'Board' with Potter

What do Pagans and other Beliefnet members think about Potter?


11/18/2005 02:13:50 AM

Harry Potter is a wonderful fantasy story line. it has nothing to do with Wicca or WitchCraft. In the stories, they celebrate the traditional holidays...for example, Christmas. For some people, anything that even thinks or looks differently then they are automatically pinned as "evil". They simply need to grow up and get a life instead of being so pathetically fearfull of everything!


07/15/2005 09:02:48 PM

"So in their own way, don't Christians also have a form of magick? " yes, i agree with you rockrangel! Although Christianity is such a prominent religion, I think some people do not every understand every aspect of this religion! It is not so different from other religions. People say that christians are afraid of magic but I know christians that practice what can be referred to as magic. It is called therapeutic touch where the healer evenly distributes the energy of the person being worked on throughout their body. This is done by rubbing one's hands together and moving them over the person. Of coure it is more detailed than this, since one has to learn the parts of the body and way the energy is placed. It is based on science. Therefore, not all christians are afraid of magic, but christians like me are afraid of believing that the magic comes from ourselves. Because according to Christian beliefs, it does not. Everything only comes from God.


06/06/2004 02:34:54 AM

rockrangel, as a true follower of Christ, (at least I try to be), I'm with you! Our loving and merciful God has provided us with many paths to his arms. My mum always taught me to respect other's faiths because when I found my soul being judged by a giant pink rabbit, I'd be wishing I hadn't laughed at those people when they came to my door. Love and acceptance are the only way forward.


06/25/2003 01:44:59 PM

I think the whole debate about parents losing their children to Wicca due to Harry Potter is stupid. The books have little or no actual Wicca in it. It's just a fantasy story that lets children get away for awhile.....why would anyone want to take that away from them? By telling your child that they can't do something all you're doing is making them want it more.


04/06/2003 02:19:33 PM

I am pagan, determined to work and to become one with the magick nature has to offer us. But what is magick, really? More or less it's just an artful way to pray to the godess. So in their own way, don't Christians also have a form of magick? and who are we praying to, really? Aren't all gods one ad the same? Why can't we realize that? Why must we hide within our differences and judge one another based on beliefs. Why can't we accept magick AND prayer? Why can't we love the godess AND Jesus? Will someone answer that?


02/15/2003 02:34:48 PM

There is no Pagan or Wiccan-style magic in Harry Potter. What these Christians actually object to is not Pagan magic per se, but the fact that it's not *Christian* magic...because the Bible is *full* of Judaeo-Christian magic. Moses parting the Red Sea...the temple elders' "dirty water" test to determine if a woman has been unfaithful...the snake statue that cured snakebite...prophets who channel God...Jesus' virgin birth, his "miracles", his resurrection from the dead (and his resurrecting Lazarus from the dead). Modern-day Christian magic and witchcraft includes faith healing, "speaking in tongues" and Pat Robertson's claim to have commanded away a hurricane (hey, the North Berwick witches were executed for similar practices, Rev!) Of course, Christians call such practices "miracles"...but it all looks like witchcraft to me...


11/24/2002 09:52:26 AM

There's nothing wrong with using a fictional character as a means of escape from the modern world (Haryy Potter included) providing they are left in the realm of fantasy and we can return to reality afterward. We all enjoy escapism. The problem comes when we start trying to blend fiction into reality and compare it to reality. Or a child tries to fly off a roof like Superman or Batman. There are people in mental hospitals (is that the politically correct term today?) who can't distinguish reality from fantasy. But escapism is only a temporary vehicle to travel from the physical world. At some point in the future Christ is going to intervene (again) in this temporary world. Won't matter much how strong, self-sufficient and basically good anyone of us thinks we are then.


11/24/2002 04:23:55 AM

Good books for this age group include not only the element of fantasy that allows kids to immerse and escape from life, but also images of strong, self-sufficient young heroes and heroines who are nonetheless flawed and recognizable. They have people in them like Harry and his friends who consistently demonstrate that they're decent, caring, and basically good--while still being, at heart, kids. And they have the power to face difficult challenges and succeed. To take Harry Potter, or Queen Lucy, or Will the Youngest of the Old Ones for a role model is not at all a bad thing. Far better, in my opinion, than expecting children to see Isaac as a role model, or Jacob, or even Benjamin... much less Lot. Children who enter adolescence thinking of themselves as strong, self-sufficient, and basically good grow into adults who are in fact strong, self-sufficient, and treat their fellow human beings with respect and kindness. And humankind can use as much of that as it can get.


11/23/2002 09:50:06 PM

"I feel more safe letting my kid read Harry Potter than letting him read the Bible -- A book with nearly every perversion known to man in it." Since the Bible is a history of mankind and God's interaction with him wouldn't it reflect the things common to mankind? Man is a base creature that would rather give in to his animal desires than try and rise above them. It's inherent in all of us. There is nothing in the old testament that isn't common among men. Harry Potter, won't solve mankinds problems, God will.


11/19/2002 10:09:13 PM

Just think... If it weren't for all of these Harry Potter-fearing Christians, the books would have never become as popular as they did. I'll say one thing. I feel more safe letting my kid read Harry Potter than letting him read the Bible -- A book with nearly every perversion known to man in it. Let's start with Genesis. Brother killing brother. Father impregnating daughter. Adult themed activities like homosexuality... The list goes on and grows with every Book in the Old Testament. Yes... Harry Potter is definately better suited for children. Unlike that other book which fills their heads with material NO child should read.


11/19/2002 06:36:21 PM

When I first heard all the hype over the Harry Potter series and then the movie, I was suckered into believing it could be so bad. I refused to allow my 2 children-ages 7 and 4-to see a movie that allows witchcraft. When it came to video I watched it alone strictly to see what it was all about. I found nothin wrong with it, as it is no more than fantasy and make-believe just as Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Wizard of Oz, and MANY Disney movies-ex. Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, The Little Mermaid-and only people who are scared of seeing something like this would object to it. Children will grow and forget. (At the moment, my 7-yr-old son wants to be Spiderman when he grows up.)But the point is that younger children ONLY see it as fantasy, not reality. After seeing the first movie, I WILL be taking my kids to the second and any following HP movies. I think these experts need to get back to thinking as a child does and enjoy it as it was meant to be enjoyed-as a fun fantasy to escape to.


11/16/2002 11:58:06 AM

One recurring complaint that I've noticed about the Harry Potter books is that Harry occaisionally lies and steals. When I took a psychology class, several levels of moral reasoning were discussed, with the lowest being that a person should not lie or steal because they will be caught and punished and the highest being that there are occaisions on which it is justifiable, such as sneaking out into the castle in the night against the rules because the person who is supposed to enter the chamber of secrets to fight the monster has no clue of what he is doing, and that by breaking that rule, a life may be saved. Perhaps Harry's lying and stealing should be seen from the perspective that he does it only to help others who are in grave danger, rather than for his own ends. Morally, there is a difference.


11/16/2002 09:31:37 AM

I wonder what was our first exposure to Magick and the craft? probably thru stories and movies we saw as kids. like the Wiz of Oz, or other old tales we read... as we became adults we had the knowledge and maturity to decern what is real and not real.. but it's good for children to have a place to start thinking magickally an openly... this kind of reading is a place for them to do that and it keeps them reading books not stuck in video games for hours on end... that is more healthy and positive for sure... I don't want to play religious politics with what Harry is or is not.. I like the kid and the lessons are more good than bad... thats what I want for my kids anyways... Peace,=!=


06/26/2002 11:28:15 PM

(Time to give Christianity a reverse example! lol) I don't think it's appropriate for children to watch Veggie Tales. The idea that a child could really become a singing tomato or cucumber is an extremely harmful belief to instill in a young and impressionable child. They might mistakenly think that they too can sing about Christianity from the produce isle! The shock, the horror!


06/08/2002 11:55:15 AM

Whoever deems these books pagan or satanic is ignorant and needs to read these books. They stress good morals, celebrate Christian holidays and do NOT do pagan magick. To be perfectly frank, I have yet to see a pagan wave a ten inch stick, say a little gibberrish and make a feather fly. If any of you know one who can, then I have been proved wrong and you all can ban Harry Potter all you want. But personally, I think they are wonderful books. They helped my brother, who was in 3rd grade at the time he first read them, go from a 2nd grade reading level to a 5th grade reading level. If that isn't magic, please tell me what is. Thanks!


12/11/2001 05:08:24 AM

I believe even kids should have some say in what they read and watch. What people don't understand is that a sheltered child is like a time bomb, and it WILL blow up in your face.


12/04/2001 04:02:55 AM

to greenthumb:it is sad that some people take things and run waaaaay to far with it without checking it's true source but don't let it bother you tooooo much be balanced and fair to your self and others and things will be ok.


12/03/2001 01:57:07 PM

Someone mentioned a picture of three kids sitting around a pentagram. That picture was run in a satirical newspaper called The Onion(www.theonion.com). They ran an 'article' that HP were leading children to Satanism. Remember, The Onion's articles are JOKES. (They also had and article that Oprah was seceding from the USA and creating her own country. Unfortunantly, many respectable newspapers and Fundie Christian groups alike found this article and took it as fact. *rolleyes* So, the picture is actually a joke. And people are refering to that article as hard evidence... Sometimes I wonder who it is that can't tell fact from fiction - adults or kids... greenthumb


12/02/2001 11:13:43 PM

also by exposeing your children to what ever, it does not take away thier free will,it may influence them greatly but you can never TAKE AWAY thier free will!you can say stupid things to them,theach them wrong,teach them right but you cannot take away free will.


12/02/2001 10:45:13 PM

to andvari:there must be a balance it does not matter if you are pagan or christian,the object is not to keep them (your own children) from or ignorant of what you do not believe. children are a great responsability you TEACH not brainwash them what you belive,TEACH them to be moral and MAKE wise choices so they dont hurt them self or other people physically or mentally.when they get older they will choose the path they want to, and they will! yes some people on both sides peagan,christian,ect... will not show balance.as far as christians taking thier children to church to TEACH them about the bible that in it's self is not wrong. like i said you must do it in a balanced way.it sounds as if you have a hatred fror christians IF? that is the case your attitude is no better than the people you are pointing your finger at.i'm not trying to be a jerk but think about it.


12/02/2001 03:24:03 PM

"first of all i do not think us as humans have authuority to force our convictions upon someone else" By that measure, should we ban young children from being taken to church on the basis that the church is removing their free will by presupposing and enforcing the idea that a god/goddess/being exists and has premandated a certain set of behavioral rules?


12/02/2001 12:04:20 PM

harry potter is to majick what danielle steele is to real life people.... no connection in either case


11/30/2001 07:03:20 PM

first of all i do not think us as humans have authuority to force our convictions upon someone else,if God himself gives us free will!to look at hp from a christian point of veiw you must be privy of what the word of god says in contrast to harry potter if you look at it from that veiw then you will see different forms of witchcraft and sorcery although they are greatly exaggerated at some points hp does have those overtones and ways of thinking.if you come from the point of veiw of the occult,sorcery,wicca,ect... then you must try to also know both sides,it is easy to get upset when your not looking at both sides.the fact is there will always be people on both sides of the fence that go waaaaay over board that brings unbalance.never mind them,focuse on the truth on both sides then make your choice.


11/30/2001 05:27:43 AM

It's sad when people are up in arms about something so simple as a fantasy world. I wonder, did such things come about when Alice in Wonderland came out? Were people terrified that their children may begin to leap through mirrors? What of all the "wicked" representations of witches in Disney and fairy tales? Are parent's afraid that that may influence their children to snatch up the "dark magic"?? I say..there be none o' the craft in these books! It's just fantasy..give your kids a little credit for knowing the difference, and while you're at it, give yourself a little credit for raising your children well in the faith you have chosen. Merry meet and merry part!


11/30/2001 01:53:44 AM

There is nothing even remotly pagan in Harry Potter. The magic is more in the genre of Samantha Stevens in Bewitched. People who say it is haven't read it, they are taking someone else's word for it when the other person has not read it either. The person who warns people is usually on a power trip. "I say it goes against the word of god" "I say there are Wiccan rituals int it", but when asked to show where, they can't. Why, because they are not there.


11/29/2001 06:31:22 PM

I think the Harry Potter movie is a welcome diversion from the real evil that lurks in the world right now. I am more concerned about my children watching the news and seeing bombings, killings, terror, and opression. My son was terrified on Halloween when an airlplane flew overhead while trick or treating, and promptly ran all the way home because he was afraid of being bombed. Harry Potter is really the least of our worries. There is a lot of sorrow in the world and we need to come together instead of bickering over a children's book. If you don't like it, don't read it or buy it. Teach your children well, and give them a good example to live by. Don't blame a book for the demoralization of our youth; blame the parents who allow it to happen. That's all folks!


11/29/2001 03:49:57 PM

If there actually are young ones -- then welcome then, and if you can't do so -- find someone else to do so. I am not Pagan, I'm Episcopalian, but we are no enemies to the pagans -- who have an altar in our Cathedral in NY for their own use. However, I know that the evil of the fundamentalist Christians hate you and him alike -- make them eat it. Reynolds Jones


11/28/2001 05:07:18 AM

I agree with almost everything you guys have said. I recently seen the movie this week, and I really liked it, but not having read the books, I don't know the extent of the details. It is just a movie. Entertainment. Being a Witch/Pagan is a lot of work and practice, and I agree with the point of there going to be a flood of youngsters comming into the faith wanting to wave wands and cast spells. It will pass quickly I imagine. Too much bad wrap to us because of Hollywood and its "steriotypes" , don't ya think? I think that HP was a cute movie, but I will still be awaiting the day that a movie comes out with some truth to it (eg Practical Magic) and more explanation about what the Craft is really all about: LOVE! May you all walk in Love and Light and Magick!


11/27/2001 07:15:25 PM

I don't think that Harry Potter doesn't show the true side of Magick. At least not from what I've seen. But once again people take things WAY out of porportion and say that H.P leads children to "the ways of the Devil" *shakes her head* UGH!!!! I don't think so. I mean I've seen some wicked articles on it. Including one from a paper in florida (I think it was that one) that had a picture of 3 kids dressed up in a HP type costume, sitting by a pentagle (It was hard to say whether or not it was inverted was hard to say) surrounded by candles, that an writitng on the wall that is made to look like blood... I mean come on people. Get real! HP does not promote Santanism or evil... It is a method for children to use their imaginations... Let them have their fun!


11/26/2001 09:12:58 AM

Dear night silverstar, I agree!


11/24/2001 02:25:18 PM

Weehee, harry potter has no pagan teachings in it... Well not that I have seen anyway... I find it kind a funny to be indentified with the staff at Hogwarts... Too bad that ain't true at all! And what the "theblessed7" says is discriminating... You may not say jews, muslims, buddhists, etc etc etc are bad and I find that greaT1 But than I think that you also can't say Pagans are bad! Anne


11/20/2001 11:06:22 AM

Mercale: You are right about the Pagan and Magickal content of many church services- I have witnessed some of this for myself. A book by CW Leadbeater, called "Science of the Sacraments" gets into the nitty-gritty of the particular energy fields produced by a properly conducted Liberal Catholic ceremony in a properly constructed and dressed church. There are even illustrations on the energy flow and the actual eucharistical energy exchange between the Almighty and the participants. Way cool. Any nominally sensitive person visiting one of the more, um, enthusiastic churches (where they get into estactic trances and do 'tongues' and all) can sense the energies raised, and (hopefully) released in the course of a service. It's enough to make my own 'magick-sensing' hairs stand right on end. Magick is real, even in churches. I guess it's the Non-Bible-approved sort they dislike. Methinks they protest a wee bit too much. Peace, Blessings, and Real Magick Sunfell


11/17/2001 01:01:53 PM

sunfell: I agree with your statement about magick being neutral.As far as Judeo-Christian prohibition of it, I say, visit a church and watch the mass from a Pagan prespective.While sadly, most people at the service are unaware of the magick going on there is still lots both in the ritual itself, and in the prayers of the people of that faith.There just seems to be a prohibition on non-church-sanctioned magick and ritual In Service, Mercale


11/17/2001 01:01:28 PM

For those lamenting about their children being exposed to "witchcraft and the occult" I SYMPATHIZE!BUT, as a parent of two kids being raised Pagan, I have to explain the different viewpoints virtually everywhere we go!Look around you as it draws near to any "big" holiday, and you will see what I mean.We live in a religiously diverse world.My children are going to have to learn to live in that world, and be strong in their faith. If you're worried about the influence of something, TALK TO THEM in simple, friendly,terms about what YOUR family's beliefs are.That's our job as good parents anyway.


11/17/2001 12:50:26 PM

In response to the statement that Harry "Lies, cheats and steals to get what he wants," I must say that while Harry does indeed flout traditional authority on many occasions, it is often done for the "right reasons" Harry follows his heart, and tries to help others when he can. True, he is not perfect, but then none of us are, and it is important for children to see how making the wrong decisions, and acting for the wrong reasons can effect people. It is important for children not just to be told what is an important moral lesson, but to be shown why. Also, I am in agreement that the fantasy magical world of Harry Potter does not "teach children witchcraft" nor does it reflect the teachings thereof. AJRoberti hits the nail on the head when he states that in order for this series to be teaching or promoting wicca or neo-paganism, it necessarily must mention the divine, interaction therewith and AT LEAST SOMETHING about the basic tenents of the religion. Like the Rule of Three, An Harm it None.. etc..


11/16/2001 11:39:01 AM

I also think that the Judeo-Christian prohibition of Magick in all its forms stems from the unstated ( but very real) fear by their God that should humans study and practice Magick, we will gain the technical insight and understanding of the nature of reality and the universe we inhabit, and we will no longer be under that particular diety's control. This is the true reason that Magick in all its forms was specifically 'forbidden'- to keep the 'sheeple' in the dark. Magick isn't good or evil- it is a neutral force-form that can be utilized in many ways- much like electricity. And the study and understanding of Magick isn't evil, either. It is simply another form of long-lost technology. Slowly, we are finding it again. Blessings Be Sunfell


11/16/2001 11:38:41 AM

The 'magic' in Harry Potter is very external, showy and superficial. Genuine Magick is very INTERNAL and to a large degree hidden, and in the genuine practice, one would not get anywhere near his level of adepthood until at least their fourth or even fifth decade. The study of Magick is a lifelong persuit, and also a calling. Yes, people are called to it as youngsters, but it takes decades- even lifetimes- of study, perseverance, and experience to gain the insight, wisdom and discernment of a Master. There are no child Mages. That is the good thing about Magickal practice in all its facets- be it Wiccan, or Pagan of any stripe: it is self- selecting, and those who go into it for power over others, ego boosting aggrandizement or because it is 'kewl' wash out very quickly.


11/16/2001 10:10:27 AM

Oh, and for the record, I do not believe that Rowling's world has any connection to neo-Paganism whatsoever. "Magic" is waving wands around and saying magic words; Wicca and neo-Paganism are about communicating with the Divine in a particular fashion. Rowling says *nothing* in any of the Harry Potter books about the Divine.


11/16/2001 10:05:45 AM

In response to mumsy5, Harry's supposedly good, but he lies, cheats and steals to get what he wants. Great example. This describes many characters in the Bible, no? Moses and Paul are men of questionable background, but they are deemed worthy of being messengers for God. When Potter breaks the rules, he is frequently shown being punished for it; and it the fact that Potter and his friends are not perfect adds a sense of realism to the narrative. Children will learn stronger moral lessons from characters who face moral dilemmas and don't always make the right decisions.


11/16/2001 01:20:33 AM

"just like Pagans wouldn't want their children to see Christian-based films," Uh... yeah. Folks, any pagan kid raised in this society sees Christian based films. Heck, they see them at school all the time. (Often called "history" -- but slanted to present the actions of Christian in a more favorable light than could possibly be done by an unbiased source.) Or the number of classic children's books that are thinly veiled Christian propaganda... Folks, live with it -- we do, all the time.


11/15/2001 10:13:50 PM

I think that like the movie "The Craft" Potter is just going to bring a lot of wannabes into a serious religion. Never the less, its not violent, bloody & from what I hear (having never read the books) its fun. 0% of it is real and could not be accomplish without a great deal of special effects and a healthy dose of CGI. However, to alay fears for the paranoid ...ITS JUST A MOVIE!! There. All better. Sarcasticly yours, Mystik