Secret Fire

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Qtpie 01/Dec/2006 at 05:19 PM
Commander of Mordor Points: 22280 Posts: 12880 Joined: 17/Nov/2005
I’m a bit confused with the Secret Fire. I know that the Secret Fire is what gives life to all of Eru’s creations, but I’m still a bit muddled up about it.

’...(and seeing that I have taught you much and set brightly the Secret Fire within you)’ BoLT: The Music of the Ainur

From the quote it seems to me that each of the Ainur had a piece of the Secret Fire within them. Is the Secret Fire also set within the Children of Illuvatar or just the Ainur?
halfir 01/Dec/2006 at 06:47 PM
Emeritus Points: 46547 Posts: 43664 Joined: 10/Mar/2002

I know that the Secret Fire is what gives life to all of Eru’s creations

You have answered your own question by this statement.X( Read the interchange between Aule and Iluvatar regarding the dwarves to see the difference between ’making’ and ’creating’ .

Alcarináro 01/Dec/2006 at 06:52 PM
Banned Points: 14162 Posts: 14178 Joined: 24/Sep/2003
The Secret Fire, the Flame Imperishable, is the sole source of souls. The quote means that Eru has given to the Ainur free will, sentient life. Everything that has free will has, with the exception of Eru (who is above all things), been given that free will from the Flame.
Qtpie 01/Dec/2006 at 07:48 PM
Commander of Mordor Points: 22280 Posts: 12880 Joined: 17/Nov/2005
halfir: Silly me , I didn’t even realize it. Anyways I will go back and re-read that passage. Thanks!
First Age 03/Dec/2006 at 05:04 AM
Master of Isengard Points: 263 Posts: 38 Joined: 08/Nov/2006
When Gandalf is battling the Balrog in Moria, he says ’I am a servant of the secret fire’ . Does that mean he is a servant of Eru or does it have another meaning? It just seems an odd way to phrase it to me, why does he merely not say ’I am a servant of Eru?’
Mithrandír 03/Dec/2006 at 05:18 AM
Linguist of Lothlorien Points: 3280 Posts: 3291 Joined: 13/Mar/2006

Does that mean he is a servant of Eru or does it have another meaning?

Gandalf was, in fact,was a servant of Eru, because he was one of the Istari which came to middle Earth, and i think that this would not have been done(the sending of the Istari to Middle Earth) withought him knowing this.

halfir 03/Dec/2006 at 06:07 AM
Emeritus Points: 46547 Posts: 43664 Joined: 10/Mar/2002
First Age: Effectively yes, as the secret fire is the same as the Flame Imperishable. Bear in mind that Gandalf is duelling with a creature of flame- a Balrog- a servant of the dark fire that destroys, whereas Gandalf is a servant of the  secret flame, the Flame Imperishable which gives life. The force of destruction- the dark flame of Udun is fighting against the force of creation the secret fire, the flame of Anor, and thus Tolkien uses imagery that is consistent with that conflict. Moreover, Eru is never named as such in the text of LOTR.
Ædeling Beorhtlig 03/Dec/2006 at 08:53 PM
Horse-groom of the Mark Points: 551 Posts: 892 Joined: 18/May/2005

When Gandalf is battling the Balrog in Moria, he says ’I am a servant of the secret fire’ . Does that mean he is a servant of Eru or does it have another meaning?

Maybe Gandalf is talkking about all living creatures, because as posted above the Secret Fire is inside all of Eru’s creations. Gandalf worked to free Middle-Earth from the clutches of evil, he put himself in a life of servitude working for the free people

What about the Dwarves, Eru did not create them, Alue did, did the still have the Secret Fire?

KingODuckingham 03/Dec/2006 at 08:57 PM
Grey Counsellor of Isengard Points: 15053 Posts: 15390 Joined: 27/Aug/2006
Eru is never named as such in the text of LOTR. I was talking to my dad about that, and he said he doesn’t recognize Eru as canonical! I laughed in his face, then realized he was serious *g*. Then he said he didn’t recognize the Sil or HoME or UT as canonical and only thought of works published during Tolkien’s life as such. Just thought I’d give you all a laugh. Or a thought, depending on how seriously you take him.