• RRP: £13.20
  • You Save: £0.03
FREE Delivery in the UK.
Only 3 left in stock (more on the way).
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
The Power of the Ring: Th... has been added to your Basket

Dispatch to:
To see addresses, please
Or
Please enter a valid UK postcode.
Or
+ £2.80 UK delivery
Used: Very Good | Details
Sold by Greener_Books
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: **SHIPPED FROM UK** We believe you will be completely satisfied with our quick and reliable service. All orders are dispatched as swiftly as possible! Buy with confidence!
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

The Power of the Ring: The Spiritual Vision Behind the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit Paperback – 4 Dec 2012

5.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price
New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
Paperback
"Please retry"
£13.17
£7.38 £5.39
Note: This item is eligible for click and collect. Details
Pick up your parcel at a time and place that suits you.
  • Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
  • Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
How to order to an Amazon Pickup Location?
  1. Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
  2. Dispatch to this address when you check out
Learn more

Man Booker International Prize 2017
A Horse Walks Into a Bar has won the Man Booker International Prize 2017. Learn more
£13.17 FREE Delivery in the UK. Only 3 left in stock (more on the way). Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently bought together

  • The Power of the Ring: The Spiritual Vision Behind the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit
  • +
  • The Philosophy of Tolkien: The Worldview Behind The "Lord of the Rings"
Total price: £25.69
Buy the selected items together

Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.



Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Independent Publishers Group; 2 edition (4 Dec. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 082454983X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0824549831
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 14 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 457,993 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?

Product description

Review

"Stratford Caldecott, who has been delighting discerning readers for years with his sparkling writings on religious and spiritual subjects, has produced a masterful guide to the works of J.R.R. Tolkien. Finally the Christian riches of "The Lord of the Rings", "The Silmarillion", "The Hobbit", and Tolkien's other masterpieces shine forth for all to enjoy. An indispensable guide to the most popular author of modern times." --Philip Zaleski, editor, The Best Spiritual Writing series

"A superb book that blends academic rigor with a clear passion for the subject." --"Christian Marketplace"

"A literally wonderful--wonder-full--book. It will open the eyes of any reader who considers "The Lord of the Rings" just a gripping yarn in a fantasy world. Tolkien's 'vision'--Caldecott makes it clear the word is just right--draws on deep springs of philosophy and mysticism--and, not least, the orthodoxy of the church." --Aidan Nichols OP

"If anyone asks me what one book about Tolkien is the most worth reading, "The Power of the Ring" is my reply." --Peter Kreeft, professor of philosophy, Boston College, and author, "Socratic Logic"

"A superb book that blends academic rigor with a clear passion for the subject." "Christian Marketplace ""

"Caldecott's work is a delight to read, with fascinating insights on nearly every page as he discusses the riches of Tolkien's work." "The Sower""

"This book will be welcomed by those interested in the deep theological underpinnings of Tolkien's works, and is recommended to academic libraries supporting upper level coursework on Tolkien or religion and literature." Daniel Boice, "Catholic Library World""

" [...] Caldecott examines and elucidates the underlying Christian aspect of Tolkien s symbolism within his fantastical universe. A thoughtful reader with no religious background will learn much about the complexity of Tolkien s fictitious universe [...] The trilogy is much more than a whimsical fairyland; behind it lies a profound knowledge of ancient mythopoeic tradition, baptized by a Catholic imagination." Francis Phillips, "The Catholic Herald""

About the Author

Stratford Caldecott is the director of theCentre for Faith and Culture in Oxford, England, and the author of "All Things Made New," "Beauty for Truth s Sake," and "Beauty in the Word.""


