Arthur Weasley: The Importance of Passion

Arthur Weasley: The Importance of Passion

“But you’re Muggles! We must have a drink! What’s that you’ve got there? Oh, you’re changing Muggle money. Molly, look!” – Arthur Weasley

What many of us lack is passion. Passion for something outside of ourselves, passion with purpose.

Arthur Weasley is a prime example of the importance of passion. He was passionate about Muggles – not just their artifacts. His daily labor in the Misuse of Muggle Artifacts Department was primarily focused on protecting Muggles from running across and being hurt by enchanted artifacts. Then, as a side job, he took up their cause against the Dark Lord, though he could have easily protected himself and his family under their pure-blood title. Arthur’s passion drove his noble, self-sacrifice (in many ways the opposite of Lucius Malfoy). But he wasn’t the only one with a passion.

Bellatrix Lestrange was a very passionate woman. She was passionate about forwarding the pure-blood cause. She was passionate about being the most loyal servant of the infamous Lord Voldemort.

It is important that we find something to be passionate about, for passion fuels purpose. I’m convinced that the only way to have a fulfilling life is to find our purpose and run after it. However, we must be careful in how we fuel and direct our passion so that our purpose doesn’t become stained by the wrong things.

But how do we find our passion? And how can we control whether we are passionate about the right things or the wrong things? 

It is of my personal belief (being a Christian) that our passion and purpose are found and fueled when we find God. Whether you believe God to be the source of passion and purpose or not, I think we can agree our lives are made much richer and more fulfilling when we feel like we have a greater purpose to live for. And in finding that passion (whether it be for Muggles or Harry Potter or basket weaving) we must actively guide it toward “good.” It won’t just end up there on its own.

For example, Arthur had a passion for Muggle artifacts. Surely he could have allowed Voldemort to rise to power, destroy or enslave the Muggles, and take all the artifacts he wanted. He could even continue to bewitch without fear of being fined by the ministry. He might have been able to start an incredibly lucrative business in flying cars. But because he chose to direct his passion in the course of love, he chose the route of self-sacrifice and fought for the lives of the Muggles rather than for their goods.

Bellatrix Lestrange could have directed her lust for being at the helm of a cause in Dumbledore’s direction. Granted, she grew up in a Muggle-hating family, but so did her sister Andromeda, and she left to marry Ted Tonks. She even became a safe house for Harry on his trip to The Burrow at the beginning of Deathly Hallows.  Where Bellatrix chose to focus her passion on the purpose of killing Muggles, Arthur and Andromeda used their passions for the good of Muggles and not to save their own skin. (I’m sure Andromeda could have turned her back on Ted and Tonks and saved her own skin if she really wanted to, but like Arthur, she chose the course of love).

“Remember Cedric. Remember, if the time should come when you have to make a choice between what is right and what is easy, remember what happened to a boy who was good and kind and brave because he strayed across the path of Lord Voldemort. Remember Cedric Diggory.” – Albus Dumbledore

We all have passion born inside of us. It is up to us where we guide it and to what purpose we direct it – love, apathy, or hate. And in my humble opinion apathy may be the worst of the three.

Apathy is passion denied, shut up in a box and put aside or kept entirely for oneself (such as the Malfoys, whose only passion was their own wellbeing). Apathy plows the way for hate, for evil. The opposite of apathy is passion and even better, a passion fueled by love.

“You fail to realize that it matters not what someone is born but what they grow to be.” – Albus Dumbledore

What is your passion? What are you using it for? If you haven’t found it, yet, are you going to remain apathetic? Or are you going to fight to find it? 

  • Cammie

    My total passion is Theatre/Drama! I believe that the world would be a much better place if people really knew how to channel the negative things in their life and make positive art.

  • Iain Walker

    Hmm. It’s worth noting that Arthur’s passion for Muggles doesn’t seem to extend towards any serious interaction with them outside the Wizarding World, or to any serious attempts to understand their lives or technology. His attitude towards them, while benign in intent, is patronising and uninformed – if anything, his passion is for the Idea of Muggles as much as it is for Muggles themselves (in this respect he’s a bit like Hermione and her initial approach to House-elf slavery – well-meaning but hampered by their own unexamined privilege).

    As to the question of how we direct our passions towards the right things, part of the answer is that passions spring from different sources, as your chosen examples (Arthur and Bellatrix) illustrate very well. Arthur’s passion, flawed as it might be, springs ultimately from curiosity and open-mindedness – even if he is somewhat lackadaisical in his search, he seeks novelty and knowledge, in particular of his fellow human beings and their achievements. His passion, in short, is humanistic. Bellatrix’s passion springs from a need for self-validation, a need for structure and authority – which she finds in Voldemort. Her passion is simultaneously personal and ideological – almost, one might say, religious.

    So when you suggest that “our passion and purpose are found and fueled when we find God”, I’d retort that Bellatrix’s is found and fueled when she finds Voldemort, and that it’s really quite ill-advised to seek meaning and purpose in submitting to the authority of any entity – Dark Lord or Deity.

    (Sorry, but you kind of walked into that one – good article otherwise).