Abanes Responds To Potter

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Richard Abanes

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May 18, 2001, 7:15:19 AM5/18/01
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Dear rec.arts.sf.fandom,


This post is in response to Steven Poole's April 28, 2001 review of my book
"HARRY POTTER AND THE BIBLE" that appeared in The Guardian, online at
http://books.guardian.co.uk/reviews/roundupstory/0,6121,479420,00.html.

Poole completely represented my book's contents, apparently intentionally,
since he claims to have read it, and yet at the same time declared it to
contain things that appear nowhere in it. I submit the following:

____________________________________
POOLE: More fundamentalism:
TRUTH: I am not a fundamentalist. I am an evangelical. Big difference.

POOLE: Abanes has clambered aboard the "Harry Potter teaches our kids
Satanism" bandwagon . .
TRUTH: I go to great lengths to clearly show that the Harry Potter series
does NOT contain anything satanic, but rather, it contains obvious
references and depictions of occult practices (e.g., mediumship, divination,
astrology, numerology, etc.). I make clear distinctions between occultism,
Wicca, paganism, and Satanism. Poole should have read more slowly.


POOLE: The problem is that Abanes wants all children's literature to
proselytise for the "right" Biblical values.
TRUTH: The theme of my book is to make a comparison between the Potter books
and the Bible, to show where the two do NOT match up. Hence, the book is
indeed written primarily for Christians.The so-called "right" biblical
values I discuss are honesty, integrity, truthfulness, forgiveness,
kindness, temperence, etc. Is Poole saying that he consider these to be
"wrong" values to teach children? If so, then what other "right" values
would he like to have seen me advocate?


POOLE: But if that happened, kids would be so bored out of their wits that
they'd give up reading altogether.
TRUTH: Doubtful, since kids love J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis.


POOLE: He [Abanes] spends much of his book comparing Rowling's tales
unfavourably with Tolkien and C S Lewis - naturally, as the latter two wrote
crypto-Christian fables.
TRUTH: I'm not sure if Pole is being ignorant here, or just plain stupid.
Out of fourteen chapters (275 pages), I spend one chapter (16 pages)
comparing Lewis, Tolkien, and Potter. "[M]uch of his book"? ã A bit of an
overstatement I would say.


POOLE: Abanes is concerned that Harry's "magick" mirrors real rituals in
Wicca - and so presumably readers are going to grow up wanting to burn
people in enormous straw men.
TRUTH: First, Harry's magick does indeed mirror very closely many occult
practices employed by Wiccans. (Interestingly, Poole nowhere contradicts
this assertion, but rather, simply brushes it aside as being unimportant.)
Second, the only strawman around is Poole's argument. I nowhere intimate
that every reader of the Potter series is going to grow up and start burning
anything. Whose jumping on a bandwagon Mr. Poole?


Cordially,
Richard Abanes

Johan Anglemark

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May 18, 2001, 8:48:21 AM5/18/01
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My trusted friend Richard Abanes wrote in msg
<B72A5275.10684%richar...@earthlink.net>:

>This post is in response to Steven Poole's April 28, 2001 review of my
>book "HARRY POTTER AND THE BIBLE" that appeared in The Guardian, online
>at
>http://books.guardian.co.uk/reviews/roundupstory/0,6121,479420,00.html.
>
>Poole completely represented my book's contents

Well, I'm happy for your sake.

[snip]

>POOLE: More fundamentalism:
>TRUTH: I am not a fundamentalist. I am an evangelical. Big difference.

If I had said that, my wife would have berated me for being sarcastic again.
Oh well. I suppose nuances are differences to the people closest up. I
question the "Big" in "Big difference", though.

-j
--
Johan Anglemark
Lejd av Upsala SF-sällskap
http://sfweb.dang.se

Michael J. Lowrey

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May 18, 2001, 10:14:50 AM5/18/01
to richar...@earthlink.net
Johan Anglemark wrote:

> My trusted friend Richard Abanes wrote:
> >This post is in response to Steven Poole's April 28, 2001 review of my
> >book "HARRY POTTER AND THE BIBLE" that appeared in The Guardian, online
> >at
> >http://books.guardian.co.uk/reviews/roundupstory/0,6121,479420,00.html.

> >POOLE: More fundamentalism:


> >TRUTH: I am not a fundamentalist. I am an evangelical. Big difference.
>
> If I had said that, my wife would have berated me for being sarcastic again.
> Oh well. I suppose nuances are differences to the people closest up. I
> question the "Big" in "Big difference", though.

Umm, Johan: I consider myself an evangelical Christian. I
am by no means anything even remotely resembling a
fundamentalist, either in the technical or popular senses of
the word, although I am technically still a member of my
home Baptist congregation. The distinction is very big
indeed, and Mr. Abanes is right in making it, whatever I may
think of his book.

--
Michael J. "Orange Mike" Lowrey
the Friendly lay preacher in orange

Johan Anglemark

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May 18, 2001, 11:30:22 AM5/18/01
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My trusted friend Michael J. Lowrey wrote in msg
<3B052E5A...@uwm.edu>:

>Umm, Johan: I consider myself an evangelical Christian. I
>am by no means anything even remotely resembling a
>fundamentalist, either in the technical or popular senses of
>the word, although I am technically still a member of my
>home Baptist congregation. The distinction is very big
>indeed, and Mr. Abanes is right in making it, whatever I may
>think of his book.

I think how huge the distinction is depends on where in the spectrum you
stand looking, but by all means, explain further. I'm interested!

Jacque

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May 18, 2001, 1:39:07 PM5/18/01
to

Care to elaborate?

--jm
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
Jacque Marshall jac...@UNSPAM.olagrande.net http://www.eskimo.com/~jacquem

Michael J. Lowrey

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May 18, 2001, 5:08:07 PM5/18/01
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Johan Anglemark wrote:

> My trusted friend Michael J. Lowrey wrote:
> >Umm, Johan: I consider myself an evangelical Christian. I
> >am by no means anything even remotely resembling a
> >fundamentalist, either in the technical or popular senses of
> >the word, although I am technically still a member of my
> >home Baptist congregation. The distinction is very big
> >indeed, and Mr. Abanes is right in making it, whatever I may
> >think of his book.
>
> I think how huge the distinction is depends on where in the spectrum you
> stand looking, but by all means, explain further. I'm interested!


"Evangel" comes from Greek roots, meaning "good news": to
me, to be an evangelical is simply to proclaim clearly and
enthusiastically that Jesus Christ has made a difference in
my life, and can do so in anyone else's as well.  The
'evangel' message is the good news of redemption and
reconciliation, Christ reborn and death overcome. My
understanding of Scripture and salvation is not that of more
theologically conservative Christians who call themselves
evangelical, but that's all right with me. The Good News is
still the Good News, regardless of the reporters.

A "Fundamentalist" originally meant someone who adhered to
strict orthodoxy in interpretation of Christian doctrine and
scripture. In present colloquial usage, it means someone
who holds to extremely conservative views on all theological
matters, and often social ones as well, with an extremely
literal interpretation of all portions of the Bible in
everything, whether a passage has to do with doctrine,
history, science, geography, or other disciplines.

--
Michael J. "Orange Mike" Lowrey

tries to be a fair witness

Lucy Kemnitzer

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May 18, 2001, 6:10:29 PM5/18/01
to
On Fri, 18 May 2001 09:14:50 -0500, "Michael J. Lowrey"
<oran...@uwm.edu> wrote:

>Johan Anglemark wrote:
>> My trusted friend Richard Abanes wrote:
>> >This post is in response to Steven Poole's April 28, 2001 review of my
>> >book "HARRY POTTER AND THE BIBLE" that appeared in The Guardian, online
>> >at
>> >http://books.guardian.co.uk/reviews/roundupstory/0,6121,479420,00.html.
>
>> >POOLE: More fundamentalism:
>> >TRUTH: I am not a fundamentalist. I am an evangelical. Big difference.
>>
>> If I had said that, my wife would have berated me for being sarcastic again.
>> Oh well. I suppose nuances are differences to the people closest up. I
>> question the "Big" in "Big difference", though.
>
>Umm, Johan: I consider myself an evangelical Christian.

