The Spiritual World of the Hobbit

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People who have never heard of the book will pick it up and people who have read it will read it again. She began reporting full-time for The Oklahoman two years later and has served as a beat writer covering a wide Log in or subscribe to read and leave comments. Contact Us. This book is certainly useful as a reference and a further reading resource, however the author has eliminated some important influence by nearly 'erasing' all mention to Tolkien's Catholic faith and he constantly With summaries of the prurient facts of the histories of Middle Earth, details from the life and personal writings of Tolkien, and references from the scriptures which certainly influenced Tolkien's writing, a complex picture of the art put into the making of The Hobbit comes to light.

This book is certainly useful as a reference and a further reading resource, however the author has eliminated some important influence by nearly 'erasing' all mention to Tolkien's Catholic faith and he constantly makes erroneous assumptions and fails to support them. I usually do not point to specific passages, but the opening paragraph of Chapter 16 really incensed me. Granted not all readers of this book may have read the Bible, but every US high school student is taught that definition at some point, regardless of faith background.

If even a small percentage of the readers of this Christian interpretation of the themes in Tolkien's "The Hobbit" are not coming from a Christian background or a basic high school education, I would be incredibly surprised. It was a slap in the face as a reader to have so simple a fact drilled home with no tact. In the end, the book was overall a good read, but more for reference than an actual read. Apr 24, Joseph rated it really liked it. I found this delightful.

A bit of a stretch in areas, but well worth the small effort to read.

Nov 15, Cheryl rated it really liked it. Why read this book? Bell advises the reader to read this book along with reading The Hobbit. I would second that recommendation. Read a chapter in The Hobbit, then read the explanation in this book.

Seeing Christ in 'The Hobbit'?

Another similar spiritual theme is that Bilbo the Hobbit character is on a journey becoming who he is created to be. He is changed. Again this is very much like us becoming more Christlike as we go through our journey here on earth. By the very nature of the book, The Hobbit, that is, it being a fantasy novel means that not everything has to mean something.

It is make-believe after all and is meant for entertainment. God alone only knows how much spiritual stuff J.


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Tolkien actually meant on purpose to put into his book as opposed to it simply slipping in from just him being a spiritual Christian person. Either way it was interesting and entertaining to see some of the spiritual themes and parallels. If you are a J. Tolkien fan this is a must-read unless perhaps you already own that 12 volume set that I mentioned earlier. If you are a fan of C. If you like Christian fantasy books in general you will like this book, too. Interestingly, another Hobbit movie is set to come to the theaters in early December of this year. I recommend reading the book and this one as well before seeing the movie.

I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Jan 21, Miamikel SS rated it really liked it. Have you ever walked past a window of a store and looked in, walked by then stopped, turned around and walked back to get a better look? That's THIS book. It's a book that will make you say hmmmmm. It's colorful yet complex. It's whimsical yet spiritual. It's masterfully crafted. Page after page you realize that this author has done his homework. The reflection of his thoughts, ideas and proposals on The Hobitt from a spiritual perspective is unique, witty and thought provoking.

I know you might Have you ever walked past a window of a store and looked in, walked by then stopped, turned around and walked back to get a better look? I know you might be thinking elves, goblins, dragons - that's mythology, not spirituality! However, a closer look under the pages of the artfully crafted cover gives you so much more to read. He reminds us that at times, key things to consider are like Bilbao - have a strong moral compass and a strong character.

He reminds us that they remain constant - it's who they are and how they think, much like many passages in the New Testament have shown us. Being a leader is perfecting an existing craft, one we can learn from. Bilbao is no Abraham - or Noah, or Joseph per se - but the premise that we can all take that journey towards betterment, seeking, finding Truly a different yet refreshing read, one that has been a long time in coming. This book is not a light book. It will make you think. You may have to back up and re-read passages again. Grab your favorite pen. Or highlighter. Take notes. You'll be glad you did.

Any reflection of such is my own. May 20, Elaine rated it it was amazing. Author: James Stuart Bell. Plot: With the recent Hobbit movies, interest in Tolkien's world has been re-sparked and with it comes new books such as this one that gives a better glimpse into the enchanting world of Middle-Earth. Our conversation hit a bump when we couldn't decide if Gandalf was a prophet or an angel. And we get a chapter by chapter look at how Bilbo grows and matures throughout the book, with insights into Tolkien's life and viewpoints.

