A New Turn for Tolkien’s Legacy

I highly recommend reading the very good, informative and interesting article, ‘Tolkien’s Legacy about to Get Bigger’, at the link which follows:
It highlights the importance of the recent withdrawal by Christopher Tolkien from the responsibilities he had until then regarding his father’s literary legacy.
Whether his voluntary absence from the decisive role he had before may have negative, or, hopefully positive consequences on the future adaptations that, like with Amazon already, will be now allowed to take place, remains to be seen… The analysis by the author of the reasons  to  be hopeful is the best, and the best worded, that I know of.
NOW A PERSONAL NOTE FROM MYSELF, BHAGA, AUTHOR OF THIS BLOG.

As a deeply appreciative fan of Tolkien’s Middle-earth world since 1975, and an equally deep fan of Peter Jackson’s adaptations of them to the big screen through the two Trilogies rightly mentioned in the article above as “wildly successful”, I have been sorry, but mostly amazed, that Christopher Tolkien, the son whom he had entrusted with the legacy of his writings, could have such a harsh judgement on those films – and especially on the ‘Lord of the Rings’ Trilogy to start with. But then, I realized that Christopher probably never saw the Extended Editions of any of those films… and although already in the Theater Editions I found a whole lot to love, it is the Extended Editions that really represent for me what Peter Jackson truly had in his mind and heart when creating those magnificent films.

Given the incredibly huge risk that had been taken by the financing company, entrusting the still rather unknown director that Jackson then was, with the enormous amounts of money necessary for creating the three films at once, it is not surprising that the Theater Versions of them are all treated like ‘action’ films to some extent, in order to insure the massive success they each had, both with the audience at large and the critics.

But to keep the films within the length and duration of 3 hours maximum that could still be endured and accepted by the ordinary public actually sitting in theaters, Peter Jackson had to cut out all the deeper scenes.. but at least he was then free to reinsert them when the time came for putting out the Extended Edition, ‘the Director’s Cut’, for each of them in turn…

This is why these Extended Editions are the ones I always recommend most warmly to the people who don’t know yet those films: for me the Extended Editions are the ones in which can be found more excellent renditions of some of the deepest and most beautiful scenes straight from the books, or closely inspired by them so as to deliver the same meaning and deep inner impact as the original scenes did in the books.

So the first thing I would have advised Christopher if I were his friend, would have been “Do watch rather the Extended Editions, dear Christopher…”

The second thing I would also have told him as a friend would have been how terribly disappointing for me it had been to discover, buried in ‘Morgoth’s Ring’, one volume of his own archival research of his father’s writings (the six volumes he published as the separate collection he called ‘HOME’), an extremely important, late-written text that his father had especially asked him to add to ‘The Silmarillion’ as its very first Appendix.

The text’s title was ‘Athrabeth Finrod a Andreth’: a beautiful additional story between Elves and mortal Men during the First Age, told as a Dialogue between Finrod, a most well-known Elf-Prince, elder brother to Galadriel, and the young and beautiful Wise Woman, Andreth, that his younger brother Aegnor secretly loves.

The contents, intensity and sheer beauty of this Dialogue, the ‘Athrabeth’, and the extremely illuminating and hopeful conclusions reached and expressed by Finrod towards the end of his passionate discussion with Andreth, if presented in ‘The Silmarillion’ as its First Appendix as wished by Tolkien himself, would have indeed effectively altered for the better the whole perspective the readers would have had of the entire sequence of stories from the First Age that compose ‘The Silmarillion’. And further down in Time, this text would have revealed the whole meaning and true usefulness in the Divine Plan, of all those apparently doomed marriages between Elves and Men that kept happening again between Elves and Men in he second and Third Age.

Well, I am immensely grateful to Christopher Tolkien that he did manage, as promised to his father before his death, to do what his father had not been able to do in his old age: to finally publish a rich and impressive ‘Silmarillion’, composed of texts by his father but selected and finalised by himself. But on the other hand I am as immensely regretful that he chose not to include that wonderful ‘Athrabeth’ that was so important to add as the First Appendix!…

In recent years, when Christopher Tolkien was asked by some publishers to select one story out of the ‘Silmarillion’ for separate publication, I had great hopes that this time he would seize this new chance and select the ‘Athrabeth’, fulfilling then at last his father’s wish. But instead he chose ‘The Children of Hurin’, a beautiful indeed but extremely sad story in which Fate keeps hitting at those Children of Hurin as mercilessly as it would at the heroes of some ancient Greek Tragedy of old.

So, alas, again the ‘Athrabeth’ remained helplessly and uselessly buried in the little known volumes of HOME… where it still lies to the date of this writing of mine.

As a specialist also myself of those ancient mythologies Tolkien and that third son of his knew so well, I have been very happy to see that the father, JRRT, somehow distanced himself gradually from the terribly tragic overall mood and outlook on life that most of those ancient epic stories, such as the ‘Kalevala’, were steeply reflecting, inflicting them as well, I felt, on their readers.

Well, luckily, besides his acute sense of the tragic, JRRT happened to have also a solid sense of humour, and an even more solid faith in God as well as in the Virgin Mary (he, like his late mother, was a staunch Catholic), that totally prevented him from ever falling entirely into any abyss of despair.

Moreover, one of his greatest heroes in his own Mythology, Aragorn son of Arathorn, embodied in the Third Age and the War of the Ring the sense of Hope still burning in the hearts of Mortal Men, just as he was their living Hope too: the actual Heir of Isildur, last living direct descendant of the ancient lineage of High Kings of Numenor when still allied to the Elves in the Blessed Days of their shared reverence for Eru, the Supreme God and Source of All.

To Galadriel, the Lady of Light, the most powerful High Elf still present in Middle-earth and protecting it with her inner power, this is still the beautiful future she sees in Aragorn, to be one day crowned the High King, if he proves himself worthy of that destiny, and of the name she whispers softly to him, her previous sternness melting into the tenderness of a mother, the name that would then be given to him: “Elessar …”

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It is precisely this whole atmosphere of Hope, of Faith in the Divine Grace and Help, that for me makes the whole difference between Tolkien’s Mythology and all the older ones. It is exactly the reason why I have included it in my own life of conscious spiritual evolution the moment I discovered it in 1975. It was so wonderfully echoing the Faith and Hope that are now born of the new Evolutive Step that is, thanks to the decisive inner Action accomplished by Sri Aurobindo and the Mother, starting to take place upon this earth he called ‘Middle-earth’…

But at this point, although the second Professor, the son, Christopher, is no doubt immensely learned too, I am not sure whether he really perceived in his father’s writings that deep difference with other epics, so clearly. And if he perceived it indeed, whether he cherished it as much as I personally do. If he did, how could he ever make those choices he made, that I just described above, and that are still so wrong in my eyes?

I find them wrong, not because I am not aware of “the beauty and seriousness of the work”, but on the contrary because I happen to be so acutely aware and appreciative of the even deeper, the actually divine “beauty and seriousness” (but that shouldn’t mean intrinsic sadness) “of the work”…

 

 

 

 

 

 

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22nd September: Happy Birthday again, dear Bilbo & Frodo Baggins!

Bilbo Baggins, now well-known the world-over, “was born in the year of 2890”, and his much younger cousin Frodo “in the year of 2968 in the Third Age (1290 and 1368 respectively in ShireReckoning.)”, as you’ll find in Wikipedia for easy reference.

Yes, they both  had the same birthday: today itself, September 22nd!

I will not let that cherished ‘Hobbit Day’, as it is now called in many places of the world, pass without celebrating it, the Hobbit way: good  and abundant cheer, and only short and merry speeches!

This is exactly the way it was celebrated in the first live acting film, by Peter Jackson, adapting to the big screen in 2001 Tolkien’s major opus: ‘The Lord of the Rings’. Here, down below, is one moment when the two Baggins being celebrated together were side by side in the midst of the collective hobbity merriment taking place at their shared residence, ‘Bag’s End’, and of course under the nearby Party Tree of Hobbiton, their happy village in the green rolling Hills of their beloved Shire, hiding in a little cozy corner of the vast and dangerous Middle-earth:

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“The films, too, are amazing in their own right. I went to see the first one, one Xmas- and at the end of the film the packed house was completely, utterly silent, stunned into a disbelief that what they had witnessed wasn’t some kind of documentary about a real world! I have never witnessed anything like it before or since.The audience almost crept away in shock. It was most extraordinary.”

