Considering Harry Potter books have sold more than 500 million copies and in 73 different languages, it would be an understatement to say “Harry Potter is a popular series”. The secret behind its popularity is the splendid entanglement of fantasy and relatability to the real world. But its author J.K. Rowling subtly embedded valuable lessons that people can use in real life.

1. Our choices define who we are

“It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.”        

– J.K. Rowling

When we learn the backstory of Voldemort, we can easily notice the similarities between Harry Potter and Voldemort. But despite the similarities of their abilities, Harry Potter chose a different path, one which is filled with love and harmony instead of a path embellished with evil. So it does not matter if you are not as talented or resourceful as your peers because your choices define you as a person.

2. Face your fears

Ron, Harry’s best friend, is a timorous character. He is afraid of many things such as his family’s financial instability, playing Quidditch in front of a crowd, asking out his favorite girl, etc. But when he bravely plays Quidditch facing his fear, he becomes the key player who wins the game. So when you are too afraid of doing something, take a deep breath and do it anyway.

3. Life without love is not worth living

In the Harry Potter series, Voldemort is the epitome of cruelty and hatred. He has thousands of followers yet all of his followers are motivated by fear. Hence, he does not have any friends in his life. In the end, he dies as a hateful wizard with no one to remember him. From his life, we can understand that living a life full of hatred is not a life worth living.   

4. Nature vs Nurture

Draco Malfoy, Harry’s first arch enemy was born in a pureblood family and gets sorted into the infamous Slytherin house. He is nurtured to be a racist and classist; for a while he seems to be like that. But at the end of the Harry Potter series, we see Draco’s true nature bloom and him become a reasonable person. He teaches us to not judge a book by its cover.

5. Never be afraid to be yourself

Luna Lovegood is a Ravenclaw student who you might not find conventionally smart. She acts weird, reads her favorite magazine upside down and believes in crazy conspiracy theories his father comes up with. For her eccentric behavior, most of the students stay away from her and ridicule her. But when the ministry seizes Hogwarts, Luna is one of the first ones to join Harry and help him in his quest. She inspires people to be their genuine self and find genuine friends.

6. Education should not be a political agenda

In the fifth book, the Ministry of Magic takes control over Hogwarts and coerces teachers and students to follow their specific rules. The ministry also changes the syllabus of the subjects to fit their needs. This tyranny over Hogwarts eventually results in an outburst from the students and Dumbledore takes back Hogwarts Administration. The whole aforementioned incident shows that education should be there to educate and not for other purposes.

7. Friendships are important

Last but not least, the power of friendships literally saves Harry Potter countless times. Ron with his loyalty, Hermoine with her knowledge along with many other friends save Harry over and over. The whole Harry Potter series shows us why friendship is the single most important thing. 

Images by Goalcast

Did you notice these underlying lessons while reading Harry Potter? Which lesson do you think is the most important in our day to day life?