HARRY POTTER
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BULLETIN BOARD


HARRY POTTER
AND THE SORCERER'S STONE
(2001)


This page was created on November 3, 2001
This page was last updated on
June 5, 2004

HARRY POTTER INDEX
PRISONER OF AZKABAN
PRISONER OF AZKABAN
(2004)
Review
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About this Film
Spiritual Connections
Forum
CHAMBER OF SECRETS
CHAMBER OF SECRETS
(2002)

Review
Trailers, Photos
About this Film
Spiritual Connections
Forum
SORCERER'S STONE
SORCERER'S STONE
(2001)
Reviews
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Sol O Mann and Links
Interview with JK Rowling

Harry Potter Posters
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WE AS CHRISTIANS SHOULD NOT SUPPORT SUCH WITCHCRAFT
Subject: Harry Potter
Date: Thu, 13 Dec 2001
From: "matthew prentice"

I am an 18 year old born again christian living in NZ. While reading some of the thoughts by christians it promted me to write in. Harry Potter in blatant witchcraft and sould not be supported by any christians. Here are a few snippets from an email I received from Jim Schofield of godisnowhere.org Ministry. The full email can be found as an attachment.

POTTER-CRAFT: REAL OR FANTASY?

Potter defenders claim that Rowling's books have nothing to do with real-life occult or witchcraft. Not only is this patently untrue, but Rowling admits that she has done extensive research into real-life witchcraft, pagan religions and other aspects of the occult, stating several times in interviews that roughly one third of the witchcraft in her books is real.

The title of the book refers to an object revered in real occult circles as the Philosopher's Stone. If there's any doubt as to whether it is the same thing, note that in Canada and some parts of Europe, the book itself is instead named The Philosopher's Stone. This object, in the book, is said to grant its creator and wielder unlimited wealth and power and immortality -- things Satan typically offers in tempting us to corruption. The real-life version does the same thing. In the book, it was created by a man named Nicholas Flamel. (Side note: Nicholas is a name often associated with Satan in folk lore, but this could easily be coincidence.) The book says that Flamel "turned 665 last year." Odd that the author doesn't want to say what his age is this year. The book lists his wife as Perenelle. What's frightening is that Flamel actually existed. His wife was named Perenelle. Modern witches and other occultists believe he was probably the only person in history to succeed in making a real Philosopher's Stone! He was born... 666 years before the publication of Rowling's book.

Most of the other adult wizards in the stories are named after real-life figures in the history of witchcraft and the occult. Prof. Minerva McGonagall is named for a pagan deity, godess of agriculture and weaving. Prof.Sibyll Trelawney is named for the pagan fortuneteller of that name in ancient Greece. Professor Vablatsky is clearly named after and inspired by turn-of-the-century major occult figure Madame Bavlatsky. Even Harry's friend, Hermione, is named for a figure in Greek pagan mythology. Rowling also refers to people with similarly pagan names like "Circe" and "Morgana" and "Cliodna," the last of whom is a banshee worshipped as a pagan goddess of beauty in Ireland and Scotland. Rowling also refers to books within the story which, unknown to most Potter readers, are actually real! These include Arthur Edward Waite's Standard Book of Spells (for those who don't know, Waite designed the most famous Tarot cards which most people think of), Eliphas Levi's A History of Magic, and even one book by Adalbert Waffling called Magical Theory. The real-life "mad" Archbishop Adalbert of Magdeburt wrote this book and was a mystic who claimed he could see the future and read thoughts. He sold amulets made from his own hair, skin and nail clippings, and even set up an altar for the purpose of his own worship. He invoked demons through mystical prayers. He was convicted of sorcery in 745 A.D. and condemned to imprisonment for the rest of his life. This is one of the real people who Rowling uses as a source of knowledge and enlightenment in the Potter books for her fictional students to learn from.

NO INSTRUCTIONS INCLUDED?

Some Potter defenders claim that Rowling portrays magic but doesn't really show how to do it, per se. This is only a halfway adequate defense. While she rarely teaches specifically how to practice witchcraft, she often does demonstrate some of the details of real magic and occult practices. In one book, Harry visits a magic store and sees a "Hand of Glory," which was cut off a murderer while still being hanged, then pickled and so on; specific directions are given for how this talisman is made. Another student with his father shows interest in buying it. The shop owner replies, "Ah, the Hand of Glory. Insert a candle and it gives light only to the holder. Best friend of thieves and plunderers. Your son has fine taste, sir!" Rowling also often refers to astrology and describes Harry and other students getting their charts done by Prof. Sibyll Trelawney, who also teaches in detail how to scry using a crystal ball, mirror and other means, explaining how to achieve an altered state of consciousness with similar instructions to what one will find in a real-life book on the subject. Similar instructions are given regarding reading of tea leaves and other such means of divination. POTTER ETHICS Also troublesome are the ethical values portrayed in the story. Harry consistently lies, cheats, steals, and generally disobeys the rules any chance he can get. Worse, he is not only rarely punished but usually rewarded by the professors and other adults in the stories.

Most of the time, the "voice of reason" is Harry's friend, Hermione, who keeps warning him not to break the rules and defy authority. Just like all other characters who believe in following the rules, she is portrayed in a negative light, although only at first because she is soon changed by her friendship with Harry and coming up with her own schemes to get into trouble and lie about it afterward.

CHILDREN DON'T TAKE IT SERIOUSLY, DO THEY?

According to an Aug. 4, 2000 article that appeared in the British publication This Is London, the Pagan Federation has had to appoint a new youth officer to deal with a "flood of inquiries following the success of the Harry Potter books." Children are known to send in messages such as:

"I like Ron, Hermione, and Harry a lot. Professor Dumbledore is great too... I would love to be a witch or a wizard." -- 14 years old

"I like what they learned there [at Hogwarts] and I want to be a witch." -- 10 years old

"I thought the story really made you feel like you could be a witch or a wizard." -- 11 years old

"This book is amazing and contains magic spells I wish I can do in the real world." -- 12 years old

"I think Harry Potter books are absolutely fine! I like how they can use witchcraft for fun/good purposes." -- 11 years old

"I wish Hogwarts were real because then I could go and learn magic instead of quadratic equations." -- 13 years old

The Harry Potter books aren't just about "fantasy magic" ala Lord of the Rings or the Chronicles of Narnia. They are about real witchcraft and occult, portrayed as happening in the real and modern world. The ethics and morals portrayed in the books Even Rowling admits this. As Christians, should we support the indoctrination of children via these manuals of pagan.
Jim Schofield
godisnowhere.org Ministry

Response: Harry Potter is real witchcraft? Talking hats and flying broom sticks? I don't think this is real witchcraft. The so-called article from you mention is totally bogus. A lie. Constructed by liars. Hmm, who is the father of lies? But, thanks for you thoughts. -David

LET'S BE HONEST
Subject: Harry Potter Newsletter_30
Date: Wed, 12 Dec 2001
From: Greg

All I can say is that the most dangerous error is that which is closer than the truth. The fact of the matter is that maybe Harry Potter does portray certain "good" points/values but it still is not founded on the truth. Jesus made it quite clear that it is the Truth that will set you free. I would never encourage ANYONE to go and watch Harry Potter and open themselves up to the demonic. Are you unaware that the lady who wrote the books is a witch herself? How would this movie or these books help young people in their walk with God. Lets be honest, trying to pull out the good points is a shoddy cover up for compromise.
Greg Cockrell (Administrator)
Covenant People Family Church

Response: "Let's be honest" you say? Well the author is not a witch. Where did you get that urban legend? You need to be honest. She is a Presbyterian Christian. And how does your deceptive letter "help young people in their walk with God"? "Lets be honest" indeed! Go see the movie and be informed. Also, the witch hunts are over. The day of accusing people of witchcraft are over. -David

CONGRATULATIONS ON A GREAT SITE
Subject: Harry Potter
Date: Tue, 11 Dec 2001
From: "Matt Seargeant"

David:
From time-to-time I drop in on your site and each on each occasion I am treated to a rational discussion on the media and religion. THANK YOU!

