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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Main:
*WISE Passage of the Day* No. 3 - The Pity of Bilbo
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Curious
Half-elven

Apr 13 2007, 10:07pm

Post #126 of 147 (123 views)
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Yep. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

Iím here because Iím curious.


Me too! Hence the nick.


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 14 2007, 6:51am

Post #127 of 147 (141 views)
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Oh my! Saruman relented?! [In reply to] Can't Post

Okay, please let's leave aside the ' eternal damnation' thing, which is one of the unacceptable things for which I left the Church 37 years ago. Don't worry, no true 'God' will ever really do that to you - or to Saruman, or to whoever. You don't have to accept every horrible or stupid thing that's supposed to be a dogma. Your soul may actually know better, if only you trust it enough to listen to what it says!!!
But be careful here not to listen too much to your mind instead, because it seems to be somewhat biased against Gandalf and on the contrary for Saruman, to the point of refusing to see and accept the obvious, and of falling in the end into utter confusion.
It is strange that you are so willing to see cruelty and other bad intentions in Gandalf or Frodo, but on the other hand you are not willing to even acknowledge the hatred that is very much there in Saruman along with the 'wonder and respect' you do mention; that hatred is, sadly, what he allows to win within himself until the end, negating the 'wonder and respect' which had managed to surface out of his surprise at the great change in Frodo; you interprete the move of the 'pale shrouded figure' towards the West as a sign that Saruman is finally relenting; I'm afraid it's simply because the West used to be his home as a MaÔa, so he instinctively looks towards that side; but how could he be accepted back there in the inner condition that he is in?
Rather than having the 'cold wind'' answer that JRRT puts there, though, and Saruman's 'dissolving into nothingness', I would send him to the same place where Morgoth also is being kept... and perhaps Sauron too!!! A cheerful trio of egomaniacs, indeed!!! But they too come from Eru all right, and ultimately will find back the real truth of their being: the Game is ultimately safe for everybody, even those who play the role of the Villains; in the meantime, once they have played their role enough, they have to be somehow restrained for sure; but total dissolution would not be fair...!
So, for the smaller villains, and all the more for the 'half-villains' who actually did repent (at least for a while) there is hope too, of course, and the Love of God is still there for them too, or it simply wouldn't be truly God, that much is obvious and certain.
Now all this would make even more sense at last, if we would grasp what is the real purpose behind it all: inner growth, and evolution!
But I want rto have some lunch before going into that, so please excuse me for a moment, I'll be back soon!!! Laugh

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 14 2007, 7:26am

Post #128 of 147 (155 views)
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How is that?... Please elaborate, [In reply to] Can't Post

so that I may get your point clearly enough.

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 14 2007, 7:50am

Post #129 of 147 (127 views)
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Hear, hear! I agree fully. [In reply to] Can't Post

This is a crystal clear answer that should help undo the confusion created bby Saruman's twisted and obscured view of things... which is still dangerous, as people can still get caught by it and not quite know any more which is which!...

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 14 2007, 8:07am

Post #130 of 147 (124 views)
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The apparent result is not the only one... [In reply to] Can't Post

Physical death is not the ultimate catastrophe that you think it is; if those twenty hobbits died courageously, and in a higher state of consciousness than they usually were in the normal circumstances of their life, then all the inner benefit is for them, and that's what really matters.
As for the Shire in ruins, you know as well as I do that it will be restored to even better than its former beauty by Galadriel's gift to Sam.
In one's overall appreciation of all those events, one must keep in mind those various elements that make the whole difference.

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


grammaboodawg
Immortal


Apr 14 2007, 8:58am

Post #131 of 147 (151 views)
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"... willing to offer... " [In reply to] Can't Post

There ya go. If the intention or willingness of an offer (or support) for redemption is also given with the mercy as Frodo does for Gollum, redemption is possible and the mercy more rewarding and useful. I guess I feel there are two things happening. The heart or intention of the giver (Bilbo, Frodo in this case w/Gollum), which empowers them against the full influence of the Ring, is as important as the potential salvation/redemption of Gollum. So the mercy is useful in this case eventhough the recipient failed to receive it completely. Gollum failed, Smeagol succeeded for a short while.


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grammaboodawg
Immortal


Apr 14 2007, 9:03am

Post #132 of 147 (111 views)
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Perfect! [In reply to] Can't Post

The adaptation to film seems to move all the characters into a more emotional level... but your description of the film Frodo and the book Frodo is wonderful! I'm sitting here considering which I prefer... but I can't choose. This is one of those places I can point to and say I appreciate the films for being different than the book because I get a broader spectrum of the story. It also shows the skill of the writers. Genius.

