Tag Archives: JRR Tolkien

Sunday Devotional: ‘in Christ shall all be brought to life’

Genesis 3:17, 19

To the man [the Lord] said:
Because you listened to your wife
and ate from the tree about which I commanded you,
You shall not eat from it, […]
By the sweat of your brow
you shall eat bread,
Until you return to the ground,
from which you were taken;
For you are dust,
and to dust you shall return.

Wanting to be “as gods,” our first parents in that first garden freely chose to disobey the explicit command of God. Imagine their hubris!

But the exercise of free will is not free of consequences. As God had forewarned, the issues of disobedience were dire indeed. By their fall, a door was opened to chaos; henceforth a price must be paid for being human. Where once was joy and ease, there would be suffering, hardship, and pain; where once was harmony and order, there would be turmoil and confusion. Eve and all her female progeny would bear the pangs of childbirth; work would become an affliction as Adam and all men who follow must toil in order to survive. The union of man and woman becomes subject to tensions and marked by lust and domination; humankind’s relation with other creatures and the physical environment turns askew as visible creation becomes alien and hostile to man; the control of the soul’s spiritual faculties over the body is shattered, and humanity becomes vulnerable to the ravages of sickness and disease. As J.R.R. Tolkien put in, in “a fallen world . . . there is no consonance between our bodies, minds, and souls” (Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, p. 51).

More than all that, death enters the world. Along with lives of toil and pain, men and women would eventually die, returning to the ground from which they were first taken, “for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.”

Why our first parents’ fall required the intercession of none other than the Son of God Himself is a mystery that not even the brightest theologians could fully plumb or explain. This much we do know because we are told: By willingly sacrificing Himself to die on a cross, Jesus the Christ not only atoned for our first parents’ terrible sin, He also reversed their greatest punishment — the irrevocability of death.

That is why the Resurrection is so central to Christianity. In the words of St. Paul:

1 Cor 15:14, 17-18, 20-22

If Christ has not been raised,
then our preaching is in vain
and your faith is in vain….
And if Christ has not been raised,
Then those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished….
But, in fact,
Christ has been raised from the dead….
For since death came through a human being,
the resurrection of the dead
came also through a human being.
For just as in Adam all die,
so too in Christ shall all be brought to life.

But the promise of eternal life can be erased by sin.

St. Paul warns:

Romans 6:3-4, 8-11

Brothers and sisters:
Are you unaware that we who were baptized into Christ Jesus
were baptized into his death?
We were indeed buried with him through baptism into death,
so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead
by the glory of the Father,
we too might live in newness of life.

If, then, we have died with Christ,
we believe that we shall also live with him.
We know that Christ, raised from the dead, dies no more;
death no longer has power over him.
As to his death, he died to sin once and for all;
as to his life, he lives for God.
Consequently, you too must think of yourselves as dead to sin
and living for God in Christ Jesus.

See also:

May the joy and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you,

~Eowyn

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Actress Carrie Fisher dead at 60

Carrie Fisher, who, at age 19, shot to international stardom playing Princess Leia in the Star Wars trilogy, was declared dead this morning.

carrie-fisher

On Friday, Dec. 23, Fisher had a massive heart attack on board a London-to-L.A. commercial flight and was rushed to L. A. Medical Center. Reportedly, her heart had stopped for some 10 minutes before an EMT, who was on board in coach, managed to restore a pulse. We were told she was put on a ventilator and, after a stint in ER, was in Intensive Care in “stable condition”. She never regained consciousness.

In truth, she likely had died on December 23, and was artificially kept alive by a ventilator until she was formally declared dead this morning.

Fisher was only 18 months old when her adulterous father, singer Eddie Fisher, left her and her mom, Debbie Fisher, for Elizabeth Taylor.

Quite apart from Star Wars, Carrie Fisher was an accomplished and very witty author of biographical and fictional books, in which she was honest about her drug addiction (cocaine, alcohol, and prescription meds), bipolar disorder, and her weight gain and loss in a Hollywood fixated on looks.

