Epic Courage

Bravery can appear in epic situations just like mundane. In some cases, it can change the course of history like in the case of Mahatma Gandhi and Indian fight for independence, or Martin Luther King and the fight for civil liberties, resistance to Nazi occupation in eastern European countries, Vietnam war protests, American war of independence etc. Examples are countless, but even more so in bravery of unremembered individuals in epic times. From people hiding their Jewish neighbours from Nazis, to lone critics of authoritarian regimes, renegade scientists speaking against the consensus of their profession, civil liberties warriors, fishermen transporting allied troops in their fishing boats during the invasion of Normandy, various whistleblowers and fearless journalists, the world we know and love today would not be possible without the countless acts of bravery. Just like with mundane manifestations of bravery, in epic context bravery is rooted in love and duty – love for one’s country, one’s neighbours and children, fellow man, future generations or one’s conscience. If all these individuals gave in to the paralyzing fear they undoubtedly felt, world we live in would be a much different place. This is something that we, the people of 21st century, have forgotten, as we enjoy unprecedented peace and prosperity. When life is easy, in historical terms, and we are constantly fed, warm and entertained it is easy to take what we have for granted and grow soft and fearful. But if history has taught us anything it is that good times never last forever. If we want to preserve the world we have inherited for the future generations, and for ourselves while we are in it, we will need to start flexing that courage muscle. It may be atrophied from lack of use, but just like body has muscle memory, courage is in us sleeping and ready to wake up.

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