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The concept of "heaven" [In reply to] Can't Post

The Elves knew where they were going, yes, but I wonder if the thought of man going somewhere "better" was on their minds. No one knew, but there is a concept of heaven as being one with God. We as humans cannot comprehend such a thing so we whittle it down to things that we know - with loved ones, clouds, harps. But if you let your imagination expand on the concept of "one with..." then the possibilities are endless. Do men in ME die and that's it or do they go to that place that even Elves don't know about, to be *part of* Eru?

OR

Is this whole immortality vs mortality thing a psychological experiment to see how the different races make their choices?

And more to the point, when do we get to meet the dolphins and the mice?

“Where there's life there's hope, and need of vittles.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings


Brethil
Half-elven


Sep 25 2013, 11:08pm

Post #37 of 109 (200 views)
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Galadriel staying busy [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

In Reply To

On the other hand, do all Elves fade equally? After her speech to Frodo by her mirror, Galadriel says "I WILL fade and pass into the West...." At that point has she finally conceded the long defeat? Has she resisted "fading" up until that point, maybe with the hope that she can increase her influence and power in ME?




And be still active in subcreation and in ruling the land of her own that she followed Feanor's revolt to obtain? Maybe. In that sense her mandate as a Firstborn was still active...and living in her own land of Lorien the changes wrought by Men were lessened (before the Ring was destroyed anyway) so I suppose that gave her a cushion, of being behind the times in terms of change?

Can the term 'fade' here be the retreat from Arda, as it is seen by them as 'their' world?

Its tricky with Galadriel: there was the Ban put in place, which would have applied to her as a 'leader' of the Noldor. JRRT addresses later on in Letters that after her rejection of the Ring the ban was lifted...but that Galadriel herself believed it to be for as long as Earth endured (makes me question *when* she realized that she could potentially go West.)

Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply, and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!








Terazed
Bree

Sep 25 2013, 11:08pm

Post #38 of 109 (187 views)
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Children of the Day, Children of the Night [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
What occurred to me as I watched Liv portray Arwen's struggle to comprehend the loss is the Pandora's Box metaphor that came up upthread with CG. Here we have an Immortal struggling to cope with mortality on a very personal level: is her struggle with the concept and with the loss, or with the relative loss of her own previous life? Had she never known immortality, would that have changed her grief about Aragorn's choice?


I would think the key with Arwen is were she goes after Aragorn dies. She withdraws alone to Lorian. Recall last week I discussed that the elves live in aesthetic contemplation trying to feel the noumenal Will or Brahman or spirit of God (whatever your preferance) that exists outside of time. I also quoted Frodo's experience by the fire of elven music in Rivendell and I compared it to a quote from Isolde's experience of the liebestod (love-death) over Tristan's body. Let me incorporate your comments on how elves "walk/live in their memories" and also the comments in the discussion on how men have no certain knowledge of an afterlife.

For the sake of the argument I will take Schopenhauer's concept of "Will" so we can see a purely philosophical perspective on death rather then a religious one since men have no certain knowledge of death. Remember that the phenomenal world is the world of objects and subjects (people) that we experience. They are in time and space. Noumenon is outside of both time and space. As such it is a singularity. There is in truth one thing-in-itself and that is the Will. It is everything and everyone that was and is and ever will be eternally outside of time (in case you ever wondered how Galadriel's mirror works). According to Schopenhauer it is outside of reason and thought and is subconscious emotion that can only be felt in aesthetic contemplation of music, art, and nature. Let us go back to our discussion of the difference between humans and elves. Humans are children of the day, the light of reason, or of the phenomenal world. Therefore they live in time. Elves are children of the night before there was light. The night is the world of the subconscious and of dreams, outside of time. Therefore they live as if outside of time. It is also outside of reason in dreams and art where artistic "magic" exists in the primary world.

On to Arwen's case. She voluntarily exiled herself forever from the world of the night and subconscious. Now she has lost Aragorn forever if we assume that in the world of the light and reason the afterlife is unknown. Where would she go turn to for consolation? The answer is back to Lorian (or Rivendell) and a life of aesthetic contemplation. Why? Aesthetic contemplation is contemplation of the "Will" or the music of Ainur in Tolkien's world. In that music the subject-in-itself that was Aragorn has always existed and always will exist and that is as close as Arwen can get to him while she lives. If we still want to stick with this philosophic explanation then when Arwen dies she will still be part of the unconscious music and be one with Aragorn again.

