This previous weekend I spent a lot of time watching ABC Family’s Potterhead Weekend, a Harry Potter movie marathon all weekend! What on Earth would be a better use of time than rewatching Harry Potter??
I’m a BIG Harry Potter fan so while watching these movies I experience just about every emotion known to humanity and am prone to yelling at characters, crying when the couples finally get together, and crying when they die. Yet, amid all of this joy, fear, nostalgia, anger, heart-melting, etc… one line stood out to me for a very different reason, something I never thought about until I began fighting my OCD.
Dumbledore says, “Of course, it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” (Rowling).
[A bit of quick context for those who don’t know the stories: *spoiler alert*
Dumbledore says this to Harry after the horcrux (a piece of dark magic) in Harry has died and Harry is now in a limbo sort of heaven. Dumbledore is there to talk with him. Since only the horcrux died, and not really Harry, Harry can choose to remain in the limbo or go back and continue on with his life. At the end of the conversation Harry asks Dumbledore if this (the limbo heaven and their conversation) is all in his head. Dumbledore replies with the above quote, Dumbledore leaves, and Harry wakes up.]
Before I started fighting my OCD I thought this was one of the best lines in the book/movie. It is very philosophical and beautifully worded; it is a fun thought when regarding fiction and imagination. Yet with this new fight against OCD on my mind the line struck me differently. This is because I now completely disagree with what Dumbledore said (when applying it to some contexts). For people with OCD, or just anyone experiencing fear or anxiety it should say, “Of course, it is happening inside you head, but why on earth should that mean it is real?”
Not everything our brains tell us is real and we definitely do not have to believe everything our brains tell us. I’m certainly learning this at an exponential rate now that I’m getting treatment.
Keep challenging your thoughts! (and keep watching Harry Potter hehe)