Thank you ... this is great! :D


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mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 14 2007, 10:04am

Post #133 of 147 (169 views)
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The 'decline of the world' is only [In reply to] Can't Post

one phase in the evolution of the world as a whole, preparing an altogether different, ascending phase to come.
This is why the Wise don't really worry and become despondent the way people (especially those like you!!! Laugh ) would immediately do.
We don't 'have to imagine Gandalf happy', by the way, for he is; whatever you may say, he is no Sisyphus; just read again the description of him when Sam awakens on the Field of Cormallen and they laugh together; or this passage before, in 'Minas Tirith', when Pippin has answered Denethor's hard questions and goes away with Gandalf for some rest:
'Are you angry with me, Gandalf? he said. (...) I did the best I could.'
'You did indeed!' said Gandalf, laughing suddenly.(...) Pippin glanced in some wonder at the face now close beside his own, for the sound of that laugh had been gay and merry. Yet in the wizard's face he saw at first only lines of care and sorrow; though as he looked more intently he perceived that under all there was a great joy: a fountain of mirth enough to set a kingdom laughing, were it to gush forth.'
If only you would take note of such passages and ponder them and remember them with as much keen interest and persistance as you do the gloomy ones, it might help you to discover gradually what is that wonderful 'larger view' that the Wise have, which makes all the difference.
After my first clash with you, for which I apologised, thinking I had been mistaken and had misjudged you, I was moved by what seemed a real need to understand better what this world might be about, (and you may be yourself convinced that you do have such a need, or it may even be indeed there deep inside you at soul level), so I had intended to write a long post for you about that., to the best of my ability.
But when you answer Curious' weary withdrawal from a useless discussion, merely with a flippant 'But we are having so much fun!', then I really suspect again you're just actually enjoying the role of the provocator, the 'devil's advocate', that you so often play here, without truly wanting to be enlightened out of it by any argument or explanation one may ever give to you.
He seems to me genuinely and sincerely 'Curious', and does a honest job of trying to answer you, but your mind seems to me more like a slippery eel turning this way and that, not in order to get anywhere actually, but simply for the 'fun' of pretending you are trying earnestly to get somewhere.
Gandalf you deprecate and belittle and misunderstand on every possible occasion, while paying lip service to his wisdom by a 'he is no fool' that doesn't fool anyone.
The very concept of inner growth you brush aside with disdain:
'So Gandalf knows the Shire must be occupied and despoiled so it can be Scourged and hobbits can affirm their strength and grow. Thereís been reams of discussion in the RR about that.'
Well, I would have some further answers to offer to this discussion, but I don't want that they meet with the same flippant treatment from you, so I'll just keep them for myself.
Anyway, if you are truly interested in what my views are on this crucial topic, you can just check all the posts I have made so far in this thread, that should give you already some idea.
I will certainly go on appreciating you wits and great sense of humour on less important topics, but in a case like this humour too can be used in the wrong way and lead to the wrong place, and there I won't follow you.

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 14 2007, 10:54am

Post #134 of 147 (130 views)
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Perfect reply... I would only add that [In reply to] Can't Post

 it is through that self-sacrifice for the sake of the others and of the general good, that he comes to his death (something one could easily harp on and on as a proof that G was a fool: 'See the result!...'), but then, as we all know, is revived as a new Gandalf deserving to be called 'The White' and to be invested with even greater power than before (and that's the true result...).
So, self-sacrifice is there all right, no doubt about that; but at the same time, through the challenge he or others may accept to take up, of an apparently impossible task to be done, inner powers that were only a potential before, get called upon and become active.
In that way, all the main characters who have that kind of inner courage get closer and closer to the full plenitude of the divine nature secretly dormant in them as in all of us.
This glorious, exciting element of progressive inner Victory of the Divine in each of us should not be forgotten when we are trying to see the Purpose we may all have, somewhere in our depths, in our willingness to participate in Eru's great Story...
These inner victories, however small and unnoticed by others (even small children experience such victories all the time as they grow) give us some of the most powerful joys and most intense satisfactions a human being can experience in life: the exhilaration of our own secret, but irresistible divine power to win against all odds.
This, too, is part of why we are here!... Laugh

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


linkin-artelf
Lorien


Apr 14 2007, 10:18pm

Post #135 of 147 (116 views)
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"Not to strike without need" [In reply to] Can't Post

