Harry Potter "a Sorcerers tale"
When was the last time you heard of a children's book wanted by every child? Like it or not over the last year the Harry Potter series has stolen our children's hearts and continues to do so. She has sold over 300 million books in this series and is the first author to break the billion dollar threshold.
Harry's Potter first hit the top of the adult hardcover bestseller list in England in less than a year. Currently the first three books in the series still occupy four top slots on the New York Times best-sellers list. With the new book spending 42 weeks on the New York Times Bestseller list. The top three selling books this week are all written by author J.K.Rowling. Amazon.com reported the new book to be the largest pre-order they ever had they sold 313,000 copies before its release.
1. Harry Potter and the prisoner of Azkaban.
2. Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone
3. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
There are numerous books written on Witchcraft and the Occult, but none is more ingeniously packaged to attract the kids like this one. Its been said you can't tell a book by its cover, on this one you can. Notice in the picture he is flying on broomstick.
Harry Potter graced the cover of Time Magazine in September of this year giving him a boost to his already celebrity status. It has now become the in thing to read fiction books on sorcery.
In an Interview with author J. K. Rowling presented by Stories from the Web she was asked, "Any clues about the next book? ""I don't want to give anything away, but I can tell you that the books are getting darker... Harry's going to have quite a bit to deal with as he gets older. Sorry if they get too scary!" The most recent book is the darkest of the series and as promised, they will progress to be darker as they continue.
Harry Potter first achieved success in England, and next in the United States. Rowling had first struggled to have the book printed, she asked for a grant from the Scottish Arts Council. They gave her a grant (of $11,000) to finish the book she was writing.
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone was first published in England as Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. The USA versions name was changed from Harry Potter and the "Philosopher's stone" to " Sorcerer's Stone ", which was the publisher's idea. They certainly were unafraid of any controversy knowing that it would help sell. It has been sold to publishers in eight countries, and has netted a $100,000 advance from Scholastic Books for the American edition. Judy Corman, spokeswoman for U.S. publisher Scholastic Division reports more than 5 million hard copies of the books have been sold in the United States and millions more are in paperback. ( 7 + million altogether which adds up to a whole lot of kids reading) It will be published shortly in Brazil, Holland, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Czechoslovakia, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Japan (35 languages in all).
The book has continued to win major awards in England. It has won the National Book Award, the Smarties Prize, The British Book Awards Children's Book of the Year. In America New York Public Library Best Book of the Year 1998, and Parenting Book of the Year 1998.
Written for mostly the ages of 8 to 13 the adults are reading and enjoying it as well. A total of seven books are planned in the series. Although reported in Variety, Rowlings, is said to be working on seven more installments for the "Harry Potter" series. Guess you can't get enough of a good book. The newest release Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (her fourth in a series of 7) is a huge 752 pages. Quite a feat to read for the age group it is targeted to.
Some have compared it to Alice in wonderland, Peter Pan and other famous children's adventurous book. However the comparison is weak and not as relative considering the content and the underlying message of, power through the Occult is available and good.
The books are well written and has a certain attraction to capture those of young ages to be infatuated with it. This is why so many have said it is good because it is promoting reading to children who normally are not interested. However it is the content of the story that needs to be questioned for the very same reason, as it is targeted to the very young.
*Rowling's new Harry Potter novel, is the fifth in her Potter series is to
be about 900 pages.
Expected sales for "Order of the Phoenix," has topped the bestseller lists of Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.com, for weeks. It is more popular than the most popular novels. Michael Crichton's Prey, which had a first printing of 1.5 million. Last year's publishing sensation, Alice Sebold's The Lovely Bones, had under 2.4 million copies in print.
