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"I will take the Ring to Mordor, though I do not know the way."

102_frodoreluctantadventurer.jpgFrodo Baggins, Fellowship of the Ring by JRR Tolkien

I'm not sure there is a more poignant moment in all of literature than when Frodo, who thought he was through with his responsibility, takes on the burden of bearing the Ring of Power to its destruction in Mount Doom, even though he has no idea how he can accomplish it. Frodo's willingness to do this in the face of overwhelming odds is a powerful statement of duty, faith, and utter surrender. Tolkien makes it clear that Frodo does not believe that this is a journey he will ever return from, and truly it almost takes his life and soul many times along the way.

Among my kin the Lord of the Rings is a kind of sacred text, and it is no mystery why. We can relate with Frodo's burden and the paradox of his journey. To me Frodo is a symbol of non-violent resistance on par with Martin Luther King, Jr., Gandhi, and Jesus. He carries the Ring not to wield it, but to destroy it. The least of the races of Middle Earth, beneath the notice of lore and legend, rises to defend the world by destroying the greatest weapon. He is beset by temptation, foes, uncertainty, and treachery, and yet he persists. And he persists not alone, but with unflagging support from allies. Thank you, Samwise Gamgee and all who would not let hope fail.

40 for 40, #2

Okay, after my very reverent analysis, there's this. Jack Black and Sarah Michelle Gellar bring you their take on the Council of Elrond. It brings a whole new meaning to the term "ring bearer." Warning, not exactly kid fare.

Apparently this was part of the 2004 MTV movie awards show.

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