Monday, November 7, 2011

Morality for Muggles by Moshe Rosenberg

Rabbi Moshe Rosenberg has written a wonderful brief discussion of the values gleaned from J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series.  The rabbi seamlessly connects the lessons of Harry Potter and their parallels to the Torah's tradition by citing Biblical, Midrashic and other rabbinical wisdom.

All the different themes like friendship, loyalty, and love (and more!) that manifest themselves through Harry, Ron and Hermione have counterparts in the Jewish Tradition like Moshe Rabbeinu, his brother Aaron and sister Miriam or King David and Yonatan and others!.  Dark characters of Hogwarts are compared to Bilaam and King Shaul (after his jealousy sets in against David) and others in a very simple clear readable fashion.  The rabbi even includes the insights of his students of the S.A.R Academy of Riverdale, NY.

I remember coming away with great satisfaction when I finished the series years ago; I was struck by the series' honest values and true psychological insights.  As Rabbi Rosenberg aptly says, Harry Potter  "fires" one's imagination.  For Jewish Harry Potter fans interested in a springboard for discussion about possible Torah applications to what one gleans from J.K. Rowling's 7 part series, Rabbi Moshe Rosenberg has provided us with good one!

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