“Harry Potter”

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The term “Harry Potter” refers to a series of fictional books that portray the life and experiences of a young wizard named Harry Potter, especially his friendships with Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley (Vezzali, Loris, et al. 105). The three are pupils at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Lord Voldemort’s main adversary is Harry Potter, and the series depicts their everyday challenges in their search for greatness (Vezzali, Loris, et al. 105) A host of issues, mostly religious in nature, continue to plague the novels. The examination of faith, or the lack thereof, in the book series is thus critical to the overall interpretation of the book. The harry potter series is amongst the books that continue to face debate most especially its religious affiliations. (Jenkins 207) Some people argue that the book does not have any elements of religion but rather contains aspects of occults and even Satanism. In the United States, for instance, there have been numerous proposals to stop the sale of the books to school children for the reason that it seemingly purports witchcraft (Wagner 5). According to the law, Witchcraft is a form of religion and therefore contradicts with the policies which aim at separating the school and state from religious aspects.

Among the significant religious argument against the book is that white witchcraft has been severely appraised and made to look so innocent. The entire book series comprises of acts of witchcraft a wizardly and in as much as it is fiction, it tends to seemingly motivate the readers and show them how exciting witchcraft is (Wagner 5). Typically, in any setting, and most especially among the blacks, witchcraft is associated with evil. People practicing the vice are always known to be extremely bad and are in most cases devil worshippers. There should not be any perceived difference between white and black magic as both have similar consequences and endings (Wagner 5). Magic is magic regardless of the person who performs it. The fact that the vice continues to be praised in the book is very controversial and in no small extent demonic(Wagner 5). The religious argument against the series focuses on the well-known fact that wizardly can only come from the devil. For this reason, there can’t be any positive religious affiliations from the book.

Further, the fact that the witchcraft in the book is considerably associated with continued violence is a significant source of concern. Typically, in any setting, such violence cannot be condoned by the major religious groups such as Islam and Christianity. The book is thus very unspiritual, and the lack of a definite religious affiliation is the reason why most religious groups are opposed to It (Barratt 2). Any children’s’ book should encourage the children to be the best version of themselves and the fact that it is at this critical stage that their brains are still developing, what it is fed with should be taken into consideration (Barratt 2). The Harry Potter series plays no impact whatsoever on the encouraging of the readers to be morally upright and so cannot be considered beneficial or religious in any way.

When the aspect of the bible and God’s command is taken literally, it is clear that the Harry Potter series dramatically defy the commands as outlined in the holy book. For instance, the bible states that witchcraft is evil and that God does not tolerate magic (Gierzynski, Anthony, and Kathryn 3). It indicates that any act of magic is an abomination to God. While this statement is unambiguous, the Harry Potter series does not consider this factor and appraise the use of magic as an accepted norm (Gierzynski, Anthony, and Kathryn 3). There is even a school of wizardry and witchcraft which shows the extent of the toleration of the vice. Religious people believe that anything that goes against the teachings of the bible is disobedience (Gierzynski, Anthony, and Kathryn 3). The Bible, being opposed to the use of magic is, therefore, a clear illustration of its alienation with the entire series and what it stands for. By the continued use of magic, Harry Potter is apparently against the religious beliefs of the people.

In the development of books and movies meant to appeal to the children, there has to be a line regarding what the teachings are. Concerning that, it should be clear that in as much as the books are coupled with aspects of fantasies; witchcraft cannot be regarded as such (Gierzynski, Anthony, and Kathryn 5). Therefore, witchcraft is in no way fantasy but a major sin in the real world (Zulaika 52). The Harry Potter series does not draw the line, and the people are practicing the vices in the book are appraised as some of the very best. It may be a significant problem since if the innocent people therein are the ones practicing magic, it would be appalling to see what the wrong people are capable of. Since the book does not contain elements of people who advocate for different practices, it is very unreligious.

The harry potter series further desensitizes the readers, and the primary argument is that they may consequently lead them to fancy the occult leading to negative extremities. (Zulaika 53) Some of the things depicted in the book such as the use of snakes, the conducting of human sacrifice, and the communication with the dead as well as instances of reincarnation do not point out to any religious affiliations. Christianity, as well as religions such as Islam, do not condone such practices, therefore, being a clear illustration of the lack of religion in the books.