What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5 stars
5 star
4
4 star
0
3 star
0
2 star
0
1 star
0
See all 4 customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I've just read the Power of the Ring and I found it a really enlightening book - I loved The Lord of the Rings when I was younger - and read it many times, excited by the mythic power of it - but perhaps not really sure why. This book explains how Tolkien's faith (or for atheists, the Christian myth!) informs the book, just as much as Norse mythology and heroic literature do.
For me, to be really worthwhile, a book has to say something about the human condition, and I hope to find something inspiring, which encourages me to feel that there is a human spirit which will work with others to achieve great ends and overthrow evils. The Lord of the Rings does this of course, and Caldecott does a brilliant job in revealing the roots of this creation. He highlights the moral and spiritual struggles of the protagonists, which we can all relate to to a greater or lesser extent, while drawing analogies with Christian ideas and examples. I think any lover of Tolkien would find this book enlightening - as it draws on ideas and ideals that are part of the common culture of the Western world.
I found his appendix "The Film of the Ring" particularly interesting, it provides an extended review of the film, highlighting the changes that Peter Jackson had to make, but showing how they are often very much in the spirit of the book.
As someone who hasn't read the Lord of the Rings for 25 years the Power of the Ring made me want to re-read it and see it in a new way - which is a tribute to Caldecott's insights.
Comment 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
This is a revised and expanded edition of the excellent 'Secret Fire' (known as 'The Power of the Ring' in America). For reviews of the first edition check out the American amazon product: http://www.amazon.com/The-Power-Ring-Spiritual-Vision/dp/082452277X/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1358501006&sr=8-2&keywords=the+power+of+the+ring or the publisher's website: [...]
Comment 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It's been a while since I read this book, but I liked it so much that I bought a copy for my niece for her Birthday. Mr Caldecott, who died earlier this year had clearly read & reread The Lord of the Rings many times. As a Catholic who loved and read all of Tolkien's writing, he gives us a very important insight into all things Tolkien. Not a cheap book, but well worth a read
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A pleasure to read and a must for Tolkien fans looking to gain an insight into the inspiration for Middle Earth
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars 9 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Meaning Behind The Words 12 April 2016
By John D. Cofield - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
J.R.R. Tolkien's deep Christian faith was an integral part of his life and writings. A Roman Catholic in a country where there was still considerable prejudice against "Popery," he had to deal with social exclusion and some harassment during his youth. Having to deal with this discrimination strengthened his faith. Stratford Caldecott, himself an English Catholic, has written a very beautiful account of the ways in which Tolkien's faith and vision helped him form the tales which became his life's work.

Caldecott's account is partly a spiritual biography of Tolkien himself and partly a spiritual analysis of his writings. I am not a Catholic, and while I am very familiar with Tolkien's worlds inevitably some of the religious symbolism and references had passed me by, so I am grateful to Caldecott for enhancing my future enjoyment and understanding. I also appreciated his references to the works of other Tolkien authorities, especially Verlyn Flieger, whose writings are complementary to and expand on much of what is found in this volume. There is very little reference to Tolkien "fandom", though the last of Caldecott's nine Appendices is given over to a fairly critical analysis of the three Peter Jackson Lord of the Rings movies.

In many ways I found reading The Power of the Ring evoked the same pleasure and mystery I experience when I reread Tolkien, and there can be no higher praise than that.
5.0 out of 5 stars "In the name of Wonder !" said Gandalf... 5 May 2017
By Stefano T. Farris - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
And full of wonder indeed is Caldecott’s magistral reading of Tolkien’s work. Read it all: this review just touches two decisive points, but the whole of Caldecott’s work is worth reading and reading again.

Caldecott’s reading of Tolkien reveals that The Lord of the Rings is a tale about the mystical Way and that the Way is established, guaranteed, and protected as the very Heart of the world. Why can we say this ?

First of all, Caldecott’s great illumination: the Ring is the symbol of the ego.

