Is Heroism Really For Everyone?

As cheesy as the cliché goes, it’s assumed true and given that anyone can be a hero. You can be a hero, she can be a hero, and I can be a hero. However, when everyone’s a hero, doesn’t that make nobody a hero?

In relation to this, relatively, anyone can be a hero for somebody. For example, I’m a hero for my friend if I give him a yellowpad paper when he has none, during an exam. So, can a thief be a hero for his family when he uses the money he steals to save his dying mother?

Sometimes too, I wonder if a soldier dying in battle is more commendable than for example, a man returning a lost wallet. The soldier signed up and perfectly knew what he was getting himself into, while the man didn’t sign up to return every lost wallet he saw.

All these distort what a hero really is. Furthermore, it makes it a tedious task to define what a hero really is. The way I see it, nowadays, the term hero is taken too lightly, and people coin many definitions for what a hero is, too liberally. In my opinion, to define what a hero really is, in relevant times, we should go back to the classical definition of a hero, and integrate it to the present world. Historically and traditionally, a hero is someone who shows outstanding strength and achievements. To make this relevant to the present times, this strength may not just be physical strength but also strength of spirit and of heart. Furthermore, for me, what a hero should really be is someone who is morally right while working for the improvement of the society. In addition, he seeks no reward and has no other agenda in achieving the said betterment than the said end itself. While it might be too old fashioned and idealistic, this characterization of a hero would eliminate the devaluation of what a hero is. Frankly and conservatively, the alms-giving of a very well-off person isn’t much an act of heroism. In my opinion, we should not deem heroic or limit heroism to such little acts.  While it is true that anyone can be a hero, not everyone chooses to, because after all, being a true hero is difficult – hence the title hero bears a great value.

Carlo Fernandez

2012 35645

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3 thoughts on “Is Heroism Really For Everyone?

  1. I agree, the word “hero” should not be taken lightly. However, to me, it is acceptable to call those who are morally upright heroes because of how rare those type of people actually exist nowadays. 🙂

  2. The first thing that came to mind after reading this was the movie Hercules. =D I also think that a real hero is actually measured by the strength of his heart. Real heroes are indeed rare, and I think it’s not just because people didn’t choose to be one but also because they don’t actually know how to act like one and don’t have the proper attitude to be one.

  3. You said that we should apply the traditional idea of heroism to the present. I agree with this because I myself have given heroism a “shallow” meaning, but after reading your blog, I realized that heroism is a big word and it indeed captures something greater than “common” acts of generosity, honesty, etc. And you also said that the soldiers somewhat distort the meaning of heroism because they already signed up for it, so it means that they are just doing their jobs. But often, they are regarded as heroes because of the fact that they die serving the nation. Is the signing up for the job enough reason to disqualify them from being heroes? I think that the signing up itself already requires a lot of courage and strength already. How much more the actual work? Personally, I don’t think that the soldiers distort the concept of heroism. I think that there are soldiers who do reinforce how people should view heroism. 🙂

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