Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Harry Potter and the Quaker Quote

No spoilers I promise (oh and Lucy I've finished it now!) not even oblique references like Kate put in her post...

As you open Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows you come across a couple of quotes - one of which has meant a lot to me for many years. Here is a longer extract of the text as found in Britain Yearly Meeting's book of Quaker Faith & Practice, thought some of you Potter fans who aren't so well acquainted with William Penn might appreciate it...

The truest end of life, is to know the life that never ends. He that makes this his care, will find it his crown at last. And he that lives to live ever, never fears dying: nor can the means be terrible to him that heartily believes the end.
For though death be a dark passage, it leads to immortality, and that's recompense enough for suffering of it. And yet faith lights us, even through the grave, being the evidence of things not seen.
And this is the comfort of the good, that the grave cannot hold them, and that they live as soon as they die. For death is no more than a turning of us over from time to eternity. Death, then, being the way and condition of life, we cannot love to live, if we cannot bear to die.
They that love beyond the world cannot be separated by it. Death cannot kill what never dies. Nor can spirits ever be divided that love and live in the same Divine Principle, the root and record of their friendship. If absence be not death, neither is theirs.
Death is but crossing the world, as friends do the seas; they live in one another still. For they must needs be present, that love and live in that which is omnipresent. In this divine glass, they see face to face; and their converse is free, as well as pure.
This is the comfort of friends, that though they may be said to die, yet their friendship and society are, in the best sense, ever present, because immortal
William Penn, 1693

(the text in bold is that quoted in HPVII)

What I will say (and no this won't spoil it for anyone) is that Dumbledore's insistance in earlier books that love is stronger than anything else comes through even more strongly in this one which has prompted many thoughts. But right now they are whirling around as if in a penseive (and yes Mum I have spelt that right, you really are going to have to read them you know!) but they haven't quite got themselves in enough order to make sense for a blogpost. But needless to say this has decided to float around along with it all - WGYFers and ANZYFs will probably recognise it better than most =)

No comments: