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 Communication, Farspeaking and 'mental telepathy'
Posted: Jun 27 2007, 11:24 AM

Balrog Slayer

Group: Tauristo
Posts: 2,305
Member No.: 1
Joined: 20-October 04

by J. R. R. Tolkien
Edited with introduction, glossary, and additional notes by Carl F. Hostetter

The essay entitled sanwe-kenta, 'Enquiry into the Communication of Thought', is extant in eight typescript pages, paginated 1 through 8 by Tolkien. It is presented and (self-)described as a "rsum" (see below) or "abbreviation" (MR:415) by an unnamed redactor.1 of another work of the same title that the Elvish Loremaster Pengolodh "set at the end of his Lammas or 'Account of Tongues'" (ibid.).2 While thus a separate document, it nonetheless is closely associated and no doubt closely contemporary with the longer essay that Tolkien titled Quendi and Eldar (the bulk of which has been published in The War of the Jewels), with which it is located among Tolkien's papers. A note on one of the title pages of Quendi and Eldar indicates that the sanwe-kenta was intended by Tolkien as an adjunct to the longer essay: "To which is added an abbreviation of the sanwe-kenta or 'Communication of Thought'" (ibid.). Furthermore, Christopher Tolkien notes that his father used the title Quendi and Eldar not only for the longer essay, but also to include the sanwe-kenta and another brief essay on the origin of Orcs (the latter published in Morgoth's Ring, cf. pp. 415 ff.). All three essays are extant in typescript versions that are "identical in general appearance" (MR:415).

The association of the sanwe-kenta with Quendi and Eldar also extends to terminology and subject matter. For example, the sanwe-kenta employs certain linguistic terms defined and discussed in some detail in Quendi and Eldar (e.g. tengwesta, lambe) in a manner that assumes that the definitions and distinctions given there are already known.

Further, the sanwe-kenta amplifies certain statements in the Note on the 'Language of the Valar' that concludes Quendi and Eldar: for instance, that "It was the special talent of the Incarnate, who lived by necessary union of hra and fa, to make language" (WJ:405); and, more strikingly, that "the Valar and Maiar could transmit and receive thought directly (by the will of both parties) according to their right nature", although their "use of bodily form ... made this mode of communication less swift and precise" (406).

It likewise amplifies upon "the speed with which ... a tengwesta may be learned by a higher order", by the aid of direct "transmission and reception of thought" in conjunction with "warmth of heart" and "desire to understand others", as exemplified by the quickness with which Finrod learned the Borian language (ibid.).3

According to Christopher Tolkien, one of the copies of Quendi and Eldar is "preserved in a folded newspaper of March 1960", and notes written by his father on this paper and on the cover of the other copy include the sanwe-kenta among the Appendices to Quendi and Eldar (MR:415). Christopher concludes that this complex of material, including the sanwe-kenta, "was thus in being when the newspaper was used for this purpose, and although, as in other similar cases, this does not provide a perfectly certain terminus ad quem, there seems to be no reason to doubt that it belongs to 1959-60" (ibid.).

The eight typescript pages presented here appear to comprise the sole extant text of the sanwe-kenta; if it was preceded by any typescript or manuscript versions, they have apparently not been preserved. In the top margin of the first of these pages, Tolkien has written the three lines of its present title in ink. He has also numbered the first seven pages in the upper right-hand corner by hand, and written the notation "sanwe" to the left of the numeral on each of these pages, also in ink; but the page number and notation are typed in the same positions on the eighth page. This suggests that Tolkien may have paused, or perhaps originally concluded the essay, somewhere on the seventh page, and written the short title and page number on those pages he had typed at that point, before the eighth page was begun. If so, he may have done so at the break on the seventh page indicated by a blank space before the paragraph beginning "If we speak last of the 'folly' of Manwe". The typescript has also been emended at points by Tolkien in ink, chiefly in correction of typographical errors, though on a few occasions supplying a change of wording. Save in a very few instances these changes have been incorporated silently in this edition.

In this edition, Tolkien's text has also been reorganized slightly in the matter of notes. On the first page of the typescript (only) Tolkien used numbered footnotes, but as throughout Quendi and Eldar, elsewhere in the sanwe-kenta he at points interrupts his text with notes, typically typed on the line following, or within a few lines of, the notation mark, even where this interrupts a sentence (cf. WJ:359). Christopher Tolkien's practice in editing Quendi and Eldar of collecting Tolkien's notes at the end of the essay, distinguishing them from editorial notes by referring to them in the text with Note 1, Note 2, etc. in parentheses, has been adopted here for most of these notes. However, seven very brief notes, which simply supply Quenya glosses of terms under discussion (those for sanwe-latya, sma, lta, indo, pahta, avanir, and aquapahtie), have been placed in the main text parenthetically.

A brief editorial glossary of the Elvish forms encountered in the sanwe-kenta has been supplied following Tolkien's notes, as a convenient place for citing further information relevant to them from other texts (especially Quendi and Eldar, various texts in Morgoth's Ring, and The Etymologies) and for most of the specifically linguistic editorial commentary.

I am grateful to Christopher Tolkien for providing this text for publication in Vinyar Tengwar, and to Christopher Gilson, Wayne Hammond, Christina Scull, Arden Smith, and Patrick Wynne for their assistance in preparing this edition.


"Enquiry into the Communication of Thought"
(rsum of Pengolodh's discussion)
At the end of the Lammas Pengolodh discusses briefly direct thought-transmission (sanwe-latya "thought-opening"), making several assertions about it, which are evidently dependent upon theories and observations of the Eldar elsewhere treated at length by Elvish loremasters. They are concerned primarily with the Eldar and the Valar (including the lesser Maiar of the same order). Men are not specially considered, except in so far as they are included in general statements about the Incarnates (Mirranwi). Of them Pengolodh says only: "Men have the same faculty as the Quendi, but it is in itself weaker, and is weaker in operation owing to the strength of the hra, over which most men have small control by the will".

Pengolodh includes this matter primarily owing to its connexion with tengwesta. But he is also concerned as an historian to examine the relations of Melkor and his agents with the Valar and the Eruhni,5 though this also has a connexion with "language", since, as he points out, this, the greatest of the talents of the Mirranwi, has been turned by Melkor to his own greatest advantage.

Pengolodh says that all minds (sma, pl. smar) are equal in status, though they differ in capacity and strength. A mind by its nature perceives another mind directly. But it cannot perceive more than the existence of another mind (as something other than itself, though of the same order) except by the will of both parties (Note 1). The degree of will, however, need not be the same in both parties. If we call one mind G (for guest or comer) and the other H (for host or receiver), then G must have full intention to inspect H or to inform it. But knowledge may be gained or imparted by G, even when H is not seeking or intending6 to impart or to learn: the act of G will be effective, if H is simply "open" (lta; ltie "openness"). This distinction, he says, is of the greatest importance.
"Openness" is the natural or simple state (indo) of a mind that is not otherwise engaged (Note 2). In "Arda Unmarred" (that is, in ideal conditions free from evil)7 openness would be the normal state. Nonetheless any mind may be closed (pahta). This requires an act of conscious will: Unwill (avanir). It may be made against G, against G and some others, or be a total retreat into "privacy" (aquapahtie).

Though in "Arda Unmarred" openness is the normal state, every mind has, from its first making as an individual, the right to close; and it has absolute power to make this effective by will. Nothing can penetrate the barrier of Unwill (Note 3).

All these things, says Pengolodh, are true of all minds, from the Ainur in the presence of Eru, or the great Valar such as Manwe and Melkor, to the Maiar in E, and down to the least of the Mirranwi. But different states bring in limitations, which are not fully controlled by the will.

The Valar entered into E and Time of free will, and they are now in Time, so long as it endures. They can perceive nothing outside Time, save by memory of their existence before it began: they can recall the Song and the Vision. They are, of course, open to Eru, but they cannot of their own will "see" any part of His mind. They can open themselves to Eru in entreaty, and He may then reveal His thought to them (Note 4).