Let me put up some quotes now that I have talked about day/night imagery that will show how the love-death (liebestod) works. Remember also that Isolde knows the "magic" of Ireland and Tristan is the soldier and prince of what will become England.

First they discuss the theory behind the liebestod:


Quote
TRISTAN Oh, now we were dedicated to Night! Spiteful Day with ready envy could part us with its tricks but no longer mislead us with guile. Its vain glory, its flaunting display are mocked by those to whom Night has granted sight. The fleeting flashes of its flickering light no longer dazzle us. Before him who has seen with love death's night, before him to whom she confided her dark secret, are scattered the lies, the renown and honour of Day, power and advantage shining and glorious, as the paltry dust caught in the sunbeam! Amid the vain fancy of Day he still harbours one desire - the yearning for sacred Night where, all-eternal, true alone, love's bliss smiles on him!
TOGETHER Descend, O Night of love, grant oblivion that I may live; take me up into your bosom, release me from the world!
TRISTAN Extinguished now the last glimmers;
ISOLDE what we thought, what we imagined;
TRISTAN all thought
ISOLDE all remembering,
TOGETHER the glorious presentiment of sacred twilight extinguishes imagined terrors, world-redeeming.
...
TOGETHER then am I myself the world; floating in sublime bliss, life of love most sacred, the sweetly conscious undeluded wish never again to waken.


They go on to talk of what will happen if one of them dies first:


Quote
TRISTAN Our love? Tristan's love? Yours and mine, Isolde's love? What strokes of death could ever make it yield? If mighty Death stood before me threatening the very life in my body which I would so gladly leave for love,how could it reach love itself? Were I to give my life to that for which I would so gladly die, how could love die with me, the ever-living end with me? And if his love were never to die how could Tristan die of his love?
ISOLDE But our love, is it not Tristan and Isolde? This sweet little word: and, would death not destroy the bonds of love which it entwines if Tristan were to die?
TRISTAN What could die but that which troubles us, preventing Tristan from ever loving Isolde, forever loving only her?
ISOLDE Yet this little word: and, were it destroyed, how else but together with Isolde's own life would death be given to Tristan?
TRISTAN Thus might we die, that together, ever one, without end, never waking, never fearing, namelessly enveloped in love, given up to each other, to live only for love!
...
TRISTAN Tristan you, I Isolde, no longer Tristan.
ISOLDE You Isolde, Tristan I, no longer Isolde!
TOGETHER Un-named, free from parting, new perception, new enkindling; ever endless self-knowing; warmly glowing heart, love's utmost joy!


Just before he puts up his sword and impales himself on Melot's sword he asks one more time if she is still committed to follow him.


Quote
TRISTAN Wherever Tristan now goes will you, Isolde, follow him? To that land of which Tristan spoke, where the sun's light does not shine; it is the dark land of Night out of which my mother sent me when he, whom she bore on her deathbed, left her in death to reach the light. From that which, when she bore me, was her fortress of love, the wondrous realm of Night, I then awoke. That is what Tristan offers you, thither he will precede you. Whether she will follow him in grace and faith, let Isolde now tell him.
ISOLDE When for a foreign land her beloved once won her, that ungracious man Isolde had to follow faithfully and graciously. Now you are returning to your own estates to show me your inheritance; how could I flee that land that spans the whole world? Wherever Tristan's home may be, there let Isolde go, there let her follow him in grace and faith, so now show Isolde the way!


Finally I will quote the Isolde's liebestod in full.


