The Lord of the Rings (The Lord of the Rings, #1-3)The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

One could spend a lifetime writing about Tolkien's themes, characters, symbolism, language -- really, the whole world that he created in this book and others. I'll just present some questions to consider when reading this book.

What can this book teach us about the struggle between good and evil?

Frodo and Sam recognize that they are playing some role in a grand narrative. What role are you playing? And what is the grand narrative in which you exist?

What does the Ring symbolize?

What does the Ring's influence on Men (i.e., the race of human beings in the book) tell us about human nature?

How is Aragorn a Christ figure? (For example, consider Isaiah 53:2-3.)

How is Gandalf a Christ figure?

How is Frodo a Christ figure? (Perhaps consider Isaiah 53:4-12.)

What does the book imply about Tolkien's view of the environment? Or, how does environmentalism permeate the book?

How does the book reflect the influence of C. S. Lewis?

I realize that one could raise plenty of questions related to the historical-political context in which Tolkien was writing. Here I have focused more on his Roman Catholic background and how that may have affected his writing.

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