MythLore

Seeking knowledge in, of, and about Middle-earth.
User avatar
Eldy
Drowning in Anadûnê
Posts: 270
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:44 am
Location: Maryland, United States
Contact:

Re: MythLore

Post by Eldy »

Voronwë the Faithful wrote: Thu Apr 14, 2022 8:34 pmEldy, I'm still interested in hearing your thoughts if you read it!
Unfortunately, I am terrible at budgeting my time, so with a lot of big transition-related things going on IRL and my allotted Tolkien time routinely eaten up by my poor self-control over making stupidly long Lore posts about tangential topics in other people's threads, I have a backlog of stuff to read. But your paper is now at the top of the list, and I've read about half of it so far. I'll try to finish soon, though this weekend is going to be very busy for me. I'm sorry about the delay!
User avatar
Inanna
Meetu's little sister
Posts: 16237
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2006 5:03 pm

Re: MythLore

Post by Inanna »

Voronwë the Faithful wrote:Which part do you not understand, the part about Círdan bringing us to the Other Shore by his example, or the part about the Other Shore being right here?
The other shore being right here.
'You just said "your getting shorter": you've obviously been drinking too much ent-draught and not enough Prim's.' - Jude
User avatar
Voronwë the Faithful
At the intersection of here and now
Posts: 40422
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2005 1:41 am
Contact:

Re: MythLore

Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

Inanna wrote: Sat Apr 16, 2022 11:47 am
Voronwë the Faithful wrote:Which part do you not understand, the part about Círdan bringing us to the Other Shore by his example, or the part about the Other Shore being right here?
The other shore being right here.
I'm sure that you are not the only person to be confused by that, though you might be the only one honest enough to say so! It certainly is purposefully obscure. But if you think of the Other Shore as a metaphor for enlightenment (as I say earlier in the paper), it is a "wrong perception" that that is a separate place from right here.

Hope that helps. :P
A great tree may outlive many a Man, and may remember the seed from which it came ere all the Men that now walk the earth were yet unborn, but the rind upon which you lay your hand, and the leaves which overshadow you, are not as that seed was, nor as the dry wood shall be that decays into the mould or passes in flame. And other trees there are that stand about each different in growth and in shape, according to the chances of their lives, though all be akin, offspring of one yet older tree and sprung therefore from a single seed of long ago.
- J.R.R. Tolkien, Dangweth Pengolod

Image
User avatar
Inanna
Meetu's little sister
Posts: 16237
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2006 5:03 pm

Re: MythLore

Post by Inanna »

So - since the “other shore” is enlightenment, it is obviously, right here. We just have to work to attain it.

Yes?
'You just said "your getting shorter": you've obviously been drinking too much ent-draught and not enough Prim's.' - Jude
User avatar
Voronwë the Faithful
At the intersection of here and now
Posts: 40422
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2005 1:41 am
Contact:

Re: MythLore

Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

Yes. And Círdan's example shows us part of the path towards doing that work - through service to others.
A great tree may outlive many a Man, and may remember the seed from which it came ere all the Men that now walk the earth were yet unborn, but the rind upon which you lay your hand, and the leaves which overshadow you, are not as that seed was, nor as the dry wood shall be that decays into the mould or passes in flame. And other trees there are that stand about each different in growth and in shape, according to the chances of their lives, though all be akin, offspring of one yet older tree and sprung therefore from a single seed of long ago.
- J.R.R. Tolkien, Dangweth Pengolod

Image
User avatar
Inanna
Meetu's little sister
Posts: 16237
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2006 5:03 pm

Re: MythLore

Post by Inanna »

Got it. Thanks.
'You just said "your getting shorter": you've obviously been drinking too much ent-draught and not enough Prim's.' - Jude
User avatar
Eldy
Drowning in Anadûnê
Posts: 270
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:44 am
Location: Maryland, United States
Contact:

Re: MythLore

Post by Eldy »

I enjoyed reading your paper, Voronwë! It was good to hear your thoughts at greater length after our recent, brief conversation about Círdan remaining in Middle-earth. I've never put much thought into interpreting the legendarium through a Buddhist lens. When I'm in a revisionist mood, my thoughts tend to nonetheless be guided by Primary World debates over Christian theology—just coming to different conclusions on many important topics than Tolkien did. (I've recently begun playing around with neopagan readings of certain aspects of the legendarium, particularly focusing on Elbereth and her relationship with the Quendi, but that's neither here nor there.) I think you make a convincing case for Círdan's resemblance to a bodhisattva. Your footnote connecting his inexplicable beard with artistic depictions of bodhisattvas with facial hair had me on the verge of exclaiming "Aha! So that's what it was about!" before remembering that (as you note) there's no evidence Tolkien was influenced by Buddhism. Nonetheless, this is one of the more fascinating examinations of Tolkienian "applicability" I've read in some time.

My formal education in comparative education was brief and, by now, is long past, but I have vague recollections of reading articles comparing the concepts of bodhisattvas and Catholic saints. Do you think there's any substance to this comparison? And, if so, might that account for the curious resemblance between this creation of a Catholic author and Buddhist religious figures? I don't know one way or another, but the thought occurred to me while reading your piece.

Congratulations on this publication, and thank you for bringing such thought-provoking ideas to wider attention. :)
User avatar
Voronwë the Faithful
At the intersection of here and now
Posts: 40422
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2005 1:41 am
Contact:

Re: MythLore

Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

Eldy, thanks for your thoughts! I'm glad you enjoyed the paper. I definitely think that there is substance to the idea of comparing the concepts of bodhisattvas and Catholic saints. As for Círdan's beard, that was actually a point made by the peer reviewer that the editor had read the paper. He mentioned it not as something to be added to the paper, but just as an observation, but I thought it was worth noting in a footnote, so I added it in.
A great tree may outlive many a Man, and may remember the seed from which it came ere all the Men that now walk the earth were yet unborn, but the rind upon which you lay your hand, and the leaves which overshadow you, are not as that seed was, nor as the dry wood shall be that decays into the mould or passes in flame. And other trees there are that stand about each different in growth and in shape, according to the chances of their lives, though all be akin, offspring of one yet older tree and sprung therefore from a single seed of long ago.
- J.R.R. Tolkien, Dangweth Pengolod

Image
User avatar
Eldy
Drowning in Anadûnê
Posts: 270
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:44 am
Location: Maryland, United States
Contact:

Re: MythLore

Post by Eldy »

I'm glad you did! :D
User avatar
Voronwë the Faithful
At the intersection of here and now
Posts: 40422
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2005 1:41 am
Contact:

Re: MythLore

Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

Forgive me for posting this but it was so gratifying to see. I just received this on the MythSoc email list.
I received Mythlore 140 today, and just wanted to send a note saying how incredibly impressed I was with Douglas Charles Kane's essay about Círdan the Shipwright. There has not been very much written about the character over the years, and I was delighted to see this in-depth analysis.
A great tree may outlive many a Man, and may remember the seed from which it came ere all the Men that now walk the earth were yet unborn, but the rind upon which you lay your hand, and the leaves which overshadow you, are not as that seed was, nor as the dry wood shall be that decays into the mould or passes in flame. And other trees there are that stand about each different in growth and in shape, according to the chances of their lives, though all be akin, offspring of one yet older tree and sprung therefore from a single seed of long ago.
- J.R.R. Tolkien, Dangweth Pengolod

Image
User avatar
Inanna
Meetu's little sister
Posts: 16237
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2006 5:03 pm

Re: MythLore

Post by Inanna »

Wonderful! :)
'You just said "your getting shorter": you've obviously been drinking too much ent-draught and not enough Prim's.' - Jude
Post Reply