The above comment isn’t by me; it is actually by a Tolkien fan (thank you, ‘Honda Oxford’!…) who wrote it this morning on a site where an article had been written for today’s occasion. But when I happened to read it there, that comment was expressing so exactly, to the word, what I myself too experienced on my first time watching that first LOTR film, I decided to include it here just as if it were my own comment. The music also, by Howard Shore, was absolutely stunning: just perfect, be it for the Hobbits, the Elves, the Dwarves, the Humans or the Orcs!… What a totally amazing feeling of truly entering that Middle-earth I had known until then only through the (already so magnificent) books by Tolkien! Watching that first film has been an unbelievable awe, moment after moment, which is still etched in my memory with the power of special wonderfulness…

Why is all this so important to me, even though I am a ‘spiritual person’ practicing most seriously for forty-six years already the Integral Yoga created for Conscious Evolution by Sri Aurobindo and the Mother?… I will tell you that in another post, hopefully soon… As for today, it is dedicated to my beloved inner friends Bilbo and Frodo of the Shire!

Post Scriptum: I just watched again that great Birthday Party in ‘The fellowship of the Ring’. In case you’d like also to give yourself that treat, here is the link, and it has two parts that follow each other automatically if you let it happen…! Wonderful fun!!!

Celebrating the Birthday of ‘The Hobbit’

Happy 80th Birthday, Bilbo Baggins!

J.R.R. Tolkien’s ‘The Hobbit’ was published on September 21, 1937. Eighty years later, we celebrate the beloved classic with a look at why Bilbo Baggins still reigns supreme.
J.R.R. Tolkien in 1955

J.R.R. Tolkien, author of ‘The Hobbit’ and ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogy, photographed in 1955.

(Photo: Haywood Magee/Getty Images)

Eighty years ago, in September of 1937, when the evil of fascism was poisoning Europe, and the world teetered on the brink of the most devastating war in history, a new hero was born. He was 50 years old, about three feet tall, with a beer belly, slightly pointed ears, and feet so hairy they needed to be brushed. His name was Bilbo Baggins and he was a pipe-weed-smoking, food-obsessed homebody, of a breed of creature no one had ever heard of before: a hobbit. Bilbo and his woolly toes stepped out of The Hobbit or, There and Back Again, a fantasy novel about Bilbo’s adventures with a wizard named Gandalf and a pack of dwarves on a quest to steal back their gold from an evil dragon. It is hailed as one of the finest, most beloved classics of English children’s literature.

Bilbo’s creator, J.R.R. (John Ronald Reuel) Tolkien, was a professor at the University of Oxford in England who was fascinated by invented languages, Norse myths and epic legends of dragons, dwarves and swashbuckling warriors like the Anglo Saxon prince, Beowulf. Tolkien would perform the classic poem about Beowulf aloud in his English Lit class, shouting, “Hwæt!” (Old English for “Yo!”) to begin the poem (and wake up his students.) Yet when Tolkien created his own hero, it wasn’t a monster-slaying prince or a hammer-wielding Norse god. Bilbo emerged from a single phrase formed in Tolkien’s mind while grading boring student exams: “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.” Ten words that blossomed into his first novel, The Hobbit or, There and Back Again, published in September of 1937, followed in 1955 by The Lord of the Rings trilogy. All together the books sold hundreds of millions of copies the world over, launched a multi-billion dollar Oscar-winning movie franchise, and spawned a legion of fans devoted to this very day to arguing the fine points of “Tolkien legendarium”—the exquisite details of the imaginary worlds and languages in his books.

 

J  R  R Tolkien

And there is much more to learn and enjoy reading (and watching!) in this great article, the origin of which is at this address:

https://www.biography.com/news/the-hobbit-jrr-tolkien-facts

With all my thanks and appreciation to Carolyn Jacobs, the author…

Bloguer… et les risques émotionnels de le faire

Eh bien, en plus de la raison principale dont j’ai parlé dans mon post précédent (dans la traduction française,  https://labofevolution.wordpress.com/2017/08/18/trois-mois-de-silence-et-de-yoga-integral/  ) , en fait, il y a eu aussi une raison plus négative pour laquelle j’ai cessé de bloguer pendant longtemps. Je voudrais mentionner cette raison spécifique, car elle m’a en fait aidée à constater en moi une vulnérabilité encore trop intense aux commentaires que certains visiteurs peuvent écrire, qui peuvent ne pas être totalement positifs, voire même être totalement négatifs …!

Cela arrive très rarement, mais au fil des ans, depuis 2011, lorsque j’ai commencé ce blog, chaque fois que cela est arrivé, cela m’a causé un choc émotionnel majeur.

Pourquoi devrait-il en être ainsi? …

La première et évidente raison est que, par tempérament, je suis extrêmement émotive pour commencer, c’est sûr. Mais même cela ne suffirait pas à expliquer le genre de douleur au coeur que je ressens lorsque je découvre un commentaire tout à fait négatif sur l’un de mes messages: c’est comme si une longue aiguille soudainement perçait mon cœur.

En écrivant ceci, le souvenir me vient d’un commentaire de J.R.R.Tolkien, dans une lettre, sur la façon dont il se sentait après avoir fini d’écrire “Le Seigneur des Anneaux” – ce qui pour lui n’était pas simplement une fiction ou une «fantasy», mais l’expression même de son monde intérieur le plus secret depuis sa petite enfance et sa jeunesse … c’est pourquoi il avait choisi la Philologie et son étude des épopées anciennes mondiales comme sa manière officielle et respectable de continuer, en tant qu’adulte dans sa carrière extérieure, ce qui avait de toutes façons été sa passion intérieure intense et irrésistible pour aussi longtemps qu’il pouvait se le rappeller.

Non encore publié, mais écrit bien avant, lors de son expérience directe de la Première Guerre mondiale, son «Silmarillion» chéri était déjà là, avec la «Terre du Milieu» autour de lui comme le fond vaste, riche et inspiré auquel tous ses écrits ultérieurs appartenait inévitablement aussi.

«Le Hobbit», le premier à être publié, avait été un énorme succès. Déjà, lors du démarrage de cette supposée suite toute simple du «Hobbit» qui devenait rapidement «Le Seigneur des Anneaux», dans sa lettre il avait prévenu son éditeur que tout cela était, en quelque sorte, en pleine expansion; et il avait essayé d’expliquer les raisons intérieures pour lesquelles cela se produisait; Alors il avait ajouté:
«Eh bien, j’ai parlé assez longtemps de mes propres folies. Ce qui importe est de terminer la chose telle qu’elle est conçue et ensuite de la laisser être jugée. Mais pardonnez-moi! C’est ma vie qui est écrite là, mon sang, tel qu’il est, de quelque qualité que ce soit; et je ne peux rien y changer. ‘(Lettre 109)

Plus tard, alors qu’il se préparait à en voir la sortie comme livre publié que tout le monde pourrait lire, il a encore écrit, répondant cette fois à un ami:
«Je crains que ce ne soit que vraisemblable: ce que vous dites au sujet des critiques et du public. Je redoute la publication, car il sera impossible de ne pas se soucier de ce qui sera dit. J’ai exposé mon coeur pour qu’on lui tire dessus. ‘(Lettre 142)

Est-il besoin de dire que c’est comme ça que je me sens aussi ?…
Ce dont je parle, ici sur ce blog, ce n’est pas seulement de la «littérature», ce ne sont pas non plus des sujets extérieurs, superficiels, cherchant seulement à intéreser ou si possible impressionner les visiteurs potentiels; même lorsque ce sont des citations «simplement» d’autres êtres plus grands que moi, ce sont ces citations qui m’ont été les plus chères en tant que mes propres lignes de vie depuis des décennies, et qui le sont encore.
Et dans beaucoup de mes publications, les contenus plus personnels sont encore plus révélateurs de mon moi profond, avec ses qualités et ses dons spécifiques, oui, mais aussi ses nombreuses difficultés – ouvrant
alors la porte évidemment au sarcasme, si un lecteur est enclin à cela .
Il n’y a pas d’autre façon, je crois, que d’accepter une telle vulnérabilité, si je veux atteindre l’objectif que ce blog a pris dès le début, ainsi que je l’ai
expliqué, et qu’il a toujours: voir ma DÉCLARATION D’INTENTION ( https://labofevolution.wordpress.com/about/declaration-dintention/ )