The author, J.K. Rowling is 34 years old, she lives and writes in Scotland. She is a graduate of Exeter University, and a teacher. She married a journalist, and has a young daughter (now 6), she divorced and moved back to Edinburgh in 1993. Among the things she loves, she states is Halloween. At the time she was writing, she was a single parent and penniless, living on unemployment benefits. She is stunned with the success the books have so quickly brought her. Rowling says the idea for the story came in an unusual way. She was taking a long train journey from Manchester to London in England in 1990 when she was stuck on a delayed train and the idea for Harry just fell into her head. It took her 5 years to write it, but throughout that time period she was planning and writing parts of the six sequels. In an interview she states "Harry as a character came fully formed, as did the idea for his sidekicks, the characters of Ron and Hermione, who is the brains of the threesome," she said. "It started with Harry, then all these characters and situations came flooding into my head. At that point it was essentially the idea for a boy who didn't know he was a wizard, and the wizard school he ended up going to. The author has described herself as "I have a very visual imagination. I see it, then I try to describe what is in my mind's eye." I can't prove this author is involved in the new age in some way, but this certainly sounds like the language. Many musical artists who are occult based have testified of songs just coming into their heads so the source does not seem to be all her.
In the controversy
BBC news Sunday, October 17, 1999 Harry Potter fights back Rowling stated "There are those things in the book because I made a very conscious decision right at the beginning that I was writing about someone evil and I was not going to tell a lie," said J.K. Rowling. "I think they're very moral books. I see children as innately good unless they've been very damaged. That's where I'm coming from." The fact that the parents are portrayed as evil she admits is planned this way in the story. What kind of message does this send? To say she sees "children as innately good unless they've been very damaged " is also revealing in relation to the theme, since Harry's adopted parents are made to be bad and those who practice sorcery as good. What is the most puzzling is that parents read the book and seem to overlook this example and the not so subtle messages it sends.
Harry Potter, an 11-year-old + wizard-in-training, who is competing for the attention of young children next to Poke'mon. The book is so successful that like the Poke'mon movie, it will have its own movie debut in Nov. 2001 after the 4th sequel is released in July 2,000. Rowling just signed a six-figure contract with Warner Brothers in which she will assist in writing the script. The NY post reports Steven Spielberg, Rob Reiner, Chris Columbus, Jonathan Demme and Brad Silberling are all begging Warner Brothers for the chance to direct the film.
Harry is a skinny kid with glasses with a thunder-bolt scar on his forehead who attends Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
Harry became an orphan at age one, by surviving a murderous assault by the evil wizard Lord Voldemort, who killed his parents who were also wizards. Voldemort lost much of his power when he tried unsuccessfully to kill their one year old son. From this Harry inherited a thunderbolt scar on his forehead marking his unusual psychic strength and triumph over evil.
Harry is adopted and for the next ten years in his aunts and uncles home (the Dursleys) in London. But it is a miserable muggle life ("muggles" are mundane, non-magical humans) as he is constantly tormented by his cruel guardians and a spoiled bully of a cousin, his bedroom is a closet under the stairs. In the mundane human world Harry is a nobody, But everything changes on his eleventh birthday. He discovers that he is a wizard of great renown. Harry's discovery of his mysterious powers reminds him that he's altogether different from others.
One day a mysterious letter is delivered by the friendly giant Hagrid "We are pleased to inform you that you have been accepted at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry." Uncle Vernon protests but to no avail as Harry is rescued (or not depending on how you look at it) from the clutches of his nasty aunt and uncle. They are depicted as mean, selfish, unloving everything one would not want their parents to be.
Hogwarts is a desirable boarding school for aspiring wizards (witches and warlocks). Harry attends classes on Potions, Spells, Transformation, Divination etc.. Learning the basic deeds of the old Sorcerers Craft Harry begins to sharpen his innate magical talents. Harry and others learn to know the future as the author accurately describes the functions of divination.
After he enrolls in the wizard school he still required to spend most of his summer vacations with the Dursleys. Who are portrayed as going from denial of his world of wizardry to fear and hatred of both magic and him. This becomes a challenge to Harry's new world.
Those who don't believe in the world of witches, who despise it as evil are cast as blind, and biased. This includes Harrys cruel aunt and uncle and anyone else, that is if you see witchcraft as a danger. This message is sent to the reading child who makes the story personal. Which they do when they are young and impressionable.
