When I write, I write of heroes and villains. Creatures of extremes, in respect of both their abilities and personalities. J.R.R. Tolkien was no different, not that I would compare myself in any other way to such a literary giant. Yet, in my re-reading of ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogy I’ve reached the stage where Frodo, Sam & Pippin have almost crossed The Shire, following a couple of uncomfortable near misses with the Wraith Kings, the Dark Riders.
‘Courage is found in the most unlikely of places.’
So Frodo informs Pippin, after their otherworldly encounter with Gildor Inglorion and his fellow elves, an ethereal band passing through the Shire on their way to distant shores. Gildor and his people provide the hobbits with protection, sustenance and wise counsel before they embark on their own journey towards the Bucklebury Ferry and strange new lands. They’re only tiny, inconsequential folk but the future of Middle Earth rests on their well-fed, hairy shoulders. The most unlikely of heroes.
We all need to step up to the plate and display courage at some point in our lives. Failure to do so will mean our hopes and dreams are repeatedly trampled upon, by others in this rat race called life. You may not feel particularly heroic, you might not look like Superman or strut about like Wonder Woman, but the ability to perform heroic acts, no matter how small, exists within us all. We just need to dig deep and draw upon it when the time is right.
The word ‘hero’ originates from the Greek ‘heros’ meaning defender or protector. It is therefore not an aggressive expression, rather one that denotes shielding others from harm. Others less fortunate than ourselves. Be a hero today. Protect or defend another human being; from hunger, bullying, poverty, abuse, the list is endless. You decide when and where within your sphere of influence. Nobody is too small to be a hero. Just ask the hobbits of Hobbiton.