The Potter Parody That Got Out of Hand
Condemned for defending Harry Potter, the author thinks Christians should heed St. Paul's advice.
06/16/2004 05:31:47 AM
Yes, random gibberish in dodgy Latin will warp their fragile minds, WARP I SAY! It's a fictional story. The "magic" used amounts to a few genetically different individuals (because magic in the HP universe is a genetic trait like hair or eye colour) uttering, as I said, random gibberish in dodgy Latin. If someone can show how that poses any threat to anyone's children (except the barking mad fringe) then I'd love to see it.
06/15/2004 11:03:50 PM
And here I thought the witch hunts were a thing of the past.Honestly for all those who have harrassed Anne Morse they should be ashamed. Not much of an example to set for their children. To think they were worried about the HP books warping their kids.Seems to me they need no help in doing that.
06/15/2004 08:32:56 PM
Well if all those people call themselves Christians, they'd be lying, you are not supposed to judge other people. In the HP books it doesnt even come close to even teaching witchcraft or wizardry, it just says words in the dialogue. Do you really think that just by reading a book is going to make you a satanist, I dont think so! I go to church, I believe what is preached and I am sure that other HP readers do too! I so sick and tired of people criticising J.K.R for the way she writes. It is a book about magic. People are taking the whole witchcraft and wizardry too seriously, I BELIEVE IN GOD ALMIGHTY
06/09/2004 04:09:01 PM
(...continued from below) I think, however, that your concern is partially misplaced. First, I will step out on a limb and say that the whole notion of "psychically gifted" strikes me as hogwash. More importantly, it's unlikely that Satan is going to use a Ouija board to tempt your children into dancing with the devil (in the pale moonlight?) because, frankly, he's got more tried-and-true methods of pulling kids away from God. Heck, Christians in America are doing it for him half the time, and the things Anne Morse writes about in her article are an example of that. The real danger from occult stuff is not that anything nasty will come out, but rather that nothing will. God's prohibitions on scrying have nothing to do with trying to prevent demonic possession. I will agree with you on one point, though: Christians should look into witchcraft to understand what it is. Indeed they should; it would give them a real basis for deciding exactly what's dangerous and what isn't.
06/09/2004 04:00:12 PM
(... continued from below) Scrying is an example. Not something you would want a child to pretend, as pagan's well know a "gifted" child would not need to practice to be able to "pull" out something scary, and without the knowledge to protect himself, a child could find himself in a horrible position. You know, my immediate impulse was to ridicule this whole section -- but I won't, and not just because of Beliefnet etiquette. Fact is, people do play with Ouija boards and the like. I had a friend in college who owned one. We got it out and used it once. I honestly believed at the time, and still do, that anything and everything that happened that day could be explained through non-spiritual, non-occult means... but I remember that I did wonder if there were more things in heaven and earth than were dreamt of in Horatio's philosophy, if you know what I mean. (continued above...)
06/09/2004 03:50:48 PM
taska2u writes: My Sister has recently come back to Christ after 3 years she was a respected member of clegy in the Wiccan faith. It only took her three years in the Wiccan world to become a respected member of the clergy? Wow, they have low standards. She mentored as many as 300 students, Why am I reminded of Mike Warnke? and volenteered her time to stop persecution of witches. Well, good for her on that one. Nobody in America should be persecuted for their religious beliefs. In her words "Harry Potter is written by one who knows much of Wicca". There are lots of historians with in-depth knowledge of the rise and rule of Hitler. That doesn't make them Nazis. (continued above...)
06/09/2004 01:55:34 PM
taska2, I don't remember any place in HP where it tells how to scry. The word scrying never even appears. Divination classes do not actually discuss how to do anything. You get a little info in Potions, but I believe only one complete recipie. Somehow, I doubt the Polyjuice Potion would really work. I don't mean to be catty, but I do have to wonder if you really read the books?
06/08/2004 08:30:51 PM
taska2u: everything in the Potter books can be learned simply from reading anthropology books, history books, religious history books, and any number of other books in the library. Further, the idea of divination has been with humans since long before written history. People have read turtle shells, bones, burnt plants, bowls of water, you name it. People even look for secret (i.e., occult) meanings in the Bible. I hope that your sister has found peace in her new religion. But be assured that even the most sheltered Christian kid will know about attepts to read the future and summon deamons. It's one of the results of human curiosity.
06/08/2004 05:00:25 PM
why do christians if this stripe go after trivia? they complain at a children's story but will not raise so much as a peep over poverty, injustice and real issues that really matter. As Jesus said of the Pharisees, these people have strained out a gnat and swallowed a camel (ie pursued trivia and totally missed the important issues like what te point of the gospel is). I have not yet read the HP books but i loved the movies and will be lining up to see the 3rd next week. BTW if we christians condemn occultic practices outside of trhe church why do we not condemn those we practise ourselves? like psychic prayer. but god forbid we should ever deal with logd in our own eye first
06/06/2004 10:37:18 PM
Let me say that I have read the all the Harry Potter Books. I picked up the first on simply because it was causing such a stir. My Sister has recently come back to Christ after 3 years she was a respected member of clegy in the Wiccan faith. She mentored as many as 300 students, and volenteered her time to stop persecution of witches. In her words "Harry Potter is written by one who knows much of Wicca". Scrying is an example. Not something you would want a child to pretend, as pagan's well know a "gifted" child would not need to practice to be able to "pull" out something scary, and without the knowledge to protect himself, a child could find himself in a horrible position. Harry Potter in the hands of a child with any psychic abilities could open doors he should leave closed. Ignorance is never an excuse and I believe Christians should look into witchcraft to understand what it is, then they could see what the danger of Harry Potter is.
06/06/2004 02:29:20 AM
I laugh so hard reading these old posts from 4 years ago. Aside from the Christmas argument, Harry's been baptised! I love HP and actively encourage my children to read them. I also attend worship almost every Sunday, teach Sunday school and work on service planning and outreach programs. I'm relieved to know that what I read will determine my salvation rather than what is in my heart.
01/13/2004 11:47:27 PM
Do you Christian's who call Morse, the handmaiden of Satan ENJOY living under the shadow of fear? I can't imagine going about in peace to love and serve the Lord while attending such a narrow minded prison as your church. Anne, a succubus from the pit of hell? It's a joke right? More Onion stories right? Just in case, can I ask what type of Christains you are? I'm trying to identify you now on the religious definitions, just in case I move. I don't want my children exposed to your hateful way of thinking. Banning books is a big no-no at our house. Thank GOD this is a free country and I can worship as I please! THANK YOU to all you soldiers who laid down your lives to allow me the freedom of the worship of my choice. God Bless the USA!
01/13/2004 11:43:42 PM
Do you Christian's who call Ms. Morse, the handmaiden of Satan really ENJOY living under the shadow of evil? Gosh, you have controlling pastors who fling their own misguided egotistical thoughts at you and tell your kids what they can or cannot read? I can't imagine going about in peace to love and serve the Lord while attending such a narrow minded prison as your church. You people actually think this writer with a lovely sense of humor is a succubus from the pit of hell? It's a joke right? More Onion stories right? Just in case, can I ask what type of Christains you are? I'm trying to identify you now on the Beliefnet religious definitions, it's just in case I move. I don't want my children exposed to your hateful way of thinking. Name calling and judging others is a big no-no at our house. Thank GOD this is a free country and I can worship as I please! Thank you, Thank you to all you soldiers who laid down your lives to allow me the freedom of the worship of my choice. God Bless the USA!
01/13/2004 11:36:07 PM
Do you Christian's who call Ms. Morse, the handmaiden of Satan really enjoy living under the shadow of a controlling pastor who flings his own high and misguided egotistical thoughts at you and tells your kids what they can or cannot read? I'd rather die than be forced to live a day in such a narrow minded prison as your church. You people actually think this writer with a lovely sense of humor is a succubus from the pit of hell? Can I ask what type of Christains you are? Just in case I move, I want to know where NOT to move to! I'd much rather meet a witch than your hate filled, supposedly Christian pastor. Thank GOD this is a free country and I can worship as I please! Thank you, Thank you to all you soldiers who laid down your lives to allow me the freedom of the worship of my choice. God Bless the USA!
01/13/2004 08:47:06 PM
My church has put down Harry Potter, and told my 9 yr old son, that he MUST NOT read them. And this comes from a childs mouth "mom why cant i read them, are they silly its only a book, and its not a true story" He knows the difference between the bible and God and Harry Potter. If he wants to read them, and inprove his love for books.... thats fine by me. And guess what i love the films, after all the author is English and so am i.
07/10/2003 11:50:43 PM
I personally feel that in the end, its how you interpret the books. People are gonna interpret it in different ways : a threat, heresy, a morally rich lesson, or even just a book. Although I know that the first two interpretations (threat and heresy) are a growing problem, due to certain groups of parents and others, there is certainly no lack of the morals in the book. After all, we should never take life too seriously, or we're wasting the happiness God intended us to have in our lives....so can't J K Rowlings books just BE books? For enjoyment? Relaxation? :)
07/03/2003 05:03:25 PM
Even tho my daughter loves the books and movies, she says no way would she want to go there, you have to live away from home!
06/26/2003 08:15:20 AM
Actually, the holiday of Christmas was created from the pagan holiday of Yule, in an attempt to convert pagans to Christianity and/or make them more comfortable as Christians. Paganism was very strong in Britain and I don't think that the paganistic traditions have changed, except for what they are called. So, it's not unusual to me that they would celebrate Christmas, I don't know that there are very many there who celebrate the religious side of Christmas all that much, as I've heard that very few are religiously active.
06/24/2003 07:54:55 PM
Harry Potter celebrates Christmas. It's in the books. Would Satan celebrate Christmas?
06/22/2003 10:43:24 AM
PrestorWilliam says "Some times I wonder whether these folks have as much faith in God as they seem to have in Satan, since they seem to grant him such a vast range of power and influence." dplatt says "Fundamentalists who fear Potter should be really insecure about the power of their own religion if they think that a fantasy movie will draw their kids away from their faith." To me, these statements are true of ALL Christian fundamentalists who refuse to learn ANYTHING over and above what they seem to read in the Bible or hear from their pastors. They refuse to learn anything about any faith other than their own, because those faiths are evil and Satanic (even tho they don't even know what those faiths teach or believe), they refuse to let their children read anything that does not mention Jesus Christ or SEEMS to go against what they read in the Bible (witchcraft is a really good flag phrase!).
06/22/2003 10:42:54 AM
from above dplatt and Prestor are right. They give Satan more power than God did, they are too afraid to actually STEP OUT in faith, they have no faith in their faith (does that make any sense?). I know what I believe and why and I try to teach that to my children, and then, when they are grown (and they almost are) then they can make up their OWN minds about what THEY believe and why. And I think that reading Harry Potter (and in one of my kid's case, it's Lord of the Rings, rather than HP), even tho it's not technically a CHRISTIAN book, is only going to help them in their journey to find their own faith.
06/21/2003 12:10:12 PM
When and if I have a child, I can honestly say that I will allow my child to read the Harry Potter books. Heck, I'd read the books to him or her MYSELF! Of course, I'd make sure that my child understood that it is completely fictional. I would make sure that they knew that in reality, no one is born with supernatural powers--save for those which the Lord himself appoints us to have.
06/21/2003 12:02:45 PM
My boyfriend recently attended the Promise Keepers convention in the Baltimore Arena (in Baltimore, MD). He said one of the speakers, a Christian commedian, was talking about how some Christians have taken this Harry Potter thing too far. He recalled that a church in New Mexico had had a Harry Potter Book Burning. "Boy, what better way to bring people running into Christ than to have a good, old-fashioned book burning!" he joked. Then, he made a very memorable comment: "People, if it's something Hitler tried, you MIGHT want to try something else!!"
03/05/2003 03:40:01 AM
I was quite sad reading your article because I am both a Buffy AND Britney fan. :) Though I wont bother you with my Britney defense, I just want to say that you should watch Buffy and try to notice what they are trying to tell other than a story about demons. Its a story about a girl who gets super human powers to stop hell from taking over earth. actually, I wont bother this space with my defense, just go to the article about Buffy and read what people say there. But I also believe that Harry Potter is acceptable. Harry uses his magic for good and when he does use it for darker purposes, he gets punished.
11/25/2002 05:09:15 PM
A reasonable exchange, truth-is-humility, for the ultimate Friend that laid down His life for all of us. And the understanding to obey out of love instead of fear because of that sacrifice is an awesome gift from God.
11/21/2002 03:12:21 AM
Satan means "the accuser" Jesus said, "I did not come to bring peace but to bring a sword" I get people all the time telling me that it's just my interpretation of Jesus' saying "If you love me keep my commandments" Jesus is my only lawyer and I plead guilty. He pays the price and I get paradise. That's a sweet deal. And I don't have to do a thing. Funny thing is that now that I understand that, it is my joy to keep his commandments.
11/21/2002 02:57:50 AM
Lets stop arguing about who's take on religion is more accurate. The bible and all other religous scriptures are to be enterpreted as you will. We have the church to help us enterpret the bible as we have judges to help us enterpret the law. However, I believe people tend to enterpret the bible to their own advantage just as lawyers enterpret the law to their advantage. Lets just look at these scriptures as laws to help ourselves live a good life, and not to help others live life the way we see it should be lived.
11/19/2002 03:11:00 AM
Forgive me for anything that was of me. I had to look at your bio to know if you were a real follower of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is not the God of Islam nor Judaism and thus the God of Christianity is not the God of Judaism or Islam. There are very serious claims in the Islamic faith and Judaism that you are not acknowledging. Jesus loves everyone but is intolerant of anyone who puts religion, culture or traditions above the law of humility. Jesus is very exclusive. Also check out Spirit Radio's answer to the HP like JC question. I believe his answer was not only biblical but able to be understood by those who don't accept scripture. In Jesus' name, the offspring of pure love, and truth itself.
11/18/2002 10:02:45 PM
Ah, I see now. The old "scour the bio to see what I can use to demean and invalidate someone with" trick. You should explain your meaning from the beginning. Yes, I believe in Allah. Allah=the God I believe in, the Christian God. Islam and Christianity/Judaism come from the same roots; therefore I consider their gods to be one and the same. Also, perhaps the Bible does not mention rosaries or confessions, but the practice is still accepted among believers, even though essentially it is a type of witchcraft. That is the point I was trying to make; you obviously missed it.
11/18/2002 08:22:27 PM
Katja, you mentioned allah in your bio. Be carefull with your words. God bless
11/18/2002 08:20:41 PM
2 Tim 2:25, "In humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth". Katja you said their is witchcraft in Christianity yet I didn't read anywhere in the scriptures that spoke of rosaries and confession boxes. First faith, then the religion follows. Evil is more than a man in a red suit with horns and a pitchfork. Evil is pride. My argument about HP for everyone is that witchcraft is more than broomsticks and cauldrons. Witchcraft is doing work of yourself or of the world and not of God.
11/18/2002 08:16:41 PM
The controversy over the Harry Potter series mystifies me. While religious squabbles often have me wringing my hands over the ignorance and intolerace (and greed) typically on both sides, this particular fight has destroyed any faith I had left in the intelligence of the human race. Religions exist, differ, and squabble because it is impossible to KNOW everything so people must reach their own conclusions. However, one thing really should be screamingly obvious: This is a children's fantasy series, and is not to be taken as a philosophical arguement. Also, HP and LOTR have extensive legendary, linguistic and cultural inspirations. They were not inspired solely by the Devil. I really have a hard time believing that reading children's books has ever corrupted anyone fiercely enough to twist a fundamental Roman Catholic child into joining Satanism. I personally can say that it was not made-up worlds that caused me or anyone I know to split with our birth religions.