I am an unabashed fan of Star Wars — and all stories, like Lord of the Rings, of brave people fighting the good fight against evil, which inspire us to be better people than we are and from which we draw encouragement when we lose hope. As J.R.R. Tolkien put it, speaking through Samwise Gamgee in Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers:

“By rights we shouldn’t even be here. But we are. It’s like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo, the ones that really matter, full of darkness and danger they were. And sometimes you didn’t want to know the end, because how could the end be happy. How could the world go back to the way it was, when so much bad happened. But in the end, it’s only a passing thing–the shadow–even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines, it’ll shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you, that meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances to turn back, only they didn’t.  They kept going, because they were holding onto something–that there’s some good in the world, Mr. Frodo, and that’s worth fighting for.”

Carrie Fisher’s gutsy Princess Leia did that — for generations of young girls. She once told the Los Angeles Times:

“I remember the first time it was weird to me was when someone wanted to thank me because they’d become a lawyer because of me. The main thing they said is that they identified with me. I felt like that [Princess Leia] was somebody that could be heroic without being a superhero and be relatable.”

Rest in peace, Carrie Fisher. To borrow a fan (and LA Times reader) mark00000352’s words:

“You are now in the stars where we first met you.”

UPDATE (Dec. 28, 2016):

Carrie Fisher reportedly had a drug relapse before death. (Page Six)

~Eowyn

Sunday Devotional: How long, O Lord?

Habakkuk 1:2-3

How long, O LORD? I cry for help
but you do not listen!
I cry out to you, “Violence!”
but you do not intervene.
Why do you let me see ruin;
why must I look at misery?
Destruction and violence are before me;
there is strife, and clamorous discord.

The prophet Habakkuk’s complaint resonates with us, for we similarly are anguished and frustrated.

The answers are in today’s other Scriptural readings:

2 Timothy1:6-8

Beloved:
I remind you, to stir into flame
the gift of God that you have through the imposition of my hands.
For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice
but rather of power and love and self-control.
So do not be ashamed of your testimony to our Lord,
nor of me, a prisoner for his sake;
but bear your share of hardship for the gospel
with the strength that comes from God.

and

Luke 17:10

So should it be with you.
When you have done all you have been commanded…

In other words, we soldier on — “bear our share of hardship,” do “all you have been commanded” with a spirit of courage, power, love and self-control, and spread the gospel of truth.

Armor of God I can do all things through Christ

As J.R.R. Tolkien put it in Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King:

“It is not our part to master all the tides of the world, but to do what is in us for the succour of those years wherein we are set, uprooting the evil in the fields that we know, so that those who live after may have clean earth to till. What weather they shall have is not ours to rule.”

May the courage and love and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you,

~Eowyn

LOTR’s ethereal Legolas is forever tainted because of Orlando Bloom’s dick

It’s no secret to FOTM readers that I’m a huge fan of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings (LOTR) and Sir Peter Jackson’s movie trilogy.

While my favorite character in the books is the humble and loyal Samwise Gamgee, in the movies the Elven prince Legolas is a close second because of actor Orlando Bloom’s portrayal — ethereal, unruffled, not a (long flaxen) hair out of place even in the midst of battle, with preternatural athletic prowess. Witness this breathtaking scene of Logolas taking a flying leap onto a horse, from the second LOTR movie: The Two Towers.

In fact, it was Legolas that catapulted the then-unknown Bloom to instant stardom, which secured Bloom his roles in the execrable Pirates of the Caribbean and other movies.

But I’ll no longer be able to watch the LOTR trilogy without the disgusting image of Bloom’s penis spoiling all of Legolas’ scenes.

Orlando Bloom, 39, and his current girlfriend, pop singer Katy Perry, were on vacation this week in Sardinia, Italy, and for some reason, he decided to paddle-board stark naked.

New York Daily Post broke the story and published pics of Bloom, but with a discreet black bar superimposed over his crotch.

Orlando Bloom naked

Other sites, of course, ran with the uncensored version of naked Orlando. Click here, but be forewarned that . . . .

eye bleach shocked cat

Reportedly, Bloom is mortified, angry and frustrated by the uncensored pics. But he has no one but himself to blame, as no one put a gun to his head to sport around naked in public.

He also has crappy tastes in women:

  • Impregnating before marrying, then divorcing, the narcissistic Australian “supermodel” Miranda Kerr.
  • Briefly dating the slutty-looking Selena Gomez. See her leering like a gargoyle in the Verizon commercial below, looking like a transvestite with a lot of mileage and much older than her 24 years.
  • And now consorting with avowed satanist Katy Perry.

Many of Perry’s biggest hit songs have to do with lesbianism, bestiality, the Illuminati, and selling one’s soul to the Devil — which she admitted on video:

~Eowyn

Smaug the dragon in gingerbread!

Whatever you may think of Peter Jackson’s cinematic Hobbit trilogy, even Tolkien purists have no beef with Jackson’s rendering of the malevolent dragon Smaug.

Now a Swedish artist and sculptor has constructed Smaug from gingerbread.

Stockholm’s Aftonbladet reports, Dec. 23, 2014, that 27-year-old Swedish artist and sculptor Caroline Eriksson has gingerbread in the blood. During childhood, her family had a tradition of building a gingerbread house at Christmas time.

“But I got tired of it and wanted to do the harder stuff. So I started building towers and ships and such,” says Eriksson.

Last year, Eriksson built a gingerbread Optimus Prime, a character in the Transformers movies, and won first prize in a contest — a trip to Bali. 

This year, Eriksson took two weeks and many late evenings to construct a 70 cm (28 in.) long, 50 cm (20 in.) tall replica of the dragon Smaug entirely out of gingerbread.

Caroline Eriksson's gingerbread Smaug

Caroline Eriksson’s gingerbread Smaug

H/t TheOneRing

See also “A dragon in his garden” about John Brooker, 75, who spent 10 years sculpting the hedgerow outside his cottage in Norfolk, England, into a huge, 100 ft. long, magnificent dragon, complete with six legs, wings, and pointed teeth.

~Eowyn

Mythology of Tolkien’s Middle-earth in 4 minutes

For J.R.R. Tolkien geeks

This is a hoot (in spite of the mis-spelling of wizard Saruman’s name).

Bonus video: Tolkien’s Silmarillion in just 3 minutes! LOL

~Eowyn

Concerning Hobbits, Authors, Critics and Fans…

Here is an interesting article for all of us who love the works of JRR Tolkien, CS Lewis and Peter Jackson. This is just an excerpt. There is a link at the end to the whole article. ~TD 

A Pilgrim in Narnia

The Hobbit as a Living Text: The Battle of 5 Blogs

hobbit battle of 5 armies posters jacksonThis post is part of the Battle of the Five Blogs, or six blogs to be precise. It is a throw-down of various Tolkien bloggers who are thinking about the release of the final installment of Peter Jackson’s Hobbit trilogy,  The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. Other bloggers in this series are Kat SasJames MoffettSørina HigginsCrystal Hurd, and Matthew Rettino. Follow the links to check out their reviews, recaps, and rants. We encourage comments and links to your own reviews, recaps, and rants.

The Hobbit as Living Text

There is a curious thing that happens to C.S. Lewis’ writing: He made friends.

I think that most true J.R.R. Tolkien fans are going to hate The Hobbit: The Battle of 5 Armies, the newest and last installment of Peter Jackson’s series. Some of those fans detested the Lord of the Rings trilogy on film, while I loved them. I lack the technical, absolutely precise knowledge of the massive myth project that are the books that make up The Lord of the Rings, The HobbitThe Silmarillion, and the dozen or so other books that tell us about the History of Middle Earth. The second language in my home is not Quenya or Entish, and I haven’t tracked the number of new moons that pass in Frodo’s long journey to Mordor.

The Hobbit Dwarfs FilmI loved the LOTR films. And though there are moments that make you wince in The Hobbit trilogy—poor computer imaging, characters bent out of narrative shape, unclear lusts and motivations, uneven storytelling, genre confusion, and a general lack of Hobbitishness—I have quite enjoyed the films, as films. I went last night to The Battle of 5 Armies and had a great night out with friends.

But even I, who am willing to throw myself into the adaptation projected on screen, felt uncomfortable at times with how Jackson seems to bend what is to me a pretty straight story.

And yet…. And yet… I want to suggest that Jackson’s bending of Tolkien, and my discomfort with it, and the 100s of angry reviews online are all part of the tale.

Let me explain why…
http://apilgriminnarnia.com/2014/12/20/living/

The Hobbit as a Living Text: The Battle of 5 Blogs.