Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Tales of Beedle the Bard (From Harry Potter) - by J. K. Rowling

In December 2007, J.K. Rowling regaled Harry Potter fans with The Tales of Beedle the Bard; a book designed to be the fictional stories gathered in the midst of Potter's wizarding world. It was the equivalent to reality's the Brothers Grimm tales and ranked as one of the top 10 fairy tale books of all time. Below, you'll find a brief overview of several stories featured in this book, along with how each tale would apply morally in essential life lessons.

-- The Tale of Three Brothers.
About three brothers of step-ladder ages, this story begins when they meet death. Instead of dying, they ask death to bestow a gift on each of them to give them power over death for a few more years. They're given the Elder Wand, the Resurrection Stone, and the Cloak of Invisibility. These items prove to be chaotic, and have all become integral parts of the Harry Potter series. The moral? Every man can avoid an inevitable death for only so long, but in the end, we're all equal in dying.

-- The Fountain of Fair Fortune. Three witches accompany a luckless knight across multi-adventurous terrain in search of a fountain that's said to grant all who find it their wishes and small fortunes. The premise of the story is self-explanatory, as the witches and knight face many challenges, overcoming each obstacle in turn. The moral? The fortunate life isn't important because of the reward at the end -- it's important because of the journey getting there. It's a tale that attempts to instill an appreciation of life in children and adults.

-- The Warlock's Hairy Heart. This story is morbid, much darker than the other tales, and more sophisticated in theme. A warlock decides that love is useless and foolish, so he cuts out his own heart, puts it in a box, and lives his life as a cold person until he meets a Maiden. She's everything he's ever dreamed of and he feels the stirrings of love, but when he tries to literally give her his heart, he discovers it's grown hairy and worthless. The moral varies from reader to reader; therefore, this one is up to the reader to decipher.

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