La raison originelle pour laquelle j’ai commencé ce blog?
Cela a simplement été en réponse à la gentille
suggestion d’une autre Blogueuse que je suivais à ce moment-là. Elle s’intéressa à un aspect spécifique de ma propre recherche en cours, que je lui avais expliqué dans quelques commentaires, et elle m’a conseillé de commencer un blog sur ce sujet si fascinant.
Je n’étais pas sûre du tout d’en être capable, mais avec sa constante aide en ligne pour faire face aux obstacles techniques pour moi redoutables, à ma grande surprise je me suis bientôt
retrouvée en effet en train d’écrire un blog!… En premier sur ce sujet … et ensuite, mûe de l’intérieur, avec bonheur et ouvertement, sur d’autres sujets aussi: les plus importants en réalité à mes yeux …
Et c’est alors que ma nouvelle amie s’est soudainement transformée en l’opposé de l’amie qu’elle avait été pour moi jusque-là: elle n’avait aucune idée de la grandeur réelle de Sri Aurobindo et de la Mère, et semblait soupçonner toute spiritualité de toute façon, si bien qu’elle ne comprenait ni ne partageait nullement
mon respect et ma gratitude pour eux, loin de là.
En dépit de mes meilleurs efforts pour lui expliquer sur quelles raisons profondes et convaincantes mon dévouement pour eux était basé, à la fin il est devenu évident qu’il n’y avait aucun moyen de la faire changer d’avis à leur propos, alors nos routes se sont séparées. Mais cela a été une grande douleur pour moi que de découvrir cette différence majeure – et pour elle infranchissable – entre nous, par la brusque et brutale hostilité qu’elle a exprimée envers moi dès que Sri Aurobindo et la Mère ont été mentionnés sur mon Blog.

Néanmoins, je lui suis toujours reconnaissante pour l’aide si généreuse donnée au début, et pour avoir été l’instrument du Divin afin de me faire entrer dans le monde merveilleux du Blogging! Cet incident douloureux dès le début avec cette Blogueuse beaucoup plus expérimentée a été un précieux avertissement de ce qui pouvait très bien se reproduire à tout moment avec quelqu’un d’autre parmi les «visiteurs» ou les «adeptes» réguliers que mon blog a commencé à attirer – par ses propres mérites, et non en raison d’une stratégie consciente de ma part.

Ensuite, pour une longue période, ma vie en tant que Blogueuse (à temps partiel) a été plutôt heureuse … sauf que je me suis souvent interrogée avec une certaine perplexité sur toutes ces personnes qui lisaient bien mon blog (je pouvais voir les chiffres des Statistiques, et les nouveaux “adeptes” qui continuaient à s’ajouter eux aussi) mais étaient apparemment tous désapprobateurs de la procédure du «Liking» au contraire si populaire sur la plupart des autres blogs! … Je soupçonnais un peu que le Divin faisait en sorte que cela se passe de cette façon afin de ne pas encourager ma tendance à peut-être rechercher un peu trop l’approbation et l’appréciation des autres concernant mon travail … mais tout de même… !!!

Et il y a quelques mois, c’est arrivé à nouveau: deux personnes, l’une après l’autre, ont exprimé un commentaire très négatif sur un de mes articles.

J’ai été prise par surprise, et anéantie.

C’était comme si des gens en lesquels j’avais cru en quelque sorte comme en des amis me frappaient soudain au visage ou dans l’estomac. Cela faisait mal.

À tel point que, après quelques semaines, j’ai remarqué que je ne pouvais plus rien  écrire à nouveau. Sur quoi que ce soit.

Alors j’ai raisonné avec moi-même: allais-je vraiment arrêter mon Blog juste à cause de deux personnes qui m’avaient fait mal par leurs commentaires?! Ce serait tout à fait ridicule!…

Mais essayez donc de raisonner avec votre être émotionnel blessé … Rien n’y fait: il se blottit tout juste là-bas, dans un coin plus sombre de votre espace intérieur, léchant ses blessures en silence et refusant absolument de revenir, quelque cajolerie que vous puissiez essayer pour le faire sortir de là.

Donc, j’ai simplement attendu … Enfin, j’ai constaté que cela payait d’être patient avec soi-même, avec n’importe quelle partie en soi-même qui passe, pour quelque raison que ce soit, par un moment difficile: un beau matin, mon être émotionnel était de retour, souriant timidement … Prêt à nouveau à participer à ma vie de Blogueuse! … “Bienvenue, mon être émotionnel!”, lui dis-je chaleureusement en souriant; “Je suis contente que tu sois là: sans toi, ce que j’écris n’atteint pas les autres personnes comme cela les atteint normalement, et mes dernières publications ont seulement porté sur des sujets qui n’étaient pas vraiment personnels – c’est très bien , mais ce n’est pas – ou pas seulement – ce que ce Blog est vraiment destiné à être … Viens, re-travaillons ensemble à partir de maintenant!… “

Alors nous voilà de nouveau ensemble, bien sûr aussi avec mon être mental … et n’oublions pas toutes ces cellules partout dans mon être physique qui, gaiement, font ce qu’il faut pour que ce que je veux écrire apparaîsse ici sur ce blog et que tous les visiteurs puissent le lire… mais maintenant, je suis consciente que je dois être particulièrement prudente avec mon être émotif, afin d’éviter de le blesser une fois de plus …

De son côté, j’ai l’impression qu’il fait de son mieux pour apprendre à ne pas être si extrêmement sensible: il peut sentir que chez quelqu’un qui pratique le Yoga Intégral, un tel progrès devient à un certain point indispensable … Donc, il s’entraine, courageusement! … 

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(Ne laissez pas vos émotions vous distraire de ce qui doit être fait. Contrôlez vos émotions, ou ce sera vos émotions qui vous contrôleront.)

