The Munich Marauders

Just a bunch of wholesome rice bowls 🍚

Welcome fellow muggle!

We are the Munich local chapter of the Harry Potter and the Sacred Text Podcast. We meet regularly to treat the Harry Potter books as sacred, and to build a community of love, respect and thoughtfulness. We support trans-liberation and oppose J.K. Rowling’s hateful rhetoric on the issue. We are not a cult, but of course, that is what a cult would say, isn’t it?

Gallery-style group picture of some of our members

Meeting Agenda: Due to the pandemic – and for reasons of flexibility – we are currently meeting digitally via Zoom, reach out to us if you want to join a meeting. We start each session by solemnly swearing we are up to no good and by – anyone who feels comfortable doing so – sharing a personal thorn and rose from since the previous meeting. Before entering the theme discussions, one of the participants does a thirty-second-recap of the current chapter. After the person moderating the day’s meeting guides us through the theme discussion, we continue with a sacred practice, followed by each of the participants blessing a character from the chapter. In our critical reading Havruta segment we take a step back from Sacred Reading to discuss (our issues with) the text as a piece of contemporary literary fiction, and how its perspectives on social and political issues impact us as readers. After a short miscellaneous section which mostly focuses on group organisation, we officially finish the meeting with mischief managed, before we let the session derail into our many – optional – muggle studies tangents. While most of our members do speak German, the discussions are held in English, just like the original texts and the podcast.

Statement concerning transphobia: The Munich Marauders want to make clear that we stand unitedly against JKR’s and any other transphobia. Trans rights are human rights. We believe that the Harry Potter books teach us a different story than what JKR is perpetuating: They teach us a story of love and acceptance, of finding your true self and being comfortable in that, of Hogwarts as a safe home for everyone. Sacred reading has nothing to do with the author or her intent – the text belongs to the readers, all of us. We, as readers and interpreters, make it magic. And that is why we as the Munich Marauders feel comfortable condemning JKR for her transphobia, while still gathering around the books. This isn’t her story, it is ours. And it has inspired us to love more and better, to take care of our friends at the margins, to fight for what is right. As Jackson Bird so pointedly said in his opinion piece: “The real magic for me is what people have created around the books and the community we have built together.”. Some additional resources we found helpful are the Statements by the HPST team and trans and non-binary listeners, Natalie Wynn’s Video (content warning: transphobic quotes) and this Essay by Brie Hanrahan (content warning: transphobic quotes).

Our favorite sacred practices: