Harry Potter and the heart of good

What better time than Hallowe’en to write about magic and the battle between the forces of good and evil? Stephen Holmes, the acting head of divinity at St. Andrews University in Scotland, has good timing in that regard.

Earlier this week he endorsed Harry Potter—even called him Christ-like. Holmes hoped that the seal of approval of a respected theologian would open the minds of those who condemn the books as tools for promoting witchcraft.

I hope it helps.

The Harry Potter series has two powerful plus points. First, the books are a family experience. We read all seven books out loud together on long rides to the cottage. We laughed together and cried together, and I know many other families had a similar shared experience. Second, the overriding theme of the books is that good triumphs over evil, and love overpowers hate.

Hard to argue with that.

As we worked our way through the series, I wondered all along, “How is J.K. Rowling going to resolve this in a way that doesn’t involve Harry doing something evil?” I couldn’t imagine how Harry could remove Voldemort’s power without resorting to murder.

Isn’t that the way? When we face something evil, sometimes the only way that we can see our way out of it is doing something evil in return.

But J.K. Rowling didn’t take that road. In the end, Voldemort destroyed himself with his own evil rebounding back on himself. Good triumphed over evil; love overpowered hate.

We are Muggles, but, like Harry, we will often be tormented by Voldemorts in our lives.  We can follow Harry Potter’s example—place ourselves in the heart of good and see what happens.

Happy Hallowe’en!

4 thoughts on “Harry Potter and the heart of good

  1. Barbara

    Very well put Arlene.

    Too many times in too many lives across societies “evil” (anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego – as per the Two Wolves legend) manage to try and sometimes succeed to take hold of our lives. As like Harry Potter, if we focus to keep the “good” (joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compasion and faith) in the forefront of our lives, perhaps we would find that it (good) and ourselves can rise above and create a more harmonious world and life.

  2. Joanne

    this confirms my belief that life is too short to let hate control you. let it go and focus your energy on all that is good in your life, it makes you day a more pleasant experience.


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