12 November 2012
Good vs. Evil in the Middle Earth
Tolkien was clear in the books The Silmarillion and The Lord of the Rings that the struggle between good and evil would be never-ending. Right after the Valar vanquished Melkor, Sauron emerged in the Middle Earth and forged the Rings of Power to bring it all under his control. Not only do the seeds of evil continue to grow in Middle Earth, but also the dark conditions in which they grow continue to spread. As the sources of light decrease over the different Ages of Middle Earth, it becomes easier to deny the power of light and show off that of darkness. This expansion has encouraged a loss of hope and a lack of faith.
In our world, a feeling of growing darkness can lead to feelings of despair and defeat. In this feeling of defeat is the sense that evil is stronger and somehow more real than goodness. This is the exact opposite of the truth as many see it, Evil cannot prevail over goodness because evil is just a denial of the only true and fundamental wisdom: God. In other words, the light may be hidden or blocked, there for allowing darkness to grow, but it cannot be destroyed. All you have to do to regain the light is remove whatever obscures it, be it Melkor's or Sauron's evil. The great thing is that the moment you remove whatever blocks the light, it immediately flows again, illuminating the world as brightly as before. Of course, as The Lord of the Rings so aptly points out, removing the obstacles to the light is often very difficult and comes at a very high price. More importantly, even though the light returns as strong as before once the obstacles are removed, the damage caused by their evil can still linger long after.
Tolkien often used the word shadow in relation to evil and evil characters, even going so far as to say Sauron is the Shadow. This is so effective to us because of the stereotype that a shadow is evil. As the darkness created by an object blocking out light, a shadow lacks