11/18/2002 02:40:41 PM
What is this big controversy about? Good triumphs over evil in the Harry Potter books, doesn't it? So what's the big deal? I think some fundy groups are just jealous of the zillions of dollars that Harry has earned and want to horn in on the bonanza however they can.
11/18/2002 11:50:46 AM
Let's be honest: Harry Potter has about as much to do with real Witchcraft as The Shadow has to do with real Tibetan mysticism. Kids are not likely to give up whole hog on their own religion because Harry Potter can conjure up neat stuff. If they do study Wicca, they'll be disappointed to see that they can't turn their teachers into toads or anything like that. Fundamentalists who fear Potter should be really insecure about the power of their own religion if they think that a fantasy movie will draw their kids away from their faith. C'mon, have a little more confidence in your kids!
11/18/2002 11:46:15 AM
Remind me where I mentioned the Koran....I've not even read the book and I certainly don't see any reference to it in my post. In fact, I don't see a reference to ANYTHING you mentioned anywhere in my post...
11/17/2002 11:21:05 PM
By the way Katja, if you believe in the Allay of the Koran (who speaks only Arabic) and reincarnation, you don't believe in the God of Jesus Christ and you're committing blasphemy.
11/17/2002 11:17:15 PM
Read the bible. But for now I'll try to make it very simple: Jesus is tolerant of all cultural differences but intolerant of those who put those cultural differences above the mystery. Read Paul and Jesus and then you'll be a better witness.
11/16/2002 10:06:41 PM
(cont.) What about the repetition of prayers, such as the praying of the rosary? That's nothing more than a sort of "witchcraft"--a ritual of repeated prayer to effect some sort of change. If you say the rosary for a sick relative, and they die anyway, it's because you should have said TWO rosaries, right? Many believe this. Another feature of Catholicism that smacks of witchcraft is confession; you go to a "magic holy man" and confess your sins, receive a small ritual to perform as penance, and your sin has disappeared. Just like magic! (This is NOT, by the way, me knocking Catholicism; just me noting that many of the rites and rituals of the Catholic church fit the "witchcraft" type description.) Moses performed the same magic as the Pharoah's magicians; for them it was witchcraft, but for him it was not? There was another point I meant to bring up, then forgot; if I remember, I'll post it.
11/16/2002 10:06:24 PM
There is a lot of superstition and the like in Christianity! What about the common "The more prayers are said for me, the more likely I am to go to heaven, or get well, or get that promotion"? Would God really condemn us to hell (or purgatory) or not help us because we're not popular enough? I sure hope not; if heaven is just another popularity club, I'm not going to have a very good time there. Yet how many people believe this? I couldn't even count. How about baptism? A special water is poured on your head and, as many believe, you are instantly saved from hell.
11/16/2002 09:15:59 PM
Jesus said, "no one is good but God alone" and "you say you see, thus your sin remains". The representation of reality is sorcery itself. Jesus' power came from humility, from giving his life for the sake of the world. A sorcerer's power comes from pride. The miracles Jesus did were considered "demonic" by the religious people who murdered him. He did it because of love, not because of desire. Jesus didn't want a religion, but a relationship with God.
11/16/2002 01:31:43 PM
If in the bible it says to stay away from witchcraft and wizardry, maybe it means not to believe in such things. As a society we have stopped burning witches, maybe because they do not exist and in turn many inoccent people were killed because of the phobia that created god preaching witch hunters. The bible exists to help us become moral citizens. Harry Potter is a simple book that preaches morrality. Don't let the setting prevent you from reading a good story that is about a good person.
01/31/2002 12:43:21 PM
I'd like to know what God-fearing Christians call what Jesus did to refill the fish and wine... And why is that not 'the work of this Satan'? Was it not magick as well?
01/24/2002 04:12:37 AM
Attention PrestorWilliams You took the words right out of my mouth! Vaya con Dios!!!
01/24/2002 04:02:08 AM
I'm a Christian and had the priviledge of seeing HP in Korea, (also saw LotR) and enjoyed both movies for their technical grandeur and the absolute magnificent scores! I'll not believe that either had a satanistic impact on me or anyone associated with me. I recommended that my kids see HP. I think most so-called Christians are absolutely overreacting and they are satan-chasers. I do believe that he exists - the Bible describes him as a 'roaring lion', but he is actually just a mouse with a microphone!" Dont' go looking for him behind every bush. If you do, you'll find him there and then what?? God gave people creative minds and talents. Why don't you all just enjoy the movies for their entertainement value! If you want to get upset about something, why don't you take the money you would have spent on seeing these "atrocious, abonimations" and send it to Goma in the Congo, or for the hungry asylum-seekers in Australia. At least your contribution to society would be of some real value then.
01/11/2002 05:43:41 PM
Ok ... near as I can "get it" the problem with both LOTR and HP is the "W-word." A "witch" is a "wizard" is a "satanist" and that's that. It feels like bigotry to me, but but "literal" is "literal" and everyone's got a right. What I don't get is why g-rated hocus pocus written by witnessing christians gets bashed ... while truly occult obsessed, nudity laced fiction (ie Kull The Conqueror or Conan the Barbarian) seems to slip under the 700 Club's radar? Even to the point ... the "psychic" John Edward seems to be doing (or faking) exactly the thing that most comes under the Scriptural prohabitions -- and seems to enjoy total immunity. What am I missing?
01/10/2002 11:19:43 AM
this is going to be harsh but I'll say it anyway. You people(you being all you harry potter antifreaks trying to ban it, or burn books like in New Mexico) are morons. Now this doesn't include those people who are like, I don't like it, but if you do that's your business. I personaly don't read the books just because I don't. Though I did see the movie and though it was ok and cute. However, again...maybe it's harsh but these people are idiots pure and simple. "The spirit realm is real.". Give me a break. I can Old Scratch himself sitting somewhere devising his evil Harry Potter Plan To Take Over the World right now. I'm almost curious as to what Satan's "evil master plan" to control our children was before Harry Potter. Frankly such people should get over it. It's a bunch of stupid books that have as much to do with the real beliefs you so often step on that involve the use of what they call magic as christianity has to do with reality. Which is to say NONE.
01/03/2002 10:09:57 PM
I would not consign anyone to hell for reading the Harry Potter books. That is not the job of or what Christians should be doing. I do not read the books or recommend anyone to do so. But it is a personal decision.
01/01/2002 10:56:32 PM
I LOVE Harry--saw the movie twice & will start on 1st book soon. One thing I noticed about both of them is there's no mention of Satan, or anyone trying to turn Christians away from God. It's about friendship, loyalty, standing up for what's right, & most important, LOVE. I'm very interested in this "list" I've heard so much about--I wonder if Lord of the Rings was included. I know what Anne Morse's going thru because I received threatening emails because I was vocal about my beliefs on a Xian mb. Tho I don't call myself a Christian, but rather a "Universal Gnostic" (which is a comb. of beliefs comb. in a way I can understand), I respect Christianity, & always enjoy the few pleasant conversations I can get from them (lol). I have no children, but I would rather they read Harry Potter & learn lessons of friendship, & loyalty rather than suffer horrible nightmares after reading of incest, rape, pestilence, plagues, and human & animal sacrifice!
12/16/2001 12:03:06 PM
The entire situation with "Harry Potter" is beyond intellectual and spiritual dignity.During the middle ages our predecessors based their lives on wizards, spirits, magic and superstitions.No,they lived in a time when those items were all the knowledge they had.Any Christian with any reasonable amount of education can conclude that we live in a world where we must constantly filter through info.It is my job as a parent to three school age children,to teach them right from wrong and how to filter information. We must learn how to use it correctly or how to dispose of it.It shames me that modern day Christians do nothing but judge constantly.There is only ONE TRUE JUDGE.My family has read and enjoyed the "Harry Potter" books, just as we have enjoyed Disney movies, magic shows,etc.Burning books and movies is not the answer.Just read your history books and you will see why that is NEVER the answer.
12/15/2001 08:23:54 AM
As a parent of young children, I know that I can speak for most of us in that disney movies are a fav past time in my home. Movies such as Mary Poppins, The Sword and The Stone....just to name a few. My husband took the older children to see the Harry Potter movie and he said that there is no witchcraft, and that even if there were that not only is it just a movie but that it has ALOT less than most Disney movies!! Think about it....Little Mermaid, Snow White....they ALL have a little magic in them....even Fantasia for crying out loud. God loves us all, whether we accept that or not, lets be grown-ups about this and find something else to be petty about!!
12/14/2001 08:05:21 PM
I think too often we have let so many things slip by in saying it's just fiction, ot it's just a song and that's why we have so many problems today.I know that it is merely a trick of the devil to say it's harmless.The way of the "world" does not have to be the way we see it for ourselves.And yes we know right from wrong and we will teach that to our children but that does not mean that they can't be captivated to do things we have taught them not to do. That doesn't mean that they can't get caught up and believe that those things in those books aren't possible.A spirit of the devil can enthrall you to do many things.So once again, to each his own--"As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord".Part of being a Christian is avoiding the things that God would not have you do instead of excusing yourself by saying that i can do this and still please God because it's harmless. Seek God's opinion on it. That's what i teach my kids and that's what we will continue to do.
12/14/2001 08:05:08 PM
I say to each his own with these books.My kids are not allowed to read them nor are they allowed in my house.The spirit realm is real. If others choose to think of it as all harmless fun, fine.i am not in judgement of those who choose to read them. but when asked my opinion,I give it based on the word of God.
12/12/2001 12:15:23 PM
As for avoiding spiritism and false gods, I think Christians can still do that and read Harry Potter. The Holy Spirit is the only one God wants us to be concerned with. I think that can be done easily while still reading those books. How do you know you should read a book by Charles Dickens, for instance, and not take it as gospel? There's this thing the New Testament authors refer to as "discernment." As long as you've raised your children right, they should be able to read anything and still have a decent grasp on fact vs. fiction.
12/12/2001 12:15:16 PM
I've read the first Harry Potter book and seen the movie, and I am a Christian. Also, I have a lot of friends who are pagan and Wiccan, and let me tell you, Harry has nothing to do with their religion. It's fantasy. Anyone who would prejudge without knowing and presume to tell someone that they are going to hell (which can be found nowhere in the Bible, incidentally, and was worked into Catholic doctrine orginally to scare people into joining their religion) isn't really a Christian to begin with.
12/11/2001 09:41:42 AM
to Forever_blessed_x3 I think the main point of these points has more to do we pseudo-christians trying to force their views on others then your personal choice. Secondly, is people who are unable to distinguish between fantasy and reality. Another point is people making statements that are ignorant of the both Christianity and what the Bible calls Witchcraft and spirituality. For example, your statement "The spirit world is very real, and why would any christian want to have anything to do with it?" God is in the spirit world as is Christ and heaven. So I suspect that what you wrote isn't exactly what you meant to say. Sadly, that happens way too often.
12/10/2001 04:22:25 AM
I must have seen every episode of "Bewitched" growing up. It didn't turn me into a witch. I am Christian. I think people, even children, are intelligent enough to know that the movie is only fantasy.
12/09/2001 04:02:38 PM
Sigh. Well the muggles of the Christian community have done it again ! I'm a supporter of the Potter books (as a long time reader of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Charles Williams, et. al, how could I not be?). What bothers me most is what this displays about those who call themselves Christians to the world at large. Once again the most loudmouthed of our community have made us all look fearful, condemning, narrow minded, aggresive and unable to do the simple background checking which would have revealed the nature of the Onion article. Many of our fellow Christians have gone of half-cocked once again making us all look stupid. Some times I wonder whether these folks have as much faith in God as they seem to have in Satan, since they seem to grant him such a vast range of power and influence. The level of fear they are always displaying makes me wonder if they are afraid that ultimately the Devil just might win.
12/08/2001 11:02:11 PM
Long before the movie ever come out, my 11 year old daughter approached me and asked what I thought of the Harry Potter books. I looked it over like I do all books she reads, and told her,there are better books to read. She said that was fine, and to this day has never read one. Do I feel like she has been missing something? No, there are just a lot more educational, uplifting, and pure books to read, not dealing with fanasty. I am not against the books, to each their own. On the other hand, I don't like being put down because of the stand I have taken as a parent. I also don't allow my children to view MANY movies either. I believe it is a matter of teaching a child to pick and choose wholesome things to read or see. Books like Harry Potter and others, can make us shrugg off witchcraft and sorcery, like it is a trivial matter, when it isn't, and say well it's just fanasty. The spirit world is very real, and why would any christian want to have anything to do with it?
12/07/2001 12:06:34 AM
to jesusfreakrick: Harry Potter is FICTION. just a thought. as a christian i do not have to turn off my brain and stop reading and thinking. i know right from wrong and bad from good. i know reality from fantasy. and i know good writing when i read it. she is an excellent author and these are good books. maybe not for the very young, but my whole famiy has now read them because of the christian conflict (we didn't feel qualified to participate in a conflict over something we had never read). if these are bad so are the lord of the rings series, and the wizard of oz and many more i can't even remember. in every generation people have sought to ban one book or another. for one reason or another. but banning books is not a good way to deal with the human mind. you only make them want it more!!!
12/04/2001 10:35:53 AM
The bible says "seek and you will find." The Potter critics are seeking satan and evil and so they find it. Anne Morse is seeking God and good and so she finds it. Only those who seek God will find God and only they will be in heaven. Those who are calling "Harry" evil with the loudest voices are wolves in sheeps clothing. By creating false impressions of Christianity they support the work of the Anti-Christ, turning facts into falsehoods and truth into deceptions. JesusFreakRick compares Harry Potter to Satan because they both "seemed to have had a fatal wound, but the fatal wound had been healed." Do you see how that might also be used to describe Jesus who appeard resurected with wounds on his hands that told of his death on the cross? True Christians should fear these people who twist the truth and the bible so easily and so much knowledge. We are warned that the Devil himself can twist the Bible to his own ends. Thinking people who seek the truth can see who is truely evil.
12/03/2001 10:50:33 PM
Harry is an absolute cutey. The books and movie are good, imaginative fun. I reccomend them even to adults seeking a little light fantasy to relax from stress. As a psychology major, I have seen the 'Harry effect' work "magic" on stressed out people as a part of an experiment. If you need to relax and laugh a little, Harry is my perscription. Ihyani
12/03/2001 05:02:54 AM
I believe that imagination is the root to all new beginnings. Allow your children to imagine flying, seeing dragons, and three headed dogs. What a mind bggling movie that shows how much more intelligent our children are to know that all of this was hog-wash, or should I say,"imagination at it's best." We took our 10 year old daughter, and two grandsons along with one of their friends. To everyone's amazement the children clapped at the end of the movie. It wasn't about witches and wizards really. It was about wishing, and trying to do the impossible that may surprise you to be possible. I found the background and location astounding. Now, our children will think they can, and will try many new things instead of saying, "I can't."
12/02/2001 05:13:44 AM
My wife and I have seen the movie. I thought is was ok as far as movies go. I personally would let my son if he were old enough to see the movie; however I can see the concerns of those who would not let their children see it. I'm not going to recommend it saying that everyone should see it but I personally think it was ok for myself to see it. I think it is good for Christians to evauluate the movies that they see and let their children see. I have not read the books so I cannot comment on them but if for some reason when the second movie comes out and if it troubled me or I thought it to be negative for my son to see then I would not let him see it. For those who are not sure about the movie, I would recommend that they see it first before their kids do and if there is a doubt at all, then just don't see it. It's better to be safe than sorry.
12/02/2001 03:14:23 AM
My neighbors will not allow their kids to read Harry Potter books, nor are the bookds allowed in their Christian school. I think that is ridiculous. It is not right to sheild our kids from everything in the world. Life will not always be to our liking. My neighbor kids are living in their own world of make believe where everything is wonderful & everyone is nice. That is not real. Parents should have more faith in their children, for they are not stupid. If you raised them well, then they should be ok. We have bigger things to worry about in life than Harry Potter.
12/02/2001 03:05:41 AM
Parents who are worried about HP books corrupting their kids or turning them into witches should take a look at how they are raising their kids. If they haven't taught them about what is wrong/fiction or that their faith is so weak that they won't even allow their kids to read HP books, they as parents have some problems. I believe that if I raise my children with good values they should be able to do the right thing. We can't protect our children forever. The hand-holding will stop eventually and those soft-minded kids are going to fall on their faces when they step out into the world & see that it's not all rosy. Maybe parents should stop telling their kids about a fairy tale life that doesn't exist & start living in a world that does.
12/02/2001 02:52:10 AM
By the way, there's a hoax going around fueled by these fundies as it has been for the past 25 years. It survives because people who can barely use email never check to see if it's a hoax. It's a hoax, folks. It makes you look stupid. I only mention this because it peaks at Christmas and Easter, and wastes my tax dollars to refute. http://www.snopes2.com/inboxer/petition/fcc.htm#add
12/02/2001 02:15:37 AM
I'd just as well be hanged for a sheep as a lamb, so here goes. Deuteronomy also says I shouldn't eat pork, shrimp or shellfish. So since I'm going to burn anyway, I might as well make this good. The problem with fundamentalists is not that they get their inspiration from the Bible, but that they DON'T get it from the Bible. How else could they quote Deuteronomy so piously and then go to a clambake on the 4th of July? Shellfish is forbidden. So are cheeseburgers. Where do they get it from, then? From fundamentalist Christian Mullahs. The recent terrorism comes from fundamentalist Muslim Mullahs; this debate comes from fundamentalist Christian Mullahs. These "Mullahs"--of any faith--only exist because of their own dreams of being worshipped themselves, and because hordes of ignorant people with a vague, desperate need to belong to something are willing to mistake them for the voice of a god and worship them. This has nothing to do, really, with Harry Potter. I used to listen to them on the car radio driving home from work, just for the laugh. Remember the Casper movie? "Casper the friendly--NO!!! Casper the UNfriendly DEEmonic ghost!!!" I thought it was a riot. Still do. Guess I'm just a sick, sick person.
12/01/2001 05:51:28 PM
My daughter is a very intelligent seven year old that loves to read everything including Harry Potter. She knows it is fantasy. Explain things to your children. If you really don't like the message, then don't read it or watch the movie. Having read the books myself, I have to say they are very imaginative and quite humorous. Harry & his pals are not bad people. In fact, the people complaining remind me of Harry's critical and mean-spirited relatives (Mr. and Mr. Dursley) who take him in after his parents are murdered. After all that has happened from September 11th on, can't people just live and let live. Do we not have more important things to worry about?
12/01/2001 01:37:30 PM
I think it's pathetic that many people take an innocent book like "Harry Potter" and turn it into something evil. People are saying it's Satanic. "Satanism" to the uneducated is the worship of Satan. But, in reality, Satanism is the worship of man as good and evil. Not everything is based on Judeo-Christian deities. I don't believe that "Harry Potter" is any different than "Cinderella" or "Pinocchio", (I realize I probably spelled them wrong). They both deal with magic and things of that sort. It is a writer's thoughts. It is just a writer's thoughts. That's all, entertainment. The "Harry Potter" books are not to be taken literally. They are just to be read and enjoyed. Pagans and Wiccans alike, don't fly on broomsticks, don't go to a wizard's school, or anything like that. So don't say it's Wiccan or Pagan either. It is just folklore mixed with the writer's imagination. Someone's imagination is not evil.
12/01/2001 01:21:57 PM
How sad that we view books like Harry Potter through the eyes of Adults. We have forgotten what it is like to be a child. Without the imagination, we would not have space shuttles orbiting the earth nor scientist and doctors finding cures for diseases. Hear! Hear! I stand an applaud you. It's a movie folks. Fantasy. Not even to be taken seriously. Don't get your hairpins tied in a knot over it.
12/01/2001 11:23:03 AM
HArry is not about being pagan. It is about being a witch. Was Glenda the Good Witch of the North in The Wizard of Oz pagan? Hell, she is probably a Hogwarts graduate!!(Hufflepuff, obviously) The religious right is so worried about not being the only authority on religion that it finds demons & devils & evil in everything. Just to try to make a point. So ignore it & enjoy. The books are entertaining and the movie was more than worth the price. let the paranoics burn in a hell of their own making. Trust me, I know, it makes them happy.
12/01/2001 12:10:20 AM
How sad that we view books like Harry Potter through the eyes of Adults. We have forgotten what it is like to be a child. Without the imagination, we would not have space shuttles orbiting the earth nor scientist and doctors finding cures for diseases. I am sure Jules Verne was called a witch for writing about submarines and men on the moon. It is our duty as a christian parent to ensure that our children will be able to read stories and know the difference between God's love that is real and a book that offers an imaginery world that is just fun to read about. Try looking through the eyes of your children instead of your own eyes. Is our world so happy and perfect? Our news are filled with death, wars, and diseases. Reading is an escape from reality. No matter what you read. We can let the children enjoy being a child and read books like Harry Potter for the imaginery world that it is and know God is with us in the real world.
11/30/2001 10:51:05 PM
Why are soe people quoting the bible in reference to Harry Potter? There are tons of movies out there that don't adhere to teachings in the bible. Also, the characters in the movies are mostly good kids, who are trying to look out for each other and their school. That's a pretty good message to send....friendship & courage. And lastly....it's just fiction! Why are people picking on this book & movie? I've seen way worse movies that didn't get 1/10 th of the protest. (shrug) Oh well....I enjoyed it!
11/30/2001 08:19:21 PM
Snowfeather I agree with you. I have seen kids in my school who would never pick up a book unless forced to, pick up the first Harry Potter book (because it was so popular) and get hooked until the end of the fourth book. If you count the pages and I did not, that's a whole bunch of reading going on. Our/their (the children's)world is so filled with hard choices, terrible realities, and bad news that it is a relief to get lost in a book that offers trials with solutions, and fanciful dreams.
11/30/2001 07:23:47 PM
WHAT IS THE BIG DEAL??? IT'S JUST A BOOK!!!!!!
11/30/2001 03:45:28 PM
Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right,...--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things. (NIV)" Is Harry Potter any of those things? I don't see it. Harry Potter practices magic and sorcery. What does the Bible say about that? "Let no one be found among you who ... practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, ...Anyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD, and because of these detestable practices the LORD your God will drive out those nations before you. (Deuteronomy 18:11-13, NIV)" Harry Potter also carries on his forehead a fatal wound that should have killed him, but had been healed. This reminds me just a little of Revelations 13:3 "One of the heads of the beast (editors note: this is speaking of the anti-Christ) seemed to have had a fatal wound, but the fatal wound had been healed. Doesn't that make you think a little?
11/30/2001 02:43:31 PM
Before anyone makes their mind up whether Harry Potter is evil, I would ask you all to please do some research first and learn the truth. From what I’ve read, Wicca is a peaceful religion that works for positive reasons and cares about nature. Unless things have changed drastically, that's what other religions do too. As for Harry and co, the bottom line is that it’s fantasy. That's what it's all about! I have been reading novels for years, and I’ve never believed that things in my books happened – my parents taught me the difference between real life and fantasy. I think that it's good that there is a new book series that is getting them to read. Too many kids today would never touch a book except for school. Personally, I'm seeing the movie next weekend with my parents. We're going just to enjoy a movie and spend time together. In the end, a little bit of fantasy can enrich all our lives. We humans need to relax and play make believe sometimes. Send me mail if you agree/disagree. ~ snowfeather(@freeze.com)
11/30/2001 02:23:49 PM
I think this is a very valid question. Why so much furor about a book? Because we are what we read. We are influenced by what we take in - books, TV, movies, music, etc. - and the people around us. How much we are influenced is determined by how well-done these things are and how much they draw us in, and by how charismatic people around us are. This is also determined by how much time we spend in their influence. To the woman who is keeping her grandson in godly influences, I salute you. To the reader who responded negatively: GROW UP! Parental influence, whether moral, immoral, or amoral, is NOT brainwashing! Since when is it brainwashing to teach our children to believe what we believe????? As to whether Harry Potter books are truly Satanic: it has nothing to do with flying on a broom. It has to do with sorcery, wizardry, spells, and Magick. Veggie Tales, on the other hand, teaches morals and moral values. Vegetables that talk (or any cartoon character that's not a person, such as an animal) is simply imagination. What those characters say and do is what is signifigant. Veggie Tales characters pray, and the stories teach morals. I have not found Harry Potter to teach much in the way of morals, and rather than teaching prayer to God, they teach man's idiocy to try to redeem himself through spells that put one into contact with demonic powers. As for those of you who say you read "evil" books as a teen and you turned out fine: Christians, if you want your kids to be Christians, give them a godly influence. Non-Christians, hear this: I too grew up reading demonic books -- Twilight Zone books, John Bellair's and Richard Peck's books. They fed my curiosity about the "non-God" side of the spirit world, and as a result, I began to talk to demons in my room and experienced encounters with these creatures that could not be explained. Thanks to the influence those books had on me, it was many years before I was free of the demonic, occultic influence they had on my life. If you hear nothing, hear my experience with these things, and know that children who read these books will not be untouched by their evil influence. These books arouse an even greater curiosity. I know a "Christian" teenage boy right now who, since reading them, has a reluctance about going to church that he never had before. Watch out!
11/30/2001 01:59:03 PM
I think there are too many Christian hypocrites out there. We are all sinners I will admit that one of my pet sins is D&D. Does that mean I am going to go to hell for it? Take a long look in the mirror. God gives us a clean slate. When I dedicated my life to Christ, I made some serious changes. I have minimized my caffeine intake (sorry I just couldn't give up Chocolate). I now drink decaffeinated beverages. I quit drinking alcohol. Does that mean I gave up my occasional glass of wine? No, I just switched to an alcohol free wine. I gave up eating pork because the Bible says it is an unclean meat. Does that mean I don't eat bacon? No, I found a Turkey Bacon that is very tasty, and has a lot less fat. I didn't give up the things I enjoy, I just reevaluted them and made changes. I analyzed what was bad about D&D, the fact that it is based on Paganism, and eliminated it from my role-playing. By the way some Christian holidays, such as Christmas and Easter, also have Pagan roots.
11/30/2001 01:34:48 PM
I grew up watching: "Bedknobs and Broomsticks," "Mary Poppins," "Scooby Doo," "Bewitched," and "I Dream of Jeannie." I'm no more of a witch than Olive Oyl. It's fantasy; pretend. Like cops and robbers. Jesus is real, God is real. My son knows that from Sunday School and absolutely knows that Harry Potter is make-believe. Just my opinion,.... God bless.
11/30/2001 11:38:12 AM
I would just like to add that I am not condeming those books. I just don't allow my children to read everything. I am also an educator by choise of career and my students have read literary material that entails some things that can be considered demonic as have my children, but we as parents must educate our chidren. While we still have an influence on them we must teach them right from wrong and good from evil. Its really not that hard to decide what is best for our children but we must always know one day the grow up and leave home. We just have to do as the Bible says in Proverbs 22:6 "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it."
11/30/2001 11:28:11 AM
This hole Harry Potter thing is just getting rediculous. Every generation has a book or movie or type of music that someone in the earlier generation thinks is evil. The WIZARD of Oz. Are the same people that are complaining about Harry Potter also denying their children the chance to see this wonderful movie? I've started to read the first Harry Potter book myself just to see what it's all about. It's a good book for kids and adults. Anything that gets kids to read is fine with me.
11/30/2001 11:10:35 AM
I think that anything that promotes the practices of witchcraft, voodoo, soccery, etc. is demonic!!! The bible speaks on it as being as such in various books of the Bible in both the Old and New Testaments. How can you renew your mind if you are feeling it with junk? How can you preach righteousness to your children if you allow them to watch any and everything they want? I am a mother of four children, and I monitor everything that they watch because our children are influenced by not only what they see us do, but also by what others do. That's one reason there is a problem with peer pressure. Where do we draw the line between good entertainment and and bad entertainment? It starts at home. rlcs
11/30/2001 10:45:30 AM
Do you remember what stories you read as a child? Is there anything more aggressive than the popular fairytales? Why does this particular story catch our fancy so much that we create controversies? It is, after all, just that, a fantasy. Are we afraid of the realities of what is Witchcraft? Do we understand what that really means? You have left me with more questions because there is a closed mind behind this kind of "Ban" the book. By the way, the results of any kind of ban will only increase sales...everyone will want to know what the problem really is about!!! God bless, J
11/30/2001 07:00:36 AM
If Christians would look at their own childrens entertainment; ie Superbook cartoons, Flying House cartoons, they would see that imagination is just IMAGINATION. Why aren't they worried about a their children believing houses fly and books swallow children into bible FANTASIES. And it is a well know fact of any one who has had even a passing interest in history that the Christian religion is the creator of Satan.
11/30/2001 02:15:03 AM
These books should be for older kids atleast 8yrs or older. There parents should be involved with them on what the the books are about. If we wanted to say that their is evil in the story we could find problems in almost every child's book written in the last 30 yrs. That is why it is fiction or also refered to as makebelieve for children and adults. This movie or books is not going to cause children to become evil or withes. It teaches values of being good and how to overcome evil people. This is just another way of people being hypocrites. Because if you turn on regular Saturday cartoons there are more bad examples and story lines being pumped into homes that children should not be subjected to at all.
11/30/2001 12:42:17 AM
GET REAL!! If your faith is so weak that you are threatened by a children's fairy tale/fantasy, you cannot claim any faith. If we ban Harry, why not ban Grimm's Fairy Tales where witches abound (e.g. Hansel and Gretl). Also, King Arthur must be dethroned because of the activities of Merlin, the Lady of the Lake, et als. Let us also Ban Aladdin (Arabian Nights) since it deals with genies, etc.
11/29/2001 11:49:02 PM
vaaxu1 makes some valid points. At our "fundamentalist" church, there has been some heated debate in my sons' youth group over Harry Potter with kids, parents, and sponsors on both sides of the issue. This has been a wonderful opportunity for my kids to see how each of us must find our own position on "debatable" issues and be respectful of those who disagree. It is possible for reasonable minds and committed hearts to disagree. I don't think we should waste too much energy on this one.
11/29/2001 09:55:57 PM
To adam11726: You wrote: > 1) Both books are "fashionable." Um, I'm afraid you'll have to explain what you mean by that, and/or why it's a problem. > 2)Both authors seem to assert that place Agape/Love is the source and > the pinacle of all Virture -- but they do not submit to St. Thomas' > assertion that Love comes into the World only through the Person of > Christ Jesus as revealed through Scripture, recieved through Baptism > and sustained by Faith. St. Thomas? As in St. Thomas Aquinas? Since when were his writings gospel? If Aquinas posited that non-Christians were incapable of loving, he clearly didn't get out much. Nor did he read his Scriptures much.
11/29/2001 09:07:56 PM
Elize, perhaps you should do some research before making statements like that. You're just plain wrong.
11/29/2001 08:56:40 PM
Why not Harry Potter? It makes a hero out of a witch and eliminates God in the process! Magick is not a game nor a fantasy! Neither is it the proper use of a gift God has given, to use it for practices that do not glorify God! If it is not intentionally directed by God to be used by the practitioner to do the will of God it is the occult! It is an abomination to God, because he intended this gift to be used for specifically his purpose and instead is being wasted upon the person's own will! It is the highest vanity using a gift of God for ones own purposes! Then it does not give life, but takes it and is therefore opposite of what it was meant to be and has become foul and evil! No little children need to know the truth of spirit and what the spiritual gifts actually are for! They do not need a book to confuse them more and cause their spirits pain!
11/29/2001 08:45:05 PM
I think we should all just get over it and love each other! dammit!
11/29/2001 08:42:32 PM
Abbiecrombie, I know EXACTLY WHAT YOU MEAN! I get emails or links to stuff like that, things that I don't know at first is a satire, and if it's well done it's hard to know that! Problem is, there are too many people who honestly believe goofy stuff like that, that it's easy to believe someone would seriously write it. ;-)
11/29/2001 08:39:40 PM
Response to Markweird: "Witch craft is a problem because it is one seeking a power other then that of the true God. " Wrong. There IS no power other than "that of the true god," and most witches realize that. We just don't try to hold a monopoly on it. All power comes from one source. Therefore, you can't seek power outside of that.
11/29/2001 08:36:04 PM
Reply to innerspace, one of my friends had emailed me that article. I didnt know it was a satire site because I had never been there before, but that article was just too much for me to take. I've heard way too many comments that are actually just like that.
11/29/2001 08:26:56 PM
On the difference between magic and magick. My understanding was that the "k" was added so there would be less confusion about stage magic, a la David Copperfield, and witchy magic. Of course, I could be wrong.
11/29/2001 08:25:07 PM
First a reply to Abbiecrombie, you asked for opinions on the Onion article. You do know, don't you, that the Onion is a pretty well known satire site? I'm not sure from how you wrote your post if you realize that or not. For the record, I think the whole brouhaha is pretty silly, but at least it keeps the zealots busy and out of my life. ;-)
11/29/2001 08:13:54 PM
Last post (I promise) On the difference between magic and magick. The different spelling is (to my knowledge) a relatively recent - 19th century - innovation to distinguish "low" or sympathetic magic from "high" or ceremonial magick. Magic is the stuff that witches (and other pagans) do. Healing; attracting luck, love, money; increasing fertility (of people and the land); protection from evil. It is a side dish in the banquet that is Wicca. Magick - the domain of ceremonial magicians - is more concerned with the big issues. Talking to God and getting God to talk back; immortality; understanding universal forces, and wielding those forces. The ultimate aim is to "cross the abyss" and become one with God. Most ceremonial magicians are not pagans, but many pagans incorporate magickal practices into their craft (as I do), and the two groups can be found cavorting together (though the pagans can get fed up with the CMs using big words and talking down to them). Blessed be.
11/29/2001 08:02:31 PM
Bretheran, It is time to step back and think a little here. First of all, the Harry Potter books are works of fiction, not documentaries. The books don't anymore teach witchcraft and sorcery than Shakespere, Toilken, or Walt Disney. In every one of the Harry Potter books, good triumphs over evil. Witchcraft is about as far removed from Satinism as apples are from turnips. If our dear Lord has a sense of humor, as I am sure He does, I bet He loves the Harry Potter books. Pax et Bonum! Brother Michael, TOSF
11/29/2001 07:39:32 PM
One more bit of trivia: In the third HP book they start using the term Animagus to describe a wizard who can turn themselves into an animal. Magus translates from Latin as "wise man", and is interchangeable with the word Sorcerer. It is the singular form of the plural noun Magi, which is the root of our word Magician. In Latin transcriptions of the nativity story, the wise men are "Magi". These Magi read the heavens, followed the star, found baby J, and gave him Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh. I don't doubt they were Astrologers, Alchemists, and Sorcerers - Magi. There is more magickal instruction available in THE BIBLE than in HP. Blessed Be
11/29/2001 07:22:09 PM
I have to say that some people on this site have problems.Is this the 1700s?I've read all four books at least twice and have yet to see the movie.I think they are one of the best books ever.People need to stop overprotecting their children for when they leave and get into the real world their soft little minds wont help them.And the parents will not be there holding their hand and and shielding them.People are way too paranoid about everything.There are a lot worse things on tv and on the internet. Also, I went to that theonion.com and read the harry potter thing.Here's the address: http://www.theonion.com/onion3625/harry_potter.html.I have to say I have never read anything sadder than that.That picture is the fakest thing I have ever seen.Whoever wrote that, I have some advice for you:Get a life! Here's a clip from it,"Across America, Satanic temples are filling to the rafters with youngsters clamoring for instruction in summoning and conjuring."Please tell me what you think of that and that article.
11/29/2001 07:07:27 PM
(cont. from prev.) How do these guys relate to HP. Only in so far as the magic in HP seeks very dramatic outcomes (defying the laws of physics), and generally involves reciting a latin phrase, mixing a potion, or a combination of both. I merely mention them to point out to the fundies (and any other interested party) that those things so often labelled "witchcraft" are in fact "sorcery", and that the two are actually two different things. (though the bible literalists would probably disagree with me there). (end)
11/29/2001 06:41:37 PM
I am a practicing (Some would say fundamentalist)Christian, have read all the Potter books twice and seen the movie. The only material in these books that involves witchcraft is the (unfortunate) use of the word "witch" to identify magic using female humans. There is nothing of modern Wicca and little more than implication of any traditional witchcraft practices. Much of the magic is derived from authentic lore (eg: the philosopher's stone, the harvesting of mandrake roots, pidgin Latin for spells, etc.), but much of it is silly invention (eg: the Whomping Willow, flobberworms, and so on). These aren't great literature but escapist fun. As such, they are probably no more dangerous than an interest in football, television, or network chatrooms: if it distracts a person from their obligations it would be sin. Jesus said the road to Hell is wide and well travelled. It comes down to the choices that folks make. If someone is determined to go that way Harry Potter will not be the cause.
11/29/2001 06:35:13 PM
(cont. from prev.) Okay, now that the wiccans are safe from the faggots, let me introduce you to the "Ceremonial Magicians". This is the category that Aleister Crowley, The Golden Dawn, The Rosicrucians (Order of the Rosy Cross), and the O.T.O. (among others) fall into. These folks are generally accepted as being derived from the Knights Templar - Christian Knight involved in the Crusades. Their magickal practices (note the 'k') are derived from THE BIBLE (the Book of Revelations is quite popular), and the writings of Christian scholars and demonologists. Ceremonial Magic uses the same ritual tools as wicca, but where Wicca is a religion that involves respecting and worshipping Nature and the Old Gods, the object of Ceremonial Magic is to develop a direct personal connection with God - the Judeo-Christian God. (cont.)
11/29/2001 06:16:32 PM
funkinslick, Thanks for the question. Having read and re-read the four existing books, won HP trivia comps, and being a Witch of 7 years experience, I think I can answer. The magic in the HP books has nothing to do with "witches", that name being specific to the pagan religion of Wicca. There is no mention of The Goddess, nor of The Horned God. The children observe none of the eight sabbats (no, Halloween doesn't count!). There has yet to be a mention of a pentagram (upright or inverted). No-one has cast a circle, called the quarters, used an athame (ritual knife), invoked an aspect of deity, or shared sabbat cakes and wine. (cont.)
11/29/2001 06:12:00 PM
Remember dungeons and dragons? Remember history? Reformation? How about Anne Askew, tortured and burned at the stake because she did not believe in transubstantiation. What happens to anyone with a new idea? Anne Morse will be haled a genius and a pioneer after she's dead and the people that read her books are the new scientists,alchemists,spiritualists, healers, and pioneers of their day-perhaps? Controversy is a path.
11/29/2001 05:45:59 PM
Yeah, gods forbid that love is spread for religiously unbiased reasons, rather than (possibly) meaningless rituals and the Medieval interpretation of a 2,000 year old book (referring only the New Testament, of course). Peace out
11/29/2001 05:29:07 PM
Aside from simple bigotry against "Witches" ... there ARE serious objections to the Harry Potter books AND to the Lord of the Rings Trilogy -- for Theocentric , and NonConforming Christian families. 1) Both books are "fashionable" 2)Both authors seem to assert that place Agape/Love is the source and the pinacle of all Virture -- but they do not submit to St. Thomas' assertion that Love comes into the World only through the Person of Christ Jesus as revealed through Scripture, recieved through Baptism and sustained by Faith. So as moral examples, Frodo and Harry are "right" for the "wrong" reasons. By offering them an idealization (Frodo) or a role model (Harry), Tolkein and Rawlings take what is supposed to be a Theological Virtue, particular to Christians, and offer it as a Pagan Virtue, accessible to any well-meaning, kindly-disposed person.
11/29/2001 04:52:14 PM
There have been many books over the years that have inspired men, women and children. And Harry Potter may just be such a series. It has inspired every kid I know (and I know many as I work in a middle school) to read all 4 books, and who wait with baited breath for the 5th. And these books have fired their imaginations, and magically transformed them into good listeners, and readers. We are all afraid of what we do not know or understand, but these books should not be on that list. They are wonderful stories where good ultimately triumphs over evil. They teach positive messages of kindness, and the golden rule. If our minds do not have the chance to dream about fanciful things life becomes so dull.
11/29/2001 04:24:53 PM
I find it interesting that such conflict is going on about a child's book. And how many people actually know to any degree whether or not this is what witchcraft is really about. I have not read any of the books, nor seen the movie. It just doesn't interest me. But seeing such strife over a work of fiction just confuses me. People taking these books and movies as fact and totally blowing it out of proportion in saying that this advocates satanism and should be stopped, and that only GOOD christians will not read these and should spread the word about the "evils" of these highly entertaining to many works of fiction. I don't think these book shave anything to do with being a good christian. Can't we all just get along?
11/29/2001 04:19:07 PM
I believe that everything we allow to enter into our mind, whether it be conscience or subconscience lingers. When we read, it is also entered into our subconscience psyche. When we allow our children to be introduced to unclean things, we are opening the door to destruction. Since I love the Lord and I also thank him for the child he has put into my possession, I must do all things to teach this child of the Lord and his goodness and mercy. You see, tomorrow is not promised, and there is no one who can prepare a child for tomorrow other than a mother. "Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it." This is our responsibility as parents.
11/29/2001 04:01:47 PM
I thoroughly enjoyed reading the Harry Potter series and am excited about the next 3. Are we heading back to the "Burning Book" stage. Why can't a book be read without people thinking there is some hidden agenda. The book is a fantasy and without fantasies we wouldn't belief in and see the miracles that God performs each day or in Angels that are around us or the Spirit world. It makes me think about the "what ifs". It all comes down to what we each expect to get out of a book we choose to read.
11/29/2001 03:56:40 PM
becky, You are correct. Unfortunately, fundamentalists can't do that. Ultimately they have an inherent and deliberate ignorance, an inability to perceive good and evil except as they are taught (in the case of "Christian" fundamentalists in the parts of the Bible that they bother to read) and I believe a subconcious need to subjugate or destroy everything that isn't like them, including Harry Potter, and non-fundamentalist Christianity. They are the Christian version of the Taleban. Pity them for this, and their utter blindness to reality alike.
11/29/2001 03:55:55 PM
I have sent out numerous messages regarding Harry Potter - for one, I have enjoyed the daylights out of Lord of the Rings, Frank Peretti novels, Terry Brooks novels and Star Wars - Each far more insidious than Harry Potter - To Anne Morse I would say "KUDOS!" It is scary that christians would pass around information blindly without finding out if it's true or not first - afterall, we are the stewards of truth - If a christian were to glance over the Onion.com, I feel certain they would be embarrassed for their Harry Potter objections and writhe over onion.com content. ...Now, I think I'll go see the Harry Potter movie...
11/29/2001 03:52:57 PM
Hasn't anybody everheard of symbolism and reading betweent he lines? In the Books (ive read all five) Harry is on the Good side of magic, Snape Malfoy and allt he others are on the bad side did anyone else see that. Before people over 20 decide to condem a book or better yet a series they should read it first and look at it without a evil glare.
11/29/2001 03:40:31 PM
I am kind of neutral on the whole Harry Potter thing. Watching or reading such material is not in itself bad. It is what one does with it afterwords. CS Lewis wrote the Narnia series which had magic. Nothing is wrong with that. Those books are edifying and do contain a large amount of christian imagry for anyone who is knowledgable about his books and THe Book. THe problem with harry Potter is that it is less that edifying. It teaches that their is no good or evil...only power. Witch craft is a problem because it is one seeking a power other then that of the true God. Watching a film that demonstrates fantasy and witches is not necessarily inherently wrong (though perhaps not the best allocation of ones time)...it is what one does with these ideas that matters
11/29/2001 03:35:08 PM
I really don't understand any of this. No one ever objected to the tales of King Arthur and the Round Table, and there was, of course, the magician Merlin who was ever so present...not to mention the Lady of the Lake. No one ever called those tales satanic. There is NOTHING wrong with Harry Potter. Let your children read the tales, and take them to see the movie. I went yesterday and it was absolutely fabulous! Oh, and just for the record, I am Director of Religious Education in a very large parish and I have a Master's Degree in theology.
11/29/2001 03:25:55 PM
also to Cosmomandw -- I DO NOT say that I am in the "LORDs Word" (SIC) if by that you mean that I am "in" a book of laughable myths thousands of years old. I am in Jesus Christ -- and in case you never noticed in your pursuit of in depth historical knowledge (you did have such a quest, right?) the faith predated the "Bible" by centuries. Study canonical formation sometime. Reynolds Jones
11/29/2001 03:22:34 PM
CWG I agree with you. As for you cosmomandw -- CS Lewis has been deceased for many years. He was the author of the Narnia books, and of the Peralandra series -- he also authored dozens of theological books -- considered the best and deepest by many Christians. I say theological, not idolatrous celebrations of a human book like the Bible -- because that's what the books were -- theology. Reynolds Jones
11/29/2001 02:48:51 PM
There's a lot of sad people posting on this topic. What happened to love and tolerance? And why do some people feel they have the power to speak for God on what God would or wouldn't like. Now, that's audacity! It seems this posting area should be called "The auttie column".
11/29/2001 03:46:37 AM
Ok -THE NARNIA THING-I read the Lion.the Witch and the Wordrobe.There is nothing in that book that has to do with christianity that I can recall.I have the knowledge that the author is now a christian.Thank GOD he has excepted his salvation!Now I dont know how long hes been a christian, or when he wrote those books, and I wont be recommending those books to my children.
11/29/2001 03:35:33 AM
So you say your a christian-and your in the LORDs Word.So do you think there is an OK form of magic-witchcraft-sorcery.Would you please let me know where GOD says there is a difrence-there ,of course, is no reference of the sort-it is detestible-not of GOD all of it-no exception.Well.You may have been introduced to the bible and even raised in the church-but do you believe with all of your heart?If so are doubting the Word of GOD?Proverbs-30 verse 5-Every Word of GOD is flawless....
11/28/2001 09:54:30 AM
So I guess I should close out by re-stating that I have received Christ in my life, he's with me everywhere I go, and he will protect me from the real evil and real witchcraft in the world. But we have little to fear from Harry Potter. It's a well-written story, which is widely popular now, but in time will die down just like every other popular thing. Next up is LOTR. Maybe they could show the old BBC live versions of the Chronicles of Narnia that were on PBS in the early 90's. Those were pretty good and they had a nice message. Just a thought.
11/28/2001 09:54:09 AM
We Christians have been against witchcraft from the start, its entirely in our history. Have we always, in our infinite wisdom, been right about who's a witch, or who's practicing witchcraft or dancing with the devil in the woods? Not exactly... and the crusade against HP seems to me, after following the arguments pro and con for days now, to be largely another good-intentioned but unneccesary witch-hunt. Does anyone really think that Rowling is a devil worshipper? Or that she has some kind of secret agenda to turn all of our children to the devil?
11/28/2001 09:53:18 AM
I'm not saying I have all the answers, and I learn something every day, so I'm honestly asking here... I believe these two "types" of witchcraft are incomparable. J.K. Rowling was probably not interested in re-creating the history of magic or witchcraft and instead drew from lots of existing resources. I don't think its accurate to associate Harry Potter with real devil worshippers and Necromancers that do sick and disgusting things. Those that are speaking out about what real wizards do have every right to, and I'm glad they're exposing these truths. But that doesn't mean that that's the way HP is.
11/28/2001 09:51:39 AM
I too am a Christian and have been all my life. I was introduced to the Bible at a very early age and have read and re-read and taken notes and participated in Bible discussions. I have heard and believe all that you say. But my confusion starts here: Deuteronomy tells us of many things that we may not do, yet today's Christian has picked and chosen those things that apply to him/her. It also lays down many Jewish laws that Jesus later preached against. So which things still apply? Obviously, witchcraft would be one of them. However, is Harry Potter practicing the witchcraft we were warned against?
11/28/2001 04:13:30 AM
Phew-So do you think christians are just giving you a personal opinion of a feeling that comes from themselves?Hold on a little longer.Let me introduce you to the Word of GOD.Yes that book called the bible.That is where christians get their guidance-from GOD.Not themselves.Remember as this passage sinks into your heart that this is GODs Word who loves you-not anyone elses. ---Deuteronomy chapter18 verse10)Let no one be found among you that sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire,who practices divination or sorcery,interperets omens,engages in witchcraft,or casts spells or is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead.----------------dead being- the dead-demons.There is no such thing as ghosts.Youve either accepted your salvation or you havent.Youll either be GODs child or not.Its up to you.GOD gives you free will even when it comes to accepting your own salvation.GOD is only good.GOD is love.GOD dosent force anything upon you-just sends the messenger.JESUS just waits for you to call out to Him in honest heart felt belief.gospel of John chapter 3 verse 16-For GOD so loved the world he gave his one and only Son and whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have everlasting life.
11/27/2001 11:22:49 AM
P.S. FYI, my post starts with the first "auttie" post, and works it way up... sorry for the length, but i wanted to include an actual quote, guess i should have just posted the link... oh well... too late now!
11/27/2001 11:17:44 AM
So before I wander off again I guess I should say that taking a stance as a parent is important, because we have more influence (believe it or not) on our kids than anyone else. Be careful with it, and be respectful as well. In all reality, kids are smarter today than they have ever been, with access to more forms of communication than ever before, and at some point we need to trust THEIR judgement, that is, when they have the cognitive ability to do so. At some point in all our lives we reached a point when we thought for ourselves. They most certainly will, too. So (FINALLY!) i would just like to say that for those who have come late to the discussion, I hope I've given you a good place to start. The bponline website has lots of stuff on this issue, as do sites on the other side of the arguement... Love and Peace to all on both sides of the issue...it's been a captivating one for me to follow.
11/27/2001 11:15:41 AM
I believe HP is as harmless as Halloween and ghost stories. Has anyone been able to stop either one? No. Do and should Christians have the right and duty to criticize what we think is displeasing to God? Absolutely! And of course, they DO have a right to limit what their children have access to. But for parents making that tough decision, please do so carefully. You may end up making something 100X more appealing in the longrun. But of course, being involved in your child's life is a wonderful thing. In the education field I've seen so many cases where parents hardly care at all...
11/27/2001 11:14:55 AM
My problem with this statement is that it claims that Wiccans "relate" and "connect" with the Harry Potter stories, which in actuality couldn't be farther from the truth. Go to the Wiccan or Pagan pages of Beliefnet and see for yourself. Think about it: if you're faith was based somewhat on magic(k), would you want it dumbed down for a childrens' book? A lot of broad statements about the content of HP books are being thrown around, many without references from the stories, or the author, or the critics for that matter. I understand the wariness about witchcraft that most Christians feel, I appreciate those that have pointed out scripture that support those positions. I feet that way too, about true and manipulative witchcraft, but I also see things in their proper, logical perspective, too...
11/27/2001 11:12:40 AM
McClure goes on to answer those who place J.K. Rowling's creation in the same category as the works of C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkein. "If Rowling's books are truly ideologically on an equal level with The Chronicles of Narnia (C.S. Lewis) or The Lord of the Rings (J.R.R. Tolkein), then why aren't more witches praising those Christian authors with the same passion and praise as Rowling? It's because they relate to her book through the witchcraft. So if witches connect with these books and praise them for their accuracy with the occult, doesn't it stand to reason that children could become swept up and enamored with the occult in the same way?"
11/27/2001 11:12:08 AM
From the www.bponline.net website (Baptist Organization): "In her book, "Death By Entertainment," conservative film reviewer Holly McClure states, "My concern for younger children who read these books is the adult-level violence, gore, cruelty, and language along with the scary characters. My concern for the older ones is their getting 'hooked' on the stories and desensitized to witchcraft and the occult practices. Some children will handle this issue without a problem, but others won't."
11/27/2001 07:24:27 AM
I find it hard to believe that with such a large expanse and the sheer number of galaxies and solar systems that we've found (plus the ones we haven't) in this universe, that God sits around all day getting offended if we go see a film or read a book about a young orphan boy who happens to be a wizard. I think God is bigger than that. If you kill someone, or commit a mortal sin, and die in mortal sin, then you have a problem. But seeing a movie or reading a book? I think God is fairly forgiving on those fronts. It's some of his human followers that have the problem. God gave us the ability to think, and free will for a reason. He obviously meant for us to use them. And there is nothing about Harry Potter that is evil, despite claims to the contrary. I don't think a movie or a series of books matters much in the larger cosmic scale of things. I think God is big enough to let it slide. It's the humans here who get all wrapped up in decrying what they don't understand.
11/27/2001 03:46:36 AM
Hey -Have you seen how people are making GOD politicaly correct?Guess what all of you looking for other peoples aproval-or are arrogant enough to think you can make GOD to be what you want GOD to be. -wether you admit it or not-You will stand before the ALMIGHTY someday.So as you stand in his presence you will either be his child or not.You will either confess the name of JESUS the Son of GOD and believe in the fact that he saved your tail or not.Guess what GOD gives you free will to accept your own salvation HE made possible for you.Anyone who says -hey Im a half way decent person-never went to jail or anything-ect,so of course Ill go to be with the LORD-denys what JESUS did for them on the cross and says that GOD-who is perfect who is only love-who is only good accepts sin as being OK.Yes heaven is a beautiful place where sorrow will be a thing of the past.GOD is there.We serve a perfect Holy loving GOD that cant stand to look upon sin(everything not of the LORD)Better check yourself because we all sin everyday.The only reason any of us are going to heaven is because JESUS paid the price that we never could.Whosoever calls upon the name of the LORD shall be saved.AND when the LORD who loves us says something is detestible and to stay away from it-Im staying away from it.People who mess with witchcraft mess with demon spirits.
11/26/2001 05:40:46 PM
Everybody is so worried about Magic. Magic is suppose to be of the devil. Look at the Bible (miracles, natural phenomenon, etc., etc.) What do you think God is? Magic! There will always be good and evil.
11/26/2001 02:31:04 PM
The saddest thing I see out of this whole discussion is the way in which fellow Christians have resorted to name-calling and insult-throwing. Speaking of the Bible, not once in the entire book do I read of Jesus using such methods of spreading the word of God. Interesting that in one breath, some are shouting the need to adhere to strict Christian rules while out of the other, denigrating another's denomination. Personally, I believe that God did not want us to remain separate from all of the terrible, sinful things in this world, but rather, He wanted us to live within that world and remain untempted by what exists around us. That means that we understand the world and it's problems so that we are able to use the Word of God to decide what is right and what is wrong. In the same vein, we must be able to teach our children how do that. They must be able to view something for what it is, then take all that we have taught them to decide if it is right or wrong, if it is truth or if it is false.
11/26/2001 01:36:58 PM
Good afternoon to all. I would like each of us to take a look at the Word of God. People can quote what part of the Word they like but we MUST ALWAYS view the WHOLE and not just PART. We all have opinions and may not always agree but the Word of God has never changed. In 1 Corinthians 8:1-13 and 1 Corinthians 10:23-33 we see the explanation of the whole picture. We have to stop thinking of only ourselves! Let us know that if our behavior causes a brother to sin we have sinned against Christ. We are not suppose to be seeking our own good but the good of many so that they may be SAVED. We have little time left here to fight about Harry Potter or anything else for that matter. It all takes us away from what we should be doing, sharing the Word of God in LOVE. It is the little foxes that destroy the vine. Read 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 and 7:1. Please stop fighting and realize that GOD is the answer and JESUS is the key. With Agape(the God kind of love)
11/26/2001 01:36:04 PM
Good question. I would say yes, but it requires having your own base structure, your world view, concrete before engaging in something. If I read something like Harry Potter, I might find themes that remind me of Christ or God, because that is how I perceive the world, from a christian viewpoint. On the other hand, if you don't know what you believe, I assume you could find yourself caught up in believing or possibly wanting to believe in things you read or see, especially if you are young. But i think those things come and go, and don't leave any permanent marks, because once you've found the truth, you know you've found the truth. you don't see adults running around praying to he-man, which is definetely a good thing.
11/26/2001 01:35:34 PM
As one who was christian for 40+ years and then became a wiccan after a long search for truth, I can see both sides of the arguement about Harry Potter. To those who see him as evil, well, you have the right to feel that way, and ban the books from your childrens' lives. That is your right, go for it, and Goddess bless you. But do remember one thing, please: Not all of us believe your Bible, not all of us think witchcraft and sorcery are inherantly evil. Many of us believe evil comes from the human heart, just as love does, and it's how you use your powers and talents that make you good or bad. That is what I saw as the main theme of the Potter books. Harry was as powerful a wizard as Voldemort, but Harry's uses of magick were geared to helping his friends and blocking the evil plans of Voldemort, whose propensity for murder and other evil acts were obvious. Harry (good) triumphs over Voldemort(bad) time and again in the 4 books. Is that the kind of lesson you want to prevent your kids from reading about? Well, that's your priviledge. Enjoy it. But you're missing a rare chance to get your kids excited about reading.
11/26/2001 01:09:24 PM
I remember growing up, I wasn't allowed to read "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe," because it was an evil book which, if read, would invite demons into our house. I was chastized for running around with a stick, proclaiming loudly, "By the power of Grayskull, I am He-Man!" When studying mythology; telling my mother what I'd learned that day, only to be responded to with, "there's only one God, and he's not Greek." The bottom line is... well, I don't know where my point wandered off to. Is there a difference between reading somethign and simply being entertained by it, and reading something to embrace and accept as part of yourself... can you really do one without the other?
11/26/2001 12:33:18 PM
A continuation: If someone is too closed minded and too weak to only pick on "witchcraft" as a sin then they need to spend some more time with God. We as Christians have bigger fish to fry. If you are going to condemn Harry Potter, you better start condemning every movie that has an ounce of sin in it, and you should, if you're going to be consistent. Otherwise, get over it. If you really want to fight satan, go and write a book that will sell better than Harry Potter, go and make a movie that is of better quality than Potter. You can do it! It can be done, and it must be done if we as Christians are to be salt and light in this American culture. If you're not going to go out and change the media of this country, if you're just going to sit there and complain and tell people what not to watch without offering an alternative, then you're not accomplishing anything for the Kingdom. So stop yakking, and go out there and make a difference for Christ with your hands, not your mouth.
11/26/2001 12:33:04 PM
I believe it is a Demonic book there's nothing cute and good about it. sorry to offend anyone this is just an opinion people. I could be wrong.
11/26/2001 12:32:59 PM
This is to who it may concern: The Harry Potter Epic has been a great seller. Why do people love it so much? It is because it is the epic battle of good vs evil, and good triumphs. As CS Lewis once pointed out, God has instilled in us a desire for good to triumph over evil. When a book or a movie, such as star wars, specifically magnifies that one aspect, that one conflict, and then builds the rest of the story around that powerful battle between good and evil, it attracts many people. Harry Potter is not a movie or a book about God, but it still glorifies His nature of goodness vs evil.
11/26/2001 11:05:20 AM
I just don't get it. There must be hundreds of children's movies involving sorcery, and I don't know any Christian who has objected before. Every argument used against Harry Potter could be used against Cinderella's fairy godmother, or the Good Witch of the North. So do you ban Cinderella and the Wizard of Oz? If we can accept those "magical" beings as symbols of good, then why not Harry? And marchetti, your ad hominem attack is totally out of place here. But to respond off-topic -- no, I don't cite Julian of Norwich as "justification" for a feminine image of God; I cite the Bible. ;-)
11/26/2001 10:57:32 AM
Hello to the Christian fundamentalist hypocrits. These kind of fantasy/mythology stories have fascinated children and adults since time began; it's quite healthy and normal. There are virtually thousands of these stories and movies out there; Harry Potter is only the latest. Disney has to be the biggest perpetrator of these among many others. How many of you have taken your kids to the Disney theme parks or allow them to watch Disney movies?
11/26/2001 09:07:39 AM
Dear Z Pastor, How do you figure Harry Potter is the snake in the bible that God talks about? Please,get a grip man I think you are loosing it!
11/26/2001 01:17:08 AM
The LEFT BEHIND series is wonderful and so are other healthy books such as THE CONFESSIONS OF SAINT AUGUSTINE, JOSHUA, A PRAYER FOR OWEN MEANY, THE PRAYER OF JABEZ, but their messages are better understood at an older age. Fairy tale has been around as far back as one can go back in history. They are stories created to serve the purpose of keeping a child entertained and often they, too hold moral lessons. The occult is not okay for those of us who are Christian, but is it right for anyone to criticize a children's story? Harry Potter is wonderful, he has made many children read/ Their interest in literature is growing. We should be happy about that.
11/25/2001 10:58:12 PM
How many Disney movies have good/bad witches in them? How many classic children's fairy tales? So much of Harry Potter has classic magical characters in them, both from traditional fairy tales and classical meditteranean stories (like the 3 headed dog). I see no reason to be against Harry Potter any more than I would ban Cinderella or Mickey Mouse (Fantasia), Dorothy, King Arthur and Merlin. I think if we ban all children's books that have witches or socery or magic, many of our beloved classics would be gone. We've always had good and bad witches and socerers in our stories. And how different is a character like Superman, Batman, Spiderman etc... They have "super powers" but then so does Harry. Or the Star Wars movies and all the powers a Jedi Knight has. This is just one more fairy tale. Harry is like a young Merlin.
11/25/2001 10:41:38 PM
The author of the tarzan books also wrote a set of sci-fi books dealing with moral issues and adventure, also zenna henderson sci-fi theme that takes the imagination away in her group of aliens on earth with christian virtues and using gifts. To say that the occult is ok as long as its for kids is deceiving and who is the master of this the devil. Who comes to steal kill and destroy. If we ask God about whether a parent should validate this interest in socery is to say the author of these books cares for your childs soul, and that she is not teaching them that there is not any absolute Good or absolute evil, is ok. It makes our Christian child wiser, in touch with this world, and knowledge of the occult is what makes them wiser is going against God who defines wisdom. Sow the word of God in your child every way you can through books, bible,christian movies,and videos,and tapes. Make them the kind of people that God is calling for, Make them a Joshua generation, equipped to go into God s promise land.
11/25/2001 10:05:45 PM
The word the bible is quite plain about witchcraft, yet like other sins we find many who ignore its warnings. On television we see all kinds of recent stories about witchcraft glorifying it.,parents and grandparents introducing their children through these books to witchcraft. Barnes and nobles even has a witchcraft book for children in its stores. I know that the word says witchcraft is an abomination. That is a very serious sin. We have buffy, sabrina,the teenage witch, we have angel, and charmed. All directed at our children, and many gullible young adults. If we think all of this is an accident then you are seriously misguided. Wicca is booming. But all Christians who are born again know that christianity is the only way to heaven. Why introduce your kids to a desire to become involved in demonic oppression. Why not give them the left behind series. Or the lion the witch and the wardrobe series.
11/25/2001 08:04:52 PM
Something out of nothing is being made here. Harry Potter is not the definition or incarnation of evil in the literary world. Greek/Roman/Egyptian/Celtic/Aztec mythologies speak of polytheistic beliefs, yet we encounter them in our Western educations. Greek texts such as Aeschylus' THE ORESTEIA and Euripedes' MEDEA introduce a world of evil and witchcraft to us all, yet they are famous Greek texts that give us all lessons of justice. Harry Potter is not evil, but it is another great literary work that has the younger generation reading. Let it go! I doubt that a loving and forgiving GOD would strike HARRY POTTER fans into the depths of hell.
11/25/2001 07:48:15 PM
because veggies aren't against the teachings of God, and sorcery is. Harry Potter is all about evil practices. But what do we expect, we live in a secular world indeed. (not for long). Jesus is returning soon.
11/25/2001 07:37:58 PM
SparrowHawk is a United Methodist. So of course we all know now why she enjoyed Harry Poofter. We've all heard of the United Methodist Church's break from orthodox Christian doctrine and how it has embraced the theosophy of ancient wisdom. It seems that the UMC has now included a prayer to "God the Mother" in its worship book for the Millennium. The feminist faction cites medieval mystic, Dame Julian of Norwich as justification for this concept of God. In The Trojan Horse, Samantha Smith and Brenda Scott mention Richard Foster's Devotional Classics regarding Dame Juliana: ... Juliana of Norwich showed him the depths of Divine Love ... of' a somewhat sensual and 'intimate' relationship with God." (p.129)
11/25/2001 07:23:18 PM
I just got back from watching the movie. :-) Wasn't as good as the books, but I thought it was darn good! As Dumbledore explained to Harry at the end how love has the power to vanquish the forces of darkness, I thought, "Now WHAT exactly is supposed to be wrong with this story again?"
11/25/2001 06:22:38 PM
If Harry Poofter is ok with most christians, then i guess we can pat "Jo" Rowling on the back for showing us evil in a better light than what the Bible can portray! Lance Marchetti email@example.com
11/25/2001 06:00:36 PM
Harry Potter was a nice movie. A nice break from this war. It is no worse than King Arthur stories or Greek Mythology, or Grimm Fairy tales, or even the Wizard of Oz. Good triumping over Evil. Good.
11/25/2001 05:48:34 PM
Since the Harry Potter books depict the ultimate triumph of good over evil, I find it hard to believe that those who call themselves Christians would be opposed to the novels. And I hope Christians would be open-minded enough not to ban books, even if they are still uncomfortable about fictional portrayals of witches and witchcraft. Censorship and accusations of Satanism are not about religion, they're about fear and ignorance.
11/25/2001 04:08:16 PM
My aunt and uncle go to a "non-denominational" Christian church and that church has convinced my 7-year old nephew that Harry is a tool of Satan. He's scared that he'll go to Hell if he so much as reads one of the books, and that is unforgivable. He is at an age where Harry would be great entertainment for him, but since this child is deeply religious and believes everything he is told in church, he doesn't want anything to do with Harry Potter, and it's all out of fear of eternal damnation. I find it outrageous that people teach children about God through fear like this, and tell them that God will forsake them for reading a book or seeing a film. God is bigger than that. He'd no more send a child to Hell for reading a book or seeing a film than he would an adult for eating meat on a Friday. I find it repulsive that some would pervert the love that is God and instill fear in children like this. It's just absurd.
11/25/2001 12:21:39 PM
I think the opposition to the "Harry Potter" novels shows the complete IGNORANCE and STUPIDITY of the conservative/fundamentalist Christians. These fundamentalists just want to make me PUKE!
11/25/2001 02:03:49 AM
Harry Potter is just a book. C'mon, people, you're making way too much of this. If you can't SUSPEND BELIEF long enough to read a novel, then you shouldn't be reading them. There is NO SUCH THING as a witch. All magic is merely nature or technology, misunderstood by primitives. If we shield our children from ideas, where does it end? Which common cultural reference points are you going to deprive YOUR child of?
11/24/2001 11:18:17 PM
If we have survived fairytales that speak of magic, throwing wicthes in an oven or the Wizard of Oz that has a house falling on the wicked witch or a scarecrow catching on fire etc...Harry Potter is a non issue except for the fact that it is keeping our children and grandchildren reading. Children know it is not real and that it's fun. Let's us s get real and stop making a mountain out of nothing!
11/24/2001 07:26:08 PM
Children are reading more now and excercising their minds in doing so.Harry Potter is like any other fairy tale that exists.Judging a children's book for its plot is a waste of time.The most important thing is that Harry Potter has made children want to read.Don't waste time persecuting Harry Potter. Remember all of us,no matter what religion,have been judged,mocked,and persecuted throughout history. Think of all the things that would be banned because of their use of the mystical/occult: Shakespeare's MACBETH and THE TEMPEST,Disney's SNOW WHITE,etc.What would banning all this do for children, but deprive them of the reality that exists in the outside world.Those of you who have an issue with Harry,perhaps you should read the books and remember when you were a child--when fantasy and fairy tales were wonderful to you.As parents it is your job to teach your child your religious ethics and morals while still allowing them to enjoy the simple pleasures of childhood.Long live Harry Potter!
11/24/2001 02:23:04 PM
I think that "Harry-Potter" haters really need to rethink their position. When cameras and electricity came around, they were considered "black magic." Things that people didn't understand they called witchcraft--hence, we have the Salem Witchcraft Trials. I mean, i know it is cliche to mention the whole Salem thing, but it really illustrates a point. How come we don't call movies like "Star Wars" blasphemous as well? Maybe since I am not a Christian or very close-minded (not that those two have anything in common), I am blocked from thinking this way. Oh well...I'm off to the movie theater to see "Harry"!
11/24/2001 02:17:03 PM
I think harry potter is GREAT, I totally love it! If Harry Potter is bad, so is snowwhite and pretty much any other fairytail, there's witchcraft in those stories too! Harry potter has nothing to do with Satan, Harry is the good guy... Those people are just jealous because of the great way JK Rowling writes... Harry Potter is just a story! And even if it wasn't... What's so wrong about witchcraft... I'm ashamed for being(I doubt I still am but ok) or ever have been christian, if this is how christians act... Anne
11/24/2001 02:01:17 PM
Harry is just all right with me. Harry is just all right with me. (with apologies to the Doobie Brothers) Truth has an excellent point about choosing our battles. In a city neighboring mine, a city councilman has declared war on Hooters, but is completely mute on the much more numerous topless and all nude businesses. I can't imagine why Harry Potter creates a controversy and so many other fantasy stories do not.
11/24/2001 03:38:46 AM
I hate to say it, but some people really need to get lives rather than instigate a holy war on a bunch of children's books. I mean please, there is this huge world out here with all these problems, millions of them, and out of all these moral dilemas and human crises, of all the possible things to declare a moral war about, people chose a children's book?????? Grow up.
11/23/2001 08:24:42 PM
I had no idea as to how many people are o.k. with Harry Potter. First I realize that this is a make belive story but the problem is the truth embedded in the story. We are dealing with blatant withcraft which is not being hidden on any level. I will not tell a person the are a bad parent for allowing their child to become interested with Harry Potter but I will say please educate yourself. So many parents are simply not educated about the spirit realm and if they are many do not believe the magnitude that it carries. All I can say is that we have a very real spiritual war going on and satan would love nothing better than to use a seemingly innocent thing as a fictional story to enter the minds of our children and begin to introduce them to the occult. Please educate yourself before allowing this to become a part of you family literature.
11/22/2001 05:30:01 PM
Everyone here has read about Adam and Eve. Let's say that Eve is a Christian and the serpent is Harry Potter. Harry, or the serpent, says "Eat from the tree of Magic(Satanism). It won't hurt you." Then Eve replies "But God says he doesn't want to find anyone doing that (Deut. 18:10-12)." "Surely he didn't mean that." says Harry. Then Eve, not knowing her fate, takes from the fruit of satan and passes it on to her husband." Later on we see that God WILL rebuke the users of Satan and will ban them from Eden or in this case, Heaven. E-Mail me for even more verses prohibiting the use of magic.
11/22/2001 10:52:41 AM
As a teacher, I think it's great when children are so engaged in reading---not just the reading itself, but children like to discuss and argue and predict and WRITE about the adventures. I teach students of many different levels and allow them to choose their own reading. I have no problems with parents, and no problems with children not understanding that this is fantasy--not real. The books are written to entertain. It seems some adults haven't figured out the difference between fact and fiction. CS Lewis' Lion, Witch, & Wardrobe series are also very popular and (I think) they go way beyond Potter's level of "craft"y adventure. Read these books, and enjoy the ENTERTAINMENT! :-)
11/22/2001 10:15:51 AM
I live in the twenty-first century, not the thirteenth. For those who cite "reports" of children suffering psychological problems or fear of returning to school because of reading the books or hearing the books read in class, please be good enough to reference your information source for independent verification. One must never accept heresay as evidence. To those who condemn the books, I must ask: have you read them, or are you repeating what you've been told? If the later, I suggest you challenge the source, do your own research, and draw your own conclusions. By the way, do you have problems with "The Wizard of Oz"?
11/21/2001 09:54:14 PM
GOD is larger than Star Trek,Superman,and Harmless Harry Potter. After all GOD lets us dream for a reason. GOD enjoys all the makings. Without our imagination we are only, excuse the term, just animals.
11/21/2001 09:46:20 PM
maby if people would take the time to teach their children the diffrence between fact and fiction this wouldnt even be a issue by the way did anyone else ever watch bewitched when they were kids better yet do they remember being kids
11/21/2001 08:56:52 PM
Anne Morse says that we are not to dismiss Potter haters as "idiots." Of course she is right. That would be a sin and rude, as well. So that leaves us with a dilemma. Just what do we call Potter haters?
11/21/2001 06:56:37 PM
I believe that Harry Potter is evil! Children should not be exposed to this book that so many people call childrens literature. The spells and the rituals used in this book are the actual ones used in the real to life witches and satanic worship rituals that the dark underworld engages in. There have been reports that some children have had nightmares after having this book being read to them at school. These children did not want to go back to school because of it! Some children after having read these books started acting unusual as if something evil came over them. I know because I witnessed it my very own self. There are good books and bad books and this book is a very bad one indeed! Our innocent children don't need any of this evil garbage in their lives. Our world won't be a better place for any of us until us adults learn again good from evil and then teach our children accordingly.
11/21/2001 10:15:50 AM
Everyone has their own personal convictions, and as a Christian I have my own. I do not judge anyone because God is the only one who can judge. He deals with the matters of the heart. In regards to the Potter series, the only reason I do not allow my children to read it is because the children involved in the stories are on their journeys to become witches or wizards. I do not want my children to think that is okay. I feel that the book glorifies the use of witchcraft in the children's lives. I want to encourage my children to pray, read the Word, incorporate Christ into every moment of the day. To keep everything pure and holy before them. The characters in the Potter books does not demonstrate the new statement "What would Jesus do?"
11/21/2001 01:04:26 AM
By the way, I'm a conservative Biblical inerrantist. I don't even believe in divorce and remarriage. Think about what I wrote, what the author of the articles in Beliefnet wrote, what other believers have said and written, such as my former professor Jerram Barrs. When Christians get gullible and fail to think or even attempt to avoid the sin of false witness, they become bad witnesses to the lost.
11/21/2001 01:01:12 AM
Miss Rowling's books do NOT teach the religion of Wicca. The ‘magic’ appears to be technology. The evil folk indeed do something with similarities to animistic religions. But Harry and his friends do not. Miss Rowling believes herself to be a Christian, and is a member of a society devoted to the Christian apologist G. K. Chesterton. One might try reading the books with that in mind. Her novels are neither great literature nor evil, and I suspect that she will introduce Truth at a later date, once she's "gotten past watchful dragons". At the present, we see real, Christian, morality, and yet she gives you the uncomfortable feeling that the 'decent' sorts have compromised with evil. Harry, to defeat `Death-Wish' will have to reject the compromises and the disrespect of Muggles. That is a subtext throughout the first four volumes. Finally, it is a SIN to bear false witness, as so many Christians are doing against Miss Rowling. Repentance and apologies are in order.
11/20/2001 10:43:01 PM
because God didn't say aviod vegtables that can talk, and he did say aviod withcraft (wizards, magic, etc.). If you can find scripture to defend that I'd like to hear it. May God Bless You and Keep you close. -Ali
11/20/2001 09:34:24 PM
Isn't it wonderful to know that God was with us yesterday, is with us today, and patietly waits to guide and direct us tommorrow. We can rest in the thought that He will never lead us anywhere that He has not already been himself.
11/20/2001 04:44:11 PM
Good question. Maybe myth is what we as humans used to believe; religion is what we now believe. Eventually we'll all find out what is myth and what it truth. Some of us may be very surprised.
11/20/2001 04:33:50 PM
So, realistically speaking, what is the difference between myth and god?
11/20/2001 11:24:44 AM
How 'bout if we do believe in God, but don't believe in Hell? How 'bout if we have an interest in things "mythological" because it says something deeper about human psychology and history. What happens when you meet God and he tells you that Heaven and Hell are nothing more than human myths? And that paradise and persecution lie within the heart and spirit and are not physical destinations.
