Thursday, December 20, 2012

You Cannot Conquer Time

Talking about Tolkien's One Ring on the docs' blog Sermo, and got to thinking:  its destruction ended Sauron and Mordor, broke the power of evil.

But the evil of Saruman and Grima in the Shire persisted after the Ring's destruction, and people started setting off for the Grey Havens. That wasn't a voyage of striving, seeking, finding and not yielding; it was an elegiac fade, not at all an exuberant victory.

I'm talking more out of my hat than out of deep analysis here, but perhaps the Ring is Time Bound, and its destruction Time's Release, as the Ring as evil, which it surely is. I see the seduction of the Ring as that of the power to bind Time to one's own ends, the preservation and consequent ossification of one's life, the infinite extension of an illusion of power rendered unchallengeable thereby. And, in the event, the Ring's destruction required an act of the entity most completely enslaved by it--made immortal by it--taking a piece of the living in his mouth as he fell to doom. Time's Release, as well as Time's Binding, may be one of those things one should be cautious to wish for...

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