Harry's destiny is to rid the evil hidden within the depths of Hogwarts. With his new friends, Hermione, Hedwig (owl), Ron, the giant Hagrid, and the guidance from the Head Wizard Dumbledore, Harry summons his courage and common sense to discover the enemy that is stalking Hogwarts. He finds it is Voldemort the evil wizard who killed his parents. Once discovered Harry and his friends combine their magical talents and they send the evil sorcerer away. They eat jellybeans that come in every flavor, including strawberry, grass, snot, and even sardine. While this is may be seen as imaginative and humorous, it just adds to the negative content of occult themes, with its characters practicing nonsense along with Witchcraft.
Some of the committed Hogwarts fans paint the purple thunderbolt on their foreheads. This mark bonds them to Harry, a student wizard with amazing mystical powers. (as seen in real life with the picture in the USA weekend paper Nov.12,1999)
On the review on www.amazon.com it states "As with its predecessor, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is a highly readable and imaginative adventure story with real, fallible, characters, plenty of humor and, of course, loads of magic and spells.(ages 9+) In this sequel to "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone", Harry keeps hearing strange voices, sinister and dark messages appear on the wall, and then his friend Ron's sister disappears.
This glorifies the world of the occult and has a strange attraction especially for children who are naÔve to its Spell. Most of the mass murderers heard voices that drove them to their crimes.
In Rowling's interview in USA WeekendNov. 12-14,1999 she states, "DON'T CENSOR what children read "says the planets leading kids author, Harry Potter series creator J.K. Rowling.
"I don't think you should censor kids, reading material. It's important just to let them go do what they need to do." Many have branded the Harry Potter books anti-Christian and pro witchcraft and want the schools and libraries to ban them. But she said, "I am not trying to influence anyone into black magic That's the very last thing I'd want to do.
"I'm not so naive that I didn't know or didn't suspect that, at some point, someone was going to say, 'You're writing about the occult! My wizarding world is a world of the imagination. I think its a moral world." "I don't believe in the kind of magic that appears in my books." she confessed. "But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."
Is it a world of imagination as she claims or is it both imagination with reality.
James Bjornstad points out in his article in the Quarterly Journal "She also bias knowledge of some of the famous occultists of the past. An example of this is her reference in her first book to Nicolas Hamel as the partner of Albus Dumbledore, the greatest headmaster of Hogwarts
ever (Hary Potter and the Sorceror's Stone op.cit. pp.102-103,219). Dumbledore is fictional, but
Flamel is not. .. not every other thing in Harry Potter is from the imagination of Rowling. She has had to research or most certainly has been exposed to occultic writings and practices.
Yes something magical is happening, a whole segment of society has now become open to what was formerly forbidden. It is breaking down the walls of protection to something we should not become familiar with. The author admits she is not naÔve and It may not be black magic to her, but black or white, it is all the same power source whether one acknowledges it or not. The idea of censoring is a mute issue since parents censor many things the kids read or see. What she is asking for is the parents to step aside and stop parenting. Especially to stand by and watch a book get promoted in the schools that is teaching religion, witchcraft.
Some are so infatuated with the story have read the books up to 7 times, other call it a waste of a tree. Despite the controversy the influence is now entrenched in the minds and hearts of our children. And while many moms and dads have no idea thinking this is all just a fantasy story, things are not what they use to be when we were young. The world of magic, or better called witchcraft and the occult, is very real and is a religion. And because the books have renewed children's interest in reading this is rationalized as beneficial and is now being advocated in the schools?The reports are that some of the schools in its zeal for reading allow the pupils to 'dress up' like characters in the books. Its hard enough to get a child to read a small size book but this huge book they are wanting to read, this should strike anyone as highly unusual. To read of a child watching his parents die when they are an infant is not an easy task for children. This is what nightmares are made of. To allow the schools to promote a child's deepest fear of losing the parents and facing the unknown is not a smart curriculum. The result is worse, his new wizard friends which has the solution to his problems.
The controversy seems to have become a religious one, and rightly so. It is about values and the way we understand things.
In one online survey the question was asked, Do you think the media responsibly
reported the Harry Potter story?
