Hi's,Hello and I'm New Thread

Discussion in 'New Members' started by Moyses Sedraz, Jan 27, 2002.

  1. Floss Gibson

    Floss Gibson New Member

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    'Lo folks o/
    Long time fan of the Professors works.
    I also collect, mainly books and Tolkien inspired art.
     
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  2. 01Syd

    01Syd New Member

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    Hi there, I'm french, so maybe you'll find my english level pretty bad, sorry for that, I skipped english class when I was in school !

    My name is Mathias, I'm 24. I was born in a little (but pretty) town called Metz, in the North-East of France, near Luxembourg. I moved some years ago in Paris, and today I live in the center of France, in a little village called Allanche, which is in the middle of what is called Cantal, a territory of low mountains at the center of the country. If you want to now, these moutains used to be a huge volcano, some millions years ago. In a way, I live now in a peaceful part of the world which was a Mordor-like in the Past (I think it's some kind of poetry, doesn't it ?)

    Anyway, I discovered Middle-Earth with the movies when I was 11 or 12, and I actually liked them. Worst of all, I hated the books, when I read them a few months after the realease of the trilogy. But understand me, when I was 12, I didn't know how to really "read" a book, and besides, they were completely different of the epic movies Jackson had made (and for a children, epicness is the only thing important in this kind of adventure). But I re-read them years later, when I became a (lonely) law-student and lived in Strasbourg, near Germany. And I fell in love with Tolkien at that time. After that, I bought the Silmarillion, which is by far the best book I ever read in my life. I also read Unfinished Tales and the two books of Lost Tales. All of them are, in my point of view, huge masterpieces.
    Despite the fact I'm not an english native, Tolkien works are the first books I read in english, I have the Alan Lee-Illustrated LotR Edition, the Ted Nasmith-Illustrated Silmarillion, and I'm collecting all of the "Histories of Middle-Earth". I don't think you could understand how it feels to read an approximativ translation like the french one, and to understand the true power and meaning of the words of the english one. That's why I think that today,Tolkien is one of the best writer ever.

    I'm pretty excited to read and react to some of the topics here, especially on the Tolkien's mythology (almost better than the greek one !). I recently bought "The Return of the Shadow" during a trip in Scotland, which has never been translated, nor (obviously) released in France. It's great to discover some new stories behind the genesis of LotR, and I know now, that I have a lot to learn about Tolkien in years to come.
    Otherwise I love literature in general, books are a passion, I read everything I find, and I'm especially fond of Shakespeare, Milton, or Thoreau. I'm also a movie-fan. Cinema was so powerful for my imagination, during my entire (short) life, than watching a movie, for me, is like breathing (or reading, everything is linked !), it releases my dreams into reality.

    Sorry again for language mistakes, I'll try to do my best !
     
  3. Starbrow

    Starbrow Tolkien Fan

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    Welcome to the forum. Your English is very good.
     
  4. Matthew Bailey

    Matthew Bailey Member

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    Hello....

    Scientist (Cognitive Science with a Concentration in Linguistics, and Computational & Systems Biology - Cybernetics - with a Concentration in Computational Neurosystems), Historian (Art History focusing upon Sacred Art of the early-Christian Church - Primarily Heretical Sects and Gnostics), and Artist (Sculptor, primarily, but once upon a time an excellent painter and musician as well).... I studied directly for a very short period of time with Joseph Campbell, just before his death in the 1980s, as I discovered Joseph Campbell at roughly the same time as I discovered Tolkien through a friend who also shared a mutual interest in both (I was very sad, though, to learn that Campbell did not give much consideration to Tolkien's works - which is something of a tragedy considering how applicable Tolkien's works are to the Life's Work of Joseph Campbell).

    I have been not just "reading" but deeply studying Tolkien since the release of The Silmarillion in 1977, and then the discovery of The History of Middle-earth in 1984 (I went to College the first time in England, and was there when its publication was announced).

    I did at one time have a huge number of Fanzines and Tolkien Journals, but in 1999 I lost everything I owned after being hospitalized for a motorcycle accident (during which time my wife stole LITERALLY EVERYTHING - she even took my underwear). The only things that survived that I owned where either the clothes I wore to the Hospital, or stuff that was at Family or Friend's Houses (which fortunately included my Hardback, single-volume copy of LotR, and first ed. Silmarillion).

    I have been trying to re-assemble my collection of Journals of the Tolkien Society (but they are expensive), but I do have rather a large number of editions of Parma Endorion (all digital, which I feel a little guilty about).

    And I have studied a great deal of Theology and Philosophy that would be applicable to Tolkien (although, sadly, much of it I need to re-read, as it has been over ten years since I last read any explicit Theology).

    I am currently working on a Theory of Metaphysics and Ontology for Middle-earth (some of which I have explained in a Post/Thread here in the Books>Silmarillion Forum) that could account for the operation of the seemingly "Supernatural" elements of Middle-earth.

    Christopher Tolkien states in The History of Middle-earth, vol. X: Morgoth's Ring that his father's failure to complete The Silmarillion was due to Tolkien desiring an Operational Theory of Metaphysics for Arda (the direct quote is ". . . underlying Postulates. . . and coherent Theological and Metaphysical system"). This is a concept that many people seem to have a very difficult time with accepting.... And it is one that I have found is exceptionally hard to communicate in a way that people understand.

