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Heroism – The Misunderstood and Toxic Ideal

Heroism – The Misunderstood and Toxic Ideal

Nikhita Makam

Heroism, the mighty combat, the blazing soldier, the prince charming, the beaux, etc, etc! Yet, does heroism truly exist?

Heroism

heroism

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Typically, he comes with the zeal to save the day no matter what, a never-ending plethora of smiles and perfect sayings. Perfect. Heroes are perfect. They never fall and never falter. Heroes, oh so heroic, oh the heroism. The only problem here though is that life, sadly, is not a fairytale. The dragons have long fallen asleep and sunk into the Earth’s core, absorbed and then reborn in our minds.

The monsters hide under our skin and the trolls manifest in our thoughts. And alas, prince charming is on his mighty horse dressed in shining armour waiting to save the day but somehow his armour is actually rustic, his sword is flimsy and his teeth gleam too white, he just cannot empathize because he does not understand.

Perfection

Perfection

He is perfect, too perfect. So where? Where is the happily ever after? If this isn’t prince
charming then who is? Where’s the knight to save the day? How much longer in this
dreaded tower will it take? The universe, as it will prove to you at every opportunity it can grasp, is not kind. It is not nice. There are no fairy princesses or godmothers. There is no magic spell that will poof, fix everything. No bippity boppity boo to set everything right and tie up all loose ends.

There is no magic. There is no elixir. The real world is messy. The real world is not kind. The real world will kick you down to the ground and wait for you to get back up so it can sucker punch you in the face. The real world will suck joy out of what could have been a happy moment, it will paint the skies matte black and mix all your colors to
create a murky brown to dip all your thoughts in. The real world, simply put, is not nice.

The Stark Truth

Truth

This is not reassuring and obviously not what anyone would like to hear. We’d rather
hear about wizards with potions that save us and not pills. We’d love to idolize a prince
and not think about character flaws. But just like how we grow out of fairytales and
bedtime stories, we eventually grow out of fantasy and face reality. Dragons die and
leprechauns lie. Here is the part that no one would ever like to hear; there are no
heroes.

This is not dreary or gloomy, in fact its the exact opposite. We need to shed the whole
hero and victim complexes we created in our mind. It’s extremely rare that a person will enter your life as a hero and save you. We need to shed the whole hero and victim
complex. Because maybe you are stuck up in this tower and maybe there is an evil spell
cast upon you and maybe you’re in mortal doom and Prince Charming is running an hour late?

Running a couple of days, weeks, months late? Or maybe, prince charming just
isn’t coming. And maybe, you don’t need him to. You’re not a damsel in distress and even if you are stuck up in that tower, you can always find a way down.

You don’t need to stare out that window and wait, you can weave rope and climb out. You can carve a weapon and defeat the monsters. You can wield a sword and banish the demons. You can do all of it, and so much more. If you ever think that you need a hero, remember that you can always become one.

Bitterness

Bitterness

The world is not nice. This is a fact. This fact may annoy you, in fact, it should annoy you because it is super annoying to everyone. You may become bitter, you may decide that you are better off by yourself then. Prince Charming isn’t coming, pfft and all the fairytale fallacies are falling apart. Or you might naively have hope and try to be a fairy
for other people and try to fix them. You might bottle things up and let people walk over you or you might turn frustrated and upset with people.

This is understandable. We are not angry at people, we are not upset with the people who took advantage of our vulnerability and we are not mad at any particular person. We are mad at the universe for not being nice. Perhaps the world is not nice, but that doesn’t mean that people are not nice. There are people who will find you and stay. You are never alone on your journey. There are always characters to help you. There will be no fairy godmother to grant you wishes, but there will be people who will stick with you throughout.

The Partners

Partners

There will be a Yoshi to your Mario who will help you finish this level, a Hermione Granger to tell you the rational side of things, a Thelma to your Louise and a Rosencrantz to your Guildenstern. There will be heroes, all along the way. They may not have capes and horses but they stay up an extra hour to talk to you, they save you a bite of food if you’re not there, they make you laugh when you want to cry, they make you beautiful when you are a mess and they make you find comfort in their smile.

They do not arrive on white horses and proclaim that they will save your life. They will prove to you, that you do not need a hero but that you are a hero. They will take that matte black sky and teach you how to paint galaxies on it, show you how beautiful the stars are, how beautiful space can be. They will be there for you while you find yourself and they will watch you when you finish the level with pride.

For this feat, they are true heroes because that is true heroism to me. These heroes do
not wear capes, yes but they don qualities that superman would envy. They redefine
perfection and they show you how flawed prince charming ideals are. Their heroic
deeds may seem as small as telling you that they are proud of you but that is the
equivalent of moving mountains, of rescuing a school bus of children, of saving an entire kingdom.

They redefine the term heroism itself and they understand that while life might be messy, there is beauty in embracing that mess. When life punches you in the face they will teach how to take that jab and then throw an uppercut back at the life and then throw in a hook or two for good measure.

They will shatter the idea of a prince charming who creates a path for a princess to take and waits at the castle but instead they will give you the torch to light up those dark nights of travel, they will give you neon pink snacks to sustain the trip, they will give you a map and above all, they will walk down that road with you.

Flaws and Ideals

Flaws

The idea of a hero is flawed. Rather, it’s about heroic ideals. It is about a strong work
ethic, about optimism and hope for the future, and about never giving up. Heroism is helping a person become their own hero. Heroism perhaps is not in buying fancy shoes and redesigned rooms but in asking a person how their day went every single day. Heroism perhaps is not in building walls to protect a character but allowing the character to fend for themselves.

Heroism perhaps is not the perfect teeth but the person who knows perfectly what to say. And perhaps heroism is as simple as just being there. Just being there for a person, makes you a hero. The world is not nice, and there is no prince that’s true. But there’ll be people who will make you find a hero within you. The person who is there at both your hundreds and zeroes, who is there for your highs and lows those are the people who are real heroes.

Read more Heroism articles on The Teen Pop Magazine!

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

See Also

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

Heroism comes from the Latin word heroes meaning a real or fictional person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. The Prince Charming who slew that dragon, who vanquishes all the trolls, who pulls the sword out of that stone and saves the kingdom, who goes on a quest to find elixir but also finds himself along the way, and who is loved by all the kingdom’s folk. The protagonist, the oh so charming hero.

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