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Catholics at Hogwarts (was Harry Potter (Digest Number 1287)

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  • Pauline J. Alama
    I m belatedly catching up with some of the last month s the messages, having stayed off until I had time to finish the latest Harry Potter. (My husband & I
    Message 1 of 2 , Jul 21, 2003
      I'm belatedly catching up with some of the last month's the messages,
      having stayed off until I had time to finish the latest Harry Potter.
      (My husband & I read it aloud to each other, nearly a month of shared
      reading pleasure, including a morning's false-alarm visit to an
      emergency room where I sat with a fetal monitor on my 7-months-
      pregnant belly while my husband read to me. Yes, I liked the book.
      Quite a bit.)

      I like the posting below about Harry Potter being compatible with
      Catholicism. Being Catholic myself, I also found the Harry Potter
      books compatible with Christianity as I know it. In Tolkien's terms,
      I see it as not "allegorical" but "applicable" to my religion.

      The most recent HP book...

      ...ends with an affirmation of what I would consider to be the
      central ethos of Christianity: love is stronger than death. And love
      includes a suffering, sacrificial love. Dumbledore tells Voldemort
      that his weakness is his inability to imagine anything worse than
      death. When Voldemort takes over Harry's body, Harry recognizes a
      fate worse than death -- to be used for evil purposes against those
      he loves -- and inwardly begs for death, both to be released from the
      power of evil and to rejoin Sirius, whom he had come to love. As his
      heart fills with emotion, we are told, Voldemort leaves him. He is
      saved by love. Not by moral purity -- he isn't a Galahad, he has his
      faults -- but by a love so strong it embraces suffering and death for
      the sake of those loved.

      The reality of any God or gods, and the truth of one creed or
      another, aren't within the scope of this story, but its ethics, to my
      mind, are compatible with the very heart of Christianity.


      --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Berni Phillips" <bernip@i...> wrote:
      > From: "Catherine Boyle" <ccampboyle@a...>
      > > Your
      > > post caught my attention, since I am Catholic and an avid reader
      of the
      > > Harry Potter books. Personally, I find them to be perfectly
      > with
      > > Catholic moral theology. In fact, the primary theme of the books
      is free
      > > will and personal responsibility -- we become who we choose to
      be. Magic,
      > > per se, in the books, is a talent you are born with, and that
      > learn
      > > to use. In that sense it fits the concept of a charism, a gift
      from God,
      > > that we have a responsibility to learn to use in furtherance of
      > will.
      > > Not using or developing a charism would be akin to the servant in
      the New
      > > Testament who buried the talents he had been given by his master.
      > That is an excellent point!
      > Berni
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