Audacity of the Ainulindalë:

The Ainulindalë is a sub-creation about creation itself. For Tolkien, human sub-creation is possible because of God’s prior, divine act of creation. In the Ainulindalë, however, Tolkien isn’t just sub-creating: he’s sub-creating about God’s own act of creation. According to Tolkien, our sub-creations, properly understood, are responses to what God himself does in creation. The audacity of the Ainulindalë lies in that Tolkien is going back and re-writing or re-telling the original, creation event that all of our sub-creations are supposed to be responses to. This is a paradoxical and perilous venture: the Ainulindalë is a fundamentally outrageous work.

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