On Faith after Witch-hunts

Po 11 ledna 2021

(my comments on “Doesn't it make sense for wizards to be Christian? A Historical Perspective” by u/PhantomKeeperQazs)

Of course, all Europeans almost without an exceptions were Christians well into the 19th century. It was traditionally unacceptable (or perhaps only unfashionable) not to be Christian in Europe well into the early 20th century, and in US until recently. (Let’s put aside in this generalization the issue of Jews, Muslims, and followers of other religions, this is mostly about Christianity v. nones). Wicca really started in public sometime after the Second World War.

Even if we are most favourable towards nones, we can imagine that after the witch-hunts most wizards and witches truly rejected their faith (which is hard to imagine, people don’t do that … see for comparison most Communists who kept their faith even during the Stalinist purges, often even those were unjustly persecuted themselves).

However, it is necessary to understand that even if the magical world was completely unbelieving, it was still functioning in the middle of mostly religious Muggle world (see the recapitulation above). Not only magicals could turn back to the faith from Muggle sources, but also all people coming to the magical world from the Muggle one (muggleborns and spouses of magical partners) were as matter of course Christians and they were bringing their faith back to the magical world. I could imagine that at least some of them managed to convert their families to the faith.

So, my head-canon of the religion in the magical world is combination of mostly agnostic apathetic majority (what we see in JKR books, where the religion is never even mentioned), but there are some families which are strongly Christian (the similar fighting spirit we can see in Christians who are living for long time in the hostile environment, e.g., Catholics in France). It is something very similar to what’s the current situation in UK: people are perhaps nominally CoE, but there are just few of take it seriously.

(update 2024-01-06)

Somebody noticed that most of the so called pagan religion is a product of the Romantic/Victorian raving and the so called The Old Wizarding ways (spread all over the fandom) could be very well created by Dumbledore and Grindelwald as a tool for subjugating masses. An absolutely awesome assumption.

Category: literature Tagged: review harryPotter blogComment HPreligion

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