Corruption: The Tangled Webs We Weave
“True hearted men, they will not be corrupted. We of Minas Tirith have been staunch through long years of trial. We do not desire the power of the wizard -lords, only strength to defend ourselves, strength in a just cause.”
~ Boromir, The Lord Of The Rings, The Fellowship Of The Ring, Book 2, Chapter 10 ~
To Corrupt & Corruption
The definitions of corruption and corrupt had some rather interesting descriptions. One that stuck out for me was the impairment of integrity, virtue, or moral principle. It perhaps though is one of the most accurate. Another that is particularly interesting is decomposition, decay.
Full Definition of corruption
1a : impairment of integrity, virtue, or moral principle : depravityb : decay, decompositionc : inducement to wrong by improper or unlawful means (as bribery)d : a departure from the original or from what is pure or correct
2archaic : an agency or influence that corrupts
Boromir & Denethor
Do you remember our examination of Boromir and pride? Yes? Maybe No? Let’s have a quick review as pride plays a big role in corruption.
What is so important about Boromir and Denethor? What is their relationship to corruption? I am glad you are asking! When I first picked up Sarah Arthur’s Walking With Frodo to read this segment, I was wondering a little about this as well.Gondor was without a king when the Lord of the Rings unfolds with The Fellowship of the Ring. It had been without a king for a long time. Centuries perhaps.The relevance…. well..
In the absence of a king the Stewards ruled over Gondor. The Stewards charged with the care of Gondor and its people were, you guessed it, Denethor and his oldest son…Boromir.
You have heard the saying right? Absence makes the heart grow fonder.This can be said of Boromir and his father Denethor when it came to the power the Stewards of Gondor retained. Each of them believed themselves not only to be sturdy in body. In addition to this, they thought themselves impervious to the influence of the One Ring. Boromir and Denethor also have the notion that the enemies’ tools are something they can use against them.
We see this with Boromir’s trying to take the ring from Frodo.
We witness it yet again with Denethor’s admission of the use of one of the ‘seeing stones.’
“After [Finduilas’] death Denethor became more grim and silent than before, and would sit long alone in his tower deep in thought, foreseeing that the assault of Mordor would come in his time. It was afterwards believed that needing knowledge, but being proud, and trusting in his own strength of will, he dared to look in the palantír of the White Tower.”
TA 2988 (from Appendices A & B) 2988 Finduilas dies young.
“In this way Denethor gained his great knowledge of things that passed in his realm, and far beyond his borders, at which men marvelled; but he bought the knowledge dearly, being aged before his time by his contest with the will of Sauron. Thus pride increased in Denethor together with despair, until he saw in all the deeds of that time only a single combat between the Lord of the White Tower and the Lord of the Barad-dûr, and mistrusted all others who resisted Sauron, unless they served himself alone.”
TA (Appendix A) Before his sons grew to manhood
The Stewards’ confidence in their own resolve and their inability to take accountability makes them fall prey to the very thing they believed themselves immune to, corruption.
Why Is It Important To Take Accountability ?
Sarah Arthur eloquently writes: WITHOUT ACCOUNTABILITY CORRUPTION IS INEVITABLE .
Definition of accountability
What we do at times, may seem harmless, but is it? What happens when we ask ourselves this question? Do we even bother asking?
If we do not examine our intentions before and when we act, we start to act more for the “I” and the “Me.” It becomes a matter of what can be gained instead of giving. Quite simply, what is right, doing the right thing does not matter anymore.
The Word On Corruption
Proverbs 16:2 New International Version (NIV)
2 All a person’s ways seem pure to them,
but motives are weighed by the Lord.
Titus 1:15 New International Version (NIV)
15 To the pure, all things are pure, but to those who are corrupted and do not believe, nothing is pure. In fact, both their minds and consciences are corrupted.