Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter, #5) Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix discussion


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Would you be able to see thestrals?

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message 1: by Samantha The Escapist (last edited Feb 28, 2012 07:24AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Samantha The Escapist I know it's a grim topic but it IS a bit of a grim book and whenever I read it I wonder how many other HP fans would be able to see them.

I'm not looking for stories or reasons(not expecting them anyway, by all means share and open up if you'd like ^^), just curious if anyone else would be able to or has wondered the same as me.

I think I'd be able to, I was with my Grandmother in the hospital overnight while she was slipping away, but I'm unsure if it was right in front of my eyes or not.

I wonder if just seeing a video of someone dying would be enough? It's a really interesting and abstract concept for the creature.

I really hope no one takes offense to the topic and I'm not trying to be flippant about death by any means.


message 2: by Monique (new) - added it

Monique It is an interesting question. I would be able to see them. Thestrals were one of the cool and yet sad aspects of books. Rowling did that combination quite well.


Carol Yes, I would be able to see them. I agree with Monique that Rowling did the combination of cool and sad very well. Interesting concept.


Samantha The Escapist Wow that's very sad, already 4 of us that would be able to.

I loved how the Thestrals were a point of bonding for Luna and Harry, Luna is one of my favourite characters throughout the book. I remember in the 7th book when Harry is at her house and looks at her bedroom I nearly cried over the description of the paintings. ^^


message 5: by Monique (new) - added it

Monique Samantha wrote: "Wow that's very sad, already 4 of us that would be able to.

I loved how the Thestrals were a point of bonding for Luna and Harry, Luna is one of my favourite characters throughout the book. I re..."


Yes, that was really awesome how Luna and Harry bonded over them and the loss of family. Luna was one of those characters I really could see a spin off series about. She was under-developed and very intriguing.


Whitney No, I cannot see thestrals.
*knocks on wood*


message 7: by [deleted user] (new)

Whitney wrote: "No, I cannot see thestrals.
*knocks on wood*"


same for me. and i hope and pray it will stay that way...


J.D. Field I don't think so, but what if you thought you couldn't then you did? Wouldn't that be freaky?


O. Ouellette I was wondering if other people thought about this! I used to a lot. Up until 1 1/2 years ago, I wouldn't have been able to see them. Now I would! Unfortunately, I saw death up close and personal.


O. Ouellette Mary wrote: "Wow, good question. I unfortunately would be able to see them. As creepy as they were, I think that they were somehow beautiful in their own way when portrayed in the movies."

I think once you've watched someone die, you really feel how strangely beautiful and painful it would be at the same time to see one.


message 11: by Monique (new) - added it

Monique O. Ouellette wrote: "Mary wrote: "Wow, good question. I unfortunately would be able to see them. As creepy as they were, I think that they were somehow beautiful in their own way when portrayed in the movies."

I thi..."


I so wish there were a "like" button. I would totally "like" your comment.


message 12: by Alya (new) - rated it 5 stars

Alya Does my cat count? :( I watched as they put him to sleep. :'(


O. Ouellette Alya wrote: "Does my cat count? :( I watched as they put him to sleep. :'("

*I* think it counts; animals are people too, though I don't know if I can speak for what Rowling would say about Thestrals.


message 14: by Monique (new) - added it

Monique Alya wrote: "Does my cat count? :( I watched as they put him to sleep. :'("

Alya,

Your cat does count. Thestrals are visible to those who have seen death; it does not specify that it has to be human death.


Kallie~ Can'tLive-WithOrWithoutYou yeah I would be able to see them... one of the coolest (and creepiest) creatures in the HP books...


message 16: by Sam (new) - rated it 5 stars

Sam I'd seem them. :/
I'd find it a bit painful knowing that I could though. It's like a tragic reminder of the things you've seen. Even though they are eerily beautiful creatures and so gentle. It's a shame something so tragic has to happen for you to know what they even look like.


Amanda I love how they sort of bring Harry and Luna together. He realises that he's not the only person who's ever had a tragedy happen to him, a parent dying. Okay, so maybe his tragedy is on a grander scale but he realises that the pain is still the same. They're really cool creatures, and yes i would unfortunately be able to see them.


http://divaliciouzbookreviews.blogspo...


message 18: by Ts (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ts James If animals count, then yes I would be able to see Thestrals. I watched our parakeet die a few years ago.


Katie Kaleb wrote: "Whitney wrote: "No, I cannot see thestrals.
*knocks on wood*"

same for me. and i hope and pray it will stay that way..."


I also would not be able to see them and hope it remains that way for a long while to come


Samantha The Escapist Alya wrote: "Does my cat count? :( I watched as they put him to sleep. :'("

I completely forgot that as an option! In one month it'll be a year exactly since I watched my kitty get put to sleep as well, it was awful, I'd had her for 14 years. :(

It would be a really trajic reminder if you, say, owned a thestral. But then in a way wouldn't it always keep close the one you'd lost?


