Harry Potter - U2 Feedback

Go Back   U2 Feedback > United Colours > The Goal Is Soul
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 11-27-2002, 11:55 AM   #1
The Fly
 
UltravioletU2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 222
Local Time: 07:34 PM
Normal Harry Potter

So, as a Christian, what do you think of Harry Potter?

I am a Christian, not one that is totally on the right track right now, but struggling. I love Harry Potter. Here are some of my thoughts:

1. Most Christians have not read Harry Potter yet criticize him ruthlessly.
2. The HP attackers let their kids watch the Wizard of Oz and read them fairy tales of witches and wizards and spells and enchantment.
3. These same Christians who claim "this fiction can turn real" are the same people who watch movies with shootings and killings, but when questioned, they say, "it's only a movie!"
4. These people will take their kids to see innocent magicians who wave a wand and do a magic trick, yet when HP waves his wand and makes something float, he is satanic.

I dunno. I think Harry Potter is great. Sure, the last ones are dark, but no darker than fantasy stories like LOTR. Perhaps the last one was a little bit too dark for children, but it's simply good versus evil. I guess I find that Christians who have the book chopping parties and HP protests seeth religiousness and turn people off from Christianity.

What are some of your views? I find it's hard to find a Christian who has actually read Harry Potter. I see it as a fantasy land, good versus evil plot. Just like the old fairy tales with godmothers who waved their wand, Harry waves his wand. Plus, it has encouraged so many children to read.

If I had children who begged me to introduce them to Harry Potter "because all their friends are", I would read it with them and discuss it. I know they would love the books, because I sure do!
__________________

UltravioletU2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2002, 12:05 PM   #2
Offishul Kitteh Doctor
Forum Moderator
 
bonosloveslave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Taking care of kitties
Posts: 9,655
Local Time: 08:34 PM
Re: Harry Potter

Quote:
Originally posted by UltravioletU2


If I had children who begged me to introduce them to Harry Potter "because all their friends are", I would read it with them and discuss it. I know they would love the books, because I sure do!
I am one of the many who have chosen not to read it. I know this may become an issue someday when we have kids, and if a situation such as the above arises, I think I would be willing to do that.

No one is perfect, we all have to make choices regarding what we listen to, read, movies we watch, etc. I know I don't always make the right one - but in this case, with what bits and pieces I do know about the books and the movies, I've chosen not to read or watch. I dunno, I guess all the spiritual stuff makes me nervous and I'd rather not open that door.
__________________

__________________
bonosloveslave [at] interference.com
bonosloveslave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2002, 12:14 PM   #3
Offishul Kitteh Doctor
Forum Moderator
 
bonosloveslave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Taking care of kitties
Posts: 9,655
Local Time: 08:34 PM
An excerpt from Focus on the Family with some thoughts:

http://www.family.org/cforum/citizen.../a0019032.html

---------------------------------------------------

The Materialist Magician

If so many people like Harry Potter, what could possibly be wrong?

To answer that question, it may help to look at another supernatural novel, C.S. Lewis’ The Screwtape Letters.

Framed as fictional correspondence between the high-ranking demon Screwtape and his nephew Wormwood, the book explores some of the ways that demonic forces seek to build walls between humans and God.

In the 1941 preface of his book, Lewis revealed two of the greatest mistakes in humanity’s beliefs about demons:


There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them. They themselves are equally pleased with both errors and hail a materialist or a magician with the same delight.


An even greater error, and the one most valued by Lewis’ demonic characters, is the fusion of the two errors. As Screwtape writes to Wormwood:


If once we can produce our perfect work — the Materialist Magician, the man, not using but veritably worshiping, what he vaguely calls "Forces" while denying the existence of "spirits" — then the end of the war will be in sight.


By disassociating magic and supernatural evil, it becomes possible to portray occult practices as "good" and "healthy," contrary to the scriptural declaration that such practices are "detestable to the Lord." This, in turn, opens the door for less discerning individuals — including, but not limited to, children — to become confused about supernatural matters.

This process is already well underway in American culture. A December 1997 study published by George Gallup, taken from the Princeton Religion Research Center, revealed that 31 percent of Americans believe in ghosts, 20 percent believe in witches, 24 percent believe in astrology, 17 percent had consulted a fortuneteller and 24 percent believe in reincarnation.

Gallup found that born-again Christians — defined as those who believe God’s Word to be literally true and have tried to encourage someone to accept Jesus Christ as his or her Savior — held almost the same beliefs percentage-wise as non-Christians.

What About Narnia?

Christian fans of Harry Potter insist that the series is no different than C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia, a series that many Christian parents accept.

It is true that both authors create fantasy parallel worlds involving young British children who encounter magical creatures. Both develop admirable characters and evil villains. But this is where the comparison ends.

The difference between the two hinges on the concept of authority. From a Christian perspective, authority and supernatural power are linked.

Take a look at Mark 2, where Jesus heals a paralytic. When Jesus first sees the paralytic, He says, "Son, your sins are forgiven." This sets up the following scene:

Now some teachers of the law were sitting there, thinking to themselves, "Why does this fellow teach like that? He’s blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?" Immediately Jesus knew . . . that this was what they were thinking . . . and He said to them, "Why are you thinking such things? Which is easier: to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up, take your mat and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins. . . ." He said to the paralytic, "I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home." He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. (Mark 2:6-12a)

Christ’s power flows from His authority. That’s the nature of all legitimate power — it is granted and guided by authority.

When we read Rowling’s series, we find that she effectively divorces power from authority. There is no sovereign person or principle governing the use of the supernatural.

Magical power is gained through inheritance and learning. It is not granted by a higher authority, because there is no Higher Authority — at least none higher than Harry’s mentor, Albus Dumbledore, and the evil Lord Voldemort. The two are equal, antagonistic and unaccountable to a higher authority.

In C.S. Lewis’ Narnia, power and authority are welded together. That authority is Jesus, in the character of the great lion Aslan — creator and sovereign ruler of Narnia, son of the Emperor Beyond the Sea. Good power is power that is bestowed by Aslan and exercised in accordance with his will. This good power is at work when the children Peter, Susan and Lucy use gifts bestowed on them by an agent of Aslan.

Evil power, on the other hand, is power that is seized or conjured — rather than bestowed — and exercised for selfish ends. Those who resist the temptation to use such power are commended, as was Digory, in The Magician’s Nephew. But those who wield it (such as Jadis, also in The Magician’s Nephew) and the White Witch (in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe) are eventually vanquished by Aslan.

Despite superficial similarities, Rowling’s and Lewis’ worlds are as far apart as east is from west. Rowling’s work invites children to a world where witchcraft is "neutral" and where authority is determined solely by one’s cleverness. Lewis invites readers to a world where God’s authority is not only recognized, but celebrated — a world that resounds with His goodness and care.

It’s a difference no Christian should ignore.


John Andrew Murray is dean of students at Whitefield Academy in Atlanta, Ga.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
This article appeared in Citizen magazine. Copyright © 1999 Focus on the Family. All rights reserved. International copyright secured.
__________________
bonosloveslave [at] interference.com
bonosloveslave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2002, 12:27 PM   #4
Acrobat
 
popsadie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Hsinchu, Tawain
Posts: 461
Local Time: 12:34 AM
Personally I love the Potter books. I love the symbolism...the phoenix rising..the ending scene that reminded me of St George and the dragon....I find alot of great meaning in them looking at them through symbolic eyes. I don't know..the church's fear of the subtle, of the symbolic irritates me....also, the catle celebrates Christmas...love and faith draw out Harry's tools for his battle.....I don't know, just count me as a christian who is a Harry Potter fan...
popsadie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2002, 12:54 PM   #5
Blue Crack Addict
 
nbcrusader's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,071
Local Time: 04:34 PM
My wife and I have not read the books (in a world with limited time for reading, we have found better things to read). We have read a number of articles about Harry Potter from a variety of sources. Beth, the article you posted was one of the most thoughtful on the subject.

Just over a year ago, our son asked us about Harry Potter. We gave him a very basic description of the books. Now, our son had just been studying the life of Moses in bible study and was in the book of Leviticus. His response to us was "witchcraft and sorcery do not honor God." Our son loves to read, but he wanted nothing to do with Harry Potter.

For Christians, I see things like Harry Potter as training times - not something to hide or destroy. Rather than asking whether it is a sin to read Harry Potter, we ask "is it the best use of our time". This is a test we can apply to anything - television, movies, actvities, etc.
nbcrusader is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2002, 01:28 PM   #6
BVS
Blue Crack Supplier
 
BVS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: between my head and heart
Posts: 41,193
Local Time: 07:34 PM
"Christians", and I use this term lightly, are too busy looking for the devil and not God in every aspect of life. It's fiction!!! They search for the devil, because they think they've already figured out God, it's arrogance.

My whole childhood was filled with wizards, witches, smurfs, santa claus, fairies, leprachauns, and winged cherubs that don't exist. Does this mean I grew up in a "satanic" home. No. People need to calm down and really examine their own lives and before they judge others.
BVS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2002, 01:57 PM   #7
Blue Crack Addict
 
nbcrusader's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,071
Local Time: 04:34 PM
I appreciate your thoughts here, but I add just one more. Satan does not try to draw attention to himself. Satan's goal is to draw our attention away from God.
nbcrusader is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2002, 02:48 PM   #8
The Fly
 
UltravioletU2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 222
Local Time: 07:34 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by bonosloveslave
An excerpt from Focus on the Family with some thoughts:

When we read Rowling’s series, we find that she effectively divorces power from authority. There is no sovereign person or principle governing the use of the supernatural.

Magical power is gained through inheritance and learning. It is not granted by a higher authority, because there is no Higher Authority — at least none higher than Harry’s mentor, Albus Dumbledore, and the evil Lord Voldemort. The two are equal, antagonistic and unaccountable to a higher authority.
Thanks for the article. I could really appreicate it, because the author had put some genuine thought and he obviously read it enough to be knowledgeable. He is credible, and that is important.

I would like to say that I mildly disagree with the above paragraph. Harry Potter is a famous wizard who has exceptional powers that far surpass his peer's. His friend Hermione is book smart, but Harry possesses exceptional courage and strength to counteract evil and has been a great wizard from birth. Before he even attended school, he had magical abilities. And magical power is not gained from inheritance. In the story, there are many "mudbloods". Wizards whose parents are "normal".

The Ministry of Magic governs the use of supernatural powers and why cannot Albus Dumbledore be the authority? He offers guidance, help, and does good. He battles evil. One could argue that Aslan has no authority!

This is a fairly weak argument, and the only argument stating the difference between Narnia and Harry.

Please understand that I am not putting down this article. I am simply playing the devil's advocate.
UltravioletU2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2002, 04:52 PM   #9
The Fly
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Memphis, TN, 38104
Posts: 226
Local Time: 12:34 AM
Pottery

I'm troubled by the whole "witch hunt" thing that so many Christians do. (I'm family, so I will not hesitate to criticize...my dad was a preacher & I've been a Christian since around 8 years of age). It seems that fundamentalists always have to find something to be "against", while not spending much time feeding the hungry & visiting the widows.....and of course neglecting those in nursing-homes. True, we aren't to worship other gods and practice witchcraft, but I don't think a children's story book involving spells & incantations is ever going to convert a child to practice witchcraft, any more than Star Wars made me practice some form of Buddhism (as many have claimed it promotes).

In my opinion...and don't we all have those no matter whether we frequently quote scripture.....it would be more fruitful to focus on helping others and spreading love first. I'm definitely a hypocrite when I say that, don't get me wrong.

I always think back to my childhood, when I was told that KISS worshipped satan, and I was ignorant enough to believe this and to destroy all of my records and posters. (I mean, they're no U2, but....) It's just plain silly. Imagination is not satanic.
bonofnattic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2002, 03:08 AM   #10
Rock n' Roll Doggie
VIP PASS
 
cell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Disneyland
Posts: 5,901
Local Time: 05:34 PM
Re: Pottery

Quote:
Originally posted by bonofnattic

I always think back to my childhood, when I was told that KISS worshipped satan, and I was ignorant enough to believe this and to destroy all of my records and posters. (I mean, they're no U2, but....) It's just plain silly. Imagination is not satanic.
it seems like yesterday i was being taught the same thing about bands who were nothing but devil worshippers. but i can understand why my mom was so strict with what music i listened to and what i saw in the movies.

i remember someone posting a thread about harry potter in LS, and someone replied, making fun of parents/christians who were boycotting the movie. although i am not a regular church goer, that really offended me. i know its just a movie with alot of imagination, but i dont care for all the witchcract and sorcery in the movie thats being shown to young children. i am not letting my daughter see that movie. when she is old enough to fully understand God's word and the messages that are portrayed in movies such as Harry Potter, she can make her decisions. that is my right as a parent. but im not going to sit there and tell everyone else not to go and see it either.
cell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2002, 02:10 PM   #11
The Fly
 
UltravioletU2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 222
Local Time: 07:34 PM
Re: Re: Pottery

Quote:
Originally posted by icelle

i remember someone posting a thread about harry potter in LS, and someone replied, making fun of parents/christians who were boycotting the movie. although i am not a regular church goer, that really offended me. i know its just a movie with alot of imagination, but i dont care for all the witchcract and sorcery in the movie thats being shown to young children. i am not letting my daughter see that movie. when she is old enough to fully understand God's word and the messages that are portrayed in movies such as Harry Potter, she can make her decisions. that is my right as a parent. but im not going to sit there and tell everyone else not to go and see it either.
Well said. It is your right as a parent, and a good decision. I love HP, but I would think twice about subjecting my young children to it. Also, well said about not harping everyone on it, either.
UltravioletU2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2002, 01:31 AM   #12
Jesus Online
 