Quote
How softly and gently he smiles, how sweetly his eyes open - can you see, my friends, do you not see it? How he glows ever brighter, raising himself high amidst the stars? Do you not see it? How his heart swells with courage, gushing full and majestic in his breast? How in tender bliss sweet breath gently wafts from his lips -Friends! Look! Do you not feel and see it? Do I alone hear this melody so wondrously and gently sounding from within him, in bliss lamenting, all-expressing, gently reconciling, piercing me, soaring aloft, its sweet echoes resounding about me? Are they gentle aerial waves ringing out clearly, surging around me? Are they billows of blissful fragrance? As they seethe and roar about me, shall I breathe, shall I give ear? Shall I drink of them, plunge beneath them? Breathe my life away in sweet scents? In the heaving swell, in the resounding echoes, in the universal stream of the world-breath - to drown, to founder - unconscious - utmost rapture!


By the way completely off topic if you are ever truly bored (and if you made it this far in my post you must be) then search Stephen Fry Tristan Chord on youtube and you can watch him screw up the liebestod.


Brethil
Half-elven


Sep 25 2013, 11:13pm

Post #39 of 109 (184 views)
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Interesting CG [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I don't know how much to read into this, but the Sun is associated with Men while the Moon cherishes the memory of the Elves. The Sun was always more powerful--Morgoth attacked the Moon but didn't dare attack the Sun. And when both celestial bodies are in the sky during the say, the Sun outshines the Moon. Though either can eclipse the other, which is why I'm not sure how far to go with the comparison.




The Sun and Moon are both 'second best light', from after the sullying of the Trees...the starlight that the Elves love is closer kin to the moon, so maybe the connection is there?

Interesting idea, with the newer but less clean light of the Sun able to hide the Moon.... a metaphor for the fading of the Elves: with the coming of the Men (Sun-born) the older children The Elves (of starlight and moonlight) cannot be seen?

Very nice comparison here.

Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply, and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!








Brethil
Half-elven


Sep 25 2013, 11:29pm

Post #40 of 109 (187 views)
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You are never boring Terazed [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

Quote
What occurred to me as I watched Liv portray Arwen's struggle to comprehend the loss is the Pandora's Box metaphor that came up upthread with CG. Here we have an Immortal struggling to cope with mortality on a very personal level: is her struggle with the concept and with the loss, or with the relative loss of her own previous life? Had she never known immortality, would that have changed her grief about Aragorn's choice?


I would think the key with Arwen is were she goes after Aragorn dies. She withdraws alone to Lorian. Recall last week I discussed that the elves live in aesthetic contemplation trying to feel the noumenal Will or Brahman or spirit of God (whatever your preferance) that exists outside of time. I also quoted Frodo's experience by the fire of elven music in Rivendell and I compared it to a quote from Isolde's experience of the liebestod (love-death) over Tristan's body. Let me incorporate your comments on how elves "walk/live in their memories" and also the comments in the discussion on how men have no certain knowledge of an afterlife.

For the sake of the argument I will take Schopenhauer's concept of "Will" so we can see a purely philosophical perspective on death rather then a religious one since men have no certain knowledge of death. Remember that the phenomenal world is the world of objects and subjects (people) that we experience. They are in time and space. Noumenon is outside of both time and space. As such it is a singularity. There is in truth one thing-in-itself and that is the Will. It is everything and everyone that was and is and ever will be eternally outside of time (in case you ever wondered how Galadriel's mirror works). According to Schopenhauer it is outside of reason and thought and is subconscious emotion that can only be felt in aesthetic contemplation of music, art, and nature. Let us go back to our discussion of the difference between humans and elves. Humans are children of the day, the light of reason, or of the phenomenal world. Therefore they live in time. Elves are children of the night before there was light. The night is the world of the subconscious and of dreams, outside of time. Therefore they live as if outside of time. It is also outside of reason in dreams and art where artistic "magic" exists in the primary world.

