The Lord of the Rings is a monumental work of literature. It combines so many aspects in subtle ways that make it appealing and enthralling, that it's difficult to break them down.
But as most writers do, and as is shown in HoME [the History of Middle-earth], Tolkien built his story piece by piece; often reworking and re-writing. The themes in the Lord of the Rings are not in the story by chance. And it's worth studying them.
Joseph Pearce, in his book Tolkien: Man & Myth brings up the notion of five great themes in the Lord of the Rings. I would say there are Seven.
• Sacrificial Love.
• Exaltation of the Humble.
• Providence and hope.
• Forgiveness and Mercy.
• Conflict of Good and Evil.
• Industrial destruction.
These themes are not just humanitarian in origin.
They have their origin in Tolkien's own values and beliefs which are Christian. Forgiveness, Sacrificial Love, Humility, Hope; these are all lovely in themselves but find a much more profound and eternal origin and expression in light of Jesus Christ and His Salvation.
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