Luna Lovegood is my new role model.
My son and I have spent the last few weekends re-watching all the Harry Potter movies. As often happens when I re-watch a movie or reread a book, there’ll be someone or something that stands out in a new way. Life experiences often bring about a new frame of reference and something I didn’t understand before will now make sense.
As Brian McLaren says. “Some things simply can’t be seen from where I am right now. But if I keep growing, maturing, and developing, someday I will be able to see what is now inaccessible to me. ”
This very thing happened to me on my second viewing of these movies. When I watched this series the first go around, I never quite understood the character Luna Lovegood. I tended to agree with the other student’s assessment when they nicknamed her “Looney Lovegood”. She seemed a bit daft.
But watching the movies again, I have a whole new appreciation for her. Now, I think she is the wisest young wizard at Hogwarts. She is what I call a present moment person. She is very perceptive and self-aware. She notices what’s going right in front of her. She doesn’t ruminate over the past or worry about the future. Her full attention is given to whomever she’s with.
She doesn’t have many lines, but just about everything she says is thought-provoking and resonates with me. Every time she was on the screen my attention was focused on her, waiting to hear what she’d say next.
Here are a few of my favorite Luna lines. See if they resonate with you as well.
“Being different isn’t a bad thing. It means you’re brave enough to be yourself.”
This quote has one of my other role models, Brené Brown, written all over it. Brené talks a lot about authenticity and having the courage to be who we are. This can be hard to do sometimes since we are wired for belonging. We want to fit in.
But in trying to fit in, we often shut down part of ourselves. This also puts us in a place of trying to be perfect, which isn’t possible. To quote Brené: “To be authentic, we must cultivate the courage to be imperfect—and vulnerable. …that we let go of who we think we’re supposed to be and embrace who we really are.” Luna has embraced who she is. She’s brave enough to be herself.
“I’ve interrupted a deep thought, haven’t I? I can see it growing smaller in your eyes.”
Luna is incredibly perceptive. She knows that the eyes are windows to what’s going on inside us–to our thoughts and our souls–and can read them well enough to know when her timing for talking to someone may be off. This is a good trait to have as sometimes we need people to just sit silently with us. Sometimes we need to be in our thoughts without interruption. Looking at someone’s eyes may give us a clue to know when to talk and when to be quiet.
“My mum always said things we lose have a way of coming back to us in the end. If not always in the way we expect.”
Luna’s mum was wise, as well. She taught Luna the lesson of not clinging to things. Many times, things come in and out of our lives for reasons we don’t understand. They may then return to us in a different form than we had in mind and in a way that’s best for what we need right now. Sometimes we lose things to make way for something better. Either way, it’s important to not get too attached to things and to be open to what comes back to us.
“Harry Potter! You listen to me right now!”
I love Luna’s directness here. In this scene, Luna had something important to say to Harry, but he was too frantic to hear what she had to say. At first, she tried to get his attention in her usual kind and gentle voice, but he was in such a hurry he wasn’t listening. She suddenly became very direct, raised her voice and said, “Harry Potter! You listen to me right now!”
Luna knew this was a moment to elevate the volume of her voice to capture his attention. Because this tone and directness was unusual for her, it stopped him in his tracks. He turned around and listened. In a very simple and direct way, she was able to get his attention and be heard.
“Come, Daddy. Harry doesn’t want to talk to us right now. He’s just too polite to say it.
Luna is not only perceptive, she is also thoughtful. She could see Harry needed time alone and she knew to step away and give him the space he needed. Present moment people are good at noticing this. They read people well and know when to engage with others and when to give them space. She also knew that Harry was the type of person that wouldn’t have asked them to leave. She pulled her Dad away and gave Harry his much-needed space.
They say that with age comes wisdom. But Luna’s character is quite young for someone so wise. Instead, I think she embodies what Cynthia Bourgeault writes about when she says “wisdom is not knowing more, but knowing with more of you, knowing deeper.”
Luna’s wisdom comes from being present with her whole being. After seeing these movies again, I’ve gained a new appreciation for her character. I see her now as I couldn’t see her before.
She’s my new role model. If I was at Hogwarts, I’d want to be her friend.
Do you have a favorite Luna quote? If so, please share!