On to Arwen's case. She voluntarily exiled herself forever from the world of the night and subconscious. Now she has lost Aragorn forever if we assume that in the world of the light and reason the afterlife is unknown. Where would she go turn to for consolation? The answer is back to Lorian (or Rivendell) and a life of aesthetic contemplation. Why? Aesthetic contemplation is contemplation of the "Will" or the music of Ainur in Tolkien's world. In that music the subject-in-itself that was Aragorn has always existed and always will exist and that is as close as Arwen can get to him while she lives. If we still want to stick with this philosophic explanation then when Arwen dies she will still be part of the unconscious music and be one with Aragorn again.
What I find intriguing is the linking of the ideas here that you have neatly put forth, relating to the retreat of Arwen into abandoned Lorien. What's interesting is how Lorien itself relates to the definition of noumenon: rather a singularity based on the work of Galadriel and Nenya, where time passed differently than the rest of the physical world. And even though they have departed, this is what Arwen is seeking...the lingering singularity of that place, and thus to step not necessarily backwards in time but out of time, in order to be closer to Aragorn in infinity while her life slipped away. Explains the reason for her journey there, when it was lonely and deserted and seemingly comfortless, in a way that makes sense from her perspective; if we view it through the philosophical kaleidoscope (as it were....!) and not through the practical filter of a more 'mortal' choice, of staying with the family that one has. Which has always been a question for me - while understanding her connection to Aragorn superseded her connections to the rest of the world - in that its hard to see what she was potentially actually seeking versus simply choosing a lonely death (which can be seen as fleeing).

Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply, and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!








Brethil
Half-elven


Sep 25 2013, 11:38pm

Post #41 of 109 (187 views)
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Cool: bring on the dolphins! [In reply to] Can't Post


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The Elves knew where they were going, yes, but I wonder if the thought of man going somewhere "better" was on their minds. Yes, exactly what I was wondering...and is that enough to grieve them, without any confirmation that Men go 'somewhere better' to cause them grief? No one knew, but there is a concept of heaven as being one with God. We as humans cannot comprehend such a thing so we whittle it down to things that we know - with loved ones, clouds, harps. But if you let your imagination expand on the concept of "one with..." then the possibilities are endless. Do men in ME die and that's it or do they go to that place that even Elves don't know about, to be *part of* Eru? A possibility! And that might qualify I suppose to the Elves as 'better'. However, with it being Unknown, your second part of the idea...

OR

Is this whole immortality vs mortality thing a psychological experiment to see how the different races make their choices?
...seems to be still in play for us, at readers, isn't it?

And more to the point, when do we get to meet the dolphins and the mice? Particularly the dolphins. I don't trust the mice...!!!


Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply, and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!








Brethil
Half-elven


Sep 25 2013, 11:45pm

Post #42 of 109 (183 views)
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You must go through lots of bleach just to get those ice cream stains out. // [In reply to] Can't Post


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And does this have anything to do with my laundry, where everything fades, turning me into Curious the Grey?


Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply, and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!








Dame Ioreth
Grey Havens


Sep 26 2013, 12:04am

Post #43 of 109 (189 views)
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Wait, is this like that cat thing? [In reply to] Can't Post

 

Quote
With their mandate and their native desire to subcreate and change, that in itself changes original creation. A sense of inexorability in the Song - in that sense, the 'Fate' notion of the tales?

The act of creating something from something else changes the original but only if you're in a box and someone is watching...

“Where there's life there's hope, and need of vittles.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings


Brethil
Half-elven


Sep 26 2013, 12:18am

Post #44 of 109 (189 views)
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Cats in boxes?! What's next? [In reply to] Can't Post


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Quote
With their mandate and their native desire to subcreate and change, that in itself changes original creation. A sense of inexorability in the Song - in that sense, the 'Fate' notion of the tales?

The act of creating something from something else changes the original but only if you're in a box and someone is watching...




Yellow anthropomorphic monkeys in cookie tins? LaughLaughLaugh (Or maybe they prefer ice cream tubs.) Shocked

Hmmm...handsome Dwarven kings can just go right into my car.

Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply, and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!








Dame Ioreth
Grey Havens


Sep 26 2013, 1:53am

Post #45 of 109 (174 views)
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Because I have permission - a joke [In reply to] Can't Post

(and yes, I did ask Brethil)

Heisenberg and Schrödinger are driving, and get pulled over. Heisenberg is in the driver's seat, the officer asks, "Do you know how fast you were going?" Heisenberg replies, "No, but I know exactly where I am!" The officer looks at him confused and says, "You were going 108 miles per hour!" Heisenberg throws his arms up and cries, "Great! Now I'm lost!"