The Author proceeds from a general presentation of this decisive reflection [ p.82 : “…the Ring of Power exemplifies the dark magic of the corrupted will, the assertion of self in disobedience to God.”] to a discussion with the Jungian interpreters of the Lord of the Rings [p.154 : “…the Ring is not the Self but the false self…”. Here we need to remember that in the Jungian psychology the “Self”, with a capital S, is the deepest and the most positive and enlightened center of the entire person].
From there, Caldecott moves to the more precise final definition: p.207, “The Ring is the Ego, our idea of the self…”.
It should be obvious to any Reader that such interpretation radically transforms our entire reading of the Lord of the Rings. Caldecott’s reading is a precious key. But I have observed that some Readers greatly underestimate Caldecott’s deep illumination, and they ask “what does that mean ? what is the sense of it ?”. So, let’s think about it for a moment.
If the Ring must be read as the symbol of the ego, of the unending assertion of I, I, I, me, me, me, mine, mine, mine…[ “Mine, my Precious…”], i.e. as the symbol of the self that has lost any connection with the Light, or that wants to lose any connection with the Light, then the adventures through Middle Earth to destroy the Ring represent directly the mystic Way, the Way back to the Light. So, Middle Earth is no world of “fantasy” (unless we take, as perhaps we should, this last term very seriously, as a synonym of “imagination” … and if we know the deep implications of the latter): instead the drama developing through Middle Earth in the Lord of the Rings is the most realistic and truthful analysis of our true destiny as human beings…when we obey the Law, when we do our duty. It is the description of how our lives truly are (or … should be, if we would not fall, i.e., if we would not enlist in the armies of the orcs of the “dark fire ”…).
Caldecott discusses the “dark fire ” extensively, starting from the long quotation from the Lord of the Rings at page 136: [Gandalf on the bridge of Moria, trying to stop the balrog]

“<You cannot pass >he said . The orcs stood still, and a dead silence fell. <I am a servant of the Secret Fire, wielder of the flame of Anor. You cannot pass. The dark fire will not avail you, flame of Udûn. Go back to the Shadow ! You cannot pass.>”.

The “dark fire”, the fire of Melkor (ibid. p. 136), i.e. of Satan, burns and consumes, instead of illuminating. Compared to the fire of God, it is shadow (ibid.).

The True Fire and more Wonder: the Secret Fire.

Let’s read Caldecott’s decisive page 135:
“The “Secret Fire” is Tolkien’s term for the distinctive creative power of Eru. It is God’s “secret”…For Tolkien, the fire represents life, love and creativity, the Wisdom and Love of God that burns [SIC] at the heart of the world and sustains [SIC] it in existence … it is the Holy Spirit, the “Giver of Life”.”
A few lines below, Caldecott quotes again Tolkien, who spoke about

“…the mystery of ‘authorship’, by which the author, while remaining ‘outside’, and independent of his work, also ‘indwells’ in it, on its derivative plane, below that of his own being, as the source and guarantee of its being”.

And at page 100 Caldecott quotes directly from the Silmarillion (the early pages, about the Creation):

“ Eä ! Let these things Be ! And I will send forth into the Void the Flame Imperishable, and it shall be at the heart of the World, and the World shall Be;…”
The Secret Fire is the Presence of the Living Love of God at the Heart of the reality, the true Being of all that exists.

Thus, Caldecott’s symbological reading of the Ring points to the Way, the Way to get rid of the Ring-ego and to reach the Truth. And the Presence of the Truth - of the Living Love of God, at the heart of the reality, at the same time True Way and True Goal - is asserted decisively in the discussion of what the “Secret Fire” is.
As we said above: Caldecott’s reading of Tolkien reveals that The Lord of the Rings is a tale about the mystical Way and that the Way is established, guaranteed, and protected as the very Heart of the world.
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!! 16 Feb. 2016
By Stat Crux - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Fantastic! Necessary to enter fully into the mystery!!
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating book! 20 Jan. 2016
By Soxx - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Lots of intriguing information.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 26 Jun. 2015
By Shirley L. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book provides a great deal of excellent background and interpretation of the symbolism in Tolkien's works.
Were these reviews helpful? Let us know