Mais d’autre part, j’espère aussi que toutes les personnes qui visitent mon Blog se rendront compte que je n’essaie pas d’imposer quoi que ce soit à personne: je ne fais que partager ce que je ressens qui peut être utile à d’autres aussi, de ma propre expérience d’évolution consciente à travers le Yoga Intégral. Évidemment, tout ce que je partage ne correspond pas forcément aux besoins intérieurs de tout le monde, car cela serait totalement impossible, chacun d’entre nous étant unique. Par conséquent, ceux qui sentent qu’un certain article n’est pas pour eux pourraient peut-être le laisser tranquille et revenir uniquement pour le prochain? … qu’ils aimeront peut-être tellement qu’ils le marqueront même, qui sait, d’un “Like”?! …  😀

Amusant, de me trouver de façon inattendue en train de rire de tout cela à la fin de ce post … Et, me croirez-vous?! Mon être émotionnel est maintenant lui aussi en train de rire avec moi à la perspective de ces “Likes” imaginés!!!

Blogging… & the Emotional Risks of It

Well, besides the main reason I talked about in my previous post (in the original English, https://labofevolution.wordpress.com/2017/08/18/three-silent-months-of-ongoing-integral-yoga/ ), actually there has been also a more negative reason why I stopped blogging for a long while. I want to mention that specific reason too, for it has in fact helped me notice in myself a still too intense vulnerability to the comments some visitors may write, that may not be entirely positive, or may even be entirely negative…!

It happens quite rarely, but over the years, since 2011 when I started this Blog, every time it has happened it has been for me a major emotional shock.

Why should it be so?…

The first and obvious reason is that by temperament I am extremely emotional to start with, that’s for sure. But even that wouldn’t be enough to account for the kind of heart pain I feel when I discover an altogether negative comment on one of my posts: it is as if a long needle was somehow suddenly piercing my heart.

While writing this, the memory comes to me of J.R.R. Tolkien’s comment, in a letter, about how he felt after having finished writing ‘The Lord of the Rings’ – which for him wasn’t simply fiction or ‘fantasy’ at all, but the actual expression of his own most secret inner world since early childhood and youth… which is why he had elected Philology and its study of worldwide ancient epics as his official, respectable way of continuing as an adult in his outer career what had been anyway his intense, irresistible inner passion since as long as he could remember.

He had, unpublished as yet, but written long before, during his direct experience of World War I, his whole cherished ‘Silmarillion’, with ‘Middle-earth’ around it as the vast, rich and inspired background to which all his later writing inevitably belonged, too.  ‘The Hobbit’, the first one to be published, had been a huge success. Already when starting that supposed simple sequel to ‘The Hobbit’ that was rapidly growing instead into ‘The Lord of the Rings’, in his letter he had warned his editor that the whole thing was, somehow by itself, dramatically expanding, and he had tried to explain the inner reasons why; then he had added:

‘Well, I have talked quite long enough about my own follies. The thing is to finish the thing as devised and then let it be judged. But forgive me! It is written in my life-blood, such as that is, thick or thin; and I can no other.’ (Letter 109)

Later on, as he was getting ready to release it as a published book for anyone to read, he again wrote, replying this time to a friend:

