The Life And Choices Of Feanor

Discussion in 'Debates' started by Elan Morin Tedronai, Mar 14, 2005.

  1. Elan Morin Tedronai

    Elan Morin Tedronai The Forsaken

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    Possibly one of Arda's most intriguing - and definently my favourite - characters, Feanor had a great influence during the First Age that could be felt even unto the War Of The Ring. Now this isn't technically gonna be a debate, but Id like to hear everyones opinion on this character. Do you consider him evil, selfish, greedy ? Or do you see him as a misguided soul ?

    Do you agree with the choices he makes, and are his follies entirely his own fault ? As I see it, Melkor had a great influence on Feanor - turning him against the Valar, and plunging his life into tragedy after the death of his father. Is Melkor entirely to blame, or is it all Feanor's fault ? What do you think of the animosity between the half-brothers, and do you think Fate had a major hand in his life. After all, without the Noldor's rebellion, Elves such as Gil-galad, Elrond, Galadriel and Glorfindel would not be in Middle-Earth during the War Of The Ring, and without these people, the Dark Lord may well have gotten his way.

    Discuss.
     
  2. Liadan

    Liadan Insert Title Here

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    I'd have to say that it's not entirely Feanor's fault OR Melkor's fault. True, Melkor was evil, but then he's SUPPOSED to be evil. It's Melkor.

    However, Feanor was greedy enough to be tempted by Melkor, and his heart was too warped by jealousy and arrogance to heed the Valar, which I think was a major mistake. He is selfish and greedy, but he also genuinely loved his father, and cared for his sons, even if he disliked his half-brothers. But the half-brother thing might also be due to the fact that maybe he viewed this as a betrayal of his mother, Miriel. I don't think that he was evil, just misguided, and human (although he was an elf, but I'm sure you know what I mean). Everyone makes mistakes, except for divine, god-like beings.

    As for fate... I've never believed in any such thing as fate, and neither did Tolkien, in terms of controlling people's actions to that extent. I don't think that it ever said in LotR (the books) that there was any predestination for anyone.

    What's your opinion, Elan?
     
  3. isengard111

    isengard111 The Master Chief

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    Feanor made his own choices. He is responsible for his actions, as are we all.
     
  4. Firiath

    Firiath Halfling barbarian

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    Of course he is.
    Whatever, I agree with LadyDragonHeart, but I think I wouldn't say that Feanor was selfish. Well, not too selfish, if you know what I mean.
    After the death of his father he was in despair, which made him want to take revenge. And this will to take revenge might have been so strong that he couldn't... umm, how can I express that... that he couldn't think about what was right and what wasn't.
    OK, now I have to admit that it's long ago when I read about him. I think I should read it once more, just to ensure that it's right what I just said.
     
  5. Elan Morin Tedronai

    Elan Morin Tedronai The Forsaken

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    But all evil "had its beginning in Melkor" because of his disharmony during the Music. So Feanor's arrogance, greed and othre bad qualities all had their beginnings in Melkor.

    Also, remember Gandalf's quote, "Nothing was evil in the beginning, even Sauron was not so."

    Im not so sure about this, Im looking for the quote at the moment, but Im having trouble finding it. It said something along the lines of "only Men were not bound by the Music of the Ainur." Meaning that Men were the only ones with "true" freedom of will. If I find the quote, I'll post it ASAP.
     
  6. Lady_of_Shalott

    Lady_of_Shalott Weaving the Magic Web

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    Yes, do find that. It sounds quite interesting, although not very Tolkien-like. I don't remember that at all.

    Feanor was selfish, to an extent. I can't think of the right word to describe him. For sure, Melkor was the greatest reason why Feanor made most of his choices, but Feanor didn't have to make those choices, because they were just that: choices (unless of course that no free will thing is true).
     
  7. Elan Morin Tedronai

    Elan Morin Tedronai The Forsaken

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    Okay, I found that quote. Its in The Silmarillion, "Of The Beginning Of Days."

     
  8. Lady_of_Shalott

    Lady_of_Shalott Weaving the Magic Web

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    hmm... lol, I don't exactly see how that tells us that elves have no free will...
     
  9. Elan Morin Tedronai

    Elan Morin Tedronai The Forsaken

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    It doesn't say they have no free will, but that Men have a "virtue to shape their lifes....beyond the Music of the Ainur" therefore, Men's lives are not bound to the Music, "which is as fate to all things else" - including the Elves.

    What it's saying, is that Men can shape their own lives, unlike all other races, who are bound to the Music (of Eru and the Valar).

    So, does this mean that Tolkien's Elve's all had a predetermined Fate ? What does everyone think ?
     
  10. Liadan

    Liadan Insert Title Here

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    According to several different versions, yes, that does seem to hold true, BUT I don't think that everything was planned. Maybe the discord in the music could be represented by Feanor's oath and Melkor. However, I don't think Iluvatar actually said: "Melkor will become evil and Feanor son of Finwe will be influenced by him," etc.
     
  11. Falagar

    Falagar Death

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    I wouldn't say that Fëanor's oath represented was part in the discord, rather a result of it. Ilúvatar didn't necessarily say that things would happen the way they did, but I believe he knew they would.

    Personally, Fëanor has been my favorite character since my first read-through of the Silmarillion and still is. Of course, I don 't agree with most of his actions, but I can understand them, which I think is what makes him so interesting. He can't take the blame alone, there were many factors that were deciding (Míriel's 'death', the first such in Valinor, and Finwë taking a new wife, for example).
    Even God-like beings sometimes do, as some of Tolkien's notes in Mogoth's Ring regarding the Valar show.