It's all highly fascinating. I couldn't put it down for very long. It was beautifully written with hardly any repetition and jam-packed with interesting tidbits. My only objection is that there wasn't any additional information on Beorn. He's such an interesting, mysterious character.

The Spiritual World of the Hobbit (bk)

Oh well. Rating: PG- 12 and up, for reading level. If you take a closer look at the text, you can learn a lot of things about the little hobbit and the world he lives in. I thought it was a very good book and that it could be interesting to be engaged in a study of it. During their journey to the Lonely Mountain, where the dragon lives, they have to manage a lot of difficult situations and when they at last arrive and the dragon is killed they are besieged.

Five armies of different peoples meet and they fight a big battle until in the end Bilbo can return home. In my essay I want to talk about the development of this hobbit and his growth of character throughout his adventures, from a comfortable little man to a hero, who is important for the fate of many people.

I think that this development is very interesting, for this little man seems to be the exact opposite of a hero, but in the end you see that he is able to do great things.

Publisher Description

If you want to talk about a hobbit you naturally have to know what a hobbit is, first. Hobbits are very small people, who have about half the size of a usual man and live in the Shire in Middle-earth. So already their outward appearance does not speak for them being heroic figures. In addition Hobbits do not like adventures or unexpected things, they live quite and peaceful, like smoking pipes, eat many times a day and live in so called hobbit-holes, comfortable holes in the ground. People who are never involved in anything unusual are popular and highly regarded because they correspond to the image of a good hobbit.

They are typical petit bourgeois, who like to sit in their little, well-tended gardens and talk about the weather while smoking their pipes. And although there are different sorts of hobbits, of which some are more likely to have adventures you would never expect one of them to journey to the other end of Middle-earth and fight in a big battle.


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Bilbo Baggins is a hobbit, who lives in his hobbit-hole, named Bag End, in Hobbiton. He is the son of Bungo Baggins, who built Bag End, and Belladonna Took, and about fifty years old when the story starts. The Bagginses are very respected in their neighbourhood because they are rich and especially because they have never been involved in anything unusual.

So Bilbo has something of both sides in him, although he has never shown any sign of Tookish behaviour until the story starts. At the beginning of the story Bilbo hates adventures and wants his life to stay as it is, peaceful and well ordered. You can see that plainly when Gandalf arrives at Bag End and starts a conversation about an adventure. Bilbo is annoyed of him because he does not want to talk about such a bad thing as an adventure with such a strange man. We get to know this mainly by the things Bilbo says, his actions and the comments of the narrator.

There is a third person narrator, who usually follows the story through the eyes of Bilbo for he knows his thoughts and emotions, but whose knowledge is not limited to that of Bilbo, for he already knows who Bilbo is talking to, before Bilbo becomes aware of it. So Bilbo tells him directly to go away and explains that the people in his village do not want to have adventures. He is divided, the Baggins side is strictly against the adventure, but the Took side wants him to dare it.

This division can also be seen the next morning. He wants to protest, but Gandalf does not let him tell his objections. He tells Bilbo to run and meet the dwarves and Bilbo simply obeys. That is how he gets into this adventure. When they arrive in Rivendell and stay two weeks there, Bilbo is happy about him having left his home for the first time. It is the first time that he does not wish himself back home living his well- ordered life. In this part of the story Bilbo is separated from the others and has to manage the dangerous situation inside of the mountain on his own. But he already is more experienced than he was at the beginning of the story and although he is afraid and first feels for his pipe and matches, which he fortunately does not have, he finally does the right thing, he draws his sword and goes on.

This is an important point in his development because as he is alone he has to make his own decisions and take responsibility for himself because if he does not do it he will be caught and killed. We can see his growing independence for example when he immediately holds his sword in front of him to protect himself, when he notices Gollum, and when he masters the riddle-game. The most respectable thing in this chapter is, that Bilbo immediately notices the danger he is in, when Gollum finds out that Bilbo has his ring, and he turns and runs away, and that he has the idea to follow Gollum to the exit, because otherwise he would be hopelessly lost in the tunnels.

Of course, he would not be able to do this if he the ring did not fell upon his finger and he did not find out that it makes invisible very soon, but nevertheless it shows a good deal of presence of mind. For his escape from the mountain he even gets respect from the dwarves, who until then have seen him as totally useless. But the next chapter shows again at some points that Bilbo is all the same often helpless because of his physical stature. In the mountain he had no problems, because hobbits are at home in tunnels, but outside he has a lot of them.