11/19/2001 11:34:11 PM
Mr. purpleku, what Colonelcowebs wrote wasn't circular logic at all. It makes perfect sense (and I don't want to see any lowlies like you go up against an intellectual giant like Lewis). If we disbelieve in devils, and in Satan, we have no reason to want to save ourselves from Hell, because we don't even think it's real. Therefore, we go there. If we are interested in devilish things to where we worship them instead of God, then, naturally, its off to Hell we go. That's not circular logic. Your comparison of that argument to the one of the Bible's authenticity is a classic case of, well, no logic at all.
11/19/2001 09:27:53 PM
Colonelcobwebs, that is typical circular logic, on par with "the Bible is true because it says it is."
11/19/2001 08:59:46 PM
The Potter tale goes ever on and on Down from the book where it began. Now far ahead the saga's gone, And we must follow, if we can, Pursuing it with tired feet, Until it joins some larger way Where many paths and errands meet. And whither then? We cannot say. With apologies to JRR Tolkien.
11/19/2001 05:54:01 PM
"There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about devils. One is to disbelieve their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them. They themselves are equally pleased by BOTH errors." C. S. Lewis Preface to "The Screwtape Letters"
11/19/2001 05:43:05 PM
I believe I could hug Lady Aleena for her post. You all have great heads on your shoulders. It's a shame that some over-the-top people have to scare everyone who's as gullible as they are into thinking the EVIL of Harry Potter exists. I especially love Lady Aleena's examples of magic in the bible...I was talking with some of the other girls at work today about just that...I wish they could read the post!
11/19/2001 04:03:45 PM
I think the Fundie Follies over Harry Potter, the Last Temptation of Christ, Star Wars, Dungeons & Dragons et al. are all of a piece. Those works are all, as a previous poster has pointed out, retellings of classic mythological themes. Well, the Bible itself contains many of those same themes, which it borrowed from Near Easter mythology current when it was written: consider the similarities between Egyptian wisdom texts and Proverbs, the rewriting of the Sumerian epic of Atrahasis as the story of Noah, and the dozens of versions of the Ishtar-Tammuz myth recycled as the story of Jesus. The problem is this: the fundies have personalized the maxim that their god is a jealous god, and grow frantic when any other version of classic mythology, be it the Epic of Gilgamesh or the work of J.R.R. Tolkein (who drew heavily on Scandinavian mythology), turns out to be better written and more entertaining than the literalist version they peddle.
11/19/2001 04:03:24 PM
I believe that 1. Harry Potter's cool, 2. the Onion's a riot, and 3. you would have to be pretty gullible to have taken the Onion piece seriously.
11/19/2001 12:12:06 PM
My people! I love you! *grin* I am surprised no one has mentioned Dune anywhere. I didn't hear any outcrys against that movie nor the books. In Dune Herbert talked about a breeding program to create a supreme being, a massiah, done by a religious order of nunlike women. Those books even brought forth a holy book called the Orange Catholic Bible! I never saw any protest of Star Trek which shows rampant atheism. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine showed the Bajorans worshipping an alien race living in a wormhole. I saw LOTR mentioned, and I am also surprised that there has been no great protest. I read and watch fantasy and science fiction yet my beliefs are intact. There is plenty of magic in the Bible that isn't frowned upon: 1. Jesus was conceived by a virgin, changed water into wine, created masses of food out of thin air, walked on water, had visions of the future, read minds, cured a man of blindness, brought Lazarus back from the dead, and rose from the dead Himself. 2. Mary had a vision of an angel. 3. Moses talked to a talking burning bush, cursed Egypt with plagues, transformed all the water in Eqypt into blood, turned a staff into a snake, parted a large body of water, and followed a conscious column of smoke/fire. 4. Lot's wife turned into a column of salt. 5. Noah talked to a disembodied voice and followed the orders coming from that voice. 6. Saul's blindness was cured in well water. 7. John had visions of the future, how else could he write Revelations? There are plenty of post-Biblical magic ascribed to various saints. Why can't fiction authors borrow ideas from the Bible? (I have a post in the Harry Potter discussion that has more of my opinion on this topic.)
11/19/2001 11:50:46 AM
Fundamentalists who proclaim that the LOTR is OK are hypocrites. The LOTR has everything Harry Potter does and more. In the LOTR you will find wizards, magic, elves, dwarves, dragons, ogres, goblins, trolls, demons, walking magical trees, magic rings, magic weopons, and not mention drinking, smoking I could go on and on. So as usual fundamentalists decide for themselves and for everyone else what is acceptable based on nothing more than their own hypocritical thought processes and philosophies.
11/19/2001 08:17:18 AM
All of this is really quite humorous. Who's to say, other than the Almighty Himself, that Harry Potter won't one day match the tales of Narnia and the Lord of the Rings series? Take heart, oh ye of little faith. He works in ways we cannot know.
11/18/2001 10:35:16 PM
I believe this preocupation with so-called "spiritual warfare" is perhaps more dangerous for those fundamentalists who are so dedicated to it. After all, I believe Paul said to put before ourselves whatever was beautiful and true. If one spends most of one's time gazing at the ugly and the false, does one risk falling under its truly subtle influence? And isn't it also a matter of perspective? There's much to admire in Harry Potter when it's compared to, say, the atrocious "Left Behind" series. What values does that nasty little series teach, honestly? Well, besides a preoccupation with the evils of global politics and people with funny-sounding foreign names like the laughable "Nicolae Carpathia"? I thnk those books have bred more misunderstanding and interpersonal conflict than HP could in a lifetime.
11/18/2001 09:55:17 PM
I wonder if anyone remembers the fundamentalist furor over "Star Wars" in 1977. The Force was supposedly a trick of Satan, Darth Vader WAS Satan, a generation of innocents led down the path of Darkness forever... Anything sound familiar? Well, we were not "led down the path of Darkness," we grew up and got real jobs, had kids, etc. Now they are onto HP. Next month, LOTR. After that, it will be the next summer fantasy movie, or maybe a new book. After all, now that the Soviet Union is no more, and worldwide Communism is in shambles, what else do fundamentalists have to pick on?
11/18/2001 09:23:38 PM
I'm happy to say that I found and LOVED Harry Potter before all the hype, and, interestingly enough, the year after the first book was published, I did two separate, in-depth graduate projects: one on Harry Potter, and one on the Chronicles of Narnia. When all of this hubbub came along, I was astounded...mostly because I found just as much (if not more) violence (primarily, and gruesomely, committed by the main characters!), paganism, mythology & symbolism, magic, etc. etc. etc. in the CON than in the Potter series. And, of course, the CON are in the canon of Christian-endorsed books for kids. (And, in fact, Christians tend to stretch the parallels between the CON and the Bible stories more than even Lewis himself was comfortable with.) At any rate, if folks would objectively look at what they DO allow, they'd see that it isn't too different, and they'd see, if they looked again, that Potter and his crew operate from a sound moral compass, and that, ultimately, good triumphs over evil every time. Go, J.K.!
11/18/2001 06:23:11 PM
f10c I thought your line that imagination and sorcery should never be confused was right on the spot. My entire family have read the books, they encouraged our children to read which is something the bible has never managed to do since they know all those stories, why shouldn't they look for something new ??. I am a christian, I amd still a christian, I will remain a christian and all this despite reading war comics, Hardy Boys, just about everybook Enid Blyton ever wrote and well as Terr Brooks, Raymond Feist, and wo betide be for reading Pier Anthony's "Incarnations of Imortality..Please, guys everything in moderation, our children look to their parents for guidance not books(If you have eny doubt of this, look closely at your kids and just see how closely their views and mannerisms match yours!!!)
11/18/2001 01:18:39 PM
Mysecret and Rasselas!... Fabulous, EXCELLENT thoughts! I thank you for such clear REASON amidst a "topic" which CAN get rather hysterical at times. Mucho blessings on you both AND... I wish everyone a joyous Thanksgiving!...what a perfect time to give gratitude for what we DO have!
11/18/2001 10:39:07 AM
For an interesting illustration of this, see the large number of stories appearing during the days leading up the film's release which mostly dealt with predictions of how popular this movie would be. CNN had a new one every day for a week or so, each one seemingly designed to make the reader feel obligated to attend.
11/18/2001 10:28:33 AM
Harry Potter is a somewhat mediocre recombination of important mythological themes, combined with some truly clever innovations that make for a compelling story. At heart, it really is a morality play, and evil is in no way made to seem glamorous. What concerns me about the franchize is not the power of witchcraft, but the power of marketing. Does anyone doubt that, at some point in the Harry Potter success story, the commercial powerhouse behind it superceded the natural response of its readers? The Potter "phenomenon" is truly unheard of . . . the revenues and the level of interest are unmatched for a children's book. Why is this? Is it because Rowling has managed to write the most interesting story possible? Or is it the ubiquity of the media's relentless promotion of this "product"? More frightening than witchcraft is the tendency for people to identify themselves with what might feel like cultural "movements" which are really public relations "pseudo-events".
11/18/2001 09:11:33 AM
k-bears, there's criticism, then there's downright rudeness which is what this author is talking about. "fundie" or "anti-fundie"... if you want a opinion to be respected you don't threaten, scream or otherwise act disrespectful (I'm not referring to you personally) I enjoy having challenging conversations regarding my views as a Christian. However when the criticisms get personal, the other person doesn't deserve my time.
11/18/2001 08:10:32 AM
Where in God's name is IMAGINATION??? It's a cute book series. Kids and adults alike should enjot it. Remember the Neverending Story? Mighty Mouse? Leave it to Beaver? (OmiGOD did they REALLLLY call him "Beaver"...Satan has taken over TV...sex sex sex) C'mon people...there's no Satan but the one that causes you to criticize a cute little story about a boy who can make good things happen with magical powers. Whooopie.
11/18/2001 08:08:14 AM
Curious-One, I wonder about LOTR as well, particularly since "non-fundies" consider it a sort of rendering of the redemptive story. I wonder what they think of that.
11/18/2001 08:06:03 AM
First, I was raised in a Christian home that promoted reading, learning, and discovery, and when the Harry Potter books came out, I wasn't all that interested in reading them...because I'm 22, but my youngest sister (who is developmentally challenged, with the capabilities of a 6 or 7 year old child) loves the books, and my parents gladly read them to her. Why? Because they know and she knows-like all of us, I would hope-should know that they are purely fantasy. J.K. Rowling certainly didn't put them out there as bait to lure children to Satanism. If it encourages reading, thinking, and questioning (which I think the latter is the big problem to "fundies"), it really can't be all bad.
11/18/2001 07:59:26 AM
I find myself a little uncomfortable with the whole Harry Potter thing. My Bible has several things to say about the occult (Leviticus 19-26 -"Do not practice divination or sorcery." Galatians 5:19 - "The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, . . . idolatry and witchcraft . . .). Certainly the Galatians passage has a number of other things in the list that are bad, but that doesn't negate the witchcraft issue. Yes, fundamentalists can be tooooo rigid and make up rules that are in a gray area, but don't discount all of them - if you are a Christian, there are biblical reasons for not watching Harry et al. Where does sin start often? In the little inconsequential things. Walk very carefully - when we rationalize one thing because of public opinion and not the reality of the Bible, we tread a very dangerous place for our spiritual life.
11/17/2001 11:02:26 PM
So I guess this means they're finally off that silly Tinky Winky thing! Hallalujah!!!
11/17/2001 10:49:46 PM
doober... I've had the pox, rendering me immune! Fie on your pox! I absolutely LOVE it when the "anti-fundies" get there panties in a knot over ANY criticism Christians may make! It's just too funny that you all are so self-righteous in your criticisms of us! Silly, silly, silly!
11/17/2001 10:46:31 PM
There are people out there using an Onion article to support a real position? Do I laugh or cry? I guess I laugh. Laughter has always been a weapon against those who attempt to make us do or believe the inane and silly. Just like in HP3. Cry "Ridikulous!".
11/17/2001 06:04:37 PM
Fudamentalists, be they Christian, Muslim, Jewish, or whatever religion, sect, or affiliation you care to name are equally offensive in their intolerance. A pox on the lot of them.
11/17/2001 01:27:10 PM
I don't know what Christians are so upset about. There is no "Satan worship" in the books, and the books/movie has a strong message of Good against Evil. To the person who said there is magic in the bible-you have a good point. The stories have nothing that is anti-christian/anti-god, in fact, they even celebrate Christmas and Easter!
11/17/2001 01:19:13 PM
To the person who wondered how fundamentalists would deal with the release of LOTR: well, I'm very much looking forward to it. Tolkien was Christian author who didn't glorify magic and witchcraft like many fantasists. Instead, when we read LOTR along with the Silmarillion, we see a great (but loose) allegory of the creation and fall of the world. Praise Tolkien (and Lewis for his Narnia); the classics of Christian fantasy will long outlive Harry Potter!
11/17/2001 11:26:59 AM
Here's my single advice for those who question the material inside Harry Potter: HEY! Those kids are _Reading_ a _Book_! You finally got them to a level above Comics and Video Game Tip Mags. *You Should Be Thrilled!!* And it could definitely be worse, if it wasn't Harry and Company, It would have easily been the Anarchist's Cookbook or somehting that really does equate Potter with Nardina. Cut your losses and praise them for actually Reading something.
11/17/2001 09:22:01 AM
Sometimes it seems that people just need something to be upset about. I remember going to see The Last Temptation of Christ at a local college, and I wasn't sure exactly where the theater was. Until I saw several hundred people on the sidewalk singing hymns. There hasn't been a good controversy like that for the fundamentalists in a while, so they are probably thrilled at the thought of dusting off the picket signs. I don't understand why there has to be such an uproar. If you don't want your family to see the film/read the books, don't allow it. Just don't try to stop me from exercising my freedom to choose what I read and see. Why is everyone so afraid? If you have taught your children the values you believe in, in most cases they grow up still holding those values. A book or movie won't change that, especially one that has many good messages.
11/17/2001 01:53:36 AM
It makes on wonder how children in fundamentalist households ever learn to discern anything for themselves when they grow up and are exposed to something outside of the b&w world of their upbringing. Just another means of the TV preachers to bring in more money by using fear tactics to prey on their viewers. God is not the author of fear. Goes to show that we live in a culture where too many people would rather be ignorant than be able to dispassionately discuss differing viewpoints.
11/16/2001 11:20:02 PM
Here we go again. When my kids were growing up it was Dungeons and Dragons that was going to corrupt their minds. Then the Society for Creative Anachronism, which some local followers of Jerry Fallwell said really stood for Statnist Church of America. Now Harry's getting all this attention. It'll blow over. Fundamentalists like to beat up things, and since they are no longer allowed to burn heretics at the stake they beat up on people being allowed to exersize their God-given imaginations. My grandson is a Harry Potter fan and it has helped him come up to his grade level in reading.
11/16/2001 09:27:37 PM
I have not read any of the HP books but find it hard to believe there is any more "magic" in them than in the bible. There serpents speak, pharoahs have spells cast on them, walking sticks turn into snakes, seas part, water comes out of rocks, food floats down from heaven, young men survive fiery furnaces, water turns to wine, people walk on water, cursed fig trees die, blind people see, etc, etc, etc. Are we sure we want our children reading this?
