Friday, July 20, 2007

DVAR TORAH S2: Devarim (Actually about Harry Potter)

A blanket disclaimer of lehavdil between Judaism and Harry Potter lest I be suspected of blasphemy.

This week's Torah Portion is Devarim. "Devarim" and "Kedavra" (In "Avada Kedavra") come from the same root in Hebrew and Aramaic respectively. The sabbath before Tisha B'Av, it is also Shabbat Chazon, the Sabbath of the Vision. Harry Potter has been having visions. That having been said, let's proceed into nonsense.

I find many insane parallels between Judaism and Harry Potter. In the middle three books of the Torah we have our own trio: Moses, Aaron, and Miriam.

As the only male infant to survive the genocide wrought by the Pharaoh, Moses was The Boy Who Lived. Pharaoh marked him as his equal when he became a Prince of Egypt. Pharaoh (Voldemort) faced a power that he knew not, the Power of God ("I know not your God, nor will I let your people go"). Moses also was known as The Chosen One, he who would lead the Jews out of bondage. Moses and Harry can both control snakes, but find out that their enemies (Pharaoh/Voldemort) also can control snakes.

AaRON was of a line of purebloods. That's all I got, but notice that Ron's name is in Aaron's... (see how ridiculous of a Dvar Torah this is shaping up to be...)

HerMiriam (Victor Krum might have pronounced it that way...) is the wise one. Known in the Bible as an Isha Nevona, a woman of great wisdom and Neviah, prophetess. Though she is wise, she also speaks the uncomfortable Truth and gets in trouble for it, such as when she points out that Moses' wife is a Kushite (possibly noting that elsewhere in the Torah it is forbidden to marry a Midianite), while Hermione is constantly pointing out that Harry and Ron are breaking the rules...

There are many occasions when Moses is not believed by his own people, as is Harry. It so frequently happens that society rebels against Moses and God and (noting the blanket l'havdil) Harry and Dumbledore, yet in the end they do believe them.

In this week's Torah portion, Moses asks "How can I do this alone?" Such a burden he has to shoulder, his brother and sister now gone. All of Harry's earthly guides and advisors are also gone. His parents, his godfather, and his teacher are all dead and the final duel might have to be alone. Harry, like Moses, leaves his relationship to keep her out of danger and to focus on the massive task ahead (According to Midrash, Moses wanted to be so close to God that he stopped seeing his wife, something which was not considered a wise move).

And as for the Haftarah, the Temple and Jerusalem were destroyed through hate and injustice but will be redeemed through love, justice, and righteousness. Maybe love will destroy evil as has been hinted in Harry Potter.

2 comments:

Abigail said...

Avada Kedavra totally means "Destroyed by the word." I love that. Okay, not the killing part.

Rube Vogel said...

You missed the most glaring hint.

A centerpiece of all the books is the contest to posess the quidditch (aka kiddush) cup.