    I tend to have very different understandings regarding things like Sauron's Ruling Ring, and the remaining Rings of Power as a result, or over the properties of Good and Evil within Arda (and consequently "Light" and "Dark").

    Lastly.... If I seen a bit "Grumpy," it is largely due to occasional problems associated with the motorcycle accident I mentioned earlier. It left me unable to walk for a couple of years, and I occasionally get horrific pains in my legs, left side, and right shoulder.... And I am currently (this week), suffering rather severely from the chronic pain associated with this injury. I am trying to distract myself by keeping as busy as I can. But it can result in me big a bit more brusque online than might seen necessary or appropriate (I apologize, and it isn't my intent).

    MB
     
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  5. Narya

    Narya ~He-he-he~

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    WOW!! Welcome to TTF!
     
  6. Halasían

    Halasían Dunedain Ranger

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    Yes! Welcome Matthew!
     
  7. Matthew Bailey

    Matthew Bailey Member

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    Thanks for the welcome.

    I wish that my current ability to focus was stronger, but I seem to be scattered all over the place, and unable to maintain focus for any length of time.

    Specifically on things that take my mind off the real world, which seems to be particularly nasty right now.

    Ideally I would like to finish a paper I have begun on Physiognomy in Ëa/Middle-earth, which examines how physical appearance of things in Middle-earth reveals their spiritual make-up, and how the instances of its inversion (Sauron/Annatar, Melkor/Morgoth as the two most obvious examples of this inversion) do not negate of falsify the existence of Physiognomy in Middle-earth (Physiognomy is a philosophy that is basically "The Moral/Ethical Properties of a thing can be revealed by its appearance." But that should be "True" Appearance, as many things in Middle-earth are often false visages created by different agencies within Middle-earth to conceal the true character of a thing/person/being). Physiognomy is from the Greek: Physios/Physics- Body, and Gnosis-To Know.

    The Istari are another instance of a form of Physiognomic inversion, but opposite that of Sauron/Annatar, and Melkor/Morgoth.

    But dealing with Physiognomy in Middle-earth causes a diversion to other aspects of Ëa/Arda/Middle-earth, such as Cartesian and Manichaean Duality, as explored briefly by Tom Shippey.

    Unlike most people who are deeply into Tolkien, who tend to focus primarily upon the languages he invented, I have been more caught up in the Philosophical and Metaphysical aspects of Middle-earth (what would need to be true for the things we see in Middle-earth to exist).

    And, sadly, that seems to be a subject that I have found few people who fully grasp the implications involved. Which is frustrating, but hasn't surprised me as much as I wish that it did.

    MB
     
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  8. Narya

    Narya ~He-he-he~

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    This is a common technique in literature. Disney makes use of physiognomy - I mean, just look at their characters and you will immediately know who the bad guy is. Many authors use this method to help readers distinguish between characters, I think, and to help them understand their deeper intentions. Shakespeare made use of this technique, yes? Chaucer as well.

    I am interested in what you mean by diversion to other aspects of physiognomy in Tolkien's world. :D Sounds like a fun discussion.
     
  9. Matthew Bailey

    Matthew Bailey Member

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    It generally leads to people unable to understand the difference between a causal and correlational relationship.

    Then it leads to issues that deal with the Metaphysical Makeup of Middle-earth, and people not understanding the "It's Magic" isn't an explanation for how something happens, or why something happens. Tolkien was seriously appalled at such deus-ex-machina, and insisted that Middle-earth functioned by a set of rules/laws that are every bit as robust as those that exist within our world/universe.

    And that leads people to being unable to see the distinction between "Middle-earth" as an actual place (what would need to be true in order for it to exist), and the existence of our world/universe.

    I cannot completely describe the problems I have found in discussing the issues surrounding the Metaphysics and Ontology of Middle-earth, because I have not been able to make heads-or-tails out of people's hostility to my efforts to explain the Metaphysics and Ontology of Middle-earth (I think the problem is that the people who were so violently hostile to my work on that subject didn't really understand what those terms mean... It only took me 25 years to fully understand them. But I might be slow in that regard).

    But generally the problems involve a failure to understand how a Physical and Spiritual World must interact if they exist, and what I can only describe as a hostility to exploring that subject.

    And that is a touchy subject to people who are deeply religious, because it involves being able to negate one's own beliefs in order to explore alternatives. To say nothing of the fact that it usually causes foundational flaws within terrestrial religious beliefs to be exposed (and that isn't something that very many people handle very well).

    The few Jesuits I have spoken to on the subject seemed to be very capable of understanding the issues involved, and even helped me to formulate a Metaphysical Foundation for Middle-earth that seems to work. But outside of the few Jesuits I have run into who understood or appreciated my passion for Tolkien, I have run into very few others who can both understand, and follow the process of describing that Foundation (I really wish that Tolkien himself was still alive, as his later years were consumed with discovering or describing such a Metaphysical Foundation - the Introduction to Morgoth's Ring even includes a part where Christopher Tolkien explains that this is why his father never fully completed The Silmarillion, and the remaining stories of Middle-earth).

    But even where the hostility isn't present (or is overcome), I cannot seem to get very far in explaining things, due to constantly having to backtrack to explain some other feature that is only tangentially related to the Metaphysics themselves.

    MB
     
  10. Narya

    Narya ~He-he-he~

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    Well, MB, you have a good place for your discussion. I am pretty sure many of the Tolkienites here share my curiosity on the subject. Try to post a thread on the subject in one of the forums.
     

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