The Incarnates have by the nature of sma the same faculties; but their perception is dimmed by the hra, for their fa is united to their hra and its normal procedure is through the hra, which is in itself part of E, without thought. The dimming is indeed double; for thought has to pass one mantle of hra and penetrate another. For this reason in Incarnates transmission of thought requires strengthening to be effective. Strengthening can be by affinity, by urgency, or by authority.

Affinity may be due to kinship; for this may increase the likeness of hra to hra, and so of the concerns and modes of thought of the indwelling far, kinship is also normally accompanied by love and sympathy. Affinity may come simply from love and friendship, which is likeness or affinity of fa to fa.

Urgency is imparted by great need of the "sender" (as in joy, grief or fear); and if these things are in any degree shared by the "receiver" the thought is the clearer received. Authority may also lend force to the thought of one who has a duty towards another, or of any ruler who has a right to issue commands or to seek the truth for the good of others.

These causes may strengthen the thought to pass the veils and reach a recipient mind. But that mind must remain open, and at the least passive. If, being aware that it is addressed, it then closes, no urgency or affinity will enable the sender's thought to enter.

Lastly, tengwesta has also become an impediment.8 It is in Incarnates clearer and more precise than their direct reception of thought. By it also they can communicate easily with others, when no strength is added to their thought: as, for example, when strangers first meet. And, as we have seen, the use of "language" soon becomes habitual, so that the practice of sanwe (interchange of thought) is neglected and becomes more difficult. Thus we see that the Incarnate tend more and more to use or to endeavour to use sanwe only in great need and urgency, and especially when lambe is unavailing. As when the voice cannot be heard, which comes most often because of distance. For distance in itself offers no impediment whatever to sanwe. But those who by affinity might well use sanwe will use lambe when in proximity, by habit or preference. Yet we may mark also how the "affine" may more quickly understand the lambe that they use between them, and indeed all that they would say is not put into words. With fewer words they come swifter to a better understanding. There can be no doubt that here sanwe is also often taking place; for the will to converse in lambe is a will to communicate thought, and lays the minds open. It may be, of course, that the two that converse know already part of the matter and the thought of the other upon it, so that only allusions dark to the stranger need be made; but this is not always so. The affine will reach an understanding more swiftly than strangers upon matters that neither have before discussed, and they will more quickly perceive the import of words that, however numerous, well-chosen, and precise, must remain inadequate.

The hra and tengwesta have inevitably some like effect upon the Valar, if they assume bodily raiment. The hra will to some degree dim in force and precision the sending of the thought, and if the other be also embodied the reception of it. If they have acquired the habit of tengwesta, as some may who have acquired the custom of being arrayed, then this will reduce the practice of sanwe. But these effects are far less than in the case of the Incarnate.

For the hra of a Vala, even when it has become customary, is far more under the control of the will. The thought of the Valar is far stronger and more penetrant. And so far as concerns their dealings one with another, the affinity between the Valar is greater than the affinity between any other beings; so that the use of tengwesta or lambe has never become imperative, and only with some has it become a custom and preference. And as for their dealings with all other minds in E, their thought often has the highest authority, and the greatest urgency. (Note 5)

Pengolodh then proceeds to the abuses of sanwe. "For" he says, "some who have read so far, may already have questioned my lore, saying: This seems not to accord with the histories. If the sma were inviolable by force, how could Melkor have deceived so many minds and enslaved so many? Or is it not rather true that the sma may be protected by greater strength but captured also by greater strength? Wherefore Melkor, the greatest, and even to the last possessing the most fixed, determined and ruthless will, could penetrate the minds of the Valar, but withhold himself from them, so that even Manwe in dealing with him may seem to us at times feeble, unwary, and deceived. Is this not so?'

"I say that it is not so. Things may seem alike, but if they are in kind wholly different they must be distinguished. Foresight which is prevision,9 and forecasting10 which is opinion made by reasoning upon present evidence, may be identical in their prediction, but they are wholly different in mode, and they should be distinguished by loremasters, even if the daily language of both Elves and Men gives them the same name as departments of wisdom". (Note 6)
In like manner, extortion of the secrets of a mind may seem to come from reading it by force in despite of its unwill, for the knowledge gained may at times appear to be as complete as any that could be obtained. Nonetheless it does not come from penetration of the barrier of unwill.

