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Anonymous asked: What do you think Tolkien's Dwarves' religion looks like?

vrabia:

notbecauseofvictories:

like Terry Pratchett’s, but taken seriously.

But Terry Pratchett’s is taken seriously. Like, a lot. And it’s basically all darkness-and-stone mysticism, there is nothing else.

I mean of course they have songs that go ‘gold gold gold’ and the right to kingship is handed down via a petrified loaf of bread with someone’s butt imprinted on it.

But in the same breath you’ve got the knockermen, who go down mine-shafts with no source of light on them to face fatal explosions, and the ones who come back are regarded as exponents of sainthood, because they’ve done the impossible. And they talk about what they’ve seen down there, and everyone knows seen has nothing to do with the senses, but with the kinds of things that come to you when you are alone in the silent bowels of the earth with no light. Which. If this doesn’t sound like the perfect setting for the birth of mysticism and religion, I really don’t know, man. 

And this, this seen, changes the profession from something dangerous and full of fear into something sought-after, that young dwarves volunteer for. And then you’ve got an entire category of people believed to walk between life and death at all times and not really part of the mortal order of things. You enter this profession, your family will kiss you goodbye and think of you as if you’ve left this world. 

And then there’s something that Tolkien doesn’t have - religion as politics. By tradition successful knockermen become kings. And other knockermen become fundamentalists to the point where they decree that the amount of time you spend above ground dictates whether or not you’re a dwarf. Like, literally this one thing would bring into question your own nature and, more importantly, whether or not you would belong to a community. You’ve got debates on modernity and traditionalism, the generational effects of immigration and who should rule an entire people and why. There are mentions of social practices that sound an awful lot like religion - like how when a dwarf dies their tools should be melted so they can never be used by a living one, or the fact that it does not matter if you are literally six feet tall, you can still be a dwarf if you performed certain rituals.

And the fact that all of this happens in one of the City Watch books and is pitted against champion doubter Sam Vimes and it still leaves you as a reader kind of speechless and wowed, is saying a lot. 

I will argue this always and forever: compared to Terry Pratchett, Tolkien is a pretty lazy writer. A lot of what he did strikes you as extraordinary because he tried to do it systematically and on such a sweeping scale. But going into the smaller details of his world-building, I think the only things he’s ever taken 100% seriously are genealogies and made-up grammar. Tolkien does a lot, and I say this as someone who grew up as a fan of his work. But at the level of story-telling, he builds histories, not societies. He writes with the underlying assumption that we as an audience understand how his world works, because we’ve read what he’s read and have some notions that the Shire is pre-industrial England and the whole War of the Ring thing is basically feudal warfare blown out of proportion etc. etc. Tolkien’s world is fixed, lives in its own past, moves on in forms but not in substance. ‘The King has returned’ is really more of an end of history thing, because past that point evil has been vanquished and everyone will live in peace in an ordered world. 

In Terry Pratchett’s writings history only shows up if it has to, sometimes as exposition, rarely as plot, mostly creeping up on you in the form of remarks like ‘Ankh-Morpork is built on Ankh-Morpork’. And this is because Terry Pratchett writes societies, with all that writing societies entails, including religion.

I have actually rarely encountered an author of fiction who takes religion more seriously, because what Terry Pratchett does is treat it as a source of world-organizing principles and by extension of political power. Which, underneath its substance of faith and hope and consolation, is what religion actually evolved as.

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my sister is in labor

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erlynntheemerald:

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So I’m sure you recognize this as one of the epic moments from “The Prince of Egypt” where we see the super majestic whale as they cross through the Red Sea. However I noticed just one little issue: whale tales don’t move from side to side, they move up and down. And then it hit me, that’s not a whale. That’s not a whale. It’s a motherfucking SHARK. A BIG ASS MEGALODONIAN SHARK. WAITING IN THE WATER TO EAT THE PHARAOH’S SOLDIERS. Goddamn, Dreamworks.

(via bearccaboo)

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tapelessleopard:

Accidentally biting your cheek while you’re eating

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(via pfennings)

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"I have killed… The things I’ve done…"
"I’m proud of you Michael."

(Source: sangorox, via calebdenecutie)

Tags: rtah mogar
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monsterthalia:

queendoms:

carmillas:

the writers’ strike of 2007-2008 haunts me to this day

#heroes man #heroes

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(Source: rosamondvivian, via justjasper)

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lipgloss-in-my-veins:

“The closer he looks at the child, the less he sees … The more he looks at it, there’s nothing there. He fears that the more you look at him the less you see. There isn’t anything there.” - John Hughes

i always wondered what the fuck this scene was about

(Source: davidfincherings, via kari-kurofai)

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urbanclictionary:

doin a group project likeimage

(via theaqubat)

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its-tuesday-again:

i just found out that siri will read emojis

in related news, this is the best day of my life

(via chambergambit)

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applejackismyhomegirl:

shoesxships:

girldork:

being a feminist is like trying to fix a giant hole in the wall and discovering that the entire wall is rotting and filled with termites and you have a lot more work to do than you thought you did

And also the termites verbally attack you while you fix the wall.

"NOT ALL TERMITES ARE LIKE THAT"

(via bottledminx)

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herbertbillings:

100 Reasons (Why I’m Not Out To My Family)” pt. 2

(in which members of the lgbtq community speak out about why they’re not open about their sexuality with their families.)

poster series

Shari Heck, 2014.

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fuckyeahillustrativeart:

by Renee Nault on Tumblr

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Tags: mermaids
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porygons:

thegoddamazon:

iraffiruse:

Frozach Submitted

Whoa…

GETTING EDUCATION DEGREE, MOVING TO SWITZERLAND

(via robinade)

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