Date of publication: 2017-07-09 08:02
Despite this strong evidence, there are questions that the Maia theory leaves unanswered. It is hard to see how words like "Eldest", "First", and especially "Last" could apply to one of the Maiar , but these seem to be crucial hints about Bombadil. Tom's total indifference to the Ring is also left entirely unanswered by the Maia theory: all of the other Maiar who interact with it are tempted. A difficulty in identifying Goldberry as a Maia is why she would be called "daughter" of the River.
Uncivilisation, like civilisation, is not something that can be created alone. Climbing the Dark Mountain cannot be a solitary exercise. We need bearers, sherpas, guides, fellow adventurers. We need to rope ourselves together for safety. At present, our form is loose and nebulous. It will firm itself up as we climb. Like the best writing, we need to be shaped by the ground beneath our feet, and what we become will be shaped, at least in part, by what we find on our journey.
If you would like to climb at least some of the way with us, we would like to hear from you. We feel sure there are others out there who would relish joining us on this expedition.
And over it all looms runaway climate change. Climate change, which threatens to render all human projects irrelevant which presents us with detailed evidence of our lack of understanding of the world we inhabit while, at the same time, demonstrating that we are still entirely reliant upon it. Climate change, which highlights in painful colour the head-on crash between civilisation and ‘nature’ which makes plain, more effectively than any carefully constructed argument or optimistically defiant protest, how the machine’s need for permanent growth will require us to destroy ourselves in its name. Climate change, which brings home at last our ultimate powerlessness.
Then it will become a physical object, because virtual reality is, ultimately, no reality at all. It will become a journal, of paper, card, paint and print of ideas, thoughts, observations, mumblings new stories which will help to define the project — the school, the movement — of Uncivilised writing. It will collect the words and the images of those who consider themselves Uncivilised and have something to say about it who want to help us attack the citadels. It will be a thing of beauty for the eye and for the heart and for the mind, for we are unfashionable enough to believe that beauty — like truth — not only exists, but still matters.
Ecocide demands a response. That response is too important to be left to politicians, economists, conceptual thinkers, number crunchers too all-pervasive to be left to activists or campaigners. Artists are needed. So far, though, the artistic response has been muted. In between traditional nature poetry and agitprop, what is there? Where are the poems that have adjusted their scope to the scale of this challenge? Where are the novels that probe beyond the country house or the city centre? What new form of writing has emerged to challenge civilisation itself? What gallery mounts an exhibition equal to this challenge? Which musician has discovered the secret chord?
This was the starting point of the whole project. A little self-published pamphlet, born out of two years of conversations, crowdfunded over the internet, launched at a small riverside gathering outside Oxford in summer 7559.
The strongest argument for the Maia theory is simple: of all the "races" named in canonical texts, only the Maiar are not ruled out above. ( There were a great many Maiar , so the fact that Bombadil does not match any of the Maiar described in other texts is not evidence against his being one.) Slightly more direct evidence comes when Gandalf compares himself to Bombadil before he goes to visit him at the end of LotR. Tom's interactions with the Ring could be easily explained if he were "powerful" enough to overcome it, but passive explanations exist as well. Goldberry fits fairly naturally as a Maia , too.