According to Clara Sessoms, a Christian lady who manages Christian books in Marion, the harry potter book series pose a more significant threat than can be perceived (Neal 2). Clara talks about how certain beliefs shape the lives of the people, and the fact that sorcery is immensely appraised in the books can result in spiritual bondage among the people without even them realizing it. For instance, when one is much fascinated in the readings or the subsequent movies out of it, they might find themselves repeating words meant to cast spells or even finding pride associating themselves with evil. A child may easily state that he is a wizard since it is portrayed as an excellent and admirable thing (Neal 2). One cannot mix up two distinct vices. Therefore, the teachings of the books are very unreligious and do little to protect the innocence of the readers, particularly the children.

Finally, the primary religious argument against the books is that they worship murder. The major fights as depicted in the books have led to a series of very gruesome crimes, a practice which is very unreligious. There is no way the books can contain any religious aspects yet so easily condone or encourage such things. Therefore it is certain that the Harry potters series are very unreligious.

That notwithstanding, there may be a few elements or illustrations in the book which point out to aspects of religion. Even though there is no direct illustration, acts such as the wearing of the cross by some of the characters in the series point out to religion.

Another major hint is the mention of Christmas carols in one of the book series. Christmas is associated with Christianity as it is the time when the birth of Jesus is celebrated (Tu, Yanping, and Dilip 811). Atheists, as well as other religions, do not commemorate Christmas and the fact that the book mentions it means that they are inclined to the faith. It says that the recognition that there was the birth of a higher form of authority which is in itself a religion.

Also, Harry Potter has a godfather who was assigned to him during his baptism. It is obvious that it is only in the Christian faith that people get baptized at birth since it a commemoration of the acceptance into the family of Christ (Tu, Yanping, and Dilip 816). The fact that Harry Potter was baptized is a very critical religious representation in the series. Further, the most prominent wizard named Voldemort in one of the series attributes his consistent fever to the fact that his christening as a child was hurried. Christening is a religious practice among the Christians where a baby is dedicated to God, particularly after baptism. The fact that the two recognize the process means that they are somewhat religious.

Evidently, it is clear that the Harry Potter series greatly lack in the religious aspects as described above. The fact that the book series greatly worship the use of wizardly and witchcraft is a clear sign of the lack of religious affiliation. Typically. Christians believe that the practices of wizardly and acts such as the conducting of human sacrifices, drinking blood as well as murder do not conform to their beliefs and so the fact that these acts are highly prevalent in the books shows that there is no religion involved therein. That notwithstanding, there are a few practices pointed out which show instances of religion such as the baptism of Harry Potter and the mentioned christening of Voldemort. These are practices that only occur in Christianity and so the fact that they are referred point out to the Christian doctrines. Further, there is the mention of Christmas which only commemorates among the Christians to represent the birth of Jesus Christ, a clear sign or religion. It would, therefore, be correct to say that in as much as the books are not substantially inclined towards religion, there are a few mentions which can typically redeem it.

Works cited

Barratt, Bethany. The Politics of Harry Potter. Springer, 2012.

Gierzynski, Anthony, and Kathryn Eddy. Harry Potter and the Millennials: Research methods and the Politics of the Muggle Generation. JHU Press, 2013.

Jenkins, Henry. ““Cultural acupuncture”: Fan activism and the Harry Potter alliance.” Popular media cultures. Palgrave Macmillan UK, 2015. 206-229.

Neal, Connie. What’s a Christian to do with Harry Potter?. WaterBrook, 2012.

Tu, Yanping, and Dilip Soman. “The categorization of time and its impact on task initiation.” Journal of Consumer Research 41.3 (2014): 810-822.

Vezzali, Loris, et al. “The greatest magic of Harry Potter: Reducing prejudice.” Journal of Applied Social Psychology 45.2 (2015): 105-121.

Wagner, Rachel L. “Bewitching the box office: Harry Potter and religious controversy.” Journal of Religion & Film 7.2 (2016): 5.

Zulaika, Joseba. “Drones, witches and other flying objects: the force of fantasy in US counterterrorism.” Critical Studies on Terrorism 5.1 (2012): 51-68.

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