‘I am afraid it is only too likely to be true: what you say about the critics and the public. I am dreading the publication, for it will be impossible not to mind what is said. I have exposed my heart to be shot at.’ (Letter 142)
Do I need to say this is the way I feel too?…
What I am writing about, here on this Blog, isn’t just ‘literature’ either, or external, superficial stuff meant only to interest and perhaps impress prospective visitors; even when it is ‘merely’ quotes from some great others, they are those quotes that have been dearest to me as my own lifelines since decades, and still are.
And in many of my posts the more personal contents are even more revealing of my deeper self, with its specific qualities and gifts, yes, but also its many shortcomings – opening the door obviously to sarcasm, then, if some reader is prone to that.
There is no other way, I believe, than to accept such a vulnerability, if I want to achieve the aim I have explained that this Blog took on for me early on, and still has: see my STATEMENT OF PURPOSE (https://labofevolution.wordpress.com/about/statement-of-purpose/).
The original reason why I started this Blog at all?…
It has merely been in answer to the kind suggestion by another Lady-Blogger I was following at that time the posts of. She got interested in one specific aspect of my own ongoing research that I had been explaining to her in a few comments, and she advised me to start a Blog myself on that so fascinating topic.
I wasn’t sure at all that I could, but with her gentle help online to go over the (for me) daunting technical hurdles, to my own utter surprise I soon found myself writing a Blog indeed, on that topic at first… and then, prompted from within, happily and openly about other topics too: the most important ones  actually in my eyes…
And this is when my new friend suddenly turned into the very opposite of the friend she had been for me until then: she had no notion of the actual greatness of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother, and suspicious of all Spirituality anyway, or so it seemed, she did not at all understand or share any of my respect and gratitude for them, far from it.
In spite of all my best efforts to explain on which deep and convincing reasons my devotion to them was based, in the end it became obvious that there was no way she could change her mind about them, so we parted ways at that point. But it has been a horrendous pain for me to discover this major – and for her unbridgeable – difference between us, through the sudden harshness and downright hostility she expressed towards me as soon as Sri Aurobindo and the Mother were mentioned on my Blog.
Nevertheless, I remain ever grateful to her for the so generous help extended at first, and for having been the instrument of the Divine to make me enter the wonderful world of Blogging!
This painful incident early on with that much more experienced Lady Blogger has been a precious warning of what may very well happen again at any time with anyone else among the occasional ‘visitors’ or regular ‘followers’ my Blog started to attract – on its own merits, and not due to any conscious strategy on my part.
Then for a long stretch of time my life as a (part-time) Blogger has been a rather happy one… except that I often wondered with some bewilderment why all those people reading my Blog (I could see the numbers from the Stats, and new ‘followers’ kept adding themselves too) were apparently all disliking the ‘Liking’ procedure that was on the contrary so popular on most other Blogs!… I did suspect the Divine made it happen that way so as not to encourage that tendency in me to look perhaps a little too much to the approval and appreciation of others concerning my work… but still…!!!
And a few months ago, it happened again: two people, one after the other, expressed quite a negative comment on a post of mine.
It did take me by surprise. I was devastated.
It was as if those people I had trusted somehow like friends were suddenly punching me in the face, or in the stomach. It hurt.
So much so that I noticed after a few weeks I couldn’t bring myself anymore to write again. On anything at all.
So I reasoned with myself: was I going really to stop my Blog just because of two persons who had hurt me by their comments?! That would be totally ridiculous!!!
But just try reasoning with your wounded emotional being… Nothing doing: it just cowers down there, in some darker corner of your inner space, licking its wounds silently, and refusing absolutely to come out again, whatever cajoling you might try to make it do so.
So I had simply to wait…
At long last I found it pays being patient with oneself, with any part in oneself that for whatever reason is going through a difficult time:
One fine morning my emotional being was there again, smiling shyly…. ready again to participate in my blogging life!…
“Welcome back, my emotional being!”, I said warmly to it, smiling back; “I’m glad you’re there again: without you my writing doesn’t reach out to other people the way it normally does, and so my recent posts have only been on topics that weren’t really personal – which is all right, but not  – or not only – what this Blog is truly meant to be… Come, let’s work together again from now on!…”
So here we are again, together of course also with my mental being… and let’s not forget all those cells everywhere in my physical being too, who cheerfully make it possible for what I want to write to actually appear here on this Blog for all of you to read… but now I am aware that I have to be especially careful with my emotional being, so as to avoid its being hurt once again… From its part too, by the way, I can feel it is doing its best to learn not to be so extremely sensitive: it can feel that in someone who is practicing the Integral Yoga, such a progress becomes at some point a must… So it is training itself bravely!…
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But on the other hand I do hope also that all the people who visit my Blog will realize that I am not trying to impose anything on anybody: I am only sharing whatever I feel might be useful to some others too, from my own experience with Conscious Evolution through the Integral Yoga. Obviously not everything I share will fit the inner needs of everyone else, for that would be totally impossible as each of us is unique.
So those who feel a certain post is not for them could perhaps just leave it alone and come back only for the next one?… which they might like so much that they will, who knows, even ‘Like’ it?!… ;-D
Funny, to unexpectedly find myself laughing about it all at the end of this post…
And will you believe me?! My emotional being is now laughing together with me at the prospect of those imagined ‘Likes’!!!

Others too Remember About ‘The Fellowship of the Ring’

Another article from TORn, ‘The One Ring.net’, this time not written by me but straight from one member of the Editorial Team there, that to my great joy shows that more people remember what a world event it has been, the first instalment of the full LOTR Trilogy to come:

The lasting significance of ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogy

December 18, 2016 at 5:29 pm by newsfrombree  – argonath-posterTheOneRing.net isn’t the only news site reporting on the 15th anniversary of the release of The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring this week. Leigh Blickley, Senior Editor at The Huffington Post, takes us on a bit of a walk down memory lane in her article that looks back at the many people and circumstances that came together to produce the fantasy classic.

Fifteen years ago, Hollywood was abuzz as director Peter Jackson geared up to release the first installment of his screen adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantasy novel, The Lord of the Rings. The film series was the talk of the town, considering Tolkien fans were chomping at the bit to see Jackson’s cinematic imagining of Middle-earth. The somewhat unknown filmmaker took on one of the most expensive and ambitious projects in cinema history, and many worried he would flounder in bringing the beloved epic to life. 

Well, Jackson delivered something far more incredible than what anyone was expecting.”

We have to agree with you, Leigh! But, we’re not the only ones. Later in the week we’ll take a look a the many reviews of stunned (in a good way) critics and fans alike. In the mean time, you can read the full HuffPost article here.


15th Anniversary of Peter Jackson’s ‘The Fellowship of the Ring’

Here is the post I just put up right now on the ‘Lord of the Rings’ forum of TORn ((The One Ring.net), my favorite site for all things Tolkien, an author I love, including the two remarkable Film Trilogies made by Peter Jackson from both LOTR and now also The Hobbit; along with the two lines in the end that I chose as my ‘footer’ on TORn, I want to share with you, here too, my feelings on this anniversary of a most beautifully memorable moment for me: the one when I saw for the first time ‘The  Fellowhip of the Ring’ (FOTR), based on the first volume of Tolkien’s book:

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It is Altaïra’s article that brought me here today, back on the LOTR board for this 15th Anniversary of the opening of FOTR:
http://www.theonering.net/torwp/2016/12/17/102578-the-lord-of-the-rings-the-fellowship-of-the-ring-15th-anniversary/
Then once here I saw there had been this thread, earlier in December, which matched exactly what I too wanted most to talk about on such a day as this 15th Anniversary!…
I read every single post, taking so much pleasure in re-living through each of them (except two) my own feelings of stunned awe and wonderment when I first saw FOTR, in a big theater in Paris, France.
Like many at the time, I was among the complete fans of the books, who weren’t sure what to expect, and anxiously anticipated possibly the worst when they still decided to give it a try.
And then, sitting there in the darkness of this vast but full theater, all became silent, and in that silence slowly arose that extraordinary, deep feminine voice, speaking those few words in Elvish, and in English, out of nowhere, out of time itself – and the whole world suddenly turned into Middle-earth, fully alive with its incredibly ancient and intense atmosphere, its magical, overwhelming presence made magically real.
I must have started breathing again at some point of course, but I never became aware of it, totally transfixed as I remained for the full time while its peoples of all kinds, and those of them I cherished since so long, one by one appeared on the screen, looking exactly as I had imagined them, or even better themselves than I had been able to imagine them…
The places, the landscapes, everything was just right, the music itself was absolutely entrancing, so perfectly adapted it was to every culture and every moment of the mostly so well-known events that unfolded like in the books – even when they didn’t, it somehow didn’t disturb me at all, I took it all in just the same as it seemed to flow out from the same magical Source.
Thank you, Sir Peter Jackson and all those others who helped create this. Even if that first viewing of this first film would have been the only one memorable, I would have to thank you for it as one of the most beautiful memories of my life; but on top of it it turned out to be only the beginning of a whole wonderful Trilogy for LOTR, and now even one more for the Hobbit…
My heart outflows with gratitude that this happened in this lifetime of mine. HeartHeartHeart


‘Is everything sad going to come untrue?’
(Sam, ‘The Field of Cormallen’, in ‘The Return of the King’.)


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