Wait wait wait wait.

I thought "witnessing" was in some substantial qualitative way
different from evangelism, though I never thought I knew enough
to say what it was.

Explain?

LucyKemnitzer

Marcus L. Rowland

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May 18, 2001, 5:22:00 PM5/18/01
to
In article <B72A5275.10684%richar...@earthlink.net>, Richard Abanes
<richar...@earthlink.net> writes

>Poole completely represented my book's contents, apparently intentionally,
>since he claims to have read it, and yet at the same time declared it to
>contain things that appear nowhere in it. I submit the following:

I think you may have mistaken this newsgroup for one where anyone will
care.
--
Marcus L. Rowland
Forgotten Futures - The Scientific Romance Role Playing Game
http://www.ffutures.demon.co.uk/ http://www.forgottenfutures.com/
"We are all victims of this slime. They... ...fill our mailboxes with gibberish
that would get them indicted if people had time to press charges"
[Hunter S. Thompson predicts junk e-mail, 1985 (from Generation of Swine)]

P Nielsen Hayden

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May 18, 2001, 11:27:05 PM5/18/01
to
On 18 May 2001 16:30:22 +0100,
Johan Anglemark <jo...@anglemark.pp.se> wrote:
>My trusted friend Michael J. Lowrey wrote in msg
><3B052E5A...@uwm.edu>:
>
>>Umm, Johan: I consider myself an evangelical Christian. I
>>am by no means anything even remotely resembling a
>>fundamentalist, either in the technical or popular senses of
>>the word, although I am technically still a member of my
>>home Baptist congregation. The distinction is very big
>>indeed, and Mr. Abanes is right in making it, whatever I may
>>think of his book.
>
>I think how huge the distinction is depends on where in the spectrum you
>stand looking, but by all means, explain further. I'm interested!


It's not really a spectrum matter, unless you put "all religious
people" together in one narrow band of the spectrum.

Evangelical Christianity is outgoing, enthusiastic, and demonstrative.
Fundamentalist Christianity is religiously and socially conservative.
The two tendencies can go together and, in modern America, often do,
but they are not the same thing. There are certainly fundamentalists
who are not evangelical (and a fun fun fun crowd they are, to be sure),
and there are many strains of left-leaning Christianity, both
Protestant and Catholic, which are evangelical without being
fundamentalist.

There are evangelical Christians whose religion isn't particularly
focussed on desperate opposition to sex, drugs, and rock and roll.

--
Patrick Nielsen Hayden : p...@panix.com : http://www.panix.com/~pnh

Johan Anglemark

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May 19, 2001, 8:12:38 AM5/19/01
to

> Johan Anglemark <jo...@anglemark.pp.se> wrote:


> >My trusted friend Michael J. Lowrey wrote:
> >
> >>Umm, Johan: I consider myself an evangelical Christian. I
> >>am by no means anything even remotely resembling a
> >>fundamentalist, either in the technical or popular senses of
> >>the word, although I am technically still a member of my
> >>home Baptist congregation. The distinction is very big
> >>indeed, and Mr. Abanes is right in making it, whatever I may
> >>think of his book.
> >
> >I think how huge the distinction is depends on where in the spectrum you
> >stand looking, but by all means, explain further. I'm interested!
>
> It's not really a spectrum matter, unless you put "all religious
> people" together in one narrow band of the spectrum.
>
> Evangelical Christianity is outgoing, enthusiastic, and demonstrative.
> Fundamentalist Christianity is religiously and socially conservative.
> The two tendencies can go together and, in modern America, often do,
> but they are not the same thing. There are certainly fundamentalists
> who are not evangelical (and a fun fun fun crowd they are, to be sure),
> and there are many strains of left-leaning Christianity, both
> Protestant and Catholic, which are evangelical without being
> fundamentalist.
>
> There are evangelical Christians whose religion isn't particularly
> focussed on desperate opposition to sex, drugs, and rock and roll.

