Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Is It True?

The quote that struck me in reading “On Fairy Stories” appears on page 88. In response to the question “Is it true?” Tolkien writes primarily that “If you have built your little world well, yes: it is true in that world.” He goes on to write on a deeper, more meaningful answer to this question, bringing up his argument about Christianity that we discussed toward the end of class today. He writes that the “Birth of Jesus Christ is the euchatastrophe of Man’s history,” describing the fairy-story elements in the Christian story (88). Tolkien’s defense of sub-creation within his devout commitment to Catholicism is truly moving and makes me wonder what his perspective was on other religions. He writes of the Secondary world of sub-creation commingling with the Primary world within the Christian story, that the mythical and magical elements of Catholic theology have merged with history and reality and states that the resulting story “is supreme; and it is true” (89). 

I suppose my question is, what are the implications of this for other religious beliefs? 
If Tolkien could defend his own faith as myth of the truest form, what did he have to say about the beliefs of others from different traditions? 
Do the Primary and Secondary worlds merge in any other religious (or other) tradition or moment in history?

(Does this train of thought make sense?)

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