Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Harry Potter and the Crown of Thorns

Apparently, there were some people who maintained their bitter opposition to the Harry Potter series until the bitter end.
Rowling created a hero with many noble characteristics, and in this last book, Harry willingly gives his life. Responding to a message he magically received from Hogwarts' former Headmaster Dumbledore through Professor Snape's memories, the young wizard walks unarmed up to the evil wizard Voldemort, who points his wand at him and projects a killing curse. Harry falls down, apparently dead. 
So far so good.  Noble characteristics, martyrdom.  Standard fare.

Harry chooses to return to his lifeless body at Voldemort's feet. After some torturous tests to verify the absence of life, Voldemort declares that Harry is dead. He will soon realize his error, for Harry has still another battle to fight and win.

Oh my!  Back from the dead!  Truly amazing (but also standard fare).

But Harry's final victory is less significant than the above near-death encounter. By presenting a counterfeit version of Biblical salvation, Rowling gives her readers an image of a counterfeit Christianity that embraces the occult. Most people accept it as true, for such dialectical lies (union of opposites) -- taught through occult systems such as the Kabbalah, Gnosticism, Rosicrucianism, and Unity -- have now become an accepted way of thinking around the world. Indeed, what God calls evil, now seems deceptively good!

"A counterfeit version of Biblical salvation"?  How about just a rough analog?   You know...the kind that might arguably be called....standard fare?  (Interesting article about this kind of thing in sci-fi).   It is hilarious, because I am sure that the only reason why Berit has deemed this to be a "counterfeit" is because of her well-established hangups, due to a compulsive need to view fictional wizardry through the prism of a strict Biblical worldview.   Even in a fictional world, with principles different from our own, and magic readily available to be tapped into, and the resemblance to real world "occultism" is either tangential or just window-dressing, it doesn't matter:  that practice has to be Satan worship, because that's the Bible's stance on anything resembling magic usage.  Oh, and if they exist in a world where Satan and/or God don't exist, or where they work under different rules, even if it is only for the sake of allegory, that itself is blasphemy worthy of a firm scolding.  Most people tend to be able to take a fantasy world as a fantasy world, magic tropes as magic tropes, and a pretty typical literary Christ figure as just that.  But, others are just completely perturbed at the idea of fiction not adhering to how they think reality works.  And that's just sad.

15 comments:

Mandar Malum said...

perhaps its only due to the fact that I am one of those godless heathens that has a clear enough mind to see fiction from non-fiction, but I liked Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows...

I've come to realize that Christians will hate anything that doesn't have Jesus in it... or anything that is a work of fiction that does not have exact mirror images of the bible where the good guys don't do magical things... They hated Lord of the Rings because it is more or less a godless world (in the films) If they read the Silmarillion, they might not dislike it as much... but then again, that would mean they would have to pick up a book...

Pliny-the-in-Between said...

Reminds me of a long time ago - I was dating a woman who was really religious (don't ask). We went to see "Return of the Jedi". She hated the ending. As we were leaving she went off on how lame it was for Darth Vader to be evil all this time and at the last second do a good thing and be forgiven. She really got mad when I was dumb enough to ask her wasn't that what her faith promised? That the repentant could be absolved? I had a lot of first dates during that period of my life.

Harvey said...

These same "fundies" cannot accept the fact that earthly characters being killed and rising again (i.e. Osiris, etc.) have been a part of religious lore since long before the story of Jesus. Virtually all of the central themes of the New Testament, not to mention the Torah on which it rests, predate these "sacred" texts by thousands of years. Little wonder that they cannot "allow" even a modern allegorical retelling of these same themes without calling it blasphemy.

Mandar Malum said...

"I had a lot of first dates during that period of my life."

thats hilarious.

Asylum Seeker said...

Actually, Berit here read the Simarillion and hates Tolkien and the LOTR because the creation story in it has a deistic creator and several active gods taking on the role of interventionists, which is, of course, h-h-h-heresy. Some people consider LOTR to be a good fantasy story that reflects Christian values and what-not, but Berit is disgusted by the idea of "true myths" (reality being exposed with deeper clarity through fictional models) and, due to the polytheism in Tolkien's creation myth, as well as not mentioning elven Jesus or whatever the hell she expects, it is obvious that Tolkien hasn't created a set of works that could be deemed deep and revealing by some Christians. Since, obviously, it needs to explicitly mention "God" to do so. Right?

Mandar Malum said...

"Little wonder that they cannot "allow" even a modern allegorical retelling of these same themes without calling it blasphemy."

Its because they refuse to believe that their stories aren't original... its the first time they heard the story, so fuck what history has to say...

Mandar Malum said...

"Since, obviously, it needs to explicitly mention "God" to do so. Right?"

Silly me... I forgot that we are still dealing with the fact that they don't like fiction stories because they cannot tell the difference between what is real and what is not. haha... I guess that's what religion does to people.

Asylum Seeker said...

"As we were leaving she went off on how lame it was for Darth Vader to be evil all this time and at the last second do a good thing and be forgiven."

That is several different levels of hilarious.

And, I too find it a little disturbing how often some Christians have declared themselves to have exclusive rights to the idea of rebirth. Can I just say that, when it comes to that kind of thing, I love wikipedia.

Stacy said...

Great, just great. I have to read book 7 again ... I don't remember any of that. :-(

(brain damage)

Pliny - the "Ewok" scenes were filmed in Humboldt County, CA. :-)
(Avenue of the Giants)

Pliny-the-in-Between said...

I loved the forest but hated those damn stupid Ewoks - I'd have put a bounty on them myself and I'm not an evil emperor.

The Maze Monster said...

I am a huge fan of Harry Potter for it's characters and it's magic and JKR's great ability to tell a good story. I think before Book7 came that I knew that Harry was a "christ" among the wizards. Miracle at birth, survived death, etc. If they think harry is so bad, just think about what jesus did to horus!

Christopher said...

*speechless*

...

pboyfloyd said...

So, some Christians are willing to admit that the Bible has common ground with the Harry Potter novels?

Okay then.

Asylum Seeker said...

"So, some Christians are willing to admit that the Bible has common ground with the Harry Potter novels?"

And that if it doesn't share that common ground, that it is even worse. That's about the size of it.

Pliny-the-in-Between said...

Does this mean that the Hyperion Cantos is fictional too?