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#539283 - 07/26/09 03:18 PM Is literature full of magic ok for Christians?
Lyn-Christian Lit Offline

BellaOnline Editor

Registered: 07/19/09
Posts: 353
Loc: Southern USA
The Bible is very straight forward that magic and sorcery are evil. Is it ok, then, to let our children read books about magic tree houses, fairies, and enchantment?

Most of us were raised on Disney. While cute, they are full of sorcery and enchantment. The Magic Tree House books are very informative and useful teaching tools, however, they center around the sorcery of the witch Morgan La Fay. Harry Potter is a teen magic series but teaches the difference between good and evil.

I am interested in hearing where YOU draw the line.

#539299 - 07/26/09 04:09 PM Re: Is literature full of magic ok for Christians? [Re: Lyn-Christian Lit]
Phyllis Doyle Burns Offline
Highest Posting Power Known to Humanity

Registered: 11/17/07
Posts: 17644
Loc: Reno, NV
I see no reason why a Christian child should not be allowed to read books with magic, fairies, enchantment, etc. As long as the parents teach the child that what is in the book may not be what is truth according to the Bible. Christmas is to celebrate the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ - yet is not Christmas time full of magic and fairy tales? Elves, Santa flying in a sleigh pulled by reindeer that can fly. Santa being able to deliver at least one toy to every child in the world in one single night.

The people of the world have been raised with stories of myths, enchantment, fairy tales, legends, folklore for eons. There is not one single society, culture, faith, religion that does not have some form of enchantment or fairy tale. It is up to the parents of the child to make sure the truth is distinquished from the fantasy. Every child deserves the right to pretend and live, if only for a few minutes, in a land of enchantment.

Even if the land of enchantment may not be real, it often saves people from going insane with the reality of life in the real world, the world we have to face every day. As long as one does not get lost and trapped in fantasy or enchantment, it is a fun and exciting escape and one I would not deny to any child.

Edited by Phyllis, NA and Folk (07/26/09 04:10 PM)
Walk in Peace and Harmony.
Phyllis Doyle Burns
Avatar: Fair Helena by Rackham, Public Domain

#539304 - 07/26/09 04:52 PM Re: Is literature full of magic ok for Christians? [Re: Phyllis Doyle Burns]
Lynne - ChristianLiving Offline
BellaOnline Editor

Registered: 04/04/02
Posts: 5561
Loc: Indiana
I think we all grew up with fantasy and fairie tales and they were a healthy part of growing up. However, I'm seeing a difference in many of the books, television shows and movies that are becoming popular now. Maybe its just me, but the stories of witchcraft seem to be encouraging young people to use it to get their own way, at the expense of others. I worry about the many teens dabbling in witchcraft.

I think it is impossible to ban our kids from reading books and seeing movies. What is necessary is that parent be involved. - Read the books, see the movies. Discuss them with your kids. Parents need to make sure they know what the Bible says and then that their children know too.

Lynne Waite Chapman

Christian Living @ BellaOnline
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#539574 - 07/27/09 04:48 PM Re: Is literature full of magic ok for Christians? [Re: Lynne - ChristianLiving]
Barbara, GayLesbianEditor Offline

Registered: 04/09/08
Posts: 437
Loc: Kalamazoo, MI
I think it really depends on the books and each family's views. Personally, I love fantasy and science fiction - but it's *fiction* - I don't look at it as a guide to living. I understand a parent's wish to protect their child. At the same time, if a person objects to the topic, my experience has been that reading the book together, then talking about it is far more effective than banning it. It helps the children learn *how* to think, not *what* to think.
Barbara Sharpe

#540131 - 07/29/09 08:01 PM Re: Is literature full of magic ok for Christians? [Re: Barbara, GayLesbianEditor]
Lyn-Christian Lit Offline

BellaOnline Editor

Registered: 07/19/09
Posts: 353
Loc: Southern USA
Thank you ladies! The three of you have hit up on the key item that is the most important factor: the involvement of the parents.

I could argue both sides of the coin. The Bible warns that we should not cause a brother to fall. From past experiences, I have seen that exposing some children to books with magic and sorcery ignites a burning desire for the youth to become involved with pagan religions. I believe a susceptible person should be kept away from material that would weaken them. We do not know, by sight, who is susceptible and who is not. The innocence of books such as Harry Potter and the Magic Tree House Series could be argued to be "innocent" tools the devil uses to grab the attention of our youth much like the drug dealer gradually uses stronger drugs to hook the junkie.

The flip side of that is that both good and evil are presented....fights between the light and the dark. As parents, it is important that we monitor what our children are exposed to. Books with magic can be used to illustrate good and evil...the power of God vs satan. It is up to parents to decide what is appropriate for their own family and to mentor their children. CS Lewis successfully used fantasy in the much loved Narnia series.

