Christianity and Middle-Earth

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

When did a young Christ first look at the ritual slaughter of the Passover
lamb in realization of what it meant?

"For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us"


~Frodo is the shadow; Christ is the reality~

When did you understand?
Which breath drew knowing harshly in
And gave it flesh and bone and skin,
And sped your heart to beat in sudden
dread on ebon wings?

When did you first perceive?
Was it a thought, a waking sight?
Or telling dream come in the night
With ancient words that spoke to you of
dark and fearful things?

When did you see?

When did you bow your head?
And cup the truth in gentle hands
To drink like salt and desert sands,
And trade for cold black winter
all your summers and your springs.

C.Baillie, c. '03

Monday, March 22, 2010

SLAUGHTER SUNDAY: The Real Power Behind the Loonybiscuit Left

(By way of making myself clear, let me state that the below is not aimed at any specific person; rather the "intellectual" poison - the same that murdered Terri Schiavo - that has contaminated our universities, our politics, our culture, and even yet, works to complete the enslavement of a free people in submission to a very real and very dark Power: in other words, the designation "intellectual" leaves little sooty footprints wherever it goes - and death follows after.)

“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities,
against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world,
against spiritual wickedness in high places.“

Slaves to Power

~Sauron's Captains, Sauron's Kings~

Consume with flame this Middle-Earth; from smoke and ash a new world sings!
So speaks the heart of one who waits impatiently to make all things
In image of his own desire and forged with pride as bold as death,
To rule with stern, ensceptred will the days of all who would draw breath.
Pride like the barren strength of mountains, footed deep their roots of stone,
That fed, unfolds to bleak colossus, sheer and cold and harsh and lone;
A sullen peak of adamant that blocks illuming ray and gleam
Of truth or wisdom, bitter-jealous, lest his power lesser seem,
And shutting out the light knows not that there is nothing else beside.
Behold! the futile world and dim that shivers in the lee of pride!
No Twilight blessed by stars, this field, but plat of dank and nether glooms,
A cavern chill, with echoes fed, that only leads to darker rooms.
But from this realm of self-deceit he calls fell creatures to his will;
Hence too are base, impatient men drawn to his lures and purpose ill.
And when he reigns and Hope is dead and light and love forever gone,
When all the nights that ever were are come together in the One,
When such befalls this Middle-Earth, what place will kindly folk possess?
What vengeances will come on those who sought to live in gentleness,
Who dared to spurn his cruel command and, insolent, refused his grace;
Impertinent, despised the reaching of his iron-gloved embrace?


Fear not, you who would fate resist; from shards of Day comes paradise!
The Lord of Shadow builds new worlds from black and burning stones of ice,
Impatient to let drop the judgment-plumb of his omniscience,
A wisdom higher than the high, an understanding vast, immense!
And to that end his heav’n is ripe with freezing wind and louring cloud,
To spill upon the hint of spring a vile and clinging funeral shroud;
No kindly drape of guardian snow, sun-sparkled soft upon the hills,
But false-heart rime of glazing death, embracing everything it kills;
‘Neath errant glimpse of sackcloth moon, dull red it glimmers in the Night,
A-blush with blood, a-murk with death like cinder-dregs of aconite;
But peering through his prism-glass of lies, he sees a kingdom fair
As day in all its varied hours bending into rainbow there.
And when the sword of Hope is his and life and love starve at his feet,
And crawl the floors of Barad-dur for scraps that fall from Master’s meat;
When all the lies lift up their voice in shout of brazen victory,
And he, their father, jealous dotes, elate in their ascendancy;
When paradise is tilled by frost and planted with the seed of fear,
And e’en the corners poison-sown into a pleasure garden drear,
Will he, great king, ride to the edges of a small, forgotten land
And name it e’er inviolate, secure against the foot of man?


Long-nourished in his dark conceit, he turns his proud hostility
Upon the world of homely things, of peace and of tranquility,
With arrogance like swelling storm that uses tender summer leaf
In all-unknowing treachery to bring the moth’ring tree to grief.
Thus those of quiet labors who would take their ease content at night
With wife and child and suckling babe, are driven, fey, upon his spite
To set their hearts to soak in brine of greed and lust and enmity,
Stone-weighted down with grudges old beneath an unforgiving sea;
A void filled long ago with tears, foam-flecked with ruin, deep and wide,
That damns their children to be floated on a grim, relentless tide,
Cast wild from swell to swell of hate, blown far from any hope of shore,
Until they live and have their being in a doom of endless war.
Behold! the sea-chart of that vast, unshriven, grey and formless world
Is dipped in golden fire-proofing, then to finger-circlet curled;
The slave-ships of a thousand fleets are readied for their master’s breath
To fill the sails of tyranny upon a poisoned fount of death.
And when his ensign proudly flies and he has gained his iron crown
And Hope is shattered on the rocks and life and love lie fathoms down,
No ship will lie in sheltered berth, by ancient craft and wisdom blessed,
To carry one small, broken hero unto healing in the West.

