The Evolution of the Hero Imagine, if you will, a lone man sitting astride a white steed on a remote hilltop. Suddenly, he hears a distant cry for help. He races toward the sound only to find a beautiful damsel held captive by a fierce dragon. Without a second thought for his own safety, the valiant knight leaps off of his horse, draws his broadsword in mid-air, and engages the evil dragon in a battle that only one of them will walk away from. The battle is intense but, in the end, the brave knight slays the dragon, frees the princess and rides off into the sunset.
This picture of the warrior hero is one that has pervaded literature throughout the ages. Where are these heroes today? Do we as a society even have heroes anymore? The simple truth is that our heroes today are just as brave as the warrior hero of yesterday only they occupy a different form.
Today's heroes are the intellectuals and the fighters for freedom and equal rights. Today's heroes are people such as Martin Luther King Jr., Mother Teresa, Mahatma Gandhi, and Princess Diana. Since 9-11, our heroes are such people as firefighters, police officers, relief workers, airline passengers and moms and dads who gave their lives in the name of freedom.