11/16/2001 08:38:57 PM
Only evil people, handmaidens, handmatrons, and handmaitre d's of Satan himself, would dare to type that HP is even a tenth of one percent as interesting as TLOTR. I'm, like, totally offended. Zodhi
11/16/2001 07:17:55 PM
This story adds to my conviction that authors who use irony ought to put warning labels on their works that read something like, "Warning: the following work contains irony. Some statements may mean the opposite of what they say. Reader discretion advised."
11/16/2001 06:07:10 PM
I wonder how the fundies will cope with The Lord of the Rings next month. Should be fun.
11/16/2001 04:28:54 PM
Just thinking . . . Presumably the work of the devil is to get in between people and God. Well, in that case he has used these books quite effectively. Because people are so busy focussing on witchcraft that they are not looking at God. And they are so busy judging the readers that they are driving them away from God. Just an idea of mine. Personally, I read the books. I think they are a little too old for my 5-year-old but I might start reading them to her sometime next year. Considering the target audience, the use of magic is a great way to level the playing field between kids and adults. I found it wasn't about witchcraft, it was about Harry learning to negotiate the adult world - which I believe is the goal of parenting. Great use of archetypes, too. Not nearly as offensive as the detractors have been.
11/16/2001 04:09:37 PM
There is one objective universal truth well beyond our fears and religions. We must teach our children to do the right thing through our own examples. Try as we may to convince ourselves otherwise, we inherently know the difference between right and wrong and we choose to do either but we don't accept that all our choices have consequences; for every action there is a reaction. Personally, I am grossed out by the theme of the popular American Beauty film, which I choose not to see but that many nice people enjoyed. I have not read Harry Potter but I might be interested in seeing the film. Movies don't make the difference, people do. The supernatural battle for good versus evil continues across the world, these days in both the sensible and intelligible realms. Good will triumph; I hope there's enough of us 'good' humans around to enjoy this time of triumph-let's make it so!
11/16/2001 03:37:31 PM
Took `em a while to pick up on this, don't ya` think? I first saw the use of the onion article as fact back in `99.
11/16/2001 02:24:11 PM
The fact that fundamentalist Christians would take an obvious satire like the Onion article as "proof" that the Harry Potter books are some sort of Satanic conspiracy would be funny, if it wasn't so scary. Well, I guess it's still pretty funny, but seriously - if fundamentalists are so comprehesionally-challenged that they can't pick up on over-the-top satire, then why should anyone trust their interpretations of scripture?
11/16/2001 01:48:11 PM
When I hear of "Christians" condemning the Harry Potter books and movie, I am reminded of the Pharisees and the Sadducees who were always trying to trip Jesus up with religious minutia. Jesus himself called them hypocrites. While I do allow that a parent needs to know what a young child might be reading, and help them choose accordingly, I think the age that the HP books are geared toward is totally appropriate. My 5-year old would most likely be afraid of intense parts of the movie (just as he was afraid during "Prince of Egypt", so we prabably won't take him to the movie. But when he is older, I hope he appreciates the books and the movie as I have appreciated the great works of fantasy from Madeleine L'Engle and C.S. Lewis. Harry Potter characterizes many of the qualities of a moral, ethical and compassionate person in a realm of pure fantasy (a great story which takes us "out" of ourselves), which we could all use now and again.
11/16/2001 01:23:23 PM
My favorite quote from the article is: "Some Christians will conclude that it’s wrong for them to read Harry Potter or see the film, believing the witchcraft too closely mimics the real thing, or that their own kids are too susceptible to real-life occultism." Mimics the "real thing"? I really shook my head at this one - I'm one of those folks who doesn't still believe that fairy tales are true. Witchcraft and the fantasy called the "occult" is just that - a fantasy, and not true. Magical thinking is delightful in children but really silly in adults.
11/16/2001 12:03:55 PM
I feel that people are getting a little to worked up about a book. We need to keep literature (ie BOOKS) available for our children. They don't learn to tell the difference from real and fake if they have nothing to base it on. I am reasding the HP books to my daughters age 6 and 8 and we are going as a family to see the movie. As said before their is defenitely alot worse in the Bible. I also feel you need to know if the child can tell where reality ends and fantasy begins. Talk to your kids read the books!!!!
11/16/2001 11:57:43 AM
I think that anything good can be twisted into something bad. Somebody always has to take something good and create a controversy over it. Look at what they did with angels a few years back. People took it and went overboard with it and started worshiping them instead of what they know to be the truth. I guess culture hasn't changed that much from Moses' time. The Isrealites had seen all of these miracles--and then what do they do? Someone likes a cow, Oh! Let's make a golden nik nak and worship it. Things definately have not changed in the millinea that has past since then. The only thing that we can do make sure that we are grounded in our faith and to lay the foundation for our children's walk in faith. And a message to all out there verbally and publicly opposing the Potter books, make sure you don't go off someone else's opinion. You only make yourself look narrowminded and un-educated. Read what your opposing first and make your own EDUCATED opinion.
11/16/2001 10:25:18 AM
The Harry Potter books made an avid reader of my son. After finishing the most recent HP, he read the entire Narnia series (with only my initial urging. After that he WANTED to keep reading) and I'm going to encourage him to start the Tolkein books soon. His reading skill improved by leaps and bounds (his first attempt at Harry Potter was unsuccessful, he thought it was "too hard", but I encouraged him to try again and after one chapter he was hooked...) and he now reads incredibly fast, with great comprehension. I know a lot of Christians, and the only ones who have a problem with Potter are the ones I've already seen to be pretty hypocritical in other aspects of their lives. So, live and let live, I say. If you live somewhere where these "Christians" are trying to ban Potter in your schools, then you'd better get off your duff and do something about it. Otherwise, as long as they're not hurting anyone, we should just let them be. I really don't think they can help it.
11/16/2001 10:15:40 AM
I am always amazed by my fellow Christians ability to be able to compartmentalize different things and proclaim them satanic. How is it that a book about a boy who flies around on a broom or whatever, fantasy in other words, is more satanic than vegetables that can talk. Folks, get real, "Veggie Tales" is fantasy too. Or, should I go I the tomato in my vegetable bin what they think of Harry Potter. How about Gumby and Pokey? Do clay figures really live or is it "fantasy!?
11/16/2001 10:05:39 AM
This the evident result of non-thought, people, a virus which is taking the world ablast. JPGove'
11/16/2001 09:50:07 AM
This is just a nother example of Literalist christians taking a story as real. The article was fake and people took it as literal fact. Does God that inspired people to write the not inspire others to write other things to. The bible is a wonderfuly written book of magic and adventure, of psychic prophesy, and fierce battles. But remember it is not complete and has been altered many times through out history. Each of these stories are parables in which great knowledge can be imparted. Just as books like Harry Potter has a deeper inner lesson. It however, is not real and literal fact. I think that once kids trandsend the stories and see the message they will benifit from this knowledge.
11/16/2001 08:36:26 AM
i think parts of the bible are truly sick. all this bloodshed and gore, sex with servants. I learned quite a bit more about the facts of life than my mom was ready for LOL when i was 8 and reading the bible.
11/16/2001 08:23:23 AM
Tell you what-when some kid can fly through the air on a broom, or cause things to levitate, then I'll be concerned about these books. I find it supremely ironic that some Christians want the Bible in schools, a book which features some parts on slavery, genocide, extreme capital punishment, but they balk at a silly modern fairy tail.
11/16/2001 06:59:58 AM
Sherlock - here are some mixed reviews - www.rottentomatoes.com/movie-1109764/
11/16/2001 03:38:40 AM
-- continued from last post -- Unless you intend to condemn and ban every children's book, novel, Arthurian legend, Shakespearean play, fairy-tale and nusery rhyme that has any mention of magic or witches in it, let it go. And GET A LIFE, for crying out loud!
11/16/2001 03:37:51 AM
Guess I should include a post about how I actually feel about Harry Potter, seeing as that's actually this post is for. I have read all four Harry Potter books and I loved them. I am eagerly awaiting the movie and the next book in the series. Regarding the debate, IT'S FAIRY-TALE MAGIC, PEOPLE! It's not real! You point a magic wand, say a couple of words, and *poof*, something really neat happens. It doesn't even resemble real witchcraft! Did you know that Wiccans are boycotting the movie and the books? They're upset because Harry Potter reinforces stereotypes, like witches wearing conical hats, riding brooms, etc. They are offended by the books and movie because they don't represent their religion as it really is. As a matter of fact, the books hardly mention ANY religion at all, let alone endorse any. -- continued --
11/16/2001 02:43:57 AM
I didn't realize it was OK for us, as Christians, to condemn people to Hell. In fact, it was my understanding that we were forbidden to pass judgement at all. I always thought the question of who would go where when everything is said and done was up to God. But, you know, sometimes it seems as though Christians tend to think it's OK to just pick and choose which commandments and teachings from the Bible they are going to practice. I never knew that was OK, either. But I guess I could be wrong. Maybe I just don't know enough about the Bible yet.
11/16/2001 01:50:42 AM
For all of you Lord of the Rings fans, sorry, but I don't really like those books and think that HP is better. ;) We all have our differences. Speaking from a tradtional Yi folk religionist, I see nothing wrong with the books.
11/15/2001 11:54:30 PM
Foust77- have you even read any of the Potter books? They don't encourage the occult. They don't even concern Lucifer. They're escape literature- they're about a different realm. It's just fun. Children don't read these and want to worship the devil, instead, Lyndbar was very correct in comparing them to the Narnia series. They encourage nobility and honorable traits- good conquering evil. They make children wish they had a magic wand just as much as the Narnia series makes children wish they had a magic wardrobe. And no one is complaining about the wardrobe. If you've read the books, and still feel this way, I'm glad that you at least had sense to find out what they are about before voicing against it.
11/15/2001 10:47:45 PM
I have read the first three Harry Potter books. I have also read some of Tolkien's books (especially Lord of the Rings) as well as C. S. Lewis' Narnia books. Frankly, the Harry Potter books are not any more "demonic" than Lord of the Rings or the Narnia books. After all, both Tolkien's and Lewis' books have wizards, witches, magic, frightening creatures, etc. Yet I do not hear Christians condemning them or the upcoming Lord of the Rings movie. So, I find their criticism of the Harry Potter books and movie both unwarranted and hypocritical. Even some of Shakespeare's plays (e.g., The Tempest and Macbeth) depict witchcraft, evil spirits, and so forth. The same can be said about a lot of fairy tales of the brothers Grimm or Hans Christian Anderson. So, why aren't televangelists hawking books and videos that expose the evils of Shakespeare, C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, or the brothers Grimm? Why aren't conservative Christian parents trying to get these books banned from schools? Go figure.
11/15/2001 10:39:52 PM
Though I should toss my requesite finger wagging here. For a Christian to think that Harry Potter is all well and good... that's just seriously lazy thinking. Puh-lease don't compare Harry Potter to Narnia, or even LOTR. Since when do Christians have free reign to mess with the occult?
11/15/2001 10:37:06 PM
Alas, a friend of my mom's sent this very Onion article to us and several other people. It was quite a battle for me to convince all involved that this was *satire*, not a journalistic masterpiece.
11/15/2001 10:34:39 PM
Okay... as you can probably tell from my handle, I'm a LOTR partisan. But I'm going to see "Philosopher's... um, Sorceror's Stone" soon. Not first week, maybe, but soon. The books are way cool. And Alan Rickman as Snape? Got to love that. Gotta gotta gotta. P.S. Remember Cedric!
11/15/2001 10:30:23 PM
Curious One, Wow, 'The Movie Sucks' could you provide a link? Sounds to me like you are just mad that the HP Movie has taken some fire (and money) from LOTH.
11/15/2001 09:26:02 PM
purpleku69 - one question - why do most people centre their lives around books?
11/15/2001 09:22:15 PM
OK, let me do this real slow, so that nobody misses anything. I-T-'S A B-O-O-K! G-E-T A L-I-F-E!!! Any questions?
11/15/2001 09:15:14 PM
Sparrowhawk - agreed. One UK movie critic admits that while the movie sucks (even more than the first book), 'JKR has single-handedly made reading books cool again' - I can see no wrong in that.
11/15/2001 09:03:51 PM
OK, I agree the Harry Potter books aren't in the same league as LOTR. :-) But I've read all four (I got sucked in while my nieces were reading them) and I found them very enjoyable -- simple enough for kids to read, but complex enough for adults to enjoy also. I loved them, and I REALLY love that they've gotten my nieces into reading. I don't think I've met anyone who has actually READ the books who still thinks that they're out to convert kids to witchcraft.
11/15/2001 08:54:39 PM
fc10 - Harry is not even close to Enid :-) Forget Harry. Frodo rules.
11/15/2001 08:52:10 PM
con-oo - Harry was originally published in the UK with a philosophers stone. The US version changed this to sorcers stone. Do you or the Bible have anything against philosophy? How come you control your grandson's mind? Give him a break - if he wants to adopt your ideas at least wait until he is 18 before you try to brainwash him with your fairy stories.
11/15/2001 08:50:21 PM
Salaam alaikum, I've never read a Harry Potter book (no time). But if they are anything like the Enid Blyton books I read, sorry, devoured, during my preteen years, let me assure you that children will not turn into broom toting, cursing uttering demons. Personally, I saw a trailer for the movie and it lookeed quite intersting (trailers always do!). The Quran also says that sorcery is wrong, but I do think there is a difference between sorcery and imagination.
11/15/2001 08:46:45 PM
The bible (Gods) word, says sorcery is wrong.Therefore it is , my grandson wont be reading Harry potter books, no way. He will be reading, Noahs ark, and Jonah,etc. Christian values must be maintained rather that view is popular or not is of no concern to me.
11/15/2001 08:30:12 PM
stevejd - I have to admit I will probably be dragged along to see Harry too. But if you compare the books there is only one contender. What makes me glad is that finally the world will easily understand what Tolkien tried to express all those years ago. (He was writing in light of Hitler). LOTR is also a perfect tale post 9/11. And not at all biblical, just moral. And complex - like real life. unlike Harry.
11/15/2001 08:09:53 PM
I like Harry Potter for the fun and also the values taught. I don't think anyone will take the magic seriously. It is so silly, and anyway with all their magic the wizards and witches still have the same problems we muggles do. We're going to see both "Harry Potter" and "The Fellowship of the Ring". Anyway Tolkien isn't 100% fundamentalist. How about the Paths of the Dead...not very biblical. wizard smiley
11/15/2001 07:10:04 PM
Don't worry Anne. Pottermania has about one month left. I read the books and they were barely interesting. Reviews of the movie suggest it is even poorer. In mid Dec the long awaited Lord of the Rings (part 1) movie will debut - and it is set to blow Harry out off his broomstick. Go Frodo!
11/15/2001 06:51:09 PM
It seems there are two factions; those who instantly see no problem with Potter and can't understand the fuss, and those who instantly condemn it wihhout reading it. As a Christian, i would place myself in a third category, in that, on one hand, the books are probably very well-written and should be enjoyed as works of child literature. At the same time, I'm not about to acceot them unilaterally simply because everyone tells me to. I believe all children have the right to knowledge, so should be able to read them but being told of the Christian response to certain issues raised regarding the withcraft side of things. What is called for is wisdom, which comes from God, and therefore since there is no clear answer as to how to approach the books, it is best to ask Him for guidance, as noone else, Christian or otherwise, knows His mind.