C.Baillie, c. '03


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Thursday, May 08, 2008


~A metaphor for Kalimac~

o near, so near, so far away,
The birthing, dawning grey of gloom
Speaks unveiled Light and Door to day—
There is no bridge in Khazad-dûm.

Behind, the weird of drumbeats calls,
The shadows dance the chant of doom;
Before, the shivered footbridge Falls—
The perishing of Khazad-dûm.

We stumble to the shattered edge
Beside so many unconsoled,
Lost on the brink of sorrow's ledge
In drowning dark in cavern old.

A distant, ancient voice and cry
Bewails the tumbling stony span
That broke the bond of earth and sky,
Untimely parting God and Man.

Those hearts that knew are gone to dust,
Those eyes that saw are tears become,
Slain by the Night that rendered thus
The emptiness of Khazad-dûm.

No power of this world of Men
Can span the void of Primal doom,
Nor ‘til the world’s at last a-mend
Bestride the gulf of Khazad-dûm.

But Hope—the Shepherd—to atone
Has crossed the bridgeless chasm deep,
And, passing o'er, was shaped in Stone;
The Secret Fire bore bloodied feet.

So weeping, wounded, numb, we wait
Until the Builder sets that Stone,
Which, dropped, will key a new-born gate,
Make one the soaring limbs new-flown.

Thus, in the mending of the sun,
The mending of the earth and moon;
When last the weary years are done,
There’ll be a Bridge in Khazad-dûm.

CB © 2008


1) 1 Corinthians 15:21-22 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.

2) 1 Peter 2: 6 “Behold, I lay in Zion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.“

3) “A keystone is the architectural piece at the crown of a vault or arch and marks its apex, locking the other pieces into position.“

4) Revelation 21:3-4 “And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.“


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Friday, December 21, 2007


Well, I ain't dead yet, so that's something.

Meanwhile, Narsil was just the beginning.


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Thursday, November 09, 2006

Entropy Cubed

I'd like to welcome any new readers to this blog, but also apologize to those same readers for the fact that posts, at least for the immediate future, will be infrequent. I unfortunately have to spend most of my extremely limited energy trying not to die of heart failure and thus have little left for more pleasant pursuits.

On top of which is that apart from the actual posts, which I can do via Blogger's simple system, the other aspects - such my design layout or the above in-site links - have to be put up by my young'un, who herself is limited by the fact that she has to work, finish a master's degree, take care of me and do all of the cooking, too. (And considering that she accomplished what she has running two websites with next to no formal training, I think she's done a right good job.) Thus little deteriorations creep in - for instance, the code for the archiving below has gone really weird, resulting in redundancies right, left and center. So if you want to read archived materials, you might be driven less batty if you just start at the beginning and work your way forward.

I slave-drive her as much as is merciful, and there's also the problem of having left a number of inncocent marshmallows abandoned in Moria for about a year and a half now to worry us ( So I'm afraid that you must in patience possess your souls and not give up on us entirely. We hope.



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Monday, October 09, 2006

I am Naked in the Dark, Sam

From all flesh I walk a-sundered here beneath a shrouded sun,
Every dream and every waking thought askew
Like the light that breaks in water or a symmetry undone,
Half a heartbeat, half a breath behind the true.

Far away the fire-mountain sits upon the world’s last mile,
Sending out its sullen breath in roiling fume;
And it settles on the cinder-slopes like dark and poison bile,
Black defilement clinging lovingly to Doom.

I have set my will to iron, but my heart turns more to clay
With each step that takes me further from the West;
For the evil that comes with me waxes stronger day by day
And its menace rides like lead inside my breast.

The world without no barer than the one I have within,
With such drear and dismal furnishings of stone,
Til I wonder at the wasteland - is it out or is it in?
This desert that I stumble through alone.

A voice comes knocking, knocking on the doorpost of my soul,
Asking questions that I scarce can understand;
His words are meant to comfort, words to cosset and cajole,
But they crawl like wounded things upon the sand.

Bits and scraps endure to reach me in this empty place I hold
And I wonder at the shapes upon my ear,
For they bring a brief remembrance of forgotten things of old
Ere they melt into the desolation here.

Frantic, questing little mem’ries on my heart and on my mind,
Dancing, prancing little yearnings on my night,
Hunting eagerly for pathways to the world they left behind,
To a place of springing green and summer light.

I can feel the little mem’ries as they dance against the gloom,
Searching out the door they hope will set them free,
And their prancing makes me weary in this barren prison-room
Even as I long to join their company.

