What Really Happened to Dolores Umbridge (and Why It Matters)

The Friendly Atheist has already pointed out religious people are geeks. This must mean Pagans are uber-geeks, because we can seamlessly slide from theology into Monty Python and back again. Which is why when my friend Anita posted a simple question about Harry Potter we delved deeply into religion, gender issues and all things Harry Potter. Like we do.Here's her question, paraphrased: in the Order of the Phoenix Dolores Umbridge is carried off into the woods by centaurs after she insults … [Read more...]

Harry Potter/Book of Mormon Parody

I've been trying to write about Deathly Hallows 2 but it was far more emotional than I expected. Just ain't happening today.So enjoy this Harry Potter parody of the Book of Mormon smash Broadway play:And here's the original song: … [Read more...]

Never Again New: The Bittersweetness of Deathly Hallows

There will be no book eight. There will be no more movies. Daniel Radcliffe will never don those silly specs again.Sad, isn't it? I'm not ready to let go. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows still sits on my bookshelf unread. As long as I don't read it, they don't die, right? It doesn't end?I'm told it ends well. I'm told my questions are answered. I'm told the epilogue is crap but that I'll get over it.But I don't want to get over it. How about you? … [Read more...]

Harry Potter: Making Fantasy Cool Again

As a girl growing up in the 80's I was in fantasy genre heaven: She-Ra: Princess of Power, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, Willow, The Never Ending Story, Red Sonja, The Princess Bride, Conan, Excalibur, Clash of the Titans, The Beastmaster, Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal among many others. Waging epic battle against the tyranny of the annoying, younger brother was easy with such cunning, brave and resourceful role models.Then in the 90's we had....... Dragonheart and Ever After. Xena … [Read more...]

Wyrd Designs – Why you should be a member of S.P.E.W.

Despite the unfortunate acronym that Hermione’s Society for the Promotion of Elfish Welfare (S.P.E.W.) may possess, in the relationships of people to the house-elves in the Harry Potter Universe we can see examples of HOW TO and HOW NOT TO interact with the wights. … [Read more...]

Kathy Nance on the Ouiet Heroism of Snape

The Harry Potter books and movies have been so successful precisely because they transcend religion.By drawing upon universal themes and archetypes, J.K. Rowling was able to create a world and a story that could be enjoyed regardless of a reader's religious point of view. It's the world of the folk tale, populated by characters we've all seen in the Brothers Grimm, Hans Christian Anderson, the Child Ballads. Harry, the orphan foundling. Lily Potter, the mother who sacrifices her own life to … [Read more...]

Harry Potter and Paganism

On our Facebook page we've been talking about Harry Potter and religion as the latest movie debuts this Friday. The discussion has been interesting because the Evangelical writers have a totally different perspective on Harry than I do. I don't see it as a story of compassion, sacrifice and love, although those are certainly elements. I see it as a Greek saga full of honor, integrity, courage, independence and the warrior virtues. I see more of the Nine Noble Virtues in Harry than I see the … [Read more...]