Harry Potter and the Twelve Spiritual Powers: Wisdom
This morning we are looking at the spiritual power of Wisdom. The dictionary defines wisdom as knowledge and good judgment based on experience; being wise. Wise implies having knowledge and understanding of people and of what is true and right in life and conduct, and showing sound judgment in applying such knowledge.
In ‘The Twelve Powers of Man’ Charles Fillmore writes that “Wisdom includes judgment, discrimination, intuition, and all the departments of mind that come under the heading of knowing.”
Wisdom in this case is good judgment. Wisdom is making wise choices. It is learning to balance our information, our knowledge, with our intuition.
So, if judgment is a good thing, why does it get such a bad rap? “Don’t be so judgmental.” “Judge not, lest ye be judged.”
It’s important to differentiate between true judgment, i.e. the ability to discern, and condemnation. Discernment seeks only truth, only to do the right thing. Condemnation makes others wrong. Look at it this way, discernment is love. Condemnation is fear. “Judge not, lest ye be judged” makes more sense if we insert the word “condemn.” “Condemn not, lest ye be condemned.”
Wisdom is making wise choices. The spiritual power most often associated with wisdom is love. The combination of wisdom and love is a clear example of the connecting of head and heart. Wisdom without love can become academic. Love without wisdom can become co-dependent, and make unwise choices.
Together, wisdom and love help us to move beyond ourselves, beyond what we thought we were capable of. Wisdom and love help us to see beyond appearances.
King Solomon was a wonderful example of wisdom in action. Fillmore writes, “Solomon…when asked by the Lord what He should give him, chose wisdom above riches and honor; then all the other things were added. Solomon was also a great judge. He had a rare intuition, and he used it freely in arriving at his judgments. He did not rest his investigations on mere facts, but sought out the inner motives.
In the case of the two women who claimed the same infant, he commanded an attendant to bring a sword to cut the child in two, and give a half to each woman. Of course, the real mother begged him not to do this, and he knew at once that she was the mother.”
Solomon used his intuition freely. How do we nurture and develop our intuition?
Silence. By becoming quiet.
Our Harry Potter character for the week is Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore, the headmaster of Hogwarts. Dumbledore is legendary among wizards. He was famous for many, many accomplishments.
Author, JK Rowling stated that she enjoys writing Dumbledore because he “is the epitome of goodness.”
As we mentioned last week, Dumbledore, as Wisdom, has chosen to turn his trials into triumphs, to learn from life’s experience and use that learning to help others. Both Jesus and Buddha point to an essential “renouncing” of the false self, a foundational death of the ego. This was his turn from his ego driven goals to his true self. This dying to self is at the heart of the spiritual journey.
He is a good example for us, many of us have made the same discovery to renounce our ‘old ways’ and learn from our life experiences, we have made a choice for life.
Dumbledore is a protector of Harry, because he sees beyond appearances. He sees Harry’s power and potential. Rowling states, “Dumbledore is a very wise man who knows that Harry is going to have to learn a few hard lessons to prepare him for what may be coming in his life.”
Dumbledore is described as someone who can sort things out and make the just and right choice.
“The trouble is, humans do have a knack of choosing precisely those things that are worst for them.” Is that true? What are we choosing?
“Choose this day who you will serve… as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15. In other words, as for me and my house, we will base our decisions on Wisdom… in popular jargon, What Would Jesus Do?
We’ve mentioned this story from Cherokee teachings several times, here it is in full:
An elder Cherokee was teaching his grandchildren about life. He said to them, “A fight is going on inside me. It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves.
One wolf represents fear, anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.
The other stands for joy, peace, love, hope, sharing, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, friendship, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith.
This same fight is going on inside you, and inside every other person, too.”
The children thought about it for a minute and then one child asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?” The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”
What wolf are we feeding? What are we choosing? “Choose this day who you will serve.” We know that Heaven and Hell are not actual physical places, but states of mind that we create. Are our choices creating Heaven or Hell? Do we choose grace? Knowing that the gateway to grace is gratitude, do we choose to be grateful? Every day? For everything?
Matthew Fox wrote, “When we are joyous and full of heart, we are emanating wisdom. Wisdom is not in the head but in the heart and gut where compassion is felt.”
Wisdom is compassionate. Wisdom feeds the wolf that stands for love, joy, & peace. Wisdom serves our Creator, serves our Higher Self, the Spirit within.
Wisdom looks beyond appearances. Here’s a passage from the end of The Sorcerer’s Stone.
Read pages 305 – 306.
Dumbledore rewarded the obvious acts of courage, as he should have. And, in his wisdom, he looked beneath the surface, beyond the obvious and saw the tremendous courage it took Neville to stand up to his friends, to have the courage to say “no” to those that he loved. Neville made a wise choice, and Dumbledore had the wisdom to reward it.
Philippians 4:4-9. “Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”
Have the courage, the strength, and the wisdom, to feed the love & peace wolf.