Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone – The Mirror Of Erised

Theme: Wishful Thinking

Bible refs: Matthew 5 vv 3-12

Similar clips: Millions – Money makes the world go around

Location of clip: 1 hr 28 min & 30 secs to 1 hr 32 mins & 30 secs


Film Description:

Harry Potter loses his parents in a terrible accident and ends up living with his despicable uncle and aunt. On this 11th birthday he discovers that there is more to him than meets the eye. He is really wizard, and before long he meets Hagrid who takes him to Hogwarts, a school of wizards. Here he enters a magical world where he soon discovers many new skills and makes a lot of new friends. And one or two enemies. But Harry is more than just any old wizard. He is a hero, and he is destined to do battle with the evil Voldemort.


Clip description:

One night, while wandering around the school inside his cloak of invisibility, Harry discovers a large mirrors in an empty room. When he looks into the mirror he sees something every strange. Hs parents are there with him, his father places a hand on his shoulder. Yet, when he looks around, he sees that he is still alone. He calls his friend Ron and when Ron looks in the mirror he sees himself as head boy and all round school champion. What’s going on? Harry doesn’t really understand it but he takes to visiting the mirror regularly so he can sit on the floor and see himself, happy and once again with his mum and dad.

One night Dumbledore the headmaster drops by, he knows harry has been regularly visiting the mirror. He explains to Harry that this is the mirror of Erised – or desire backwards. It shows the viewer the most desperate desires of the heart – and for Harry that is to know his parents and feel their love.

Dumbledore comments that many people waste much of their lives on hopeless dreams.

Living in the now is very difficult. We always want something we don’t or can’t have. Paul wrote in the Good Book that he had learnt to be happy whether he had a lot or a little, having experienced both states.

I go up and down; at times I appreciate the many good things I have and feel some sense of satisfaction with that. At other times I set my eyes on wanting more, and then I experience all kinds of things – frustration, excitement, anticipation, impatience, dissatisfaction. Quite often, if I consequently get what I want I wonder why I was in such a hurry to get it.

It’s not always easy to tell the difference between a selfish desire – and vision. The Bible says that without a vision people perish. So it’s good lto ook ahead and see how things might be, how we might play our part in changing things for the better. Without that many of us would grow bored, and shrivel up inside.



1.         Are you aware of some of the things you long for right now?

2.         Are they selfish, frustrating desires, or something that might bring hope and liberation to you and others?
3.         One understanding of the Beatitudes suggests that Jesus was saying in his kingdom even the poor are blessed, even the bereaved are blessed – we don’t have to go looking for hardship to find happiness. What do you think of this?
4.         Is it harder to be happy if you have lots of things? What’s your experience?
5.                  Did the clip make you think about anything else?

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