The Lord of the Rings: the longest fable ever told
It is no secret that The Lord of the Rings has been one of the most beloved
trilogies ever written. It has conjured up a fanatical group of followers over its history.
The question is why is this book so beloved? Why when we pick up this book are we
so enthralled with it? What about this book keeps us coming back for more? I believe
for this book that it is because it has so many great messages hidden inside a package
wrapped with adventure. A book becomes great when we can relate to its messages and
characters very deeply. The never ending battle of good versus evil goes on to this day
all around us. This book tells us everything that we should and should not do in our lives.
It is like reading the entire collection of Aesop’s fables at one sitting. I don’t think that I
have ever been so moved to laughter and tears by written words. The morals of this story
are the reasons that I will list for its greatness.
I will start with a fierce warning against the evils of greed. The dwarves of Moria
were a great and powerful race. They lived in this particular mountain because they could
find the mithril ore no where else in the world. It was very light but very hard, excellent
for making weapons and armor. They became very greedy and delved deeper and deeper
into the ground to keep there supply coming. They were warned that evil things lie deep
in the ground, but they did not heed these warnings. It was there doom. Every dwarf died
fighting the evil that sprung out of the ground. Many years later a band of dwarves set out
to retake Moria and they were repaid for their greed with the same price. You cannot see
where your feet are falling when your eyes are on the prize.
Next is a fiercer warning on ambition and being kind to the environment. The evil
of Saruman in this realm spread far and wide. He was merely secondary to Sauron, but
he had ambitions of his own to take over the top spot. His ambition left him blind to his
own destruction. He wantonly destroyed all living things in his path. He sullied the rivers
and burned the woods. In the end he betrayed Sauron, seeking the One Ring for his own.
He betrayed all of his former alliances with good people. In the end, even the trees of the
forest, the mighty Ents, rose up to destroy him. He was left homeless and friendless with
many enemies at his back. It is better to be happy with what you have than risk it all for
Of all the morals in this story, I like this one the best. Arwen and Aragorn are
very different but very much in love. She is an elf that is blessed with eternal life. He is
a human, destined to die. To love him is to for her to die as well. She gladly accepts that
sacrifice to be with the man that she loves. They are separated by race and war. In the
end, they triumph over it all and get married. I think these days that most people are more
worried about what is in it for them than what they can contribute to the relationship.
Giving is the greatest gift, not the receiving. The other burden these days is worrying
about what people think. The only two people that matter in a relationship are the ones
who are in it. Everyone else’s noses are best left in their own business. We spend entirely
too much time in our lives analyzing every little detail. Love needs no such investigation.
The longer you carry a burden the heavier it gets. In the book, it is Frodos destiny
to carry the ring into the land of the enemy and destroy it. The ring has a will of its
own. It wants to return to its evil master. The longer he carries it the heavier it gets and
the more it affects his thoughts and actions. We all carry burdens in life. They may be
emotional, physical, or even addictions that we cannot escape. Sometimes we need to set
aside our burdens. We need to find a place to rest and decide exactly what we still need
and what we can leave behind. In the end, things such as grudges do us no good. They
do not hurt the ones we are angry with, they just make our load heavier. Forgiveness and
kindness are light burdens indeed.
Big things come in small packages. Hobbits are the most unassuming, laid back
creatures in this entire realm. Even people who realize that they exist never give them
a second thought. They are only about three feet tall and generally are happy to keep to
themselves and live very simple lives. Yet, if it were not for four of these creatures, the
war would have ended very differently. The war would have been lost for certain. Sam
and Frodo carried the ring away to its destruction so that Sauron would never be able to
use it again. Merry and Pippin woke the Ents of Fanghorn forrest to march against the
enemy. They demonstrated courage and friendship through the most perilous adventures.
If only we could all be more like hobbits the world would surely be a better place.
It wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the woman’s liberation front. Eowyn
secretly rode to battle with her uncle, the king of Rohan, and her brother. She had been
instructed to stay behind. They did not think a woman fit to fight in a great battle. The
battle was going very ill indeed that day. The captain of the Nazgul was assaulting their
forces. Men were fleeing in fear. He attacked and grievously wounded the king of Rohan.
The book states that no man can slay the captian of the Nazgul. She was no man. She
did slay him on the field of battle. After he was dead, the men rallied and won the battle.
If it were not for one woman all would have been lost. One woman changed the course
of history. I find it very empowering that it was a woman that saved the day. Our young
women need positive role models.
Common enemies breed new friendships. In times of great trouble and war many
old relationships change. It is a shame that it takes a common enemy to bring people
together but sometimes it is true. The different races of this realm had not had anything to
do with each other for a very long time. They kept to themselves, thinking that they were
better than the others. They spent a lot of time looking down their noses at everyone else.
The problems of other people were not their problems. When a common enemy began
making trouble for them all they came together out of necessity and discovered that they
could not only work together but embrace each other. I wish that it was more than just a
pipe dream for that to happen for our world today.
In the end, all of these races must stand together, or all shall fall. All must care for
the whole to survive. Oddly enough, I relate this to all of my relationships. If my husband
and I fight it doesn’t just affect us. It affects the whole family. You cannot make just one
of us bleed. We all bleed for one another. We are all connected. If we could all just put
aside our pettiness and selfishness the world would be a fine place indeed. We don’t need
to be the same race, religion, gender, size, shape, or sexual orientation to love, support,
and protect one another. The world needs to learn to agree to disagree. If we were all
the same the world would be a boring place to live. I, for one, would rather embrace our
differences. That is why this book is so good. It shows us how to be a good friend and
neighbor. It shows us how to care for one another. It tells us how to live.