There was color once and song, if these rememberings speak true,
Buried deep beneath the rubble of old dreams;
Rainy meads like honey-water, blossom yellow, sky of blue
Scent of pine and pebbles washed by eager streams.

But the Road I walk is deep with poisoned earth and bitter ashes,
And the ashes leach the scant remembrance grey,
Like as the wind sears useless tears from sorrow-laden lashes,
The memories dry up and blow away.

But the voice comes knocking, knocking on the doorpost of my heart
And the emptiness is gentled for a time,
As I watch him break the wafer and give me the greater part,
As I swallow water dry as ancient wine.

Weary feet and weary marches, day by dreary day and dim,
And the fire-mountain coming ever nigh;
But the flame upon the mountain is now answered from within,
Spinning fierce and wild about my inward eye.

The Fire rises sudden with a surging, pounding will,
Blazing round the cardinal acre of my soul;
Spilling nether-glow of nothing and I walk in shadow still,
A fragment dark against the darker whole.

Whirl of flame and wheel of burning red against a starless night,
Whispers murmuring and singing into thrall,
Calling back the perished memories, the morning and the light,
Even as I tremble by the crimson wall.

One by one the sweet rememb’rings cut the darkness like a knife
And I smell again the meadow wet with dew.
From the bleached bones of my present I am all at once in life,
Tasting all the lovely things I ever knew.

It lies! comes word of warning from the deepest of my heart
And old habit turns me swiftly on my heel,
But at my fore new memories spring out in sudden start,
New-bright and clear and quickening and real.

From the cruel and fiery mountain I can hear the tempter calling
Crooning promises as fragrant as the rose,
While the dear, enchanted petals of my yesterdays are falling,
Swirling round in drifts as deep as mountain snows.

I see doorways in the circle, pathways through the Ring of Fire
And beyond the grass grows greening in the sun,
Like the hills and little valleys of the lost-forever Shire,
And the Fire whispers urgent, Hurry! Run!

Then the voice comes knocking, knocking at the doorpost of my mind,
Bringing succour with its small and daily things;
Even as I leap to refuge like a hurt and bleeding hind,
From the edges of my soul the Fire sings.


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Thursday, April 06, 2006

The Field of Cormallen

Guy over at Damascus Road has written of the grief and burden of his son’s chronic illness and how that long suffering has beaten at his own walk with Christ, battering him at times into the ditches of bitterness and weary despair.

I immediately longed to comfort him, to say something, anything, that might ease his hurt and fear, but I don’t know the words to use. Sometimes it feels almost an impertinence to think that I have any wisdom to impart to those enduring their own Mordor, especially when it involves the potential loss of a child; for all the length and breadth and darkness of my own treks through the Land of Shadow, still they have been on my own account and for my own suffering: I have never yet been confronted with terror for the life of my offspring. What do I then say that speaks to that?


The ditches are familiar territory, if not the impetus. I know well what it means to tumble into them, ditches that get deeper and wider until they become ravines, great gashes in the malignant soil of a very Old Forest, chasms leading only one way, implacable, unmerciful, and inescapable, into cold, cold Night. I’ve followed them many a time.

In that Night, I too have beaten in vain upon the gates to the city, invisible and unheard. I know the bewilderment of that barren place well; I’ve seen the worn pavement and the splintery wood and even the brown stain of other, bloodied, fists; the sign of those who have come before, who are beside, even those yet to come—the traces of their anguish and confusion and rage have left marks for all to see: other Christians have been here and other Christians will be here again, at the uncaring gates of an uncaring heaven.

My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

Time after time I beat and I pound and I screech and I weep, until at the end, long past exhaustion or even pain, limp and chilled death-cold with hopelessness, no longer making demands or pleadings, caring only that deep water is closing about my soul, I cry, with a sudden simple need, “Lord, save me!“

And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him…

And then I see. Only a little at first, but after each idiot trek down the ditches into the malice of a darker power, I see more, then more and then more, and here finally, I understand.

I understand that those unyielding portals were never the gates they pretended to be. The ditches of Night cannot lead to the doorway of Light. I have been lost and wandering and not where I meant to be at all.

But here, now…

And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him…

…my eyes are opened as I grasp that wounded hand.

I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.

Then the uncaring battlements of the Dark Tower crumble, and the imposter gates of the Dark Lord crash down like the last furious thunder of a mighty storm, and the Eye trembles and in a final gout of malice flames out and dies and is nothing, and the mountains round about fall, and the steams swirl apart and the dust is blown by a clear west wind, and there upon the plains of that vast and fruitless ruin comes a still, small voice.

And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.