I am a fairly liberal United Methodist pastor and enjoy reading the reviews and comments on various films.

I was intrigued to find most of your reviewers had positive comments on the Harry Potter film. I have read all four books and found the film to be well done and entertaining. It may not be Shakespeare, but neither is it satanic.

Again, thanks for your site and your work!
Matt

Response: Thank you for the kind words. -David

RESOURCES
Subject: Harry Potter
Date: Tue, 11 Dec 2001
From: Bill Turner

Dear David:
If you want a good resource on Harry Potter from a UK guy, try Confronting the Harry Potter Culture by Rev Dr Mark Stibble. It is available from Word and Spirit Resources 37 Quickley Lane, Chorleywood Herts. 5AE UK. I found this very helpful and well researched on the CS Lewis issue and not a knee jerk fighting fundy response! Great web site. God bless: Deep in the UK jungles:
Bill Turner.

Response: Thanks! -David

IT'S LIKE SATAN IN THE GARDEN
Subject: Harry Potter
Date: Tue, 11 Dec 2001
From: CJP YOUTH

I have read and understand all your reviews about Harry Potter. The central truth however is that although there are "Christian themes" in this movie and in the books they do not excuse the fact that witchcraft is the central theme. You see, even Satan himself often plays on our values to make wrong things seem right. For instance, in the Garden Satan used what Eve knew as the "Goodness" and "Willingness of God to give us all good things and not harm us" in order to confuse her and led her into doing that which was wrong before the Lord. The truth is when you read the books and Harry is saying spells- your child and/or you are reciting them along with Him and others and thus possibly inviting true evil spirits, curses, and hexes (which by the wayare very real) into your home and your child/your life. I say, if you want good values in the movies your children watch- then let them see movies that also do not conflict the spiritual truth: You cannot mix what is bitter with what is pure and expect that the bitter will simply disappear. Instead, it will in fact, only make what was pure now bitter.

Response: This is a "Mary Poppins" type film. Relax. Flying brooms and talking hats are not to be equated with the fall of humanity in the garden. Apples and oranges. -David

SLICK FLICK
Subject: Harry_Potter
Date: Tue, 11 Dec 2001
From: Grim Stripper

I think all Christians who are upset over the Potter mania should calm down. My dad for example, he has never read a single Potter book but during the initial days when book 4 was coming out there was a flurry of comments, reviews and criticism, notably was 1 article "Harry Potter may spark a rise in satanism" in the new. And my dad immediately proceeded to give me a lecture on God and occultics and where we as Christians stand. In my mind I was thinking "does he know what he is talking about?"

Also during the filming of the movie, many Christians were upset that parts of the movie would be filmed in a church. They wrote letters to the newspaper saying it was blasphemy and stuffs. In my mind they are potraying a negative image of Christianity, its as if we were still in the dark ages and practicing witch huntings

I think in this new millenium Christians should be more rational and more tolerant of others who differ from us

Response: Amen! -David

READ THE POSTINGS
Subject: Harry Potter
Date: Mon, 10 Dec 2001
From: Ken

Greetings Hollywood Jesus--
I've been reading through the postings on Harry Potter and I find them fascinating dialogue. I can see both sides of the story, and though I haven't read the books or seen the movie YET I am leaning more towards the "pro-Potter" side. I'm sure I'll have more to say once I see/read it. I've always loved the world of fantasy, and I think it's God will for us to be creative and use our imaginations. And yeah, the devil is powerful and deceiving, but Jesus is the creator of the universe!!!!!! I'd like to think He has more power.

One thought that has flashed into my brain, using my imagination, don't you think it would frustrate the devil greatly if people, especially children, could actually use "witchcraft"/magic for fighting against him? It would be like a taste of his own medicine. I like the image of the devil on a leash, getting to a certain point and then getting choked. When devil-inspired hatred caused millions of Jews to die in World War II, he must have thought, "At last I have them!" And then...the Nazis were defeated, Hitler shot himself in the head and the Jews regained the state of Israel like God said they would. "Drat!" said the devil. When Jesus was crucified, the demons partied, and then...

If Harry Potter was a story about kids using witchcraft to fortell the future, bully other kids, or kill people, I think there would be much reason for concern. Otherwise, I'd say probably not. I'll get back to you once I've seen it.
Praise Jesus!
Ken

SMOKING POT
Subject: Newsletter_30_Harry_Potter_Is_Dangerous
Date: Sat, 8 Dec 2001
From: juliana diaz

In order to truly understand the dangers of advertising witchcraft in a positive light, I believe we need to look at those who have been involved in witchcraft and how they began. While it is true that we can learn Godly principles from almost any story, we must not negate the power of a whisper. Satan is not an idiot. He knows that most people do not change their lifestyle over night, but over time. People who are addicted to heavy drugs usually start out smoking pot. Not to say Harry Potter is like smoking pot, but how are we going to protect our children from opening the door to witchcraft to their lives. As adults, we can appreciate the value of Biblical principles in a worldly story because we have learned Biblical principles. Instead of leaving our children at the mercy of "I hope they see the value in this", why don't we take that time to teach them the principles we know so well. If you want to protect your children from a journey of deceit, you don't have to sign any petition or join any witch hunts, just make a decision not to open that door in their life. If parents can't even say no to peer pressure, how in the world are we going to teach our children to?

Response: And as parents why don't we enter into the world of fantasy with them? We don't need to protect ourselves from Harry Potter, but rather we parents need to protect ourselves from ourselves. -David

THEY WOULD THINK I WAS A HYPOCRITE
Subject: Harry Potter
Date: Sat, 8 Dec 2001
From: "John Howard"

I want to thank you for this website. My name is Esther and I teach at a Christian Elementary School. I teach with many people who have extremely conservative views and sometimes I feel that if I open my mouth and disagree with them concerning certain issues they think I'm a hypocrite or maybe not even a real Christian. The truth is is that I am a real Christian and I was raised in a Christian home and even went to Christian school my whole life, but I was also raised to think for myself and to not just follow the pack "blindly" as so many Christians are wont to do. My parents love books and taught me to love books. We often read the same books and then had big discussions about them. They were interested in what I was reading. At the same time they didn't put limits on what I could read. They just made sure they were aware of what I was reading. As a result if I started to read something that I didn't understand or that made me uncomfortable I didn't just continue to read it, I brought it to my parents and we discussed it. Books were not banned at our house - they were discussed. If we decided together that a certain book was not appropriate then I didn't read it (and I didn't have a problem with that). I applaud my parents for approaching books in this manner and I plan to do the same when I have kids.

I know this is supposed to be about Harry Potter, and I really am about to get to the point. My dad is a big fan of fantasy and science fiction (even though my mom is not) and because I him, I am also a big fan of fantasy and science fiction. The earliest fantasy I remember were fairy tales. Then I started reading the Oz books. The Chronicles of Narnia were other early favorites. By the time I was in middle school, I was reading all of my dad's fantasy books and discussing them with him. (Oh by the way - my dad is the one who got me interested in the Harry Potter books. He bought them and read them and then gave them to me to read) I always knew that the things that happened in these stories were fantasy and make-believe and could not happen in real life. I never once thought I could actually walk into my wardrobe and enter Narnia or that there really was a big magical book that could tell me what was happening everywhere all the time (like Glinda's book in the Oz stories). I also was never interested in becoming a witch. I read stories full of witches, wizards, and magical spells, but they never made me interested in the occult. I knew that the things in these books were make-believe and not real!!!!!! And that is exactly what Harry Potter is. The things in this book are make-believe and not real. I don't believe that there are kids out there who really think that if they point their finger at someone and say a few select words that that person is going to turn into a frog!! I also don't think that there are kids who believe that they can actually fly on a broom and play quidditch. The whole idea of kids thinking this stuff is real is ridiculous - even to a kid. The kind of magic practiced by the characters in the Harry Potter books is the flashy and fun make-believe magic that even little kids know is not real.

Now there are some people who have expressed concern that certain practices such as astrology and crystal balls and fortune telling that are examples of "real magic" that are practiced by people today are mentioned and condoned in the Harry Potter books. It is true that these practices are mentioned in the books. In Book 1, the centaurs Harry meets in the forbidden forest are astrologers - they study the planets and stars in order to foretell the future. In Book 3, Harry takes a divination class where he learns about crystal ball gazing and reading tea leaves and other kinds of fortune telling tricks. True these practices are mentioned - but they are not condoned!!!! They are actually made fun of and not accepted as serious magic. The centaurs are depicted as scared creatures who read the heavens to find out the future but are too scared to do anything about it or help people in trouble. The first two centaurs Harry meets are unwilling to tell him anything or help it at all. The third centaur, however, does decide to buck the system and help Harry despite incurring the wrath of his fellow centaurs. Astrology is not depicted in the books as serious magic and none of the other characters is even shown to use it. Therefore, astrology is not condoned in the Harry Potter books. Divination is also made fun of in the books. All of the other professors consider the divination class to be a joke and the divination professor to be an even bigger joke. Professor McGonagall tells Harry not to be concerned that his professor saw Harry's imminent death in the tea leavers, because divination is inconsistent and imprecise at best. Because the other professors don't take divination seriously one cannot say it is condoned in the books. I think children who read these books are also going to not take fortune telling and astrology seriously.

Some people are concerned that Harry Potter is immoral because he often breaks rules and sneaks out at night in order to solve the various mysteries that are always going on. These people also say that Harry never gets punished for doing this. But if you have read the books you know that he does get punished. He is always getting caught and getting into trouble. He constantly loses points for his house because of his little escapades and in the context of these books losing points is a very big deal!!! Sometimes Harry and his friends get hurt because of decisions he makes. And while things always work out for good in the end, Harry does have to deal with mistakes he has made. I think that the books are very moral and that there is a clear sense of right and wrong in these books. Harry does have to deal with the consequences of his actions and I think that is a major theme of these books.

These books are not evil. If the bad characters won in the end or succeeded in getting Harry to come over to their side, then yes these books would be evil. But evil never wins in the Harry Potter books - good always does. Evil does exist in our world and we are in a constant struggle against it. I think that is one reason I like fantasy so much. I also think that is why so many well known Christian authors (such as C.S. Lewis, Tolkien, and George MacDonald) wrote fantasy stories. Good fantasy always depicts strong opposing lines of good and evil and evil always loses in the end. Also, there are no blurred distinctions between right and wrong in good fantasy. Harry Potter is good fantasy. Many books, and tv shows, and movies for children and young adults have very blurred lines of right and wrong and good and evil. Things that are good and right don't always win in these stories. In many stories for kids that are written and produced today the characters go against society and established rules and make up their own rules. Many stories for kids today are also not very moral. Divorce, sex outside of marriage, and breaking established rules are condoned in many books that kids read and in many shows they see. I think that I would much rather have my kids read Harry Potter and other good fantasy books than have them read many of the other books that are out there.

In conclusion I want to say that the Harry Potter books are not evil and do not condone evil practices or anything connected to the occult or to Wicca. I think that people should actually read the books (and read with an open mind - not a mind narrowed by naysayers) before they say how awful and evil it is. I apologize for writing such a long message. When I feel strongly about something I tend to go on and on about it. Thank you for a Christian website that doesn't squash people for having differing opinions about certain subjects.
God bless you.

Response: I agree! -David

continued here

Harry Potter main page -Reviews
HP more Reviews -Reviews by Hamm and Wiertra
Harry Potter page 1
-Sol O Mann Top 10, Great HP Links
Harry Potter page 2 -Interview with JK Rowling, Vision of Dark & Light
Harry Potter page 3 -Bulletin Board (Comments)
Harry Potter page 4 -Bulletin Board (Comments)
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