OK. I've read Michael's reply and yours, and thanks for pointing this out
to me. I am well aware of the etymological end eschatological differences
between emphasising the joyous message of the gospels and centering on the
literal truth of the written word of the Bible, but I was under the
impression that in present-day USA, the Christians calling themselves
Evangelical and the ones calling themselves Fundamentalist (or probably
more often called that by others) were for all practical purposes one and
the same group.

Ray Radlein

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May 20, 2001, 12:26:43 AM5/20/01
to
Johan Anglemark wrote:
>
> I am well aware of the etymological end eschatological differences
> between emphasising the joyous message of the gospels and centering
> on the literal truth of the written word of the Bible, but I was
> under the impression that in present-day USA, the Christians
> calling themselves Evangelical and the ones calling themselves
> Fundamentalist (or probably more often called that by others) were
> for all practical purposes one and the same group.

I suspect that is what the latter group *wants* you to think.


- Ray R.

--

*********************************************************************
"Right now, it looks like a hunter; but if you push this button,
here, and fold it like so, it turns into... a deer!"
"What a cute little doll!"
"Please! It's not a *doll* -- it's an *Actaeon Figure*!"

Ray Radlein - r...@learnlink.emory.edu
homepage coming soon! wooo, wooo.
*********************************************************************

Mark Atwood

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May 20, 2001, 3:05:53 AM5/20/01
to
jo...@anglemark.pp.se (Johan Anglemark) writes:
> literal truth of the written word of the Bible, but I was under the
> impression that in present-day USA, the Christians calling themselves
> Evangelical and the ones calling themselves Fundamentalist (or probably
> more often called that by others) were for all practical purposes one and
> the same group.

Your impression is wrong.

Where is your impression coming from? Your local mass media?

--
Mark Atwood | I'm wearing black only until I find something darker.
m...@pobox.com | http://www.pobox.com/~mra

Johan Anglemark

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May 20, 2001, 4:07:32 AM5/20/01
to
In article <m33da0l...@flash.localdomain>, Mark Atwood <m...@pobox.com>
wrote:

> jo...@anglemark.pp.se (Johan Anglemark) writes:
> > literal truth of the written word of the Bible, but I was under the
> > impression that in present-day USA, the Christians calling themselves
> > Evangelical and the ones calling themselves Fundamentalist (or probably
> > more often called that by others) were for all practical purposes one and
> > the same group.
>
> Your impression is wrong.
>
> Where is your impression coming from? Your local mass media?

Rather reading US media on the web. However, as I just said in e-mail, I am
grateful for the correction of my media-based image of the US that rasffers
continuously proivides me with.

O Deus

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May 20, 2001, 4:31:04 AM5/20/01
to

>TRUTH: The theme of my book is to make a comparison between the Potter
books
>and the Bible, to show where the two do NOT match up. Hence, the

Were you expecting a children's book about a wizard to match up with the
bible. Why?

>indeed written primarily for Christians.The so-called "right" biblical
>values I discuss are honesty, integrity, truthfulness, forgiveness,
>kindness, temperence, etc.

What do those have to do with the bible. The bible certainily didn't
originate them and is far from the best examplar of them.

>POOLE: But if that happened, kids would be so bored out of their wits that
>they'd give up reading altogether.
>TRUTH: Doubtful, since kids love J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis.


College kids love Tolkein, deacons love CS Lewis.


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