Here’s a little something to go with Part I of our series on Symbolism & Spirituality…
In 2013, Westmont College in Southern California hosted an intriguing lecture entitled, “The Baptism of the Imagination.” The topic is the Harry Potter series, and it is given by a Christian who interchanges Alchemy with Christianity.
If you are interested in what relationship develops between Christianity and Alchemy in their syncretism, the YouTube lecture is a thorough introduction (written work here). If you want to see hands-down-proof that Alchemy is the basis of Harry Potter, the speaker has every intention of persuading fans of this fact.
As a teaser, here’s a tidbit I got from the lecture:
Rowling is well acquainted with C.S. Lewis. He gave this explanation of his literary approach (full quote here):
“I thought I saw how stories of this kind could steal past a certain inhibition which had paralysed much of my own religion in childhood. Why did one find it so hard to feel as one was told one ought to feel about God or the sufferings of Christ? … But supposing that by casting all these things into an imaginary world, stripping them of their stained-glass and Sunday School associations, one could make them for the first time appear in their real potency? Could one not thus steal past those watchful dragons? I thought one could.”
While Rowling has never asserted that she seeks to promote Alchemy, the Hogwarts Motto is impressive: