Wednesday 22 May 2024

Why the evil of the One Ring cannot be resisted by anyone - lessons for "conservatives" and those who "study the arts of the enemy"

Honest, Frodo - I'd only be using the One Ring for the Greater Good!

It is striking that the possession of the One Ring is rejected by even the most good and most powerful characters of The Lord of the Rings.

Why this should be, is explained at The Notion Club Papers blog


The reason is a variation of what I have often termed The Boromir Strategy - or "Hey lads, let's use the One Ring to fight Sauron!".

The Boromir Strategy is the usual form taken by would-be resistance to global totalitarian leftism - which is why so much time and effort is expended in the mass media and blogosphere in "studying the arts of the enemy" in order (supposedly, purportedly) to discover and use the enemy's methods against the enemy...


In the NCP-blog post I make clear that to do this is already to have joined-with the enemy

To claim The Ring is a counter-productive pseudo-attempt to fight the enemy by moving onto the enemy's own ground; or - more precisely - trying to fight the enemy after opening the door and inviting him right inside the castle keep.

The reason the Boromir Strategy is so popular as to be near universal, is that it is a mask of good intentions used to cover the reality of evil motivations.

The argument was deployed in Lord of the Rings to justify Boromir forcibly trying to take the One Ring from Frodo in order to use it himself - for his own purposes, including his greater power and glory. 

The pretence was that this was done only to save Gondor, and to defeat Sauron - but that was not true. 

Well - Boromir realized this, and he repented (and confessed); and did his best to atone for the damage he had done. 

And... what Boromir did in the story, anybody can do in "real life". 



Brett Stevens said...

The One Ring seems to me to have more in common with Plato's ring of the Lydian, Gyges, than any other instance in history. He makes it clear that the ring is individualism, or the power to use our big brains to ignore wider reality.

Stephen Notman said...

Old Tom Bombadil is my favourite character of all. The fact the Ring has no effect on him, and that he'd only fall after every last living thing fell to the Dark Lord, adds to his mystery. Hes neither Illuvitar (god) nor a Maia (angel). Hes something else unique to Middle Earth. Tolkien himself admitted he didn't know and thought it better that way. But he's Good. Wild, surely. And possessing of great power, yet incorruptible. Seems only to want to care for the forest and bring flowers to his lady. A Boss.

Sometimes i wonder if he and his lady are an un-fallen Adam and Eve. Power over nature; almost naively unaware of the evil outside their edenic state. He surely could dance right into Mordor without trouble. But his incorrupt nature makes him fail to see the threat, as if he has no real knowledge of good and evil. He deals with Old Man Willow as though hes a gardener trimming a troublesome shrub rather than defeating an evil tree. As far as I know, no one has ever suggested the unfallen Adam idea. Though being also childless and wearing clothes, so never an exact allusion!