Very interesting discussion, if a little hard to follow coming late to it.
I'd like to draw our attention to the second part of the quote, where Gandalf qualifies the pity and mercy as not striking without need. In other words, to show restraint in giving judgement, leaving that to God, so to speak. I see the value of pity here as guarding one's soul, keeping blood off our hands. It would appear to be more important to the pitier than to the pitied. And Gandalf indeed stresses the importance of Bilbo's pity to himself, how it gave him protection from the ring's evil influence. He stresses this to Frodo for his own protection. I don't think Gandalf ever had much hope for Gollum's redemption. And yes, Darkstone, it would seem that the sanctity of one's soul is of the utmost importance, more than the possibility of lives lost in the process.
Of course the question arises, what makes Gollum more pitiable than the orcs or even Sauron for that matter? Why are they not accorded any pity? Is Sauron a metaphoric embodiment of pure evil and the orcs soulless automatons?
I find Gandalf's line "You have not seen him" intriguing.

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mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 15 2007, 5:17am

Post #136 of 147 (146 views)
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Intuition is not only for the Gandalfs... [In reply to] Can't Post

It is something that can be developed, as anything else.
A pity that the way to do just that isn't taught widely, I would say, for then it would be handy for everyone who would really be interested and take the trouble to train oneself...
This talent is latent in all of us, only one has to call upon it instead of always upon the mind as most people do (unless their individual temperament predisposes them to use their non-mental faculties as much, or more, than the mental ones).
One has to learn to silently and calmly 'listen' within, in an aspiration for the Truth, instead of allowing the intellect or/and the emotions to react, which immediately makes so much 'noise' and agitation inside, that everything becomes blurred, so to say, and one cannot any more perceive the indication given by our intuition.
Movie-Aragorn surprises Gandalf when they are wondering if Frodo is alive, and Aragorn quietly asks Gandalf:
'What does your heart tell you?...'
The wizard realizes then (and so do we) how much Aragorn has grown inwardly...
But Frodo himself goes beyond what had been told to him previously by Gandalf in Moria; once he meets effectively Gollum, and sees that indeed he pities him, that connects him back to all he can remember Gandalf advised him to do and not to do; but by concentrating in that way inwardly instead of listening to the angry but apparently good advice given to him at the same time by Sam ('Let's tie him and leave him!'), Frodo remains very quiet and listens within; and, lo and behold, this is how he is able to suddenly get the inspiration to take Gollum as their guide to Mordor!...
No one in their good mind would have thought of such a thing, which goes against all common sense and the most elementary prudence: Gollum actually just tried to strangle them!!!
But Frodo knows better, and chooses to follow his intuition: Gollum is the God-sent guide they needed so badly...
And he is indeed, but if Frodo hadn't called up on his intuition, and instead had followed Sam's advice, they would probably be still turning around in circles in the Emyn Muil! Laugh
The only thing really needed for developing the capacity to receive the intuition is to learn to rely more and more upon the Divine Presence in our heart (or the divine Wisdom high above our head, it doesn't matter) and to sincerely call inwardly for that Help.
Some people would say it's the voice of their angel they hear, some others call upon the friendly Universe they feel they are a part of, the name we give to it is of no consequence.
In its on-going further evolution, the human species will develop more and more that latent capacity of intuition, so let's go for it already!... Wink

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 15 2007, 5:31am

Post #137 of 147 (108 views)
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I forgot to add that [In reply to] Can't Post

I just LOVE the picture of Elrond you have for your L.Ron (one can see he is also an excellent comic actor!!!). That moment, with that expression he has when suddenly there are hobbits all over the place in his Council, is one of my favorite fun moments in the films, eagerly expected whenever I'm watching FOTR.
As for the caption attributed to my beloved Aragorn addressing the Dead in your footer, it made me howl with laughter the first time, and I still relish it and chuckle every time I open a post by you!!! Laugh

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 15 2007, 6:47am

Post #138 of 147 (127 views)
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Wonderfully correct... and after all, [In reply to] Can't Post

