Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Inspiration Renewed (Tolkien's Brilliance)

Here's a background on my most favored author that most people do not know. Anyone who read his books and watched the movies not knowing its history would not do it justice. So I have taken the liberty of posting it here for anyone interested.

I have always been a big fan of J.R.R.Tolkien's novels but not until today did I find out what made his stories so mind boggling. If I were to write a paper praising his profound ideas and intentions I could write books on it. It was rare to see someone embedded with what I would consider true Christian values whether I believed in them or not, and even though many might not agree with the fact that his stories proved to be the best, no one could deny that they were and still are the most original and most creative works of all time, because that is what they are.
J.R.R. Tolkien was a professor of ancient languages and mythology in Oxford University. He started writing his first novel 'The Hobbit' at around 1925 with his first lines 'In a hole in the ground there lives a hobbit'. Little did he know that that was going to be the start of a long journey to the trilogy of 'Lord of the Rings' and the most favored fantasy novel to many.

I first read 'The Hobbit' and 'Lord of the Rings' when I was 11 years old. My brother introduced them to me as being his favorite books and as a younger sister who grew accustomed to copying him, I of course aimed to read them too. That was the first inspiration I received to becoming an author myself. My goals however similar were still completely different, and only recently did I find out how different they were. The dreams I had of creating a fantasy world of my own were mere artistic and inventive hopes of an artist who would do it for pleasure and self-satisfaction. The world Tolkien created was made to become a practiced culture that England would take as a base for English Mythology and Literature. He wanted to give England and the English language a rich history because he was disappointed that English back then had no substance or long background or real culture for that matter. It used to be a primitive language spoken by the commoner where French used to be the prestigious one before the rise of the Shakespearean era.

Tolkien did not create a mere story. He created history, and culture that was supposed to have happened at a given point of a given time. For that was the way his books were written. They were written chronologically as historical documents. The stories of Middle-Earth were supposed to have happened during the pagan pre-Christian age that had long been forgotten by mankind. And all that was made believable despite the surreal elements added to it. 'The Hobbit' and the 'Lord of the Rings' are fantasy stories. They did not happen in the past, but the fundamental ideas of them did. Just as the fundamental ideas of Greek Mythologies such as Homer's Iliad and Odyssey, Virgil's Aeneid and every other myth told before that were believed to be true.
That is because the general stories and wars did happen. We are sitting here today because our forefathers fought and risked their lives for the lives we now live. That was the allegory and essence of the history of Middle-Earth. That is what fascinated me even more. I was not reading the works of a mere fantasy but the very heart of a pagan, heroic humanity.
The difference in cultures and art of each ethnic background he created. The languages were real languages he invented from scratch, they were not mere gibberish.
To think that such a world and all its details could be created and brought together by one man which naturally would have taken civilizations to develop, reflected J.R.R.Tolkien's brilliance.

I am now convinced that the idol I chose to follow was better than I could have hoped for.
Even though my goals differ in matter and in manner, and whatever I chose to create would never hold anything to Tolkien's historical legends, I nevertheless hope to make my stories as authentic as he had made his.
I am also glad I got the chance to base my Batchelor's project on his works. This post was written as a result of that. lol.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

