... along the lines of the heroes and villains of earlier posts. I was wondering if anybody had any profound insights into the prevalence of wizards of a particular sort in fiction. We have similar characters in Gandalf and Dumbledore, for example. But you can add to this Merlin and Cadellin ("The Weirdstone of Brisengamen"). In addition to the long beards, there seems to be a shared theme in the fact that they are keen to help the "normal" people, but despite their unusual powers, they need the "universal hero" to fulfil their good purposes.
Is it too easy to imagine that this is a simplified representation of God?