A Tolkien Virgin: Of Aule and Yavanna - The Journey Continues
"Wow. So, the Elves and Men--for all their differences--are the Children of Illuvatar, but the Dwarves were made by Aule. This passage is short, but amazing. When Aule raised up his hammer to destroy the Dwarves he made, but Illuvatar gave them life instead, it actually caused me to get misty-eyed. This act of kindness and compassion is truly beautiful.
In this section, we also have our first taste of dissention among the Valar (excluding Melkor). Yavanna fears that Aule's Dwarves will destroy her living things, and when she gets word from Manwe that spirits shall live among her plants and animals and will be aroused to just anger in their defense, she is pleased. Aule isn't impressed though, "Nonetheless, they will have need of wood." That's all he has to say. A peculiarly cold relationship thus develops between Aule and Yavanna--in large part due to Aule's creation of the Dwarves in secret. His sin (although forgiven) and his lack of openness with his spouse has a negative effect on their relationship. Is there a lesson here, for us as well?
Which brings me to a slight tangent: Is it okay for me to be asking if there is a lesson to be learned from this or that section of the book? Is that fair to Tolkien? Did he write to instruct as well as entertain? What do you think? "