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Character Discussion: Hagrid (2) and the Giants

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  • Hans Rieuwers
    Dear Friends, here is my final draft of my Hagrid and the giants post. In book 5 Hagrid reveals his compassion for humanity. One day, when Ron is engaged in
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 14, 2005
      Dear Friends, here is my final draft of my Hagrid and the giants post.

      In book 5 Hagrid reveals his compassion for humanity.


      One day, when Ron is engaged in playing quidditch, Hagrid asks Harry and Hermione to come into the Forbidden Forest with him. When they reach a place deep in the forest, they see a great mound of earth that moves rhythmically up and down, accompanied to the sound of deep, grunting breathing. They realise to their horror that it is a sleeping giant.


      ‘I couldn' leave him,' said Hagrid, tears now trick­ling down his bruised face into his beard. 'See — he's my brother!’


      These are among the most sublime words in the whole Harry Potter septology. This proves what the Masters of Compassion feel for humanity: they see us as their brothers. The sleeping giant is the symbol for the unconscious masses.


      We learn that the giant’s name is Grawp and that he is tied down to the trees around him. Hagrid asks Harry and Hermione to befriend him and to “teach him things”.


      Here we see a Master of Compassion, or Hierophant, showing the apprentice alchemist what his task will be in the future: to teach unconscious humanity. This is an extension of Harry’s work as leader of Dumbledore’s army, which is the Jupiter initiation. We notice that Ron is absent. This is a task for the new soul and the new mind. The old, earthly personality is not involved.


      The mystery of why Hagrid is always bleeding and showing wounds and lacerations is now solved. Grawp is somewhat reluctant, and not too sensitive about what he does to others. This is the reward for the Bodhisattva’s sympathy for the suffering of the human race: wounds, blood and pain. But to Hagrid this means nothing. He loves his brother with all-enduring patience and brushes the wounds off as insignificant.


      When we look back to Hagrid’s tale earlier in the story we can learn more about the relationship of the Hierophant with humanity.


      Hagrid is accompanied by Olympe Maxime when he visits the giant community in a valley far, far away from civilization. They tread with caution as the giants are very aggressive. To make sure they are well received they bring some gifts. First they bring everlasting fire.


      “'Dumbledore'd bewitched this branch to burn fer evermore, which isn' somethin' any wizard could do, an' so I lies it down in the snow by Karkus’s feet and says, "A gift to the Gurg of the giants from Albus Dumbledore, who sends his respectful greetings."'

          'And what did Karkus say?' asked Harry eagerly.

          'Nothin',' said Hagrid. 'Didn' speak English.'”


      Who are these giants? They are the nations of the earth! They do not understand the language of the Masters of Compassion. They don’t even understand each other, as they all speak different languages. Hagrid tells us they are every aggressive and kill each other at the drop of a hat. They are always warring. How typical of the human race! Nearing extinction, Hagrid says.


      The first gift is everlasting fire. This is obviously a reference to the Greek legend of Prometheus, who brought fire to humanity. This proves beyond any doubt that Jo is symbolizing the giants as humanity, the masses in general. In the Greek legend Prometheus steals fire from Mt Olympus to give the fire to the human race. The fact that Hagrid’s partner is Olympe, the French feminine form of Olympus, proves that Jo is referring to this legend beyond a shadow of doubt.


      The three gifts are: everlasting fire, an indestructible helmet, and a roll of dragon skin. Three supernal and radiant symbols of what the Masters of compassion want for humanity: a total renewal of spirit, soul and body. The fire is the soul-fire that is born in the heart when a person opens his heart to the divine power. This soul-fire is the new soul, personified in Harry Potter by Harry.


      The helmet is the new spirit that enters the head when the heart has been renewed. This is personified by Hermione.


      The dragon skin symbolizes the new indestructible body that is constructed after liberation is achieved through the rebirth of the soul and the spirit.

      "If I talk too freely about whether I believe in God I think the intelligent reader, whether 10 or 60, will be able to guess what's coming in the books." JK Rowling
      Hans Rieuwers

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