This book is sold on CBC Online the website of the Children's Book Council. It has been approved by rabbis and other religious sections and is the current fad for making reading more valuable.The Harry Potter series has received praise from teachers, Schools, libraries all approve, well almost all.
Excerpts from an Associated Press Writer Oct. 13, 1999; Columbia, S.C.
Parents have persuaded the state's Board of Education to review whether the books should be allowed in the classroom. "The books have a serious tone of death, hate, lack of respect and sheer evil,"
In Marietta, Ga., elementary school principal recently asked a fifth-grade teacher to stop reading the books in class until the school decided whether they were appropriate. On Tuesday, he cleared one of the books for classroom use.
"It's questionable whether every parent wants their child to read or be exposed to books having to do with magic and wizardry," the principle said.
A handful of parents at a Lakeville, Minn., elementary school also objected, but the principal said it was up to teachers whether to continue reading Potter's tales to their students."
Yes the kids are now wanting to read books and the parents should be glad, right? Not if it's exposing them to something that they are trying to keep them away from. Are there concerns? You bet there are!
For example in Harry Potter and the Secret Chamber, Harry picks up a envelope with a parchment inside that says: kwikspell A Correspondence Course in Beginners' Magic. Madam Z. Nettles of Topsham writes: "I had no memory for incantations and my potions were a family joke! Now, after a Kwikspell course, I am the center of attention at parties and friends beg for the recipe of my Scintillation Solution!" Warlock D. J. Prod of Didsbury says: "My wife used to sneer at my feeble charms, but one month into your fabulous Kwikspell course and I succeeded in turning her into a yak! Thank you, Kwikspell!"
Well it's not toil and trouble and eye of newt, but neither is it the Hardy boys. If this is not promoting witchcraft as acceptable than what is?
We find Harry learns to use his own powers in hurtful ways, hardly a good example for children growing up and the teacher trying to have them behave in the classroom and on the playground.
In the first book Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, he meets a nearly headless Nick (the ghost of Gryffindor Tower) whose head is held on by a sliver of skin. "Stopped in his tracks and Harry walked right through him. He wished he hadn't; it was like stepping through an icy shower. "But there is something you could do for me," said Nick excitedly. "Harry - would I be asking too much - but no, you wouldn't want -" "What is it?" said Harry. "Well, this Halloween will be my five hundredth deathday,"... "Why would anyone want to celebrate the day they died?" said Ron, who was halfway through his Potions homework and grumpy. "Sounds dead depressing to me. . . ."
Sounds depressing to me too, the author has admitted she loves Holloween, so much that she wants it to be read all year round.
"By the time Halloween arrived, Harry was regretting his rash promise to go to the deathday party. The rest of the school was happily anticipating their Halloween feast; the Great Hall had been decorated with the usual live bats, Hagrid's vast pumpkins had been carved into lanterns large enough for three men to sit in, and there were rumors that Dumbledore had booked a troupe of dancing skeletons for the entertainment. "A promise is a promise," Hermione reminded Harry bossily. "You said you'd go to the deathday party." This is not false decorations but represented as real skeletons in the world of Harry Potter.
In an interview on the "Today'' show, Rowlings admitted that there was "evil" in her books, but defended her motives. There are times when Harry uses his discovered powers not for good but to get back (p.29-30 Harry potter and the prisoner of Azkaban).
Then there is the glorification of death in the books.In the Sorcerer's Stone Headmaster Dumbledore the wizard professor says, "To the well organized mind, death is but the next great adventure." (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, J. K. Rowling, 1997,p. 302) This is saying its OK to live or die, if your intelligent you know that the after life can be just as adventurous as this one. And if one has a boring life they just may want to check out for a better one. With all the problems in schools today the last thing I would think that a caring teacher would want is a book that is pro death and amoral. While there are books read in schools about death they do not glorify it or represent it as fun.
"He is with me wherever I go," said Quirrell quietly, referring to Voldmort. "I met him when I traveled around the world. A foolish young man I was then, full of ridiculous ideas about good and evil. Lord Voldemort showed me how wrong I was. There is no good and evil , there is only power, and those too weak to seek it.... Since then, I have served him faithfully.". ( Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, J. K. Rowling, (New York: Scholastic Inc., 1997) p.291)
The muggles, who are ordinary people (the adults) ungifted with the powers of a wizard are the blind, pictured as cruel, mean, narrow and self-indulgent. The wizards and other creatures are the good guys who have wisdom and help Harry. The adults are depicted as strict, controlling, unloving and against the kids. This promotes rebellion to the authority that is supposed to be in the family, it is not family friendly at all.The author does a good job of reassuring the child how safe they are among the children who have the powers. The reader is lead into the time worn battle between good and evil. They are offered to see the good from Harry's pagan world view, not a Biblical perspective.
Many have compared the books with classics like Peter Pan, C.S. Lewis' "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" and J.R.R. Tolkien's "The Hobbit."
We live in a different world today. These books that have explicit descriptions of witchcraft and death. Should they be considered in the same category as the reading of time proven classics as, Charlotte's Web, Little House series, Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson, A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling, Black Beauty by Anne Sewell, Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn by Mark Twain.
So what's wrong with this fantasy? It influences our children to be open to pagan spirituality, this is not just imagination. What we are watching is an all out assault on biblical values and a Christian world view. I'm not going to put the blame on the author for intentionally influencing the children into paganism, since she does deny this as her motive and we have no proof otherwise. But unknowingly she is doing just that. It is a tragic mistake on any parents part to make magic trendy. Actually the word magic is a misnomer, its witchcraft. To open our children to the unknown and forbidden world of sorcery is nothing less than "glorifying and mainstreaming witchcraft" to children. It may be a fun story, great reading, but the occult is very real, and most parents are completely unaware of this. Books such as the Harry Potters are effortlessly fit the new age agenda and occult world view.
When one is introduced to these books they find a fascinating world of Spiritism, Astrology, Palmistry, time-travel and an assortment of occultism. It makes the occult attractive and exciting presenting it as an viable alternative. All the, love, hope, wisdom is offered to those who follow the occult. Don't think that your child could not become fascinated or influenced to become a sorcerer by reading these books. The attraction as in all the Occult is being special and having power. The fact is that reading this book or others like it are not to be chalked up to just the imagination. The concepts and stories are making familiar to the children a very real world that we are not to have anything to do with. Parents, what would you do if someone did invite your child to a very real sorcerers meeting, after all you approved of the book. In the real Witchcraft belief they practice spells, chants and other rituals used in worshiping the Goddess. The word "witch" is a derived from the Old English noun "Wicca" which means (sorcerer) and a "Wiccan" is one who (casts a spells). This religion is active and very much a part of the modern world landscape. In the United States, the church of Wicca has IRS non profit status to practice their religion. Wicca is a religion, not make believe.
The Concise Columbia Encyclopedia says witchcraft is exercise of supernatural powers through occult arts such as MAGIC, sorcery, and Satanism. Its origins are in the belief in separate powers of good and evil in ancient pagan cults and in religions. Grolier Encyclopedia- defines magic as "The use of a certain ritual action to bring about the intervention of a supernatural force, either in human affairs or in the natural environment, In casting spells, the appropriate use of words is sufficient to release or activate a power." Encarta Encyclopedia states that Magic (sorcery), is the art of attaining objectives, acquiring knowledge, or performing works of wonder through supernatural or non rational means. Techniques used in magic typically include chants and spells, gestures or actions that often have a symbolic relation to the desired result .
Michael Thorn writes: "Modern Witchcraft (or Wicca) is the most common expression of the religious movement known as Neo-paganism.... Wiccan's focus their liturgy and worship around a Goddess and a God. Rituals and services are timed to the phases of the moon and to the Wheel of the Year (i.e., the solstices, equinoxes, and the days falling midway between these such as May Day and Halloween). Most witches treat their practice as a priesthood, somewhat akin to the mystery cults of classical Greece and Rome, involving years of training and passage through life transforming initiatory rituals."
The Wiccan creed is 'If it harm none, do what ye will'. In other words, In other words do what you feel is right, but let no one be harmed by your actions. However this is open for interpretation since what they think is not harmful may very well be.
Here's a quote from a witch "In Witchcraft, we do not fight self-interest; we follow it." (Starhawk, Founder of the Covenant of the Goddess)
This list is off a witchcraft website that explains what they do and do
not believe and practice. Witches Do use spells. A "spell" is a thought
projection used to produce a desired result. Witches Do use magic wands. Magic wands are
much like "divining rods", and are used for the purpose of directing energy.
Witches Do use the natural psychic ability that all human beings possess. Witches use
these abilities to heal, and to improve their surroundings. Witches Do use witchcraft as a
science, art, and religion, and use their knowledge and abilities in harmony with the
Universe and Nature around them. As a science they use their psychic abilities, as a
religion by personifying Nature as a Goddess and God, and as an art by using magic to
The author of Harry Potter seems to have a basic knowledge of the craft and other occult concepts, there are too many resemblance's so it hard for me to accept it to be just a story that came to her on a train.
Most Wiccan traditions value a Book of Shadows. These books are rarely seen to non-initiates. Most Books of Shadows include instructions for the circle casting and banishing; religious rituals; laws; organizational laws for the coven; ceremonies; magickal rites; prayers, and other essential parts. Books like these guide and maintain Wiccan religion.
Many of the web sites for Harry Potter have games and puzzles to test ones knowledge of the story. They are all around the theme of the craft with spells and charms put in creative word games although some may be innocuous, the terms that appear desensitizes a child to be unafraid of participating in real spells in witchcraft. All this reaffirms the teachings of the occult given in the books. Just as the magazine of Harry Potter featured Sabrina the teenage witch, it is all made to look fun and interesting. The more the child is attracted to this it brings the child further down the road.
God spoke to Israel not to practice their spirituality as the pagan nations, and neither should we. Deuteronomy 18:10-13 "When you come into the land which the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not learn to follow the abominations of those nations. "There shall not be found among you anyone w ho makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses ,divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, ( one who casts a spell, )or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead (Necromancer). For whoever does these things an abomination to the Lord." These (and more) are all the things practiced by Harry Potter in the books, contacting the dead, sťances. No Christian (or non Christian) should ignore the possible influences of this book that positively promotes the occult when God has forbidden this. No one can deny that after reading these books they are not more open to accepting occult ideas. They make it look fun, I can only wonder why Christian parents would ignore the actual content and promote the book because of its quality of writing.
[A sorcerer-- A person who is knowledgeable in the occult arts, a conjurer, to summon up a devil of a spirit by invocation or spell. to produce by magic to bring to mind as if by magic. books of occult knowledge: handbook or witches and spells .
A Witch - Is someone who uses Magic Wizardry, Sorcery and the occult]
Ps. 34:14: "Depart from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it."
II King 21:6: " he made his son pass through the fire, practiced soothsaying, used witchcraft, and consulted spiritist's and mediums." The Lord called this evil in his sight.
While there have been books written on witchcraft and sorcery, if they involve a hero who uses these powers one needs to question the influence it can have on a young child who is very impressionable.
If people want to read these books on their own, they have the freedom to do so. Contrary to rumors, most Christians are not promoting burning the books or the people who practice occultism. It is not a matter of intolerance but of being aware. If someone is mature and knows better reading a book like this may not affect them in the least. Its obvious that a book like this may not affect and adult as it would a impressionable child. But children are different, and parents should be watching over their children. Parents should heed the forewarning of opening their child to the occult. Many people testify that this is the very way they got involved in the occult. It may not have repercussions immediately but eventually it does. How do I know this? Been there, done that! It all starts by playing a game or reading a book. I guess I'm just a muggle, but I'd rather not see this being promoted in any secular schools and especially Christian. Let the reader beware.
For those who still take the position that children are immune to influences that they read please go to this website to hear what children are saying.
for the 2nd in the series on Harry Potter