Sunday, March 23, 2008

Destiny and Choice

In class on Wednesday, while we were discussing destiny vs choice and free will, I couldn't help but notice that so far the only person who has shown complete free will and made choices without any outside pressure is Sam.

I've always been a big fan of Sam and I think that he, not Frodo, is the true ring bearer. And if you think about it, he's the only one who is there by choice.

At the Council of Elrond there was all that pressure upon Frodo to take the ring, silent pressure though it was. So he submitted to it and agreed to take the ring. Sam chose to go along with Frodo without any outside pressure. Only his own sense of right and wrong.

When meeting Galadriel Frodo again tried to give the ring away, was refused and so continued on his quest. Sam saw alarming visions in the mirror, was ready to leave and then chose to stay of his own accord, to see things through.

To me he seems to be the only character who has complete freedom of choice.

What do you think?

-Kelly Huber


efowler said...

I do agree that Sam is there by choice, and attempting not to think too deeply and thus confuse myself on the issue of free will vs. destiny, I think some others have as well. Merry and Pippin chose. There was already a representation for their race and their attendance on the journey was not planned. Yet they took it upon themselves to go. I think all of the hobbits except Frodo was allowed this 'free will.' All of the other characters are simply following the path of destiny that has long been laid before their feet.

Jenni Davis said...

Is Sam there by choice or is it his destiny to be there? After our discussion in class, it makes everything questionable as to each character. This seems to be why Prof. Simms liked this discussion. We can go on and on about destiny vs. free will.
Whether or not Frodo is there because he was pushed by others, I think there is still an aspect of free will. No one can make you do something you don't want to do. If there is a God in Middle Earth, then as my Christian faith has it, he would give the gift of free will to all.

becky said...

I think this observation about Sam is great but I think it is very different that Sam is not actually carrying the ring. He is not having the direct effects- like when the ring was physically heavy around Frodo's neck. Sam wore the "weight of sympathy" but nothing more. The ultimate choice would be the one ot actually carry the ring, but he opts not to. However, Sam has been the most committed to his choice (even though that is the action of loyalty of a 'servent').

twright said...

I agree with efowler. Merry and Pippen also chose. They aren't as close to Frodo as Sam, there fore they did not know to look for him leaving. I think that is the only reason they did not go with Frodo. The only Hobbit that hasn't chosen to go by their own free will is Frodo.

Rocky said...

I disagree with all of you. Sam, Merry, and Pippen’s decision to go was based on their undying sense of friendship. They could no sooner abandon this friendship then say Achilles could abandon his sense honor. He had to fight, and so too the hobbits must go with Frodo. There is only one real choice for them to take. It is as easy for them to make the decision of what to do as it was for Frodo. It must be done, hence they must do it. Doesn’t sound like free will to me.

Just A Knit Wit said...

But don't we choose our friends Rocky?