Stephanie I don't THINK I'd be able to see them.. I've been "touched" by death, but have never actually "watched" it happen.


message 22: by Habz (new) - rated it 5 stars

Habz i'm not sure if animals count, i saw a dog get run over once, it was very terrifying and i am very glad i haven't witness a human death.
That is a very good question though, makes you think.


message 23: by Habz (new) - rated it 5 stars

Habz Monique wrote: "It is an interesting question. I would be able to see them. Thestrals were one of the cool and yet sad aspects of books. Rowling did that combination quite well."

agreed


Vicki G Well, since I'm a Paramedic, yes.
I've been working on patients who went into a code blue and we couldn't save them.
The first one it happened to was a guy who had nothing wrong with him; he was waiting for his wife to pick him up and take him home, b/c the doctors had released him to go home.
He went into a massive heart attack while he was waiting and, even though all the contraptions of modern medicine - as well as all the people who knew how to use them - were everywhere around him, he still could not be brought back and was pronounced dead 25 minutes later.
The reason that's stayed with me, besides the fact that it was the first death I saw while I was working on a patient, is that the doctors were so positive everything was all right with him. So sure of themselves in fact that they discharged the man.


Tanvi Samantha wrote: "Wow that's very sad, already 4 of us that would be able to.

I loved how the Thestrals were a point of bonding for Luna and Harry, Luna is one of my favourite characters throughout the book. I re..."


me too!


Shanna yes! but nursing will do that


Elyse Schramm Yes, I would be able to see them. (I'm an RN)


Samantha The Escapist Mary wrote: "I guess it could be thought of that way, but what if the person you saw die was a stranger? Yikes, the nightmares I had were bad enough so no thanks to a thestral. But I imagine if it were a loved one I would find it comforting...a reminder of them kept close like you said Samantha. "

I might not have said that a couple years ago but (it's silly) my password at work for everything I use is Whimps which was my kitty's nickname (her name was Whimper). And after she died I couldn't decide if it would be more or less painful to change the password to something else. In the end I decided to leave it and now whenever I have to type that (10+ times a day) I get a nice little reminder of her, even if in the beginning it made me sad to type it.


message 29: by J.D. (new) - rated it 4 stars

J.D. Field People have said that unfortunately they would be able to see them. I think that, once you get past a certain age, there's nothing fortunate or unfortunate about. It's not like everybody we know will stay alive forever.
JKR said that one of the biggest themes of the stories was death, and the thestrals show that she's not compeltely negative about it at all. In HP world the lines between life and death are more blurred than they seem to be in real life, and I think that makes things better, easier to udnerstand, for the characters...


Samantha The Escapist J.D. wrote: "People have said that unfortunately they would be able to see them. I think that, once you get past a certain age, there's nothing fortunate or unfortunate about. It's not like everybody we know wi..."

I agree completely, and that was very nicely said :) But just to add a wee point, when I say "unfortunate" I mean more for having witnessed the death, particularly if any had been violent or frightening. Of course no one can get through life unscathed by this, but to see it is a little different. Watching my grandmother and my cat were both peaceful and very sad but I'm very glad for the experience, if I witnessed death in a way that I would consider nightmarish, that would be unfortunate in my eyes.


message 31: by Monique (new) - added it

Monique Samantha wrote: "J.D. wrote: "People have said that unfortunately they would be able to see them. I think that, once you get past a certain age, there's nothing fortunate or unfortunate about. It's not like everybo..."

Exactly, it is the witnessing death first hand that is critical to being able to see thestrals, not having someone you know die. Being witness to death can also be very traumatic.

In Harry's case, while he was technically a witness to Lily's murder, he was too young to understand and process that (also a requirement for seeing thestrals). But the deaths he did witness (Cedric, Sirius, Dobby) were all violent.


Marshall I don't think that I would be able to see them. I don't want to either, but if they were actually real I would want to see them. But I saw a person get shot in a security video in my V.I.P class. (A police officer comes in and talks about drugs, gangs and stuff.) But I don't know if that would count!


message 33: by Maya (new) - rated it 5 stars

Maya broaddus i would be able to see them if you count watching it on tv


Kayla I know people that have died, but I've never actually seen it happen. Unless you include my old hamster, and I don't think that counts...


JazzyCat No, almost though...


Lauren I've seen dead people, but I've never actually seen anyone literally die. Which I am glad about!!


Kelly Robson I was with my Dad when he died in hospital, I also used to work with elderly people so have seen a few deaths there.


Christine Koehne Yes. I watched my mother die on her death bed from cancer a year ago and for the comment stating that animals are not specified to count then I have seen death all my life. I grew up butchering my own chickens and have taught my children the same with chickens and rabbits.


message 39: by O. Ouellette (last edited Mar 05, 2012 02:50PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

O. Ouellette J.D. wrote: "People have said that unfortunately they would be able to see them. I think that, once you get past a certain age, there's nothing fortunate or unfortunate about death. It's not like everybody we know will stay alive forever..."

It's "unfortunate" when its untimely death (or horrifying, which someone else said). It's also "unfortunate" because most people do not want to die, and in watching someone die you understand the "unfortunate" helplessness and finality of death. I think Harry Potter DIDN'T deal with this subject very well all the time, because many people died, but the ways in which the character(s) responded to it were not always...long-lasting or reflective of the character(s) thoughts and feelings about the incident at all. (I mean you didn't see them reflecting very much on Death itself, or how they felt about it, or any fear or grief they might of felt, in any considerable depth.) I feel like the Thestrals obviously represented the grim but bitter-sweet understanding one achieves of death once they have watched it (mixture of perhaps fear, resignation, appreciation for life and eternal rest), but this wasn't always well-shown in the characters, even though they were so young and maybe would have been more heavily influenced by seeing such things in reality. This is what allowed Harry Potter, in my opinion, to blur the line between life and death in a way that's maybe more straight-forward and easy to take in than real life. (It's more like an excuse).

Whenever I've known people who watched someone close to them die, it has been horrifying and upsetting, and the peace or understanding you feel in regards to death often only comes after that initial shock and ephiphanic confusion that is often so powerful as to make many people question their religion and beliefs. No, death is not inherently bad, but I would say it's usually not a good thing to see it happen up close, especially when you're young. For me, and for many many people, it is haunting and unnerving, and you only reach "enlightenment" or whatever after facing a lot of pain and fear and rising above it.

We all try to recognize that not everyone will be around forever, but that is very different from watching a person die. Especially if you are an empathetic or thoughtful person (I mean a person who thinks a lot about things and their deeper meaning, not thoughtful as in considerate), death strikes you very, very hard, and it's nothing to be "scoffed at." Being afraid or hurt by death isn't necessarily about wanting to maintain the belief that everyone will always be there. It's about being forced to accept the inevitability of death, its pain and your inability to exert much control over how it will happen. Death just...IS SCARY until which point that you understand it deeply. Some may start out at this point or may be conditioned to take it better, most are probably not.

All right; sorry, I'm long-winded. I just thought all of this pertained a lot to the general topic and to what people were saying! :) It's nice to hear all of these different stories and opinions, especially when, as I said before and you can see now, I've been thinking about this topic a lot!


Jamie I think that I would be able to, because I was with my guinea pig when he died. It was the worst experience of my entire life.
Anyway, I do not think you would have to witness a human death to see thestrals. Other animals are just as important.


message 41: by Ruby (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ruby Hmmm...I've never actually seen a human die before my eyes...I've seen ashes, of course dead animals, very sick humans, close to dying humans...


message 42: by Ruby (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ruby Christine wrote: "Yes. I watched my mother die on her death bed from cancer a year ago and for the comment stating that animals are not specified to count then I have seen death all my life. I grew up butchering my..."

Oh my goodness. I'm so sorry.


Katya Kolluri Mary wrote: "I love the actress they chose (sorry, I don't know her name) to portray Luna in the HP movie, she was spot-on. The glassy eyes, the sincerity in her voice no matter what she was saying...great job."

Her name is Evanna Lynch.


message 44: by Ruby (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ruby I loved her.


Samantha The Escapist O. Ouellette wrote: "Especially if you are an empathetic or thoughtful person (I mean a person who thinks a lot about things and their deeper meaning, not thoughtful as in considerate), death strikes you very, very hard, and it's nothing to be "scoffed at."


I'll never forget my first time seeing a dead body at the funeral home. I was probably between 8 and 10 and my mother forgot that I had never seen one before. I looked at it and decided it was okay, I could handle it and mostly thought about how upset I should be. The I went outside to find my same-aged cousin and my 8 years senior brother cowering outside the room. I remember holding my brother's hand while he finally faced the body and thinking how odd it was when he was so much older.

Jamie was really bothered by that funeral (not a close relative) and he never goes to the wakes anymore. Now we're 23 and 31 and he's still really awkward at funerals but I don't know how many people really know that except me.

I've spent a lot of my time at funerals being the shoulder, now I haven't yet lost anyone particularly close to me (a couple grandparents) and the thought of losing a parent or my brother or my boyfriend can actually cause me to have to catch my breath. But I spend a lot of time at funerals looking around at the people surrounding me.

In all honesty I've spent a lot of time thinking about death and I think in a lot of ways I can see what other people are feeling about it, but I'm not always certain I'm focused enough on what I'm feeling, it's almost like I'm too focused on saving my energy to help the living, so much vulnerability in a single room I can't stand not being strong for them I think. I suppose I probably have some of my own ruminations to make on the topic, which is one of the reasons I chose the Deathly Hallows as my end-of-series Harry Potter tattoo ^^


message 47: by Snow (new) - rated it 5 stars

Snow Unfortunatley I would be able to...


message 48: by Chinedu (new)

Chinedu I do not think thestrals are real cor if they are i should be seeing them cos i have watched a woman die in her room right in front of me. Thestrals is jst a part of Rowlings imagery uniqueness.


message 49: by ♥ Alexia -Team Malec ♥ (last edited Apr 09, 2012 03:03AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

♥ Alexia -Team Malec ♥ yes. if watching people in movies die. oh, and ants.


Uditi I think it's supozed to be human you have personally seen like not on tv or anything.
does a dead body count? Haven't seen actual death in person but seen a real live dead body.


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