The “Essence” Behind the Plot

by Jennifer Oliveira

A very well written editorial, which can be found here, aided in my thought process behind what I am about to discuss with you all. I was debating on composing an editorial, but after some encouragement from some in the CoS Forums, I have decided to pen my theory and place it in the hands of MuggleNet’’s readers for their opinions. So, here goes.

As you know, the wand chooses the wizard. They can work spells with other wands but the results are never as good as with their own. I think the core of the wand, which possesses the “essence” of an animal (phoenix feather, dragon heart string, and unicorn hair), binds itself to the very “essence” of the wizard it chooses. So when a wizard dies, his/her essence dies with them, along with the wand’s essence that bound itself to their’s.

I do not believe the wand dies by vanishing, but the core dies out and magic cannot be performed any longer with the wand. It virtually becomes just a piece of wood. Now, another important point that was addressed in the above mentioned editorial was the case of the missing Avada Kedavra spell Voldemort performed while trying to kill Harry. It did not come out of Voldemort’’s wand in the Priori Incantatem scene at the graveyard. Why is that? A mistake by the author? Perhaps, but I do not believe Jo would have forgotten something this important.

When Voldemort attacked Harry on Halloween, Lily’’s protection caused the spell to “rebound” upon Voldemort, thus leaving him without a body of his own and forcing his “essence” to possess others in order to live. Voldemort didn’t die. This is the most important fact to remember. (Jo stated in the Edinburgh Book Festival Chat that one of the most important questions no one had thought of asking her was “Why didn’’t Voldemort die?”) A line from OotP is a good example as to why I believe the essence of an individual is the biggest plot point.

If you remember after Arthur Weasley is attacked and Harry and the other Weasleys are in Dumbledore’s office, the Headmaster pulls out a strange silver instrument that wafts green smoke into a serpent, which then splits in two. He then says out loud, “Naturally, but in essence divided?” This comment is directed toward the dream Harry had. We all know now that Voldemort and Harry can enter each other’s minds and read each other’s thoughts. We also know that some of Voldemort’s powers have been transferred over to Harry. Now Harry was his “own” person with his “own” essence before he was attacked on Halloween. Therefore, I do not believe the theory of him being Voldemort’s reincarnated past self for a minute. However, I do believe that if you put two and two together, the possibility that Harry has more than one soul or “essence” within him is great. Henceforth, Dumbledore’s comment “but in essence divided.” He knows why Harry lived and most importantly, why Voldemort didn’t die. And I believe that again, the entire plot line ties back to the “essence” of a human being.

So, because Voldemort’’s essence was never truly extinguished, I do not believe it’s possible for him to have come out of the wand in the Priori Incantatem scene. If you notice, all of the things that come out of the wand are the “essences” of the spells that were cast to create them. Again, since I think the essence of the wizard and wand core is tied together, the wand could not have “spit out” its own essence as it was still alive when the Killing Curse backfired. It was a failed spell. It didn’’t kill anyone. And, I do not believe that Voldemort may have used Lily’’s wand, which could be used as a possible explanation for the missing curse as well. I do not believe there was a struggle when she was killed. She pleaded with him not to kill her son. A mother put into this type of situation, I would have to imagine, would be completely distraught and holding onto her child for dear life. “Motherly instinct” is to protect your child.

I think that the PS/SS movie had the vision of what happened in Godric’’s Hollow pinned down pretty accurately. This was a scene that was more than likely well advised by J.K. herself, as it was not described in the book at all. The moviemakers had nothing to illustrate what happened that night, nor do we as readers. What happened at Godric’s Hollow is one of the missing pieces in the story. We have no idea what went on. Jo wouldn’t let this scene be inaccurately portrayed as it would cause the plot to have a HUGE hole if it were incorrect. So with this scene in mind, Lily did not have her wand at the ready in one hand and Harry in the other. She was clutching him with both, then turned to shield Harry from the curse. Now I know I am going to hear the argument, “Well, how did Lily protect her son from Voldemort then with the blood-charm without a wand?”

Jo has stated, and we readers have seen, magic happens without wands. The “being” or “essence” can create magic based on emotions and feelings. Harry blew up his Aunt Marge with ease because his emotions were running high at that moment. This holds true also with the glass at the zoo.

A love for a child is love in its purest and most powerful form and Lily’s emotions were running high. Therefore, she wouldn’t have needed a wand. Once again, an important act that is tied into the “essence” of the wizard: Dumbledore said “It is not our abilities that show who we truly are, it is our choices.” Choices are influenced and made based on how we “feel” about them. Our essence decides. There it is again. See what I mean?

Tell me how your essence feels about my thoughts at hermione469 at hotmail dot com.