14

We know that Eru had ability to speak (and spoke to Ainur), for example this answer quotes Quenta Silmarillion:

And the voice of Ilúvatar said to Aulë: 'Thy offer I accepted even as it was made. ...'

Is there an example of Eru speaking to someone other than Ainur/Valar? (in other words, a flesh and blood creature, e.g. Man/Hobbit/Elf/Dwarf/Ent)?

Or, conversely, a note to the effect that Eru never did, either because hearing his voice would destroy a flesh creature (ala "Dogma"), or for some other reason?

20

Just after their awakening, Men were able to communicate directly with Eru ("the Voice"), as illustrated in this tale present in Morgoth's Ring (part of Tolkien's unpublished drafts):

The Voice said: 'Ye are my children. I have sent you to dwell here. In time ye will inherit all this Earth, but first ye must be children and learn. Call on me and I shall hear; for I am watching over you.'

In that time we called often and the Voice answered. But it seldom answered our questions, saying only: 'First seek to find the answer for yourselves. For ye will have joy in the finding, and so grow from childhood and become wise. Do not seek to leave childhood before your time.'

This changes, however, once Morgoth's lies lead Men to abjure the Voice (calling it the manifestation of void and darkness):

The first Voice we never heard again, save once. In the stillness of the night It spoke, saying: 'Ye have abjured Me, but ye remain Mine. I gave you life. Now it shall be shortened, and each of you in a little while shall come to Me, to learn who is your Lord: the one ye worship, or I who made him.'

This is the original sin of Men alluded to in the Silmarillion, and the reason why Men tries hard to forget their past before arriving in Beleriand.

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    I think this draft is inconsistent with what Tolkien eventually decided to publish. In the Silmarillion, there is to my recollection no notion of original sin, Men were mortal from the start by design. – user56 Sep 7 '12 at 11:06
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    Indeed (the Gift of Men is referenced from the start in the Silmarillion, even before their actual creation). The "shall come to Me" does not necessary implies that Men were immortal before and rather appears to me as a remainder that, in the end, all of them will have to amend before Eru. – Eureka Sep 7 '12 at 11:16
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    @Eureka - Merely from the quotes above, I had the same impression, that the "you shall come to me" is a reminder and not a change in plans. I don't know if that is indeed supported in other material one way or the other. – DVK-on-Ahch-To Sep 7 '12 at 11:20
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    About the original sin, in the Silmarillion: "But Bëor knew little of his people’s origins and did not wish to return, even in thought, to the dark past they’d left on the other side of the Blue Mountains. [...] The Eldar perceived the shadow of this past even among those Men that they counted as friends, much as the Kinslaying and Doom of Mandos had cast a shadow upon the Noldor." The "original sin" of the Elves is even clearly referenced as a parallel. – Eureka Sep 7 '12 at 11:20
  • @DVK - A more exhaustive quote is available there : thetolkienforum.com/… . I have the book in paper form as well, and can confirm the passage is indeed accurate (however, I don't know any other work to confirm this, except for these indirect references in the Silmarillion) – Eureka Sep 7 '12 at 11:24
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As far as I can determine, Eru was never recorded as speaking directly to any non-Ainur. That is not to say he didn't, just that it was not recorded. Eru Iluvatar lived in the Timeless Halls and the Void, not in Middle Earth, where only the Ainur could visit/live, which would limit his chances of interaction as well.

Having said that, it's believed that Men went to the Timeless Halls on their passing, so if this was true it's possible that Eru spoke with them at that point.

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