The officer, now more confused and frustrated orders the men outside of the car, and proceeds to inspect the vehicle. He opens the trunk and yells at the two men, "Hey! Did you guys know you have a dead cat back here?" Schrödinger angrily yells back, "We do now!"

::nerdsnort::Smile


“Where there's life there's hope, and need of vittles.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings


Brethil
Half-elven


Sep 26 2013, 1:56am

Post #46 of 109 (178 views)
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(*hysterical laughing interlude*) [In reply to] Can't Post

That is just wonderful..........!!!!!!!!! LaughLaughLaugh

Nerd humor: THE BEST!!!!!!!!!!!!! Cool

Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply, and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!








Meneldor
Tol Eressea


Sep 26 2013, 4:19am

Post #47 of 109 (165 views)
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What was the question? [In reply to] Can't Post


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And more to the point, when do we get to meet the dolphins and the mice?



They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; These see the works of the Lord, and His wonders in the deep.


Brethil
Half-elven


Sep 26 2013, 4:39pm

Post #48 of 109 (172 views)
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*DISREGARDING* the laundry red-herring this time CG [In reply to] Can't Post


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But I don't think they were fading like Elves. Doesn't it sound funny to say, Gaffer-like, "Well, there's fading, see, and then there's fading." Even though the Elves in the 3rd Age had faded somewhat, when Glorfindel confronted the Nazgul at the Ford of Bruinen, Frodo saw him as a brilliant light, certainly something that the others in the real world didn't see. Gandalf explained that Glorf. was revealed in his wrath and power on the other side of things, and that he had power against the Seen and the Unseen. So in a sense, Glorf. was a shining star in the faded world. So is there more than one faded world? And touching on the planar point....I think the other side of things is the realm of spirit. where the Ring seems to 'live' to a certain extent (and thus I believe able to render those weaker in power than it is invisible to *this* plane) and where I think the Nazgul also 'unlive'. Thus perhaps why the Nine would fear Glorfindel - to them I think he (and other Elves, particularly of personal strength) is always visible shining in wrath and light?



Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply, and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!








Brethil
Half-elven


Sep 27 2013, 4:30am

Post #49 of 109 (135 views)
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Is the sadness inevitable do you think? [In reply to] Can't Post


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It seems to me that the elves regret their immortality because of their memories. They are cursed by remembering the perfection of the beginning. As time continued they saw what was once beautiful degrade and disappear - what seems like yesterday to them was many hundreds of years ago to the other races. And as such the other races forget the elves' deeds and labors from ages past. The elves fought the long defeat, if you will. No matter what they did or tried evil always returns and all that they have done seems useless when compared to the present. Also the land itself changed- the perfection that they so loved was sullied and broken. Their strongholds were over run and their monuments obscured by the sands of time. Also many of their friends were killed in battle or sailed West and so they were left in ever dwindling numbers. Even if they were to befriend men (or hobbits or dwarves) they would outlive them and then the elves would be burdened with the sorrow of loosing more people that they loved. Sounds depressing right?

Now men on the other hand- Well they get to live a nice lifespan- not to short and not to long. Because of their mortality they live life to the fullest. They don't know any different so they just love and accept what they have calling it perfect even if it is not. They have no time to waste lamenting the passing of time or being depressed. Instead they go out have fun accomplish something ( or try anyway) and then they die. That's it. The end. I think I would be envious too if I were an elf.

And then these blessed men try to throw away their gift and try to be immortal. ( That's when the elves decide that men need a psychologist and avoid all further contact if possible.)




The sense of - and reasons for - the feelings of loss and grief the Elves have are spot on Lightfoot. Do you think that it is an inevitable curse of the concept of Immortality, or does it relate more to the way JRRT wrote his particular legendarium, especially the early part?

Is there a Tolkien topic that you have wanted to look into more deeply, and write about your thoughts on it? If so, we'd like to hear from you for the next TORn Amateur Symposium- coming in November. Happy writing!








dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Sep 27 2013, 10:20am

Post #50 of 109 (146 views)
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*adds more nerdsnorts* Haw! [In reply to] Can't Post

From both myself and hubby (the physics major) - love this, Ioreth! Laugh


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"I desired dragons with a profound desire"





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