What does it take to be a hero? The term hero insinuates a multitude of understandings; there are so many perspectives. The term is broad, but when thought of in-depth, the concept of each definition shares one common distinction: heroes represent the entirety of people that lead.
People become heroic by the actions and deeds they commit, or by the characteristics they possess that allow them to great things, and in turn, the public or their peers regard them as so.
When I think of a hero, it’s those everyday ordinary people, fighting to overcome their personal battles who come to mind. Some heroes are well known–but sometimes, they become more like idols than heroes after time. A true hero is heroic sometimes more by their character and ability to inspire, more so than those who do great actions–once in their lifetime. Legacies and heroes fall hand in hand. A true hero will be remembered forever.
It takes a lot of courage to go against the grain, to be oneself in a culture of conformity. Moving beyond the expected and following one’s own dreams is heroic to me.
In a blog by David Ursillo, he writes that, “Heroism evokes thoughts of remarkable bravery and extraordinary selflessness; men and women who soar above what is simple and expected. heroism is gloriously embodied during times of significant challenge and duress…to persistently strive to rise above and beyond life’s challenges.”
Ordinary becomes laudable. Heroes come in every shape and size, but they all share a common longing to make change, sacrifice and build a better life within their hearts. Consider those brawny big guys who fight in battle, the knight in shining armor, the superheroes and greek gods like Hercules.
Personally, I think heroism runs deeper than success because of phyiscal ability. I’m not demeaning the heroes who save lives or commit noble deeds because of their strength or other powers, I just think people sometimes overlook the heroes in the ordinary people of the world.
The dictionary describes a hero as a “man admired for his achievements and noble qualities […] one who show great courage, [and often] the central figure in an event, period or movement.” I think that anyone who can overcome the trials of life, in spite of public opinion and obstacles, and continue on following his dreams, can find a true hero within himself.
I have a lot of heroes that I look up to in life. When I think of someone who had nothing, fought the critics and strifes of life, and became an inspiration to all, it makes me want to do the same. Who wants to live a completely ordinary life? Striving to follow my dreams is very important to me. I hope that some day I can make a difference in life, and be remembered as my definition of heroes do every day.
(Artwork by Ashley Jackson)