I know there will be times that I present reviews of books that some people consider inappropriate. Your comments are always welcom.

Unfortunately, as Lynne stated, today's media is different. And, we have all heard or read the statistics of latchkey kids and the disintegration of the family unit.


#540145 - 07/29/09 10:16 PM Re: Is literature full of magic ok for Christians? [Re: Lyn-Christian Lit]
Deb - ALASKA Offline

Registered: 06/22/09
Posts: 158
Loc: Alaska, United States of Ameri...
My own children are long grown up <smile>, but I DO have four grandchildren ages 7-16, so the topic is still of interest to me.

Personally, I have really enjoyed discussing the Harry Potter books (and movies) as well as the Narnia books (and am hoping there will be more movies to come since the books were so very good) with my grandkids and have gotten into some pretty deep debates at times - especially with my 16-year-old granddaughter and 14-year-old grandson.

Face it - there are plenty of examples of good and evil in the world. We can only protect our children from it for just so long <sigh>. I would rather mine were aware of it and had the "tools", so to speak, to be able to tell them apart. I am not familiar with the "Magic Tree House" series, but I see the Harry Potter books and Narnia stories as being clear and easy to understand teaching tools for even young children. It is up to parents (and sometimes grandparents, IF the parent agrees <smile>) to use these "teaching tools" or not, as they see fit.

Magic and sorcery aside (even my youngest grandson seems to understand this is not "real life", but fantasy - possibly more clearly since we do talk about it?); books and movies that underscore the importance of ethical behavior, a well developed sense of right and wrong and underscores the harm that can be done by doing the wrong thing vs. doing the right thing ... I'm all for it.

Where I see the biggest threat is in the all-invasive video games. Some of them are down-right horrible, don't you think?

I do completely agree that it is up to the parents to decide what is right for their own children and at what age they feel is the time to broach subjects like this. I think it's got to be SO much harder to raise children in today's society. I didn't know how easy I had it raising my kids 35+ years ago.
Deb Frost

#541033 - 08/03/09 10:20 AM Re: Is literature full of magic ok for Christians? [Re: Lyn-Christian Lit]
Lisa - Fiction Writing Offline
BellaOnline Editor

Registered: 06/11/09
Posts: 4108
Loc: Beattyville, KY
I have raised two children and this a topic that I have dealt with a lot while they were growing up. If you tell a young person that they don't need to read something, it only peaks their curiosity (even when you explain why) and makes them want to read it even more. Better to explain to them why you don't agree with it, that it isn't real, and let them read it for themselves. Once they have finished the book, openly discuss the pros and cons of it with them.

Early on in my Christian walk I was so determined that my children would not do anything wrong. I became a bit too strict, not allowing them to fully be who they really were. There are things that I would change about the way I raised my own children, but in spite of me, they have both turned out wonderfully.
Lisa Binion
Fiction Writing

#558145 - 10/22/09 10:13 AM Re: Is literature full of magic ok for Christians? [Re: Lyn-Christian Lit]
Lyn-Christian Lit Offline

BellaOnline Editor

Registered: 07/19/09
Posts: 353
Loc: Southern USA
A parent emailed me after her 1st grader brought home one of the Magic Tree House books on ghosts. I have not read it, but she stated the book dealt with murder, ghosts, voo doo, and demon possession. With her permission, here are her comments..........

My daughter came home from school today , with a book called Ghosts by Magic Tree House. I could not believe what was written in this book , and how a first grader had it.. It tells about people being possessed , murder , fake ghost stories, voo doo , new orleans [voo doo culture/party culture?], and ect. I could not believe christians are ok with this , because the Bible is not. This is not of God , but Satan , I will tell ,my christian friends about this , to not let there kids read these books Magic Tree house, it comes from satan, May God have mercy on all who are involved in this. Rhonda

Edited by Lyn-Christian Lit (10/23/09 07:12 AM)

#558146 - 10/22/09 10:22 AM Re: Is literature full of magic ok for Christians? [Re: Lyn-Christian Lit]
big alignment Offline

Registered: 08/31/09
Posts: 83
Originally Posted By: Lyn-Christian Lit
new orleans, and ect. I could not believe christians are ok with this , because the Bible is not. This is not of God , but Satan

I'm sure the people of New Orleans are overjoyed to hear they are now classed as being 'Satan'.

#558248 - 10/22/09 05:27 PM Re: Is literature full of magic ok for Christians? [Re: big alignment]
Lyn-Christian Lit Offline

BellaOnline Editor

Registered: 07/19/09
Posts: 353
Loc: Southern USA
I would hope it was not the intent of Rhonda to call all people of New Orleans Satanists. Her concern and point dealt more with the voodoo culture mentioned in the book.

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