I have only now noticed this cute Hegelian moment in Harry Potter. What is awkwardly translated into the movie version as: “Do not pity the dead, Harry. Pity the living” originally reads as follows in the last book: “The true master does not seek to run away from death. He accepts that he must die”
Now: in Hegel’s “master-slave dialectics” the master is precisely the one who is not enslaved by the irretrievable attachement to his life.
In Hegel the substantives “Master ” and “Slave” appear to be conceptual names for “detachment” and “attachment”. To be able to prove itself as a pure consciousness – and not a thing or an object – to another consciousness, one will have to show that it is not attached to any specific particular existence, any empirical life. To become a Master means to fully base one’s subjectivity in the symbolic order, that it to say to search for the identity in structural position (symbolic mandate) fully detached from any empirical reality. The master in Hegel is the one who is capable of such a detachment; the slave , on the contrary, is primarily the slave of his oown attachment to life and body.