6 years
Pajaro al Monte

Harry Potter and Christian Ideals

This is an article I stumbled on to this evening. It is a interview with Prof. at Baylor University. The Christian Post. I like what he had to say. It always drives me a little crazy when I hear people ignorantly repeat what another has told them without investigating the matter themselves. I am glad that there are people in the Christian community willing to put themselves on the line and educate even when they seem to be going against the popular opinion.

I particularly like Dr. Moore's attitude toward the role parents have in helping their children engage with the culture around them.

Christian Post: Considering not everyone, more so for children, can easily decipher the Christian symbols in the books, is there some danger in leaving the novels to children to explore on their own?

Dr. Moore:I don’t think children should be left alone with anything—television, video games, music, books, or whatever. Parents should be involved in the lives of their children and we must know what our children are reading, watching, and listening to. That being said, I do not believe that the Potter books pose a “risk” to children. They are classic tales of good versus evil and they affirm and teach great Christian virtues like forgiveness, hope, courage, generosity, and especially love.

However on the same site they had another not so good interview with Caryl Matrisciana, Harry Potter: Making Evil look innocent

They are being taught occult symbology and perversions wrapped up as "innocent" "just fantasy". The ideas in JK Rowlings' books are not fabrications or imaginary. Rather, they are age-old principle of Wicca and Paganism believed by thousands of witches today.

I personally know people who practice Wicca and they would be shocked to discover this. I remember talking to our Wiccan friend in Grand Rapids after the first books came out, he mentioned that he expected that a few people might seek out Wicca on the basis of the books, and that once they did they would be sadly disappointed, because the kind of magic they seek to work has very little to do with fantasy work of J.K. Rowling.  Their religion is quite a hodgepodge of all sorts of earth-centered worship, some borrowed from Native American, some re-invented ideas with that borrow heavily from Celtic Mythology, none of which are present in the books.

Ms.Matrisciana also condemns the books on the basis that their fantasy is not fantastical enough

The Christian classic fantasies are not generally confusingly set in the real world as many of Harry's

and that it is to be condemned because children want it to be true. I will guess that she hasn't read the Chronicles of Narnia either, and if she had she would condemn them also. Since the books were set in firmly in real world setting. Children sent as refugees out of the major Brit cities into the countryside. There they stumble upon a ordinary looking wardrobe that transports them into a magical land...I think countless generations of children have also wished to stumble upon magical wardrobes. I think she severely misunderstands the nature of imaginative work, and the need of the fantastical in the life of children.

She also has several misstatements as this one.

Even in Harry's books, those who don't believe as Harry and other witches do are derogatorily called "muggles".

Actually the term muggle has nothing to do with belief. Muggle simply means someone born without magical abilities.  Magical abilities in the Harry Potter have nothing to do with belief, are in fact more of a birthright. Children of wizards almost always wizards, and the few exceptions, those who aren't born with magical aptitude are called Squibs.

Hopefully those who read this article published today read Dr. Moore excellent interview first and might be able to use their critical thinking to evaluate the claims of Ms. Matrisciana


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