And now I can see clearly again and there is a green world beyond the edges of this dying one; we are ringed about with Life and Light and sweet new air; there, though my eyes were blinded and I could not behold them, are all the Shire-gardens we could ever desire, and the leaves of the forests are golden-bright, and the walls of the city gleam white in the sun, and the Gate—the Door—is open wide, forever and ever and ever. If I keep moving, though it be with canes and crutches or on hands and knees, I’ll get there. We’ll get there.

It is enough, beloved Lord. It is enough.


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Monday, March 27, 2006

How Long, O Lord, Holy and True?

The Dutch are already euthanizing babies. The English aren’t too far behind, if this article in the Sunday Times is any indication (via American Thinker):

“In a submission to a two-year inquiry into premature babies by the Nuffield Council on Bioethics, the college says: “Some weight should be given to the economic considerations as there is a real issue in neonatal units of ‘bed blocking’, whereby women have to be transferred in labour to other units, compromising both their and their babies’ care.“

The statement reflects a growing view among child specialists that babies born under 25 weeks should be denied intensive care and allowed to die.Next month the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health will debate a motion at its annual conference that it is “unethical“ to provide intensive care routinely to babies born under 25 weeks. In practice, they would only be saved in exceptional circumstances. “

Bed-blocker. What a lovely epithet for a helpless infant whose only sin is to be born too early to survive without medical help. And yet, it does make for a horrible kind of commonsense: why burden the socialist health care system with sick children? For that matter, why burden it with cripples and decrepit old ladies?

Here in the States, we’re a bit behind our European cousins in the infanticide division, but never fear – we’ll get there soon enough.

It’s already all right to starve to death innocent adults in the land of the free. And to not just starve them by removing a tube that perhaps merely bypasses faulty swallowing equipment in an otherwise healthy human being, but to deny them the least comforting taste or drop of anything food-related, lest a calorie somehow derail the project.

Just think: Grandma’s between you and $500,000. She’s not really all there, so it’s not hard to find a lawyer and a judge to agree that her life isn’t of value to herself or others, and we all know that food and drink are medical treatment, and she wouldn’t want to be kept alive artificially, so the rest follows naturally.

Thus, in a situation where Grandma would have once been at the least tenderly hand-fed, even if she could only take a teaspoonful of broth at a time, we demand that she die with her mouth parched shut and her lips cracking and her soul quivering with the bewildered misery of what those cute grandchildren really think of her.

After all, Grandma would want you to have that big new house and that luxury cruise, wouldn’t she? The fact that she got to spend her declining years looking forward to being starved to death as soon as was legally possible couldn’t possibly have affected her earthly happiness: Grandma always was one to go on about Duty.

Or maybe you’re one of those pure souls who would ONLY starve Grandma in the name of Selfless Love and that Omnipotent Deity “Dignity.“ By these lofty standards, spoonfuls of Chicken Noodle Cup-a-Soup held to wrinkled lips violate all principles of rectitude and decency and possibly even the Geneva Convention.

Or maybe you think that a man should be able to starve to death his estranged wife if he wants to: he couldn’t possibly be doing it out of any motive apart from sincere concern for her unwritten last wishes. After all, he IS her husband and we all know that a wife is chattel, a unit of property to be disposed of as His Highness wills. By gum, other, less civilized, peoples can merely mutter “I divorce you, I divorce you, I divorce you“ and get rid of their wives that way; we've got to prove that we Westerners are more dedicated to women's rights than barbarians are, after all!

Or maybe all you care about is you: “if I publicly support the people who say starving people to death is wrong, then I might end up on a respirator for ten years against my stated and written and clearly legal wishes. Damn this 'laying down one’s life for others' business. I will risk no hurt to me, for I am precious!“

And then there’s the “if the Republicans are against it, then it must be right!“ mindset. I begin to suspect that we could use preemies for stir-fried cat food without other opposition as long as the Republicans were against it.

I’ve got a suggestion for all of the above enablers of legal murder: you might want to search the Scriptures daily and see if you can pull together a good enough defense to get you through Judgment Day. Maybe George Felos can help you. And to the I am the Master of My Fate crowd, let me point out that pigheadedness won’t survive that particular fire. God gives to each of us the freedom to choose our courses in life: in death every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord, even if hell follows after.

(This by the way, does not mean that I think that everyone who doesn't become a Christian in this life is automatically damned. Think C.S. Lewis and The Last Battle. Many a man or woman whom God has not called to Christ in this life will awake, I think, like Faramir [to revert to Tolkien] to look on their king with a light of knowledge and love kindled in their eyes.)

But I pray for a better revenge. I, sister in heart to Terri Schiavo, I, crippled and broken and of little practical use to the greater society—I pray rather that the judgment upon you each will be this: that in life you will be struck down onto trembling knees by unapproachable Light, and that out of your terror and sudden shame you will cry—as we all must or perish—

“Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?“


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