People use the word hero to describe great persons who ever lived. Thus, a hero is a man of eminent bravery or ability, well-liked by many people because of his valiant actions and dignified qualities. For example, during the time of crisis, adversity or danger, certain characters flaunt courage and self-sacrifice for the greater good of communities, societies or nations. These characters amid the difficulties and dangers facing them forge ahead in order to save all humanity-heroism. in some cases, there is no reward for these people. However, through their bravery acts, heroes remain vital figures in human history for their personal commitments.
Each society or nation has its own heroes. For example, many Africans regard freedom fighters as heroes. This is because freedom fighters displayed moral excellence by resisting colonial rule and at the end, many African countries got independence.
In United States, stories of civil rights movements and the resistance to white supremacy dole out as moral examples hence, heroism. In classical antiquity, heroic figures like Perseus, Heracles and Achilles, involved themselves in imperative roles in the Ancient Greek religion, which left them venerated heroes. The paper will examine how Perseus became a hero in Greek mythology (Hero, 2010, p. 1).
Once upon a time in Greece, an oracle told Acrisius the king that his grandson will kill him one day. And so, Acrisius decided to imprison his daughter Dannae in a tower of brass in order to keep away men from reaching her. Nevertheless, this did not work as Zeus came to her rescue and later on married her. It took Acrisius four years to discover the union of Zeus and Dannae. However, as it came out, it was late for Acrisius as the two had sired a babe who most likely will instigate the death of king Acrisius. King Acrisius immediately ordered the death of Dannae and Perseus by throwing them into the sea. Conversely, Zeus definitely resisted any attempt to kill Dannae and Perseus. He therefore directed the king of the island to save the Perseus.
Under this direction, Perseus landed safely in one of the many Cyclades and survived. Of course, there was a prerequisite to this. The king of the island wanted the head of Gorgon Medusa as a birthday gift. With the protection of Hermes and Athena, Perseus went ahead and beheaded Gorgon Medusa and took her head to the king of the island. Additionally, in an act that showed his heroic nature, Perseus fought and set free Andromeda withheld by the sea monster.
Perseus went ahead to change the Polydectes into stone so that he can liberate his mother. As an act of fulfilling the oracle, Perseus visited Argos in order to participate in athletic events. In the event of being ready to throw the disc, the wind swept the disc away and landed into Acrisius killing him almost instantly. In Argos, Perseus claimed his inheritance and later became the king of Argos. However, Perseus felt guilty of killing his grandfather and reigning on his behalf.
He decided to exchange kingdoms with Megapenthes of Tiryns. His leadership led to the establishment of two cities, Mycenae and Midea (Greek Mythology Link, (n. d), p. 1). Clearly, Perseus was a true hero who defied all odds and killed his grandfather and Gorgon Medusa. In Greece and some parts of Asia and Egypt, many people refer Perseus as a great hero who ever lived. Following his death, the Greek mythology assigned him a place among the stars to reckon his heroism.
Perseus can compare with a classical hero. A classical hero aims at something and at the end of it all, accomplishes it. Just like a classical hero, Perseus aimed at wining the golden prizes set out by the king of the island for whoever will bring him the head of Medusa. Like a classical hero, Perseus went through life threatening and bizarrely intimate forces but finally became triumphant. A classical hero aims at personal divinization-apotheosis just like Perseus. For instance, in most cases, there is a plot to kill a classical hero at birth forcing the parents to rear him in a far land.
Such heroes meet their death when they are at the peak with enormous sepulchres. Individual characters such as bravery, determination, intrepidity, valor, gallantry, fortitude and sacrifice are few examples, which ignite heroes to perform greater good for all humanity. In the contemporary world, such characteristics make people vigilant and ready to fight for their rights (Raglan, 2003, pp. 2-31).
Modern fictional heroes in a way resemble classical heroes. These heroes illustrate protagonist or love interests in the story contrary to prodigious expectations of heroism. Some of these heroes show prowess in fantasy features such as epic fancy and sorcery instead of issues dominant in the real world.
In the modern movie world, heroes prevail at the end no matter the circumstances. Some action movies exhibit invincible heroes who posses phenomenal strength and fortitude. Astonishingly, these heroes are murderers, villains and alluring evildoers in order to gain heroism.
However, certain heroic characteristics affect the general outlook of modern life especially when some people opt to kill others gain heroism through genocide and political violence. As for me, I believe that heroism should help people solve the problems affecting them for the greater good of humanity (Hein, 1993, pp. 1299-1302).
Perseus Cellina (Guerber, 1895, p. 245).
Greek Mythology Link. (n. d). The Myth of Perseus and Medusa. Retrieved September 3, 2010, from
reference. com/browse/hero> Raglan, L. (2003). The Hero: A Study in Tradition, Myth and Drama. Mineola, New York: Dover Publications.