Lessons Learned from Mahal

Mahal made the Middle-Earth Dwarves. And a bunch of junk that doesn’t matter by the Third Age. He also taught Sauron, Sarumon, Mahtan, and that loveless loser Faenor.

Mahtan’s wife doesn’t have a name either by the way. Let’s name her Ruscundil (Quenya, gender-neutral, lover of foxes). The fox she loves most is him, even if he is faking it. But hey, you know what the Humans say! Fake it ’til ya make it; and when you get bored, shake it up.

Mahtan was such a great student to Mahal that one is his names is Aulendur (“Servant of Aulë”. That’s what the Elves call him). Here’s what I learned from Mahal.

  1. if your boss is such a bitch that him discovering your children makes you act as if to kill them, find another job if you can.
  2. before producing children, ask your wife if she wants to bring children into your marriage.
  3. if your boss is so competitive that he makes your children wait until his have woken up, find another job if you can.
  4. don’t get so excited to teach students that you forget what you’re actually qualified to teach.
  5. don’t teach while in the middle of a mental health crisis, if you can avoid it.
  6. if you can explain something to a pokémon from the pokémon world without people in it, you can explain it to anyone.
  7. no, i’m not giving chu a sex talk! he already understands consent anyway. and unlike some people in reality, he didn’t need a tea video to help him. or parents. that’s right, losers, a pokémon from a world with zero people at all endears more people to him than you ever will with your chauvinist attitudes.
  8. social graces are so much harder than math. i may have forgotten a lot of it, but i’m a writer. i don’t use a lot of numbers in my everyday life! especially not the pythagorean theorem or statistics or all the other junk i learned in college and high school.
  9. my education was pretty much nothing but morals before entering the public school system, and quite frankly, learning to care about others and the consequences of greed have been far more important to my actual and fictional adult lives than geometry.
  10. sure, i could say i use geometry as an artist, but i ain’t solving angles and crap like that. i just pick the shape i want to use and go for it.
  11. there’s whole entire books dedicated to figuring out what good morals are, but at the end of the day, you do need to be flexible to account for the fact that not only are your circumstances different from the author’s, you might need to do something else in different situations. Duchess from Aristocats says that Aristocats focus on self-improvement, but Pema Chödrön in The Pocket Pema Chödrön (edited by Eden Steinberg) says not to lose sight of loving ourselves, wretchedness and all. Anger and fear don’t disqualify us from being “good candidates for enlightenment” 5. To long for this hypothetically better self is self-defeating. Instead, we ought to try “befriending who [we] are already” 15. There are 4 main character arcs in storytelling: moral ascending, moral descending, transformational, and flat. It’s okay to just be a flat character. Those are often the ones with the longest-running stories.
  12. I was going to ask why do all* of Mahal’s students end up betraying Eru, but I think real question is: why hasn’t Mahal betrayed Eru yet? Seriously, that man needs a better boss, pronto!
  13. *Mahtan not included in this hyperbole.
  14. Elves may be the firstborn of Eru, but Dwarves are the firstborn of Arda as a whole. Eru just put them in a coma until his kids woke up.

“HFE, thank you for creating and sharing so much art and writing for free. How can we help turn your passion and skills into a full-time gig?”

I’m glad you asked!

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Thank you for taking time to read this. I hope you enjoy what you’ve found here.


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