A few weeks ago I decided to start re-reading Harry Potter. I don’t have a lot of down time lately, but I wanted to use the time I had to immerse myself in the world of Harry Potter once again. It has always served as such a safety net in my life…it is a joyful guarantee. While I’m in that world, I’m happy. I’m relaxed. I started the series in 1999 during one of the most stressful times in my life, and it has served as my refuge many times in the almost two decades since.
So it’s natural I’d choose to re-read them again at this time, when I’m struggling to find the light some days.
On Friday, Hank Green referenced a podcast on Twitter called “Harry Potter and the Sacred Text” and I downloaded the first episode immediately, just from the title. In the first episode they mention how they’re going to go chapter by chapter to analyze the book as though it is sacred. This allows for trust and reverence and they mention how there are so many people like me…people who turn to the books during the dark times. And really, isn’t that what a sacred text is?
And y’all? This podcast is just shaking my world and I just HAD to share it with you. It reminds me of when I used to pour over the bible for guidance and inspiration. Or when I would read authors like Max Lucado. And why it never occurred to me that I could find true spiritual guidance in my favorite books is BEYOND ME. I think because my brain says: FICTION. But there are a lot of stories in the bible that are not necessarily viewed as exactly true, even to a Christian. Yet Christians use them as teachers, why didn’t I realize I could do the same with my favorite books? That I could read it with themes in my heart…or deliberately look for guidance in the words…or offer blessings to the characters…NONE of this ever occurred to me.
I can’t binge listen to this one because I am reading along with it so that I can read the chapters with the theme they suggest in mind, but I’m about a third of the way through the first book and this morning I was just looking at the cloudy sky walking the dog and listening to the hosts talking about Molly Weasley and her capacity for love and I thought of all of you.
I got so many emails and messages of love and support last week and I printed them up (without the names! I promise!) to put in my bullet journal to remind me of the support I have in the world. And I thought of all of you this morning while I reflected on Molly Weasley. I thought of how all of you all have nuclear families or corporeal friends you are committed to in your “real” worlds, yet you found time and energy to reach out to me and send love. Just like a frazzled Molly when she was sending the boys through platform 9 3/4 and wrangling an upset Ginny, she still found a breath and a sincere moment to help Harry before she even knew who he was.
So I’m taking my sacred text of Harry Potter this morning and using it as guidance to tell you all: Thank you. Thank you for finding love to share with me amidst the chaos of your lives. If you are a deep fan of Harry Potter, feel free to join me in re-reading the books along with this podcast. It’s truly amazing. But if you’re not? Just know I thought of you when I reflected on one of the most loving characters I’ve ever read about in fiction: Molly Weasley. And be honored I thought of you in connection with her because her capacity of love is other-worldly.