There is indeed no axan that the barrier should not be forced, for it is nat, a thing impossible to be or to be done, and the greater the force exerted, the greater the resistance of the unwill.11 But it is an axan universal that none shall directly by force or indirectly by fraud take from another what he has a right to hold and keep as his own.

Melkor repudiated all axani. He would also abolish (for himself) all nati if he could. Indeed in his beginning and the days of his great might the most ruinous of his violences came from his endeavour so to order E that there were no limits or obstacles to his will. But this he could not do. The nati remained, a perpetual reminder of the existence of Eru and His invincibility, a reminder also of the co-existence with himself of other beings (equal in descent if not in power) impregnable by force. From this proceeds his unceasing and unappeasable rage.

He found that the open approach of a sma of power and great force of will was felt by a lesser sma as an immense pressure, accompanied by fear. To dominate by weight of power and fear was his delight; but in this case he found them unavailing: fear closed the door faster. Therefore he tried deceit and stealth.

Here he was aided by the simplicity of those unaware of evil, or not yet accustomed to beware of it. And for that reason it was said above that the distinction of openness and active will to entertain was of great importance. For he would come by stealth to a mind open and unwary, hoping to learn some part of its thought before it closed, and still more to implant in it his own thought, to deceive it and win it to his friendship. His thought was ever the same, though varied to suit each case (so far as he understood it): he was above all benevolent; he was rich and could give any gift that they desired to his friends; he had a special love for the one that he addressed; but he must be trusted.

In this way he won entry into many minds, removing their unwill, and unlocking the door by the only key, though his key was counterfeit. Yet this was not what he most desired, the conquest of the recalcitrant, the enslavement of his enemies. Those who listened and did not close the door were too often already inclined to his friendship; some (according to their measure) had already entered on paths like his own, and listened because they hoped to learn and receive from him things that would further their own purposes. (So it was with those of the Maiar who first and earliest fell under his domination. They were already rebels, but lacking Melkor's power and ruthless will they admired him, and saw in his leadership hope of effective rebellion.) But those who were yet simple and uncorrupted in "heart" (Note 7) were at once aware of his entry, and if they listened to the warning of their hearts, ceased to listen, ejected him, and closed the door. It was such as these that Melkor most desired to overcome: his enemies, for to him all were enemies who resisted him in the least thing or claimed anything whatsoever as their own and not his.12

Therefore he sought means to circumvent the nat and the unwill. And this weapon he found in "language". For we speak now of the Incarnate, the Eruhni whom he most desired to subjugate in Eru's despite. Their bodies being of E are subject to force; and their spirits, being united to their bodies in love and solicitude, are subject to fear on their behalf. And their language, though it comes from the spirit or mind, operates through and with the body: it is not the sma nor its sanwe, but it may express the sanwe in its mode and according to its capacity. Upon the body and upon the indweller, therefore, such pressure and such fear may be exerted that the incarnate person may be forced to speak.

So Melkor thought in the darkness of his forethought long ere we awoke. For in days of old, when the Valar instructed the Eldar new-come to Aman concerning the beginning of things and the enmity of Melkor, Manwe himself said to those who would listen: "Of the Children of Eru Melkor knew less than his peers, giving less heed to what he might have learned, as we did, in the Vision of their Coming. Yet, as we now fear since we know you in your true being, to everything that might aid his designs for mastery his mind was keen to attend, and his purpose leaped forward swifter than ours, being bound by no axan. From the first he was greatly interested in "language", that talent that the Eruhni would have by nature; but we did not at once perceive the malice in this interest, for many of us shared it, and Aule above all. But in time we discovered that he had made a language for those who served him; and he has learned our tongue with ease. He has great skill in this matter. Beyond doubt he will master all tongues, even the fair speech of the Eldar. Therefore, if ever you should speak with him beware!"

