The grand opening of Universal Orlando’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter is June 18, riding on the heels of Michael D. O’Brien’s newest book, Harry Potter and the Paganization of Culture.
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter promises fans the pleasures of traipsing through Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, shopping in beloved Hogsmeade, having a Butterbeer at Three Broomsticks tavern, and connecting with a wand at Ollivanders.
O’Brien’s book promises to frighten the superstitious, tantalizing them with the dangers of allowing children to fantasize about magic, dragons, and witchcraft. Satan and his demonic minions are very real to O’Brien, and they are at the ready to fill the hole left in the hearts of children somehow created when they use thier imaginations and enjoy reading.
The preface to Harry Potter and the Paganization of Culture is not unlike a fantasy story, but this one is in the horror genre. In O’Brien’s mind, he was an unwilling servant of the Lord, not unlike Moses or Jesus–chosen by God to read and report on the Harry Potter series of books.
And so, as Moses led God’s people out of Egypt and as Jesus sacrificed himself for your sins, Michael D. O’Brien risked his faith to save your children from the evils of Harry Potter, boy wizard. (Or at least he saves you the trouble of reading the books yourself and making up your own mind.)
As expected, as O’Brien read the books he felt what he knew from experience to be the presence of evil spirits in what he calls a spiritual nausea or disgust.
“…I can say that I approached the series with no strong emotional bias, no irrational fear. However, from the day I opened the first page and began to read, a cloud of darkness and dread descended, which was held at bay only by increased prayer.”
Those must be powerful demons.
Lest you think the author suffers from an overactive imagination, know that O’Brien claims the “imagination is a screen onto which the evil spirits can ‘project’ images, temptations presented as stimulating entertainments, offering us pleasurable rewards if we give in to the temptation.”
Yes, that pesky pleasurable reward of immersing ourselves in a wonderful story.
The last thing O’Brien wants you to do is take your children to Universal Orlando this summer. Unfortunately, the lack of fundamentalist, demon-fearing Christians in the park will do nothing to alleviate the crowd.