The Harry Potter series is a staple of universal themes taking fans on a journey about life, death, good, evil, friendship, family, and most definitely, love.
If there's one common thread shared throughout the films (and books!), it is that you can't test a mother's fierce affection for her children. You sure can try, but you're definitely making a bet to lose.
This powerful dynamic of mother and child is shown through such complex women as Molly Weasley, Narcissa Malfoy, Lily Evans and Professor McGonagall (yes, Minerva!).
In celebrating Mother's Day, we are taking a look at how the mothers of Harry Potter taught us some of life's biggest lessons.
Professor McGonagall: Tough love can teach and motivate
As the matriarch and absolute boss of Hogwarts throughout the years, Professor McGonagall protected the castle and its inhabitants during the wizarding war. She never faltered under pressure. Her abilities and expectations as a stern leader who expected the best from her students commanded the respect of her pupils and colleagues. Mother figures don't have to be related by blood to motivate. They can be teachers who guide others with wisdom and a healthy dose of tough love.
Narcissa Malfoy: Defy evil
Narcissa's loyalty to the dark side is practically impenetrable until Voldemort involves her only son Draco in his evil plot for power. Her first step in ensuring her child's safety by joining in an Unbreakable Vow with fellow death eater Severus Snape. Her next move is during the Battle of Hogwarts. When Voldemort sends her over to Harry's seemingly lifeless body, she lies to the Dark Lord that he is dead. She does this after she confirms from a living and breathing Harry that Draco is safe and alive as well. Kin is worth more than our biggest fears or supposed allegiances.
Molly Weasley : Family doesn't have to be blood-related
The wizarding world, or at least the Malfoy family, could identify the Weasleys from a Quidditch pitch away - vague facial expressions, red hair, and hand-me down robes. However, as soon as Ron befriended the young Chosen One in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Molly (and Arthur) takes Harry under her wing. Hermione also comes to know the Weasleys as a second family. Throughout the years, Molly showers them with the same affection and fierce protection as her own children. Family comes in all forms, and means more than who you are related to by blood.
Lily Evans: Love is the most powerful force of all
On October 31st, 1981, Lily sacrificed herself to save her only son. That decision is so powerful it saves Harry's life against Voldemort's killing curse, and subsequently helps destroy one of the most evil wizards of all time. While mothers show their children love through tough wisdom, taking care of others, and facing their own fears, it can also be through the painful ordeal of sacrifice. Evans' choice proved that love is the most powerful force in the world, and it can defeat evil.