"Alas!" says Pengolodh, "in Valinor Melkor used the Quenya with such mastery that all the Eldar were amazed, for his use could not be bettered, scarce equalled even, by the poets and the loremasters".

Thus by deceit, by lies, by torment of the body and the spirit, by the threat of torment to others well loved, or by the sheer terror of his presence, Melkor ever sought to force the Incarnate that fell into his power, or came within his reach, to speak and to tell him all that he would know. But his own Lie begot an endless progeny of lies.

By this means he has destroyed many, he has caused treacheries untold, and he has gained knowledge of secrets to his great advantage and the undoing of his enemies. But this is not by entering the mind, or by reading it as it is, in its despite. Nay, for great though the knowledge that he gained, behind the words (even of those in fear and torment) dwells ever the sma inviolable: the words are not in it, though they may proceed from it (as cries from behind a locked door); they must be judged and assessed for what truth may be in them. Therefore, the Liar says that all words are lies: all things that he hears are threaded through with deceit, with evasions, hidden meanings, and hate. In this vast network he himself enmeshed struggles and rages, gnawed by suspicion, doubt, and fear. Not so would it have been, if he could have broken the barrier, and seen the heart as it is in its truth unveiled.

If we speak last of the "folly" of Manwe and the weakness and unwariness of the Valar, let us beware how we judge. In the histories, indeed, we may be amazed and grieved to read how (seemingly) Melkor deceived and cozened others, and how even Manwe appears at times almost a simpleton compared with him: as if a kind but unwise father were treating a wayward child who would assuredly in time perceive the error of his ways. Whereas we, looking on and knowing the outcome, see now that Melkor knew well the error of his ways, but was fixed in them by hate and pride beyond return. He could read the mind of Manwe, for the door was open; but his own mind was false and even if the door seemed open, there were doors of iron within closed for ever.

How otherwise would you have it? Should Manwe and the Valar meet secrecy with subterfuge, treachery with falsehood, lies with more lies? If Melkor would usurp their rights, should they deny his? Can hate overcome hate? Nay, Manwe was wiser; or being ever open to Eru he did His will, which is more than wisdom. He was ever open because he had nothing to conceal, no thought that it was harmful for any to know, if they could comprehend it. Indeed Melkor knew his will without questioning it; and he knew that Manwe was bound by the commands and injunctions of Eru, and would do this or abstain from that in accordance with them, always, even knowing that Melkor would break them as it suited his purpose. Thus the merciless will ever count on mercy, and the liars make use of truth; for if mercy and truth are withheld from the cruel and the lying, they have ceased to be honoured.13

Manwe could not by duress attempt to compel Melkor to reveal his thought and purposes, or (if he used words) to speak the truth. If he spoke and said: this is true, he must be believed until proved false; if he said: this I will do, as you bid, he must be allowed the opportunity to fulfill his promise. (Note 8)

The force and restraint that were used upon Melkor by the united power of all the Valar, were not used to extort confession (which was needless); nor to compel him to reveal his thought (which was unlawful, even if not vain). He was made captive as a punishment for his evil deeds, under the authority of the King. So we may say; but it were better said that he was deprived for a term, fixed by promise, of his power to act, so that he might halt and consider himself, and have thus the only chance that mercy could contrive of repentance and amendment. For the healing of Arda indeed, but for his own healing also. Melkor had the right to exist, and the right to act and use his powers. Manwe had the authority to rule and to order the world, so far as he could, for the well-being of the Eruhni; but if Melkor would repent and return to the allegiance of Eru, he must be given his freedom again. He could not be enslaved, or denied his part. The office of the Elder King was to retain all his subjects in the allegiance of Eru, or to bring them back to it, and in that allegiance to leave them free.

Therefore not until the last, and not then except by the express command of Eru and by His power, was Melkor thrown utterly down and deprived for ever of all power to do or to undo.

Who among the Eldar hold that the captivity of Melkor in Mandos (which was achieved by force) was either unwise or unlawful? Yet the resolve to assault Melkor, not merely to withstand him, to meet violence with wrath to the peril of Arda, was taken by Manwe only with reluctance. And consider: what good in this case did even the lawful use of force accomplish? It removed him for a while and relieved Middle-earth from the pressure of his malice, but it did not uproot his evil, for it could not do so. Unless, maybe, Melkor had indeed repented. (Note 9) But he did not repent, and in humiliation he became more obdurate: more subtle in his deceits, more cunning in his lies, crueller and more dastardly in his revenge. The weakest and most imprudent of all the actions of Manwe, as it seems to many, was the release of Melkor from captivity. From this came the greatest loss and harm: the death of the Trees, and the exile and the anguish of the Noldor. Yet through this suffering there came also, as maybe in no other way could it have come, the victory of the Elder Days: the downfall of Angband and the last overthrow of Melkor.

Who then can say with assurance that if Melkor had been held in bond less evil would have followed? Even in his diminishment the power of Melkor is beyond our calculation. Yet some ruinous outburst of his despair is not the worst that might have befallen. The release was according to the promise of Manwe. If Manwe had broken this promise for his own purposes, even though still intending "good", he would have taken a step upon the paths of Melkor. That is a perilous step. In that hour and act he would have ceased to be the vice-gerent of the One, becoming but a king who takes advantage over a rival whom he has conquered by force. Would we then have the sorrows that indeed befell; or would we have the Elder King lose his honour, and so pass, maybe, to a world rent between two proud lords striving for the throne? Of this we may be sure, we children of small strength: any one of the Valar might have taken the paths of Melkor and become like him: one was enough.