we are absolutely free to believe exactly the same thing for the Primary World as well - which is the case for me as an individual, although since many years now outside of any Church.
I believe the same was the case for JRRT himself.
That total faith he had in a God of Love led him gradually to an overall understanding of Life and of Evolution which is quite extraordinary. It goes actually beyond the rigid limits prescribed by the Church and Theology in the Catholic Religion he had chosen like his mother had, but ended up feeling somehow emprisoned by in later years, although his own faith in God remained always as total as ever.
What he has described in his books (including the many documents published later by his son Christopher) seems to me to have been very much a way to put out in a relatively free manner his own deepest beliefs as they evolved along the years, and to work out as much as possible the main questions he was since ever particularly engrossed in (mortality versus immortality, for example, and the pain of separation, and of course what he called 'estel').
In the present thread most participants consider the Primary World as the only 'real' one, and don't seem to be convinced much of the applicability of what 'works' in Middle-earth to that Primary World. But after much research and experimentation in my own life since nearly 40 years, I find on the contrary that Tolkien was 'right on' about many things ... and I admire him all the more for that.
The two worlds were kind of together in his own consciousness, there is no doubt about that, however hard he may have tried (if he really did at all) to keep the two separate. So I don't think we who are studying his writings should try to set the two apart too much in our own consciousness, otherwise we will deprive ourselves of a lot of inner wisdom we could benefit from by reading Tolkien.

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)

(This post was edited by mae govannen on Apr 15 2007, 6:52am)


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 15 2007, 7:13am

Post #139 of 147 (142 views)
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'You have not seen him.' [In reply to] Can't Post

The way I understand it is this:
As long as we haven't met someone in person, the bad actions or even crimes he/she may be responsible for will tend to appear in the cold light of reason only, as purely objective facts that no 'attenuating circumstances' could possibly make more excusable.
But when you actually see the person, if your heart is not totally shut, you will almost always start to get another feeling from the person: no more a mere abstraction in your head, but a real person within a whole subjective world of his/her own, that person may unexpectedly send a different message inwardly to you, touch you, move you, make all your dry and judgmental assertions crumble at once, and instead of scorn and hatred and disgust you may be surprised to feel in yourself pity for that person.
I think this is exactly what happened to Frodo later in the Emyn Muil.
Regarding Sauron and also the Orcs, I'll try to reply something later.

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 15 2007, 7:53am

Post #140 of 147 (121 views)
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Perhaps great spiritual persons you don't know yet of [In reply to] Can't Post

have explained actually very well the problem of Evil and its future solution here in our physical world itself.
It's all to be seen in the framework of an EVOLVING world, in which the conditions that exist for the time being may not be the absolute laws we believe them to be, and in which an awakening of humanity to its secret divine nature could mean that this divine potential could become the New Reality we would live in then, right here upon this dear little Arda - er, sorry, the Earth! Wink
And perhaps Evil and the beings Evil that enact it deliberately (whether embodied directly or through others who are embodied) are in the meantime the very best puzzle-cum-challenge for both our intelligence and our courage to exercise themselves until we understand at last what it's all about... and finally win the Game!!!
For our inner sense of discrimination to grow as well - which is absolutely indispensable, as it is the central Key - we must be presented all the time with evil possible choices along with correct ones, until we know what we really want, don't get confused or intimidated anymore, and learn to follow the choice of our soul always, for it is the only part in ourselves that truly sees through all the traps, and knows at each moment what feels right and what feels wrong, as infallibly as a compass knows the North. Cool

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


Advising Elf
Rohan


Apr 16 2007, 12:47pm

Post #141 of 147 (161 views)
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He is deepely affected, but his pride still rears up. [In reply to] Can't Post

That's where the "cruel" comment comes from. Even though he has some respsect, he never lets go of his pride, so he stays bitter.

Also, I don't see any evidence of Saruman "relenting". I always took his "spirit" heading toward the West to show that he thought he was just going to go back home, as if nothing he had done changed that.. It was his last prideful act. I'm sure he was astonished at the rValar's refusal to allow him back.

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Darkstone
Immortal


Apr 16 2007, 1:28pm

Post #142 of 147 (134 views)
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Well!! [In reply to] Can't Post

This is without doubt the most offensive response I've received on any internet board this year. People like me? There's a word for that type of comment and it's not pretty. Simply because I do not agree with you I receive a barrage of vicious ad hominem attacks. This is discussion? Maybe "people like me" should should just sit in the back and be quiet. Not!

I met a Balrog on the stair
He had some wings that weren't there.
They weren't there again today.
I wish he would just fly away.


Darkstone
Immortal


Apr 16 2007, 1:35pm

Post #143 of 147 (116 views)
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Clarification? [In reply to] Can't Post

You already made it more than clear that you're only here seeking agreement, not discussion. I'd rather not leave myself open to more flaming. I might lose my temper and return in kind, and I'd rather not sink to that level.

I met a Balrog on the stair
He had some wings that weren't there.
They weren't there again today.
I wish he would just fly away.


Advising Elf
Rohan


Apr 16 2007, 2:06pm

Post #144 of 147 (100 views)
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You're welcome. [In reply to] Can't Post

I actually haven't been able to follow all of the various subthreads. I'll try to squeeze them in as soon as I can.

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mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 17 2007, 8:48am

Post #145 of 147 (119 views)
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It's not an attack at all, [In reply to] Can't Post

it's something that I say about everybody, including myself, because we all are the way we are, that is, each a certain type, with a certain temperament and way of being; and it was supposed to be fun (hence the laugh next to it: I laugh about the way I am too, just the same, for we are actually all rather funny, from a certain point of view, in our present evolutive state.
But of course you don't know me very well, so you couldn't know all this , my way of thinking and my way of speaking, and it sounded to you like a personal attack, but really it was not.
I should have realised it couldn't be understood for what it was, and refrained from that attempt at a joke.

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 17 2007, 11:31am

Post #146 of 147 (105 views)
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Please re-read carefully what I said [In reply to] Can't Post

in my post down below, which I guess you are alluding too; I just now answered your 'Well!' there, by explaining how there was in fact no personal attack in what I said, and certainly no intention to attack you.
By the way, did I ever insult anybody on any board? I don't think I ever did. I don't think I have ever given any evidence of being a troll. So why should I be suddenly loosing my own temper and sinking to a supposedly low level?
I wasn't even angry. I was simply commenting on what I see as a problem you seem to be having while discussing such deep issues, which makes it very difficult for any real discussion to take place, not only with me, but apparently with some other TORnsibs, although they too like you very much as a person otherwise.
How to help you get out of this situation, and reach some deeper understanding of what Life is about, was my real concern. You are the one who is presently struggling with those terrible questions - just as I myself was, mind you.So I really sympathize!!!
Since 1970, as a young adult, I had all those questions so acutely in my own mind, and I was so intensely scandalized by the presence of Evil in this poor world, with all the kinds of totally unacceptable stuff going on everywhere which you mention too, that I just put an ultimatum to God (yes!!!), threatening to put an end to my life if I was not given satisfactory answers about the very meaning and purpose of it all.
Why would have God given a mind to us if not to use it also for understanding these so important issues? I thought.
So I demanded answers, and answers that made sense even for my intelligence, for two rather radical questions:
1/ WHY are things (including us human beings) the way they are?
2/ HOW can it be CHANGED?
Well, apparently God doesn't mind ultimatums, when they are sincere ones, and managed to give me the needed answers as quickly as I have been able to be ready for them, with my mind made gradually wide enough, over a period of three months, to accept and ingest a first few mighty new concepts, and then finally the massive last one that put everything together like all the pieces of a huge Cosmic Puzzle at last solved.
That moment has been for me the starting-point of a whole new way of being alive, which not only makes every moment of my life a moment of conscious evolution for myself as an individual, but a constant action for the accelerated evolution of the whole as well, towards a much more pleasant and fulfilling new phase in it, that will put an end to all the evils of today - because they will not be necessary any more, we will have outgrown them.
This understanding of Life and of Evolution, with the Spirit in each of us as its key, and seen as the secret Divine Purpose for this poor Earth, is not the ramblings of some feeble-minded daydreamer; it is recognised since nearly a century as quite valid by contemporary philosophers and spiritual people everywhere.
A whole new project is even very officially growing since 1968, here in South India, but as an international - or rather 'universal' - township in the making, which has for humanity as a whole the function of a 'laboratory of evolution': a living laboratory, so to say, where humans from everywhere can live and work together, evolving consciously as individualseach one in their own way, but in order for a new, truer form of collective living to slowly emerge and show us the way towards the societies of the future.
This new, experimental township is for those interested in the collective dimension of our evolution, but individuals can live the very same kind of inner spiritual development anywhere in the world as well.
As all this goes beyond some of the beliefs taught by the existing religions, and is not itself a new religion either, the existence of this project is not advertised much by them, although its aim, Human Unity, should have their full support, one would think. But this new view of the world and of the meaning of Life is found nevertheless very helpful by more and more individuals here and there who are looking for more complete, or more acceptable answers than those that have been given to them until now.
I'll stop here in order to post already that much, and wait for your reaction to it. I hope all this will dissipate the very bad impression left by my earlier piece of writing.

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

Apr 17 2007, 12:04pm

Post #147 of 147 (369 views)
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Well, we're saying two interesting variations of the same thing, [In reply to] Can't Post

almost even with the same words, if you check my own answer to Darkstone, just above your own! Amusing. We don't always agree, but here it is total agreement! Smile

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)

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