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Ponder Session: Are Traits or Values More Important?

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  • Tip Bones

In the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, there are quite a few more wizarding schools besides Hogwarts. But in looking at Hogwarts house sorting methods in comparison to the American wizard school Ilvermorny, it got me wondering about the nature of what we deem important in ourselves.

At Hogwarts, students are sorted based on their most prominent personality trait. Bravery and loyalty is particularly present among Gryffindors, intelligence and creativity for Ravenclaws, kindness and hard work for Hufflepuffs, and ambition and cunning for Slytherins. At Ilvermorny, students are sorted based on what they actively value. With the houses set to represent one part the whole of a person: scholar Horned Serpants, warrior Wampuses, healer Pukwudgies, and adventurous Thunderbirds. 

So what, ultimately, is more important? To value and live your life as a warrior, scholar, healer, or adventurer? Or to put stock in the inherent way you are brave, intelligent, cunning, or kind? Are you what you make yourself to be? Or are you inherently who you were always meant to be?

One thing of important that both of these sortings do, but in slightly different ways, is weigh in the students opinion. Harry thinks "not Slytherin" and the sorting hat decides to put him in Gryffindor. And the statues at Ilvermorny allow the student to decide if more than one statue wishes to claim the student for its house.

Our values and our traits both equally make up who we are, and it's important to consider both when conducting and presenting yourself to the world. It's important to remember who we are as much as what we believe in.

Image from Rhii Photography on Unsplash.