Islam and the Tolkien’s Narrative
Lord of the Rings and Islam – Many of you have seen the Tolkien series of films, there’s Lords of the Rings and The Hobbit. I’ve seen each of the movies three times over and I’ve started to notice similar trends to the Islamic narrative of the final days. I mean the name of the region is ‘Middle earth’, that is pretty much like ‘Middle East’! So there are four main characters:
The Dajjal: The Dajjal is known as the one eyed Anti-Christ in Islam. He will appear during the end of times and cause havoc, he is literally the opposite of Jesus Christ, instead of bringing purity, he will spread negativity. A distinguishing sign that has been reported is that he will have ‘one eye’.
No Prophet was sent but he warned his people about the one-eyed liar. He has one-eye but your Lord has not one-eye, and between his eyes will be written Kaafir Sahih al-Bukhari, No. 6598
He will be one of the biggest tribulations to humanity. Islamic Scholars have stated that he will enter in to the world when the Muslim Ummah are weak in faith and the ways of the devil are flourishing. In LOTR Saruman makes mention of how Sauran is hidden in a chamber and that his time is near. It is believed that the Dajjal is currently waiting for the perfect moment, either in a cave or another secret location. We can see that evil spreads across Middle Earth and there is conflict. Similarly the West is doing the same and to date have destroyed Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and soon Syria. In the film the armies gather, that is exactly what will happen on an international scale. Non Muslims (The West) vs Muslims. Considering the current climate, it is likely his time is near.
Mahdi: The Mahdi is the awaited Imam for the Muslims but prior to his leadership, he will be a normal bloke and somewhat withdrawn from wider society. He will also come from pure ancestry, just like Aragorn. Aragorn is first filmed in the pub as a mysterious rider, later his qualities are reflected and he p;lays a major role in the fellowship. When the crew arrive in Gondor, Aragorn realises his true potential, that he is destined to become leader.
In Islam the Mahdi will be of the same calibre, people will flock around him and pledge allegiance, even though he does not ask for it. In Gondor, after much dispute, the crew select Aragorn to lead them.
The world will not come to pass until a man from among my family, whose name will be my name, rules over the Arabs. Tirmidhi, vol 9, pg 74
Even if one day remains for Qiyamah, yet Allah will surely send a man from my family who will fill this world with such justice and fairness, just as initially was filled with oppressionAbu Dawud
Considering Aragorn is a Prince, his forefathers had flourished and spread peace among men, Aragorn throughout the film keeps everyone on track.
Jesus: The Islamic and Christian narrative of Jesus’s return is similar. Jesus is believed to have ‘sacrificed’ himself on the cross for humanity and in particular his people. In LOTR, Gandalf sacrifices himself when they cross the stone bridge, so that his companions can flee with safety. Muslims believe that Jesus will return near the end of times to support the Muslims, this will be in-conjunction with the Mahdi.
In LOTR, Gandalf returns as Gandalf the White, he appears as a heavenly beauty. And then he says the well quoted line, ‘I’ve been sent back till my task is done’, just like Jesus. He also says ‘I’ve come back at the tail of the end of time’, this is just before Sauran is about to take over the world. Although it is Jesus that will kill the Dajjal and in the film Frodo destroys the ring, the ultimate efforts are of Aragorn and Gandalf. The final battle when Gandalf, Aragorn, and the rest of the survivors are surrounded by Army of Sauron after the dark gate is opened (the event just before Frodo throws The Ring into the lava). That event resembles the final Armageddon war between Jesus, Al-Mahdi and the rest of Muslims Vs Dajjal and his army. In the Islamic narrative, Jesus will kill Dajjal with a dagger, but in the film Frodo does, I guess Tolkien wanted the film a bit more dramatic, thus the ring being central to the film.
Gog and Megog: In the film there is the notable ‘Door under the mountain’ that is mentioned several times. In the Qur’an [18:92-99] there is a mention of people who complained that the tribes of the Yajooj and Majooj who often merged from behind a mountain caused acts of anarchy and plunder. Then the Quran says ‘Until when Yajooj and Majooj are let loose from their barrier and they swiftly swarm from every mound [21:96-97] and, ‘And on that day we shall leave them to surge like waves on one another and the trumpet will be blown and we shall be collected together.’ [18:92-99]. In LOTR this can be seen as the Army of the Elephants and the Army of Orcs and Ura Kais.
Also During the beginning of the film there is a distantly eastern/arabic soundtrack. There is a Muslim-looking army coming to fight and the two hobbits see sorcery at work. It’s also important to note that Tolkien was fluent in Arabic and had many Muslim philosopher friends. It seems to be Tolkien was inspired by Islamic Scripture. The ring is closely matched with that of Soloman. Gandalf’s staff is based on Moses staff and the Sword used, is very similar to the sword of the Prophet.
So is this all a coincidence?