Author's Notes to the sanwe-kenta
Note 1
Here nra ("will" as a potential or faculty) since the minimum requirement is that this faculty shall not be exerted in denial; action or an act of will is nirme; as sanwe "Thought" or "a thought" is the action or an act of sma.
Note 2
It may be occupied with thinking and inattentive to other things; it may be "turned towards Eru"; it may be engaged in "thought-converse" with a third mind. Pengolodh says: "Only great minds can converse with more than one other at the same time; several may confer, but then at one time only one is imparting, while the others receive".
Note 3
"No mind can, however, be closed against Eru, either against His inspection or against His message. The latter it may not heed, but it cannot say it did not receive it".
Note 4
Pengolodh adds: "Some say that Manwe, by a special grace to the King, could still in a measure perceive Eru; others more probably, that he remained nearest to Eru, and Eru was most ready to hear and answer him".
Note 5
Here Pengolodh adds a long note on the use of hrar by the Valar. In brief he says that though in origin a "self-arraying", it may tend to approach the state of "incarnation", especially with the lesser members of that order (the Maiar). "It is said that the longer and the more the same hra is used, the greater is the bond of habit, and the less do the 'self-arrayed' desire to leave it. As raiment may soon cease to be adornment, and becomes (as is said in the tongues of both Elves and Men) a 'habit', a customary garb. Or if among Elves and Men it be worn to mitigate heat or cold, it soon makes the clad body less able to endure these things when naked". Pengolodh also cites the opinion that if a "spirit" (that is, one of those not embodied by creation) uses a hra for the furtherance of its personal purposes, or (still more) for the enjoyment of bodily faculties, it finds it increasingly difficult to operate without the hra. The things that are most binding are those that in the Incarnate have to do with the life of the hra itself, its sustenance and its propagation. Thus eating and drinking are binding, but not the delight in beauty of sound or form. Most binding is begetting or conceiving.
"We do not know the axani (laws, rules, as primarily proceeding from Eru) that were laid down upon the Valar with particular reference to their state, but it seems clear that there was no axan against these things. Nonetheless it appears to be an axan, or maybe necessary consequence, that if they are done, then the spirit must dwell in the body that it used, and be under the same necessities as the Incarnate. The only case that is known in the histories of the Eldar is that of Melian who became the spouse of King Elu-thingol. This certainly was not evil or against the will of Eru, and though it led to sorrow, both Elves and Men were enriched.
'The great Valar do not do these things: they beget not, neither do they eat and drink, save at the high asari, in token of their lordship and indwelling of Arda, and for the blessing of the sustenance of the Children. Melkor alone of the Great became at last bound to a bodily form; but that was because of the use that he made of this in his purpose to become Lord of the Incarnate, and of the great evils that he did in the visible body. Also he had dissipated his native powers in the control of his agents and servants, so that he became in the end, in himself and without their support, a weakened thing, consumed by hate and unable to restore himself from the state into which he had fallen. Even his visible form he could no longer master, so that its hideousness could not any longer be masked, and it showed forth the evil of his mind. So it was also with even some of his greatest servants, as in these later days we see: they became wedded to the forms of their evil deeds, and if these bodies were taken from them or destroyed, they were nullified, until they had rebuilt a semblance of their former habitations, with which they could continue the evil courses in which they had become fixed". (Pengolodh here evidently refers to Sauron in particular, from whose arising he fled at last from Middle-earth. But the first destruction of the bodily form of Sauron was recorded in the histories of the Elder Days, in the Lay of Leithian.)
Note 6
Pengolodh here elaborates (though it is not necessary for his argument) this matter of "foresight". No mind, he asserts, knows what is not in it. All that it has experienced is in it, though in the case of the Incarnate, dependent upon the instruments of the hra, some things may be "forgotten", not immediately available for recollection. But no part of the "future" is there, for the mind cannot see it or have seen it: that is, a mind placed in time. Such a mind can learn of the future only from another mind which has seen it. But that means only from Eru ultimately, or mediately from some mind that has seen in Eru some part of His purpose (such as the Ainur who are now the Valar in E). An Incarnate can thus only know anything of the future, by instruction derived from the Valar, or by a revelation coming direct from Eru. But any mind, whether of the Valar or of the Incarnate, may deduce by reason what will or may come to pass. This is not foresight, not though it may be clearer in terms and indeed even more accurate than glimpses of foresight. Not even if it is formed into visions seen in dream, which is a means whereby "foresight" also is frequently presented to the mind.
Minds that have great knowledge of the past, the present, and the nature of E may predict with great accuracy, and the nearer the future the clearer (saving always the freedom of Eru). Much therefore of what is called "foresight" in careless speech is only the deduction of the wise; and if it be received, as warning or instruction, from the Valar, it may be only deduction of the wiser, though it may sometimes be "foresight" at second hand.
Note 7
enda. This we translate "heart", though it has no physical reference to any organ of the hra. It means "centre", and refers (though by inevitable physical allegory) to the fa or sma itself, distinct from the periphery (as it were) of its contacts with the hra; self-aware; endowed with the primeval wisdom of its making which made it sensitive to anything inimical in the least degree.
Note 8
For which reason Melkor often spoke the truth, and indeed he seldom lied without any admixture of truth. Unless it was in his lies against Eru; and it was, maybe, for uttering these that he was cut off from return.
Note 9
Some hold that, though evil might then have been mitigated, it could not have been undone even by Melkor repentant; for power had gone forth from him and was no longer under the control of his will. Arda was marred in its very being. The seeds that the hand sows will grow and multiply though the hand be removed.

Editorial glossary to the sanwe-kenta
All words are Quenya unless otherwise indicated.
aquapahtie 'privacy'. Apparently composed of aqua- 'fully, completely, altogether, wholly' (WJ:392) + *paht-ie 'closed-ness' (cf. pahta 'closed' and ltie 'openness', below).
asar, pl. asari 'fixed time, festival' (WJ:399).
avanir 'unwill'. Apparently composed of ava-, expressing refusal or prohibition (cf. WJ:370-71 s.v. *ABA), + -nir 'will' (cf. nra below).
axan, pl. axani 'law, rule, commandment; as primarily proceeding from Eru'. Adopted from Valarin akasan 'He says', referring to Eru (WJ:399).
enda 'centre, heart'; of persons, having no reference to the physical organ, but to the fa or [i]sma itself, distinct from its contacts with the hra. Cf. NED- 'centre' (LR:356).
Eruhni 'Children of Eru', i.e. Elves and Men (WJ:403).
fa, pl. far 'soul, indwelling spirit, of an incarnate being' (MR:349,470). Also cf. WJ:405.
hra, pl. hrar 'body (of an incarnate being)' (MR:350,470). Also cf. WJ:405.
indo n. 'state', perhaps specifically 'state of mind (sma)'. In "LQ 2" (MR:216, 230 n. 16) indo is used for 'mind', which here is the translation of sma; while The Etymologies has indo 'heart, mood' (LR:361 s.v. ID-).
kenta 'enquiry'. Cf. Essekenta *'name-enquiry' (MR:415). Cf. the verb stem ken- 'see, behold' (MC:222) and the element ceny 'sight' in apaceny 'foresight' and terceny 'insight' (MR:216), which may suggest that kenta might more literally mean 'a looking (into)' some matter.14
lambe Cf. the entry lambe in the editorial glossary to the extract from Quendi and Eldar App. D, above (p. 12).
lta adj. 'open'. Cf. LAT- 'lie open' (LR:368).
latya 'opening'.
Mirranwi 'Incarnates', literally 'those put into flesh (hra)' (MR:350).
n. 'will, as a potential or faculty'. Cf. S. anra '(he) desires' (SD:128-29).15
nirme 'the action or an act of nra'.
sanwe 'communication or interchange of thought'. Apparently composed of the prefix o- "used in words describing the meeting, junction, or union of two things" (WJ:367 s.v. *WO) + sanwe (q.v.).
pahta adj. 'closed'. Cf. aquapahtie above.
[i]sma, pl. smar 'mind'.
sanwe 'Thought; a thought; as the action or an act of sma. Cf. sanwe above.
tengwesta Cf. the entry tengwesta in the editorial glossary to the extract from Quendi and Eldar App. D, above (p. 14).
nat, pl. nati 'a thing impossible to be or to be done'. Apparently composed of - + nat 'thing' (cf. LR:374 s.v. NA2-). The Etymologies gives the Q. prefix as meaning 'not, un-, in- (usually with bad sense)' (LR:396 s.v. UGU-), but the force of - here is stronger than that conveyed by those isolated glosses. Compare the distinction between avaqutima 'not to be said, that must not be said' and qutima 'unspeakable, impossible to say, put into words, or unpronounceable' (WJ:370 s.v. *ABA). Cf. the entry in the editorial glossary to the extract from Quendi and Eldar App. D, above (p. 14).
Editorial notes

Glorfindel was tall and straight; his hair was of shining gold, his face fair and young and fearless and full of joy; his eyes were bright and keen, and his voice like music; on his brow sat wisdom, and in his hand was strength.

Glorfindel Biography

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Posted: Jun 28 2007, 11:11 AM


Group: Tauristo
Posts: 142
Member No.: 349
Joined: 11-September 06

Thank you so much for publishing this text. It goes a long way towards clarifying some aspects of how and when the Eldar and Valar communicate. There have been strong hints of Tolkien's thoughts on reading minds in his other writing.

Am I correct in making the following summary?

Pure spirits without bodies, like the Valar, are able to read one another's minds without impediment but only with permission. Trusting spirits are 'open' to being read. Melkor used this trusting openness to force his thoughts and ideas on those inclined to his thinking and to subvert his enemies.. (More on this later.)

The Eldar and even humans can share thoughts and read another person's mind but not with the same clarity or power as the Valar. That having a body (hroa) impedes the ability to read and to share thought. That verbalizing, or using a language can also weaken the ability though on the other hand, being able to read a person's thoughts and intentions helps immensely to learn a language.

Being able to share thoughts is influenced by the willingness to do so, an affinity of spirit or kinship and being open to another. That distance is no impediment only affinity, openness and will are necessary.

I may have missed quite a bit more. Anyone care to carry on the summary?

Thanks, Glor. 246.gif

Radiance lies on her face and enmeshed in her bright hair capturing the light of the Blessed Realm.

Artanis' biography
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Of The Return Of the Noldor

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