The Wonder in Astronomy

“There, totally immersed in a bath of pure ethereal colour and of unrelenting though unwounding brightness, stretched his full length and with eyes half closed in the strange chariot that bore them, faintly quivering, through depth after depth of tranquility far above the reach of night, he felt his body and mind daily rubbed and scoured and filled with new vitality. Weston, in one of his brief, reluctant answers, admitted a scientific basis for these sensations: they were receiving, he said, many rays that never penetrated the terrestrial atmosphere.

But Ransom, as time wore on, became aware of another and more spiritual cause for his progressive lightening and exultation of heart. A nightmare, long engendered in the modern mind by the mythology that follows in the wake of science, was falling off him. He had read of ‘Space’: at the back of his thinking for years had lurked the dismal fancy of the black, cold vacuity, the utter deadness, which was supposed to separate the worlds. He had not known how much it affected him till now-now that the very name ‘Space’ seemed a blasphemous libel for this empyrean ocean of radiance in which they swam. He could not call it ‘dead’; he felt life pouring into him from it every moment. How indeed could it be otherwise, since out of this ocean the worlds and all their life had come? He had thought it barren: he saw now that it was the womb of worlds, whose blazing and innumerable offspring looked down nightly even upon the earth with so many eyes-and here, with how many more!”


C.S. Lewis “Out of the Silent Planet”




Laughter: The Cure for Fear

“The charm that repels a boggart is simple, yet it requires force of mind. You see, the thing that really finishes a boggart is laughter. What you need to do is force it to assume a shape that you find amusing.”

J.K. Rowling “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban”

The Power of a Horcrux

‘If I say it myself, Harry, I’ve always been able to charm the people I needed. So Ginny poured out her soul to me, and her soul happened to be exactly what I wanted….I grew stronger and stronger on a diet of her deepest fears, her darkest secrets.’


J.K. Rowling “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets”



Identity Crisis

Could he be a descendant of Salazar Slytherin? He didn’t know anything about his father’s family, after all. The Dursleys had always forbidden questions about his wizarding relatives……

‘But I’m in Gryffindor,’ Harry thought. ‘The Sorting Hat wouldn’t have put me in here if I had Slytherin blood….’

‘Ah,’ said a nasty voice in his brain, ‘but the Sorting Hat wanted to put you in Slytherin, don’t you remember?’


J.K Rowling “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets”




Expectations Sometimes Disappoint

[Ron] ‘Mudblood’s a really foul name for someone who is Muggle-born-you know, non-magic parents. There are some wizards-like Malfoy’s family-who think they’re better than everyone else because they’re what people call pure-blood.’…….I mean, the rest of us know it doesn’t make any difference at all. Look at Neville Longbottom-he’s pure-blood and he can hardly stand a cauldron the right way up.’


J.K. Rowling “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets”


A Snob for Every Age

“‘Me,’ he said, pointing at it [winking portrait] and winking as well. ‘Gilderoy Lockhart, Order of Merlin, Third Class, Honorary Member of the Dark Force Defense League, and five time winner of Witch Weekly’s Most-Charming-Smile Award-but I don’t talk about that. I didn’t get rid of the Bandon Banshee by smiling at her!'”


J.K. Rowling “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets”