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Tolkien: Theological Implications Even In The Funny Stuff?

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posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 08:40 PM
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Anyone notice how religious and moral issues simply permeate even the most humorous of his works?

Fastitocalon, this poem about an ocean turtle-monster, that foolish seafarers think is an island...and when they land on his back and start making tea, HE dives, and they all drown...

(Why is Tolkien always referring to the turtle-monster as HE or HIM rather than just simply "he?" Hmmmm...)

The moral is: don't take things for granted; "there are many monsters in the sea!" Tolkien knew this well.

Don't just assume you can simply go on with your "silly life," as Tolkien puts it, because if you don't watch out for the "monsters," you might just lose that silly life! Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow...

In LOTR, the hobbits defeat Sauron, only to return to their happy Shire, and find it overrun by Saruman and his cronies...

I've set seven of the Tom Bombadil poems to music, but won't bother posting the scores unless asked to. This is just the tip of the iceberg...

There are many more examples in The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien's light verse; as entertaining as it can be, there is always a dark side, but one can learn from this constant mixing in of the darkness. Man is corruptable, and also never seems to recognize the dangers inherent in life until they are right upon him (or her). JRRT of course had his own ideas as to the solution to these human failings.

So there are my thoughts; anyone else have anything to add?



edit on 5-6-2013 by godspetrat because: (no reason given)




posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 08:56 PM
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Tolkien and cs lewis were very good friends and discussed religious issues quite frequently. Their writings shared religious and moral themes. Lewis was just more obvious with his writings



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 09:01 PM
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Originally posted by Lawgiver
Tolkien and cs lewis were very good friends and discussed religious issues quite frequently. Their writings shared religious and moral themes. Lewis was just more obvious with his writings


Good first answer! Tolkien always said he hated allegory, but used it all the time!

Here is a clearer text of the poem I just typed out.

Look, there is Fastitocalon!
An island good to land upon,
Although 'tis rather bare.
Come, leave the sea! And let us run,
Or dance, or lie down in the sun!
See, gulls are sitting there!
Beware!
Gulls do not sink.
There they may sit, or strut and prink:
Their part is to tip the wink,
If anyone should dare
Upon that isle to settle,
Or only for a while to get
Relief from sickness or the wet,
Or maybe boil a kettle.


Ah! foolish folk who land on HIM,
And little fires proceed to trim
And hope perhaps for tea!
It may be that his shell is thick,
He seens to sleep; but he is quick,
And floats now in the sea with guile;
And when he hears their tapping feet,
Or faintly feels the sudden heat,
With smile, HE dives,
And promptly turning upside-down
He tips them off, and deep they drown,
And lose their silly lives
To their surprise.

Be wise!

There are many monsters in the sea,
But none so perilous as HE,
Old horny Fastitocalon, Whose mightu kindred all have gone,
The last of the old Turtle-fish.
So if to save your life you wish
Then I advise:
Pay heed to sailors' accient lore,
Set foot on no uncharted shore!
Or better still,
Your days at peace on Middle-earth
In mirth
Fulfill!



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 09:35 PM
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WTH, here's my setting. Pretty hard...

Here's the song:

(Starts in the middle of the page: first system is from the previous song, Oliphaunt, and the last two systems of the last page are from the next song, Cat.)

























Pianists (I ain't one, though of course I could sing this quite easily) are welcome to give it a try, though this thread isn't really to be about my song, but Tolkien's poem.



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 09:37 PM
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...just RT click, print picture...



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 10:24 PM
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reply to post by godspetrat
 


Tolkien is a great writer. Prolly one of the best fantasy writers actually.

The Hobbit
Lord of the Rings
The Children of Hurin
The Silmarillion


All epic stories.

-SAP-



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 10:42 PM
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Originally posted by SloAnPainful
reply to post by godspetrat
 


Tolkien is a great writer. Prolly one of the best fantasy writers actually.

The Hobbit
Lord of the Rings
The Children of Hurin
The Silmarillion


All epic stories.

-SAP-


ONE OF the best?




posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 10:48 PM
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reply to post by godspetrat
 


Okay... THE BEST!





-SAP-



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 10:59 PM
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Originally posted by SloAnPainful
reply to post by godspetrat
 


Okay... THE BEST!





-SAP-


He took all of the old stories and modernized them, and learned (20?) languages fluently while doing it, in his spare time, I guess.



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 11:01 PM
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reply to post by godspetrat
 


Yes he was a linguist and also wrote many languages just for his stories.

www.oocities.org...

That link has a list of a lot of them, still not sure if that's all of them.

-SAP-



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 11:06 PM
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Originally posted by SloAnPainful
reply to post by godspetrat
 


Yes he was a linguist and also wrote many languages just for his stories.

www.oocities.org...

That link has a list of a lot of them, still not sure if that's all of them.

-SAP-


BTW I have read Tolkien, and about him, for 30 years, so you and I will be great for this thread!

Doubt I could learn anything from the link I don't already know, TISIMWS.



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 11:08 PM
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Damn, but it was about time this place had a good Tolkien thread...



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 11:08 PM
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reply to post by godspetrat
 


So you know more than I. I still have much to learn about him.


-SAP-



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 11:12 PM
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Originally posted by SloAnPainful
reply to post by godspetrat
 


So you know more than I. I still have much to learn about him.


-SAP-


Maybe I know more. I have read every word he wrote, including sketches, and have done so for 30 years! Wouldn't call myself an expert, but I know a lot, anyway.



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 11:21 PM
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reply to post by godspetrat
 


He should have his own forum. Not sure how much attention it would get because the "lack of content", but I'd be in there daily.

-SAP-



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 11:21 PM
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I really think Tolkien did better with shorter, more serious poems than with light verse epics like this poem, though it does have its charms. I set The Sea Bell for my Master's Thesis, and W.H. Auden thought it was Tolkien's best poem. He really was a better prose writer than a poet, though his poetry isn't bad.

I walked by the sea, and there came to me,
as a star-beam on the wet sand,
a white shell like a sea-bell;
trembling it lay in my wet hand.
In my fingers shaken I heard waken
a ding within, by a harbour bar
a buoy swinging, a call ringing
over endless seas, faint now and far.

Then I saw a boat silently float
On the night-tide, empty and grey.
‘It is later than late! Why do we wait?'
I lept in and cried: ‘Bear me away!'

It bore me away, wetted with spray,
wrapped in a mist, wound in a sleep,
to a forgotten strand in a strange land.
In the twilight beyond the deep
I heard a sea-bell swing in the swell,
dinging, dinging, and the breakers roar
on the hidden teeth of a perilous reef;
and at last I came to a long shore.
White it glimmered, and the sea simmered
with star-mirrors in a silver net;
cliffs of stone pale as ruel-bone
in the moon-foam were gleaming wet.
Glittering sand slid through my hand,
Dust of pearl and jewel-grist,
Trumpets of opal, roses of coral,
Flutes of green and amethyst.
But under cliff-eaves there were glooming caves,
weed-curtained, dark and grey'
a cold air stirred in my hair,
and the light waned, as I hurried away.

Down from a hill ran a green rill;
its water I drank to my heart's ease.
Up its fountain-stair to a country fair
of ever-eve I came, far from the seas,
dclimbing into meadows of fluttering shadows;
flowers lay there like fallen stars,
and on a blue pool, glassy and cool,
like floating moons the nenuphars.
Alders were sleeping, and willows weeping
by a slow river of rippling weeds;
gladdon-swords guarded the fords,
and green spears, and arrow-reeds.

There was echo of song all the evening long
down in the valley, many a thing
running to and fro: hares white as snow,
voles out of holes; moths on the wing
with lantern-eyes; in quiet surpise
brocks were staring out of dard doors.
I heard dancing there, music in the air,
feet going quick on the green floors.
But wherever I came it was ever the same:
the feet fled, and all was still;
never a greeting, only the fleeting
pipes, voices, horns on the hill.

Of river-leaves and the rush-sheaves
I made me a mantle of jewel-green,
a tall wand to hold, and a flag of gold;
my eyes shone like the star-sheen.
With flowers crowned I stood on a mound,
and shrill as a call at cock-crow?
Why do none speak, wherever I go?
Here now I stand, king of this land,
with gladdon-sword and reed-mace.
Answer my call! Come forth all!
Speak to me words! Show me a face!'

Black came a cloud as a night-shroud.
Like a dark mole groping I went,
to the ground falling, on my hands crawling
with eyes blind and my back bent.
I crept to a wood: silent it stood
in its dead leaves; bare were its boughs.
There must I sit, wandering in wit,
while owls snored in their hollow house.
For a year and day there must I stay:
beetles were tapping in the rotten trees,
spiders were weaving, in the mould heaving
puffballs loomed about my knees.

At last there came light in my long night,
and I saw my hair hanging grey.
‘Bent though I be, I must find the sea!
I have lost myself, ,and I know not the way,
but let me be gone!' Then I stumbled on;
like a hunting bat shadow was over me;
in my ears dinned a withering wind,
and with ragged briars I tried to cover me.
My hands were torn and my knees worn,
and years were heavy upon my back,
when the rain in my face took a salt taste,
and I smelled the smell of sea-wrack.

Birds came sailing, mewing, wailing;
I heard voices in cold caves,
seals barking, and rocks snarling,
and in spout-holes the gulping of waves.
Winter came fast; into a mist I passed,
to land's end my years I bore;
Snow was in the air, ice in my hair,
darkness was lying on the last shore.

There still afloat waited the boat,
in the tide lifting, its prow tossing.
Wearily I lay, as it bore me away,
the waves climbing, the seas crossing,
passing old hulls clustered with gulls
and great ships laden with light,
coming to haven, dark as a raven,
silent as snow, deep in the night.

Houses were shuttered, wind round them muttered,
roads were empty. I sat by a door,
and where drizzling rain poured down a drain
I cast away all that I bore:
in my clutching hand some grains of sand,
And a sea-shell silent and dead.
Never will my ear that bell hear,
never my feet that shore tread,
never again, as in sad lane,
in blind alley and in long street
ragged I walk. To myself I talk;
For still they speak not, men that meet.



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 11:22 PM
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Well, that's actually a pretty long poem, but not so folksy and sing-song as Tom Bombadil! My setting is 16 minutes long, and no one has offered to perform it...











(Etc.)



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 11:24 PM
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reply to post by SloAnPainful
 


I should have my own forum (though not as smart as Tolkien), but I'm too lazy!



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 11:37 PM
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Originally posted by SloAnPainful
reply to post by godspetrat
 


He should have his own forum. Not sure how much attention it would get because the "lack of content", but I'd be in there daily.

-SAP-


Agree.



The man was ahead of his time. Honestly, I love the movies but they butchered his work. I think he would have agreed with me.



posted on Jun, 5 2013 @ 11:39 PM
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reply to post by sonnny1
 


Very ahead of his time.

Also awesome avatar Sonnny.


-SAP-




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