Angela Harlem's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 1969
Location: a glass castle
Posts: 30,163
Local Time: 11:34 AM
I adore the Harry Potter series, so all the replies as to why it may not be a good choice for young children is somewhat eye opening to me. I personally am not overtly religious in the sense of practice, I have my faith and beliefs etc and daily try to do all the things that a more dedicated perhaps (for want of a better term) Christian will endeavour more staunchly and I hope that my children will at minimum become the same, unless they choose a more educated religious path, then that is fine too. But regardless of the amount of religious knowledge they acquire, I wonder what a child gets out of reading such books? The arguments against are certainly valid and by no means anything to write off. I just wonder whether a child would see enough to appreciate a darker message in them? I dont think I had a less or even more than average imagination or set of 'smarts' when I was young, but if Potter was around then, I doubt I would have seen past the simpler side of it. The magic, the exciting path Harry's life takes, the good ole bad guys verse good guys, Harry triumphantly overcoming all his hurdles. If religion was a larger part of my childhood and I had read them, I do wonder if that really would have made much of a difference. That is a question I suppose no one knows, but I do think we may apply our own wisdom and ability to see the fuller picture to children who might be somewhat ignorant that it exists.
Angela Harlem is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2002, 06:51 PM   #13
Blue Crack Supplier
 
martha's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Orange County and all over the goddamn place
Posts: 42,553
Local Time: 04:34 PM
Ah, yes. Those wicked books. They teach our children to fight against evil at all costs, to search for truth both in books and in life, to make choices and understand both the short-term and long-term consequences of those choices, to understand that love is the most powerful force, to play fair, to rely on friends when they're needed, to act independently when it's required, to be honest.




Oh, but they do this in a framework of fantasy, so they must be bad.



No, they aren't appropriate for young children. They are scary and serious and dark.
martha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2002, 09:13 PM   #14
Blue Crack Addict
 
anitram's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: NY
Posts: 17,290
Local Time: 07:34 PM
Nearly everybody I know has read it and most of them are Catholic. Not one person has ever brought up the idea of the books being somehow contrary to their faith, and when they've commented on the hoopla over it, it's pretty much consisted of an eye roll.

I'm Catholic and therefore Christian, and I find absolutely nothing questionable about the books. I'd prefer my kids reading them than sitting in front of the TV all day, but to each his own, I guess.
anitram is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2002, 09:25 AM   #15
Rock n' Roll Doggie
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: full of sound and fury
Posts: 3,386
Local Time: 01:34 PM
Eh, I don't geddit. How come I tried reading two HP books, but never got to finish them, because they didn't grip me? I feel like I'm missing something.

The Little Prince rules!

foray
foray is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2002, 12:04 PM   #16
Rock n' Roll Doggie
FOB
 
oliveu2cm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Live from Boston
Posts: 8,334
Local Time: 08:34 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by foray

The Little Prince rules!


___________
I gave this book to Bono
oliveu2cm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2002, 11:41 PM   #17
ONE
love, blood, life
 
melon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Posts: 11,781
Local Time: 07:34 PM
I think it is flat out silly to get worked up over harmless fiction. The Bible is far more violent.

And "Focus on the Family" can bite me.

Melon
melon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2002, 02:00 AM   #18
Rock n' Roll Doggie
VIP PASS
 
cell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Disneyland
Posts: 5,901
Local Time: 05:34 PM
i can understand how its kinda funny how people get all worked up about the movie. im not like that at all. i just choose to not have my daughter view the harry potter movies because of all that witchcraft deal. i just dont like how some people make fun of others who choose not to view the movie because of their beliefs.
cell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2002, 10:52 AM   #19
ONE
love, blood, life
 
melon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Posts: 11,781
Local Time: 07:34 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by icelle
i just dont like how some people make fun of others who choose not to view the movie because of their beliefs.
No worries. I won't make fun, as long as my right to vehemently disagree isn't infringed. I just don't need Dr. James Dobson (FOTF) legislating his beliefs--many of which I find to be repugnant.

Melon
melon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2002, 11:20 AM   #20
Offishul Kitteh Doctor
Forum Moderator
 
bonosloveslave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Taking care of kitties
Posts: 9,655
Local Time: 08:34 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by melon


No worries. I won't make fun, as long as my right to vehemently disagree isn't infringed. I just don't need Dr. James Dobson (FOTF) legislating his beliefs--many of which I find to be repugnant.

Melon
Just FYI, the article wasn't written by him. Let's try to keep this to HP, but be my guest to start a "rip on Dr. Dobson" thread (not that I'd agree with you....)
__________________

__________________
bonosloveslave [at] interference.com
bonosloveslave is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:34 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Design, images and all things inclusive copyright © Interference.com
×