This passage from the beginning of "Of the Beginning of Days" (heh) describes the coming of the Vala Tulkas into Arda. When I re-read this passage, I was shocked because I noticed a phrase I had missed before that gives a rather surprising sense of perspective to the conflict in Middle-Earth.
We are told that Tulkas, who was not in Arda but in the “far heaven,” wherever that might be, came to the aid of the Valar warring in the “Little Kingdom.” If we assume, as I do, that Arda includes Varda’s stars, it seems that the entire universe is “The Little Kingdom.” And since Tulkas had to “hear” about the conflict in Arda and did not immediately know of it, that suggests that there’s quite a lot more going on in the far heaven than simply the Music of the Ainur creating Arda; perhaps there are even other, similar projects at work and Tulkas just thought Arda was the most interesting.
This reminds me of C.S. Lewis’ revelations about Narnia in The Magician’s Nephew, in which we discover that Narnia is only one universe in a vast multiverse mere humans cannot fathom. If something similar is happening here, and Arda is indeed very “little” in the grand scheme of things, then the desire of Melkor, most powerful of the Ainur, to control Arda becomes almost laughable. While Melkor’s actions aren’t ultimately petty to the people of Arda he torments, it seems that in his greed and self-delusion Melkor hasn’t realized just how thoroughly he has demeaned himself and trapped himself in a tiny fortress in a tiny world in a (comparatively) tiny universe.
Also: I love the tale of Tulkas as a primordial, classic hero who descends from heaven to save the world from peril and ends up staying out of love (as the other Valar did). I would love to read more about his adventures.