Term Paper: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

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Harry Potter & the Sorcerer's Stone: Analysis of the Mirror of Erised

In Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Harry Potter is forced to learn many thing quickly - both as a boy of eleven and as a wizard in training. Two symbols of learning in the book are the Mirror of Erised and Professor Dumbledore. Along with Dumbledore's assistance, the Mirror of Erised gave Harry Potter a lot of insight concerning himself, his friends, his enemies, and human nature in general.

The first lesson Harry learned was that everyone has desires, the need to feel fulfilled, and the need to be happy - although happiness means something different to everyone. Dumbledore tells Harry "the happiest man on earth would be able to use the Mirror of Erised like a normal mirror, that is, he would look in it and see himself exactly as he is" (Rowling 213). In other words, a man who is already fulfilled would not see what he feels is missing in his life, because he doesn't believe anything is missing. In chapter twelve, Harry came to understand that something was indeed missing from his life - his family. Upon looking in the Mirror, he saw his parents and a host of other relatives that were very happy to see him.

Ron Weasley felt the same fulfillment when he looking in the mirror and saw himself as a head boy and Quidditch captain. While Ron stated that whatever he did a Hogwarts, it wouldn't be special because his brothers before him had done it all, the mirror showed that he indeed wanted to be as great as his brothers. Even Professor Quirrell, who wanted nothing more than to give Voldermort the Sorcerer's Stone saw himself doing that very thing.

The second lesson the Mirror and Dumbledore taught Harry was to not allow your desires to get in the way of how you ought to live. Ron and Harry were best friends, but they fought over who would look in the mirror and what reflection was more important to look at. Harry came back to the Mirror three times before Dumbledore explained exactly what the Mirror was revealing and how many have wasted time… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.  (2007, November 26).  Retrieved December 7, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/harry-potter-sorcerer-stone/4383615

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"Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone."  Essaytown.com.  November 26, 2007.  Accessed December 7, 2019.