My Finally Remembered Reoccurring Dream

I just woke up from the most insane dream and though I usually forget most my dreams I was fortunate enough to remember this one. This is going to be a little complicated to explain and the only place I could think of saving it is here.
Now I guess I know from Inception that when you appear in a dream you never know how you get there XD.
I don't remember the very beginning but I do remember my stepfamily were around and we were taking them site seeing to a place I knew very well. It's not just because I happen to know it very well in the dream... I really do know it well because I dreamed about that place so many times before and it keeps reoccurring in most my dreams. I am thrilled now that I remember some of the details.
The place I'm talking about is not pleasant orrr safe. It's dark, it's in a sort of large cave and it's extremely dangerous, but then again it's not just a cave like al-hoota or anything... it's somewhere between a mine with a lot of metalwork and Moria (if anyone ever watched lotr), to explain better... though it is huge, the scary part is the ways are not safe, some are narrow, most ways are made with those steel tracks that have rusted over time
and feel like they could give way any minute... and that would matter... that would matter a great deal because some areas in this cave go so deep down that you can't see what's down there and the metal is your only support. Then there is the circular nightmare, my most feared part of the cave. Imagine you are in a high place and you're supposed to pass a circular narrow steel track with no support whatsoever except for a rope with some handles to hold on to as you walk across the wriggly metal curves that are not standing still by the way. they move around sometimes, so that knowing where to keep your feet might be tricky.
I did this before in my dreams and I believe I managed to pass it twice. I managed to do it with less fear because i thought the second time that I'll never have to come back here again. The family seemed to be excited about it and I kept wondering whether they knew what was at stake. Apparently they had an inkling and brought certain props to demonstrate. I found they even got a small version of the circular pathway. I thought I'd test myself on that. So I went on it with one of my step cousins in the bottom helping to move the paths around as I try to cross them. She was around 16 and was getting tired of moving things around because I was taking my sweet time passing very slowly. A fall from here might be just painful, a fall from the real thing would be my death. Because here at least I know I'm falling on solid ground that isn't too high. There I'm falling into a dark depth I cannot even see the end of. It's like realizing you just fell off an aeroplane. You would not want to live through the remainder of the fall wondering when you're going to hit the bottom.
So when I was too slow on the prop my step cousin got very impatient and her mom kept telling her to bear with it and give me a chance. She could see that I was scared and I could tell from my poor demonstration that she doubted I've actually ever been to the cave before. After stumbling a few times I fell. I fell on the ground and they laughed because I probably looked funny. But to me... figuring a mistake like that would mean I'm not fit to cross such an area a third time... I WILL die.

So why did I not say anything about how dangerous it was? Because I think they knew it was dangerous and I didn't want to sound like a pussy. Make sense?
But since this was a dream I suddenly appeared in the cave alone, out of nowhere. All by myself, no one was around me except when I paid attention, there was a white clad guy by the end of the circular path waiting for me. This time it was the real cave and I was a few paces away from the circular thing I JUST failed to pass the small version of a few minutes ago. I knew I couldn't go back because the rest of the path backwards isn't safe either. I had to grit my teeth and do it. But what was that guy doing there? He didn't smile at me or anything... if anything he gave me an evil stare.
The place behind the circular doom always used to look like laboratories. and the lights around were green. I just never knew people actually worked there still, so it was creepy. I thought I wanted to get this over with so I ignored him and held the handles on the hanging rope to start. My fear was genuine. I wanted to avoid falling by all costs. But did you think he just stood there watching? No, he started distracting me... I ignored.. a lot of things happened... maybe even flashbacks from the other times I crossed this path, and the people I used to be with... I believe I remembered their advices and hints on what to do when I wanted to cross this place again. I remember seeing a face of someone I dreamt of before.. It was a guy with shoulder length black hair... I remember I liked him, but there's no one in real life I know with that description so I assumed he was a figment of my imagination. After these flashbacks I found myself falling with my hand still holding the handles on the rope. I was determined not to let go. I failed to pass and now my only chance of survival was to keep holding on to the rope. so what did you think that white clad guy of whom I could only assume was a scientist or researcher was doing?... He was trying to cut off the rope. So I had to find a place to swing to . By swinging I got the rope out of his reach and landed in a weird place. Where? Apparently there was a war in the caves. And I landed on a windowsill of where they kept the weird species they made... those species were extremely huge and looked dangerous. One of them looked dinosaur-like and would have reached out to me if I didn't move to the other sill. I kept moving till I found another huge animal I could not describe. They all seemed to have wings or some sort of limb that would help them fly and I reached the last sill where I found other humans riding something that wasn't so frightening. they took me in. Turned out they were the Royal family of that area getting ready for war and asked me to join in. They resembled Prince Charles and his sons... don't get me wrong, they looked different and I never met any of them anyway, but they sort of resembled them in a way. How did my dream switch to this? I don't know. But I was glad I no longer faced the danger of falling.

The narrow paths might look something like this

That's when I woke up.
I tried to write all the details I could remember. The image of the cave is something I want to keep.
Sounds like a nightmare in a book doesn't it? Well I do have my exams this week and I do dread the outcome of this month since it's my last semester.... I think that is why I had this dream... and I don't feel like it will have a happy ending.

I will try to draw the scenes from my head the next time I have time.