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The Harry Potter fascination continues in Western countries. The books continue to sell by the million and the second in the series, 'Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets', has now been made into a film. What is the source of this obsession, which is centred in the West and remains so incomprehensible outside Western culture? After all, is all this not just another fairy-tale, albeit an updated and technically sophisticated one, another Snow White or Wizard of Oz, with its witches, sorcerers, magic spells and potions?

Unlike some fairy-tales, it has to be said that the Harry Potter tales do have a certain symbolism and even epic quality. No element in them is more symbolic than the 'School for Magic', 'Hogwarts', where the battles between good and evil take place. Behind the Gothic facades of the Oxbridge College and the Victorian Public-School, J.K. Rowling's Hogwarts in fact resembles more a medieval cloister with its scholastic interest in alchemy and the occult. This medieval School is attached to the banal, everyday modern world by a mysterious railway station portal which leads to an old-fashioned steam train, 'Hogwarts Express'. What is the symbolism here?

It is only when we discover that Hogwarts has existed for 1,000 years that we begin to understand the history behind Rowling's imagination. The School for Magic, Hogwarts, is the symbol of Western European culture and its narcissistic self-absorption in the 'magic' of its technology. This is the culture, society and technology which came into existence some 1,000 years ago with the West's falling away from the First Millennium of the Orthodox Christian Church of the early Christians. That falling away meant the substitution of Orthodoxy by a demonic illusion, the ideology which asserts that man has no need of God and so can replace Him.

Everything in the modern West began its evolutionary course 1,000 years ago with that falling away from the Church. Then began the introduction of denominations, the university replacing the monastery, philosophy replacing theology, human scholastic speculation replacing the interior knowledge of God, man replacing God, creation replacing the Creator, pagan rational logic replacing the Love of Christ, in a word, then began humanism. True, it has taken 1,000 years to arrive at the modern unGodded and Cross-less universe of Hogwarts, but the eleventh-century roots of every evil in the modern world are there for all to see.

Medieval Hogwarts is the ideological centre and origin of the modern world. Although the non-magic 'muggles' of the modern world may not be able to understand how their spiritually empty, contemporary, materialist culture came into being in the post-Orthodox Western European world of 1,000 years ago, the portal is there for us to discover. Once we have arrived, we see that 'Hogwarts' is a world of relative good and evil, the world of the ideological Western elite.

Although Harry Potter stands for good there, the only good he can do does not come from the Source of All Good, from the Holy Trinity, but from the all too human trinity of the three friends, Harry, Ron and Hermione. Hogwarts is trapped in the human world, full of relative values, in a moral vaccuum, where Christ, the Cross and the Resurrection and all other absolute values are utterly absent and unknown. It is a world where people are caught up in death, it is a world of unquiet spirits, haunted by ghosts, which is constantly under attack from the evil Lord who wills death, Voldemort.

Whatever the good done by Harry Potter in the stories, Hogwarts will remain an unredeemed battle-ground subject to the evil one, because it does not know of the Church, for it was founded in the Western separation from the Church 1,000 years ago. Hogwarts reflects not only the unredeemed imagination of its creator J.K. Rowling, but also the unredeemed nature of Western culture, society and technology, since its fatal separation from the Church of Christ 1,000 years ago. Its sole hope of survival is that the Western fascination with Hogwarts and the magic of human technology and all the cultural ignorance and prejudice towards Orthodox Christianity which it represents, will one day cease.

It is only when the West ceases to admire and justify itself and its living in error, and humbly confesses all its mistakes of 1,000 years, that it will understand. Only then, like a child, will it be able to return to the Mother-Church and its Orthodox Christian Church roots. Beyond and before Hogwarts, there is another world, the world of Christ, of authentic Christianity which has conquered Death and its Satanic master. But the West does not see this because it is dazzled by the Christless wizardry of its new technology.

However, new technology always condemns itself because, inevitably, whatever the intentions of its creators, its every new invention comes to be used by the wicked to do evil. Beyond and before its wizardry and magic, there is another technology, a far greater technology. This other technology teaches us how not to be wicked, therefore teaching us the correct, 'non-magic' use of all new technology. This other technology is the art of arts and the science of sciences, it is the divine technology of prayer to Christ. This alone can save the Western world from its present suicidal course, bringing it back to its senses by bringing it back to the sacramental grace of Christ in His Church.

Entrapped Western world, the world beyond and before Hogwarts awaits you. It is your redemption and your salvation. All you have to do is to want it, and it will be yours.

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