J.R.R. Tolkien's Message of Courage

We will prevail...because there is no other option

J.R.R. Tolkien's Message of Courage

There are few times in a number of years where the public, specifically the American public, becomes receptive to narrative-challenging ideas.

The medical totalitarianism wrought by the governments of the world and, more recently, the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, are two issues which have so blatantly challenged the establishment narrative that ordinary Americans are actually asking questions.

As someone who has covered these issues in some detail, I will be the first to admit that the sheer volume and complexity of the associated information is overwhelming. One must immerse themselves in these topics to have any basic level of competency, much less an ability to speak on them with authority.

A common sentiment I hear, not only from folks who are just beginning their investigations, but from long time fellow travelers is, my God. What can we do, what could anyone do?

I try not to focus so singularly on such an open ended question. Such a feeling of helplessness, while surely understandable, hinges on despair.

I could certainly advocate for becoming organized and discuss the effectiveness of mass non-compliance. As for the base question of What can I do? I agree with Ron Paul’s answer: what do you like to do? I will add the caveat: just do something.

Right now, however, I wish to address each individual reading this column. Equally, I’d like to address myself,  as I am not void of despair.

Like Ludwig von Mises, J.R.R. Tolkien experienced the horrors of WWI firsthand. A largely unwilling participant in the war, Tolkien was pressured into joining the British Expeditionary Force by his family and  by the prevailing, aggressively pro-war sentiment in British society. He eventually joined and later fought in the Battle of the Somme, one of the deadliest battles in the history of warfare. After having experienced WWI, Tolkien saw its horror play out a second time in WWII.

If anyone had reason for despair, it was him.

In the first novel of his epic series, The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien directly addressed the hopelessness of ordinary folk in the face of such overwhelming evil.

Tolkien’s main character, Frodo, is a small creature most accustomed to enjoying the fruits of his garden and the company of friends. One evening, Frodo learns that fate has chosen him to embark upon the terrifying and dangerous quest of destroying the world’s greatest evil. In fact, the quest is so dangerous, it is a virtual suicide mission.

Dismayed, he confides in his friend and mentor, Gandalf, the wizard who brought him this grim news:

“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo.
“So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”

In this time, we must emulate the strength of those who endured hardships greater than our own. We would be wise to follow Tolkien’s very real lessons: find strength and courage in ourselves, our friends, family, and, most of all, our children.

Good will prevail because it must. There is no other option.

You’ll need hope, because this week’s episode of the Liberty Weekly Podcast is one of the darkest episodes I have ever released. In it, I cover eight atrocities committed by the United States during the War in Afghanistan. *Warning: it contains graphic images and descriptions of war crimes* Watch or listen here: http://www.libertyweekly.net/181

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