Seekers Guide to Harry Potter

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First published by O Books, 2008
O Books is an imprint of John Hunt Publishing Ltd., The Bothy, Deershot Lodge, Park Lane, Ropley,
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Text copyright Geo Athena Trevarthen 2008
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ISBN: 978 1 84694 093 4
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Winchester, UK
Washington, USA

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Dr. Geo Trevarthen has produced what I have to call a magical work —
scholarly but not boring, spiritual but not restricting, enlightening
without being stuffy; in short, a rewarding read for anyone who may have
wondered what was behind the Harry Potter phenomenon and why it
reaches so deeply into our core beings. I urge you to shout, “Accio The
Seeker’s Guide to Harry Potter” ... I guarantee you a mind and heart
opening experience awaits.
Roy Bauer, DD, CSC, founder and
director: The Circle of the Sacred Earth
Written with fluency and vigour, this represents a very interesting and
unusual way of relating J. K. Rowling’s work to wider issues concerning
the nature of magic, the lived imagination and the experience of alter-
native states of consciousness.
Ronald J Hutton, Professor of History
at the University of Bristol, UK

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Beginning: A Letter in Green Ink
II. Betwixt and Between at Platform 9 ¾
III. Four Houses, Four Elements
IV. Through the Maze: Heroic Journeys
V. The Art
VI. The Terrible and the Great
VII. Using the Philosopher’s Stone
Bibliography 228
Further Resources
Illustration Notes
About the Author

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To four ladies who bring magic into
my life
My mother Athena
My sister Katy
And my daughters Téa and Aurora
And to a lady who’s brought
more magic into all our lives
JK Rowling

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he solitary occupation of writing is made much easier
and more pleasant with others’ help. I’ll try to give
thanks in some kind of order. First, I want to thank JK
Rowling for writing such inspiring and engaging
books. They were a great comfort to me at a difficult time and
have also obviously given me a lot of food for thought.
Next, I’d like to thank Graham Venters, whose enthusiasm for
Harry Potter and confidence in my approach led to this rather
unorthodox class being taught at the University of Edinburgh’s
Office of Lifelong Learning. Next, to Jim Mooney who took over
as my programmer there. A great big thanks to all my students
for many stimulating discussions, including the post Hallows
debriefing at the Spiegeltent. Special thanks to Sarah Kalnay,
Shani MacInnes, Leanne Mattu, Susie McBay and Andy
Shepherd. I also want to thank all my other students for their
interest and support over the years and for waiting with patience,
yet enthusiasm, for a book from me! Particular thanks go to
Christine Thomas and Nadine Pettry for being great students and
I’m extremely grateful to my publisher John Hunt for his
instant enthusiasm for this book and patience in seeing the final
product—not to mention for giving me a positive experience of
the publishing industry! Thanks are also due to Trevor
Greenfield, who alchemically distilled a rather large lump of
prima materia into a manageable book.
I’d also like to thank everyone who read and commented on
this book as a work in progress and later. Many thanks to Ronald

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Seekers Guide to Harry Potter
Hutton for dedicating some of his lunch hours to giving me
insightful, well informed and supportive commentary. Thanks to
Roy Bauer for his enthusiasm as a Harry fan, shaman, minister
and friend. Thanks to David Lorimer for his interest and support,
as well as for past inspiration. My gratitude to Neil Douglas-Klotz
for the concept of ‘caravan time’ and insights into Christian
mysticism that have inspired me for ages. Many thanks also to
Lon Milo Duquette for corresponding with me at a very busy time
and for offering insights into magical theory and practice in his
books that inspired some of my thoughts on Harry in this book.
Thanks also to Genevieve Chilvers for her inspiring presence and
input on my writing. Thanks to Ronald Black for sending helpful
references and to him and Professor William Gillies for mentoring
me through my last little writing project.
Thanks to Aisling Willow Grey for her friendship and work on
my web site. Gratitude to Rudy and Sharon Bauer for being great
mentors in spiritual and psychological realms. Thanks to John
Douglass for helping me develop my writing skills and to Bill
Newman and Scip Barnhart for artistic mentoring. Thanks to Bill
Dutterer for creatively supporting me, for his artwork and for his
work helping children in Afghanistan. I also want to thank the
Princess Grace Foundation for early support that still encourages
me in my writing today.
Last but not least, of course, I want to thank my family, first my
two grandmothers, Erszébet and Lavinia, who, each in their own
way, gave me access to a world of magic and creativity. My Dad,
Professor George Mueller, gave me insights into the broadest
possible scientific world-view. They’ve never left me. Love and
thanks to my Aunt Susan, for being an inspiration in so many
ways. Deepest love and gratitude to my mum, Athena, who’s
made everything possible. Thanks to Katy for unfailing love and
support—and last minute Harry Potter American edition page
references! Thanks also to my two little ones, Téa and Aurora,