Essays on the Theme of Heroism

The True Definition of Heroes

by Uku Pyle from Charlotte, NC

When most people think about what a hero is, they think of the one who saves the day - the average “Perfect cartoon” hero. The stereotypical hero who shoots lasers out from his eyes and can fly from place to place. They claim heroes have millions of impeccable traits and are faultless in all of their actions. Very valid... There is a considerable amount of traits that heroes have and are defined with, but there are some that have much more significance and are more important. Many heroes hold strong, persevering traits: pushing through the hard times, going through the deep waters (Isaiah 43:2 NKJV), and never conceding their mission or goal. Others have great honesty: announcing things that they will do, admitting their faults and mistakes, and gaining the trust of others. And another handful have great courage: taking the next step while believing in yourself or moving out of your safe, comfort zone for your cause. Heroes are people whose actions benefit their society, themselves, or even the world. They don’t have to necessarily be prominent or be well known; often times they are just like ordinary people of the world. Rather, it’s their heroic actions and traits are what makes them a hero. To have those traits, however, is not the only thing that makes a hero. How they apply their traits and actions for their cause is the other main ingredient of a hero. Strong determination, bold courage, and great integrity are the three characteristics that stand out in a swarm of outstanding traits; they will use those traits to fulfill their goals, or missions. 

Without a single doubt in the world, heroes are the people who are willing to jeopardize their lives and other things to aid them in fulfilling their mission. They take bold and novel moves like a guy walking dauntlessly on a tightrope. They show great valor through the times when it seems like the opposition is too great and overwhelming. Take the abolitionist, Harriet Tubman for example. She showed great courage during the times where there were more fugitives escaping to the North than ever before. Tubman herself was once a slave, but she managed to escape from the cruel people of the south to the legit opposite in the North. Once she made the treacherous escape, she could have just lived an ordinary life without no harm or danger. However, that was not the case as she was called to help aid more fugitives to escape to the North via the great Underground Railroad. She showed tremendous courage by putting herself in severe peril just to rescue some slaves she doesn’t even know. She escorted over 300 slaves to freedom while in of being recaptured. She went down as a huge, heroic figure during that time and to this day is well known for her courageous actions. She pretty much did what Jesus did except at a much smaller level. Jesus could have just stayed in heaven, but he went down to earth to die for all of our sins so we can be with him in Heaven. Harriet Tubman showed her valor and courage by being a huge factor in the escape of slaves in the Underground Railroad; she epitomizes how and what a hero with courage is. 

As important as the preceding trait is, hero’s who keeps climbing the mountain; who keeps moving forward against the strong, vicious current; who continue to work their tail off whether in the face of adversity or not, are just as important. Look at MLK- the outstanding leader for racial equality. He literally persevered almost every day of his incredible life. Yes, it’s astonishing. He had to struggle through the hardships of racism ever since he was a kid, to when he died as one of the greatest figures of all time. He fought incredibly hard as portrayed with the countless number of rallies, protests, marches, and speeches. Along the way, he faced a giant wave of adversity; there were countless amounts of assassination attempts and so much hatred and hostility. It was kind of  the David vs Goliath of the 20th century. Despite the stacks, and stacks, and stacks of opposition, he just continued to push that great, daunting wave back and advocate very hard like a soldier fighting tenaciously for his country. King left his legacy being a man who persevered through all the struggles and being an incredible heroic figure. He is an exemplary example of a persevering hero. He will forever be remembered for being that one continuing to push through the storm. 

Now to the last trait which is often one of the most overlooked traits: integrity. Integrity is one of the most valuable and important trait a hero can have. But some of you guys ask, “ But they are not achieving anything!” Well… no. One of the most famous U.S presidents, John F Kennedy (JFK) was a man who was gifted with that great heroic trait. During the 1960s, the tension with the U.S and the notorious Soviet Union was at its peak and Kennedy called on a plan to invade Cuba ( Bay Of Pigs Operation) . Cuba was a fellow communist country that the Soviets backed and Kennedy wanted to take down the increasingly dangerous, dogged, and daunting Soviets because of their close presence to the U.S. Turns out… one of the worst decisions made by a U.S presidents. That operation was a disaster and someone had to take the blame. That’s where Kennedy’s integrity came in as he aired on national television to make the announcement that the failure was on him. That action of honesty was phenomenal - absolutely phenomenal. His ratings skyrocketed as citizens highly admired his action. This is a great example of why people should be truthful like that  as it’s a whole lot better to be that way instead of being shady. Being honest is a huge trait that the Bible quotes over and over again like Proverbs 12:22. Kennedy is a great example of what a hero with integrity displays and as we all know, later went on to be an incredible leader. 

Whether in fiction or reality, there’s a huge diversity of heroes and the traits that they have, but their fearlessness, uprightness, and their tenacity are the three most important characteristics to have. Everyone can learn and be inspired by taking note of these heroes. We can easily gain wisdom and learn many valuable lessons to apply them in our lives, just how heroes do. While writing to the earlier communities of Galatia in central Turkey, one of Paul’s (also a hero)  scriptures in the book of Galatians says, “ Let us not become weary in doing good, for the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” (Galatians 6:9) That is a perfect quote to live on as it tells us to keep on pushing to achieve our goals; all of the heroes I mentioned above did exactly that multiple times. When it comes to reflecting about the word, “Heroism,” it makes me think of trying to put more into whatever I’m working on or trying to accomplish. I also think of trying to honor those who put a lot of dedication to accomplish what they want to do. Heroes are the people who put their time and energy into their goals and I believe if we were to duplicate what they are doing, we could achieve a lot more than we think we could.


Page created on 3/12/2019 3:19:33 PM

Last edited 3/15/2019 4:10:37 PM

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