Liberal Arts Blog — J.K. Rowling (1965 — ) Do any Harry Potter Quotes Echo In Your Mind?

John Muresianu
5 min readJun 11, 2024

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Liberal Arts Blog — Tuesday is the Joy of Literature, Language, Religion, and Culture Day

Today’s Topic: J.K. Rowling (1965 — ) Do any Harry Potter quotes echo in your mind?

For me, there is one spoken by Albus Dumbledore, the headmaster of Hogwarts.

The subject is how to think about death.

“To one as young as you, I’m sure it seems incredible, but to Nicolas and Perenelle, it really is like going to bed after a very, very, long day. After all, to the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure.”

So, how about you? a favorite quote or two?

This morning I decided to poke around and make a collection. Perhaps not surprisingly, they are all from Albus Dumbledore,

Looking back, do you feel that the Harry Potter series is over-rated or under-rated? Do you re-read them on occasion?

Experts — please chime in. Correct, elaborate, elucidate.

FRIENDS AND ENEMIES, CHOICES NOT ABILITIES, INFERIORS NOT EQUALS (below Richard Harris as Dumbledore in the first two Harry Potter films)

1. “It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.”

2. “It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.”

3. “If you want to know what a man’s like, take a look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals.”

THE TRUTH, LIES, FORGIVENESS (Michael Gambon played Dumbledore in the next six films)

1. “The truth…is a beautiful and terrible thing and should therefore be treated with extreme caution.”

2. “It is my belief that the truth is generally preferable to lies.”

3. “People find it easier to forgive others for being wrong than being right.”

OUR HEARTS, BIRTH, WORDS (the first of the Harry Potter series was “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone”)

1. “While we may come from different places and speak in different tongues, our hearts beat as one.”

2. “It matters not what someone is born, but what they grow up to be.”

3. “Words are, in my not so humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic. Both capable of inflicting incredible injury, or remedying it.”

BACKGROUND — in case you’ve been asleep for the last 30 years

1. Over 600 million copies of Harry Potter books have been sold. They have been translated into 84 languages. This would make the book series the best selling in history. But with respect to individual books, The Philosopher’s Stone, is only the fourth best seller ever — beat by Charles Dickens, “Tale of Two Cities,” Antoine de St. Exupery’s “Little Prince,” and Paul Coelho’s “The Alchemist.”

2. “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” was rejected by 12 publishers before being accepted by Bloomsbury Publishing in June 1997.

3. Her parents met on a train when they were both serving in the British Navy.

Neither attended university. JK graduated from the University of Exeter with a degree in French. She had a “short and catastrophic” marriage to a Portuguese journalist, Jorge Arantes (1992–1995) with whom she had one child (Jessica). In 2001, she married Scottish physician Neil Murray with whom she has a son (David) and daughter (Mackenzie).

NB: “Seven years after graduating from university she saw herself as a failure….Rowling said that writing the first Harry Potter book had saved her life….”

J.K. Rowling Quotes (Author of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone)

J. K. Rowling — Wikipedia

Albus Dumbledore — Wikipedia

List of best-selling books — Wikipedia

Richard Harris — Wikipedia

Michael Gambon — Wikipedia

QUOTE OF THE MONTH

“Make your own Bible. Select and collect all the words and sentences that in all your readings have been to you like the blast of a trumpet.”

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

My spin — then periodically review, re-rank, and exchange your list with those you love. I call this the “Orion Exchange” because seven is about as many as any human can digest at a time. Game?

ATTACHMENTS BELOW:

#1 A graphic guide to justice (9 metaphors on one page).

#2 “39 Songs, Prayers, and Poems: the Keys to the Hearts of Seven Billion People” — Adams House Senior Common Room Presentation, (11/17/20)

#3 Israel-Palestine Handout

NB: Palestine Orion (Decision) — let’s exchange Orions, let’s find Rumi’s field (“Beyond all ideas of right and wrong, there is a field. Meet me there” Rumi, 13 century Persian Sufi mystic)

THE LAST FOUR YEARS OF POSTS ORGANIZED THEMATICALLY INTO FOURTEEN BOOK-LENGTH PDFS:

PDF with headlines — Google Drive

YOUR TURN

Please share the coolest thing you learned this week related to words, language, literature, religion, culture.

Or, even better, the coolest or most important thing you learned in your life related to Words, Language, Literature (eg. quotes, poetry, vocabulary) that you have not yet shared.

This is your chance to make someone else’s day. Or to cement in your own mind something that you might otherwise forget. Or to think more deeply than otherwise about something dear to your heart. Continuity is key to depth of thought.

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John Muresianu

Passionate about education, thinking citizenship, art, and passing bits on of wisdom of a long lifetime.