There was something that has always been bugging me. It's actually several things I don't understand.

When Snape says "You almost died today, Potter", what does he mean? Maybe it's because I'm not a native speaker, but I can't understand that part. My best guess is that Snape got so upset with what Harry said that he almost killed him in his rage. But that seems very counterintuitive to me.

Second, Snape had possibly changed after his conversation with Harry? Does this mean that Snape took Harry's words and thought that Lily is actually not worth his love, after all these years? That's my best hypothesis, but I find it very weird.

Third, did I actually properly understood that he still loves her, after more than 11 years have passed? This is very unrealistic, people get over things, and I suspect that either EY is being unrealistic here, or Snape is simply lying.

Edit: I retract the last part. Still, this does not mean that now I believe this to be realistic, but rather that it might possibly be realistic. Also that EY could indeed have decided to just go with the canon, and I see good reasons for that.

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This is very unrealistic, people get over things

Yes, but in canon, Snape doesn't get over Lily. Everything heroic Snape does in canon, up to and including becoming a double agent and dying for the cause, is because of Lily. He dies more than twenty years after he and Lily were friends at Hogwarts.

1LauralH7yPoint one: Snape originally stayed in love with Lily because of the lost chance. He actually did think he had a shot with her till he called her a mudblood, but Harry pointed out that in fact he never did. I mean some people fall in love and if their loved one dies, never date again, so I was assuming Snape's feelings were of that variety. He knew they weren't actually "dating" but he thought he'd had a chance before That Day. Now, Harry tells him "Sounds like this Guy never had a chance with that Girl ever, because she's shallow." So, yeah, hearing that he's held on to these feelings for no reason instead of "if only I'd not called her a mudblood we'd have married" - I can see how hearing that you've really wasted your past 11 years of life can piss you off. His rage was due to changing his mind, but clearly Snape finds it hard to Not Shoot The Messenger. Point two: It's more that Dumbles probably had been insisting for years (in a more subtle way than I'm about to do) that Loving Lily made him a better person so he should continue to do so. But the axiom for Loving Lily - that he could possibly have been with her if he'd been a better person in the first place - has indeed shattered. I don't think he's mad b/c Lily was shallow specifically, but just that she never, ever, ever, would have been with him. So yeah, he's trying to update on that new axiom. Point three: as others have said, Snape Loves Lily is canon, but if you take that axiom above, it's not quite that unrealistic. I knew a girl in college who didn't date for 4 years after her boyfriend was killed in a car accident. And remember Snape thinks it's his fault she died, too.
675th7yYes, but sometimes very slowly. I can tell you from first-hand experience that fixations on people with whom the fixator has zero contact for eight years do exist, and from second-hand knowledge that upwards of 13-year-long ones almost certainly exist as well. It's quite unhealthy and quite irrational, but it happens.

Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 18, chapter 87

by Alsadius 1 min read22nd Dec 2012594 comments


This is a new thread to discuss Eliezer Yudkowsky’s Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality and anything related to it. This thread is intended for discussing chapter 87The previous thread has passed 500 comments. 

There is now a site dedicated to the story at, which is now the place to go to find the authors notes and all sorts of other goodies. AdeleneDawner has kept an archive of Author’s Notes. (This goes up to the notes for chapter 76, and is now not updating. The authors notes from chapter 77 onwards are on 

The first 5 discussion threads are on the main page under the harry_potter tag.  Threads 6 and on (including this one) are in the discussion section using its separate tag system.  Also: 12345678910111213141516, 17.

Spoiler Warning: this thread is full of spoilers. With few exceptions, spoilers for MOR and canon are fair game to post, without warning or rot13. More specifically:

You do not need to rot13 anything about HP:MoR or the original Harry Potter series unless you are posting insider information from Eliezer Yudkowsky which is not supposed to be publicly available (which includes public statements by Eliezer that have been retracted).

If there is evidence for X in MOR and/or canon then it’s fine to post about X without rot13, even if you also have heard privately from Eliezer that X is true. But you should not post that “Eliezer said X is true” unless you use rot13.