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"spirit and art and ecstacy"

In Harry Potter news, I find myself returning to J.K. Rowling's admission that the late Gideon and Fabian Prewett were Molly Weasley's brothers. I realize that this fact is not crucial to the overarching plot of the series, but it does indeed affect the way I understand Molly Weasley, her relationships, and the Order of the Phoenix as a group. The revelation is unexpectedly poignant.

And now, a quote for the day:

"Every man has forgotten who he is. One may understand the cosmos, but never the ego; the self more distant than any star. Thou shalt love the Lord thy God; but thou shalt not know thyself. We are all under the same mental calamity; we have all forgotten our names. We have all forgotten what we really are. All that we call common sense and rationality and practicality and positivism only means that for certain dead levels of our life we forget that we have forgotten. All that we call spirit and art and ecstacy only means that for one awful instant we remember that we forget."

from G.K. Chesterton, "The Ethics of Elfland," in Orthodoxy


( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 7th, 2005 10:55 am (UTC)
Like the quote. So very true.
Apr. 7th, 2005 02:07 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello
I feel the same way. I'm so glad you like it, too!
Apr. 7th, 2005 11:21 am (UTC)
That quote just got copied into my favorite quote file! Guess I had better go find the book! :) Thanks, EH!

I missed that about the Prewetts and Molly Weasley! It certainly does give us some insight into Lady Weasley!
Apr. 7th, 2005 02:07 pm (UTC)
Yea! :) So glad you liked it. I could quote the whole text, really; it's that good. It's available online here.

Isn't that insight into Molly Weasley interesting? I keep thinking about how much it explains about her behavior -- and her boggart scene in Order of the Phoenix. To me it also makes the attack Arthur endures all the more powerful, as well.
Apr. 7th, 2005 01:47 pm (UTC)
Ooh, I have to go and read that now.
Apr. 7th, 2005 02:04 pm (UTC)
Yea! :) It's available online here. It's such a brilliant essay.
Apr. 7th, 2005 09:52 pm (UTC)
She may be Queen of California, but I am King of the Rain!
^^^Counting Crows being my favourite band ;)

I didn't know about Molly's brothers. It certainly does help explain why Molly is so over-protective, yet such a loyal supporter of the Order. (I am so excited about the next book- I'm going to queue up again at midnight on June 16th with the 2000 other nutters in wizard robes!)
Apr. 9th, 2005 12:05 am (UTC)
I know just what you mean about the information of Molly's brothers. It puts her behaviour and attitudes in a greater context. She has been here before, not just in resisting Voldemort but in being one of his victims. And yet she is once again surrounded by people who are in the same position. She has even more family at stake.

It makes me think of that old photo Moody showed Harry, of the first Order. In each book we are given more information and understanding about the past (as it is to Harry) which changes our view of people and events, none more so than OotP. It's that book where Harry begins to see the vulnerabilities and feelings of his elders - like Molly unable to defeat the Boggart because of her fears for her family. Knowing of her past experience with her brothers gives that much greater meaning.

That was a bit of a ramble. :) And the quote is marvellous!
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )