Initial Thoughts About Myths, Legends, and (Tragic) Heroes

It has been said that “all cultures. . . are founded on myths” while “it has always been the prime function of mythology. . . to supply the symbols that carry the human spirit forward.” These are the sage words of Joseph Campbell, the renowned scholar of myth and legend. As Campbell knew well, myth permeates our very lives – even if we are not always explicitly aware of the presence and influence of mythical stories, characters, and ideals. With that reality in mind, for the first Blog writing of the semester, I would like to consider the meaning and significance of several concepts with ample modern-day currency and usage. Specifically, I want to explore the following concepts that will be crucial to our work this semester: myth, legend, tragedy, and hero. What IS a myth, and how are mythical elements present in your life in the twenty-first century? Similarly, what makes a legend, and where have you found “legendary” stories to have meaning and influence in your experience? OR, what defines a “tragic” figure, and how is “tragedy” understood today?  Lastly, just what IS a hero? Like the first three concepts, the term “hero” frequently gets used and over-used in our modern-day popular media, but it is questionable as to whether its usage is always valid or helpful. In your response, you should answer one (or, at most, two) of the above questions, working to define, discuss, and illustrate concepts that are inherently ambiguous but also highly important to us all because, as Campbell noted many years ago, the characters and ideas of mythical tales are absolutely foundational to our society, central to our very ways of life.

45 thoughts on “Initial Thoughts About Myths, Legends, and (Tragic) Heroes

  1. What is a hero?
    My opinion of a hero is someone who goes through day to day activities and performs certain tasks towards another individual. This most nearly means that anyone can, in fact be a hero. It could all start with someone holding the door for a friend that has an armful of books. In that respect, there are many variations of heroes. Not only is doing those small things for people being a hero, but it could also be put on the other side of the spectrum. If someone were to be in a burning building fighting for their lives or in a hospital with cancer, it’s the people like firefighters and doctors that are the real heroes. The only condition that I have for a hero is that a hero cannot be cocky. When someone does something for other people, they should not wait until there is someone present to notice it. The biggest heroes are the ones that do it silently. If it is publicly acknowledged, then that’s just a job, not being a hero.

  2. Myth is a very difficult word to define. Sure, anyone can go to and find the concrete meaning, but mythology has a very complicated legacy. Since the earliest found recordings, myth has been a major influence in the distant past as well as our own present. The ideas behind myth is to use story and mystery to try and explain or justify things that certain cultures don’t fully understand. For example, the reason why the epic of Gilgamesh is so profound among scholars and writers alike is because the story follows a man trying to cope with his mortality, which was one of the first pillars separating us from our hunter/gather tribes and the Neolithic era. Since then, myth has evolved and become more about defining culture and entertainment purposes as well. Stories like Star Wars may be full of action and adventure, but also focus on a profound idea in today’s society: the balance of good and evil, with heroes and villains fighting for what they think is right. Myth is as much an entertainment outlet as well as a way to explain what cannot be explained by certain peoples, making it one of the most thoroughly enjoyed forms of literature.

  3. What defines a “tragic” figure?
    In my opinion a tragic figure can be describe in many ways but most figures go through the same back story. A tragic hero usually starts out as having a bad or rough childhood usually they are abandoned, mistreated, or unloved. As time goes on they grow up pretty ordinary until the unexpected happens. The unexpected relates to a significant event that happens in their life affecting the figure. Such as a death to a loved one, the odds may be against them, falling in love, or someone they hold dear is taken away from them. After that our tragic figure sets out to do whatever they can to fix what has been done. But in the end of all this things go much worse for our tragic figures. Some die while others never find what they’re looking for.
    What general makes a tragic figure is a person who has a story that receives sympathy from others. Usually others can relate to their story in some type of way. A tragic figure literally means someone who went through a tragedy. In most cases tragic figures relate to love. Some examples of tragic figures include Romeo and Juliet, and Hercules.

    • When discussing “tragic figures” I fear most people only look at one side of a two sided coin. People always view the Tragic Hero but fail to sympathies with the Tragic Villain. Like Tragic heroes they have faced the loss of a loved one but get little recognition from outside parties as a tragic figure because of the torment they cause . For example, Batman’s parents were killed as a child; now he seeks a life of heroism and justice. We know the tragic hero but the real tragedy is what has become of the villains. Villains have experienced similar traumas to heroes and fit the same mold but have chosen a life of evil instead. A perfect example of a Heroically Formed Villain is Batman’s evil counter-part Owlman aka Thomas Wayne. Owlman is portrayed as Batman’s older brother who in an alternate universe has suffered a similar tragedy to Batman. When Thomas was young he witnessed his mother and younger brother (Batman in other universe) shot and killed by a police officer similar to Bruce Wayne who witnessed his mother and father shot and killed by a street dweller; the same tragedy formed both a Tragic Hero and a Tragic Villain. Villains can be just as scarred as the hero and preform unjust actions and do bad things just to do them and fill the void created by their past, they have no mission or motive they just want to feel something. Villains are often miss understood and not thought about to be a tragic figure. (sorry, I was just drawing off of some points you made.)

  4. Legendary is a huge word used to describe something or somebody’s past, but what makes something legendary? To me obtaining legendary status is when something you have done transcends not just your generation but other generations that come after yours. When you can change the way people think and look at things in your time and in years to come. For example, Shakespeare’s writings are legendary because they have changed the way we think and look at literature even though Shakespeare died a long time ago, his books still live on and are taught in the modern world. Although there are no legendary stories that I have experienced personally, there are many legendary accomplishments that affect my life on a daily basis. One being Steve Jobs, since he revolutionized the way we look at cell-phones and and technology. I use my cell phone almost all the time doing more than just talking on the phone but instead doing other things such as being on the internet. His accomplishments are legendary and will forever change the way we look at modern phones. You do not have to be famous to become legendary, but by doing something legendary you will become famous.

  5. Supernatural disasters, gods, dragons, the dead returning, and the ‘Hero’s Quest’. These are just a few examples of common mythical elements. Myths are stories which attempt to explain natural phenomenon or otherwise unsolvable mysteries, typically making plenty of use of symbolism. The word ‘myth’ tends to carry with it the connotation of falsehood, and of unreliability. However, the word itself doesn’t represent outright lies as much as it does represent stories that are embellished and that can not really be verified. Lots of myths involve the creation of the world. One might consider that since nobody was actually alive to see how it did or did not happen, it cannot be proven or disproven, and any tales that might be created to explain it are but myths.
    The Gods and beasts in myths aren’t meant to be interpreted literally. They represent forces that are difficult to comprehend. Myths still abound even in modern times. Take the Constellations for example; groups of stars millions or billions of light years away from planet earth that can form images. Most of the Constellations were named thousands of years ago by the Greeks who saw images incredibly far away in the sky which would move and change with seasons which they couldn’t explain with science at the time, so they postulated that they represented celestial beings. These celestial beings also had their own stories to explain away why they were up there in the first place. Today, scientists can research what stars are made of, but even still the constellations (and even certain stars) have kept their names in honor of the ancient Greeks, who were alike to scientists in that they attempted to answer questions that affect everyday life.

  6. When you think of the word “legendary” you would imagine a word that has a lot of rules and criteria behind it, in order for you to be considered a “legend.” In my opinion, being legendary does not have to be a hard task. Someone legendary should just be able to impact someone in some way. You may think of this word, and think of your relative, and how they are legendary to you. Or, you may think of a celebrity or musician as legendary. Either way, the person has made an impact on someone, and can be thought of as a legend, even if its just to one single person.

  7. What IS a hero?
    There are no such thing as heroes, only those who perform heroic deeds. Some people might disagree, but that’s how I see it. Classic characters such as Hercules or Beowulf contain most if not all the traits one might look for in the typical hero. They set the standards and paved the way for todays fictional heroes, the ones we all know and love: Super Man, Thor, Spider Man, Captain America, etc. etc. My point is the idea of heroism has been passed down for ages. It’s a concept that people have worked into their everyday lives, performing small acts of kindness and expecting/asking for nothing in return. To be a hero, according to legend, it seems to me like it’s a full time job. In todays society no one has time to be held up to those standards, so we compromise with the small day to day deeds that help others out. In the long run, those are the ones that count the most. Now more than ever the media has the obvious ability to spread the word, to make the unknown known. When heroism is brought to the attention of the public, it’s not the same; that small act of kindness no longer holds any special value. When lending a helping hand to a stranger goes unnoticed, that’s a heroic deed.

  8. In my opinion the definition of what a “hero” is has become very misconstrued. I believe that if you were to ask any person in the street today what they think a hero is, they would say that somebody who is willing to give up their lives for somebody else is a hero. But I believe that that is only one part of being a hero. Being a hero is not composed of only one factor. Hero’s are not only people who are willing to give their lives but they are also people who would rather donate a part of their check to the shelter instead of buying themselves a new video game or TV. In my opinion the best definition of a hero is someone who is selfless and would gladly give up something that clearly benefits someone else even if it puts them at a disadvantage later on. In my definition that is what a hero truly is.

  9. A legend is bigger than life. It is something that humanity strives to be, a legend shows that people are not perfect by nature and that people have to fight past their imperfections to do great things. Some believe that the gods created man in their own flawed image so that humanity can blame them for our faults. But from a different perspective, maybe man created the gods in our flawed image so that we would have something to aspire to. Man may have created legends and myths so that mankind could believe that there is something out there that is better than humanity, something to hope for, and look up to, and pray to.
    Everyone wants to be remembered for their life’s greatest accomplishments, people try to reach the point where they have overcome enough obstacles and done enough good deeds that others will look to follow in their footsteps. People want to be just like the legends we all know such as Hercules, Odysseus, or even Percy Jackson, who are all imperfect mortals that do great things for good reasons. Humanity looks at them as legends because people are able to see themselves in such heroes.

  10. What is a Hero?

    In all literature that include humans or humanized characters (such as in Novels, Short Stories, and Epics) there is always a Hero, someone who is meant to save the day, to fix all of the problems that may arise. There are many types of heroes that are portrayed in literature, this includes:

    Tragic Hero: A Tragic Hero allows their fatal fall to overcome them, and they experience a fall from grace.

    Classic Hero: A Classic Hero is the Hero that is most commonly seen in literature. They are near perfect heroes who typically have one fatal flaw that they will have to face and overcome.

    Epic Hero: An Epic Hero is usually super human, and may have mortal mother and a divine father. We all know that the Greek Gods and (male) Demi Gods liked to sleep around.

    Anit-Hero: An Anti-Hero may display the same qualities as a villain, and have a difficult time deciding between the right and wrong paths. These are the heroes who we would expect to get revenge.

    The Chosen One: The Chosen One is the most common modern day hero. They are the ones who were perceived to come. They are the ones that the psychics or other worldly powers said would come to save the world.

    These are the types of heroes that we may find in literature. But these are not the real heroes we find in day to day life. The real heroes of the world are those that go out of their way to help others for nothing in return, those that may have a hard life but still give all they can to help others. A real hero is a child who lays sick in a hospital bed but always has a smile on their face. Those are the real heroes, the heroes that we should look up to and admire.

  11. What is a tragedy? Well, tragedy now suggests that the situation deals with death which is not always the case. A tragedy can be as simple as someone’s glass of water falling from the counter. It all has to deal with perception. Typically, tragic figures tend to get into situations that force them to react quickly. The quick reaction time forces other options to be unconsidered and usually has the situation ending in despair. A tragic character can almost always be shown as the one who has had a hard time being who they truly are or hasn’t been in the best situation early on. These are the ones deemed as tragic because usually they have to overcome the many trials and tribulations. The tragic character seems to be the most addictive because the sadness of the story appeals to everyone. The tragic character is the best because they give everyone a new idea of what could happen.

  12. What is a hero? By definition, a hero “refers to characters who, in the face of danger and adversity or from a position of weakness, display courage and the will for self-sacrifice” ”for some greater good of all humanity.” But does a hero always face adversity? Or do they always display courage? Can a hero be a normal day to day person? Can a hero very well be your plain old average Joe, who just happens to touch someones life by doing a task as simple as buying a coffee for the next person in line? Or stopping to help another person change their tire on the road? Can a hero be someone such as Rachel Joy Scot, who wanted nothing more then to spread kindness? The girl who pulled over and held an umbrella over a strangers head as he changed his tire? A hero doesn’t necessarily have to save the world. A hero is a person who touches and changes a person’s life. Whether it be one person’s life, or a thousand people’s lives. A hero can be anyone.

  13. Heroes have not changed very much from Greece to now. I still believe that the ultimate heroes in both societies are soldiers. they have changed much from then to now but things are similar they are warriors putting their lives on the line to protect us and make sure we live in a democratic nation free of tyranny and oppression. the heroes of both generations have many similar traits. Valor, Bravery, Honor, and Sacrifice. uniforms and tactics may change but the personality and traits never will. we should all be grateful that people like this still exist because they are the ones who grant us this freedom. we can only hope that in the next generations more of these brave men and women answer the call.

  14. To be called a hero is truly a great thing. In our world today and even in the past, we have had both fictional heroes and real life heroes. Those fictional heroes are what we call “superheroes.” They have special powers that they have received in some way, and they are using their powers for good. They help people and bring justice to every situation possible. Then on the other side, there are real life heroes. These are the people that we look up to and respect very highly, in similarity to the fictional heroes. These real life heroes could be firefighters or policeman, or just someone who is using their time to help others and try to make the world a better place

  15. To me, a myth is a story passed down through the ages, but only that, a story. Often times when someone transmits a tale or event they witnessed to another person, they put their spin on it to make it interesting. This is how a myth can become a legend. A legend is usually heavily fabricated, often containing a figure of extreme importance, a renassiance man if you will. Legends, along with the figures inside of them are still present in modern culture because people love to have hope and dreams, that maybe the young boy watching the Avengers series will grow up into a Hero. This will never happen because these are in fact legends. But that does not mean that the essence and characteristics of a legendary character cannot take form in the shape of a modern, “Hero,” such as a fireman. After all, the legends in the epics and tales were just individuals, helping the vulnerable and saving the day, just as our modern heroes do today. -Rob Garvey

  16. For centuries heroes have existed and been looked upon as a person who possesses qualities and strengths that allow them to complete tasks that save the lives of others and/or make their home town a better place. Not much has changed from early literature to modern day lit when it comes to heroic story characters. Hercules and Superman share an immense amount of characteristics such as strength, good looks, and the ability to do the impossible. However, in today’s society there are other types of heroes than what stories tell.

    In my opinion, not every hero has to be strong and save someone. A hero must possess the qualities of selflessness and reliability. Soldiers and emergency responders are heroes in the sense that they risk their lives for others or help those in dire situations. To me, anyone from a teacher to a friend can be a hero as long as they are willing to help and are always there for you. A hero doesn’t have to go above and beyond or even have a story written about their heroic deeds, a hero just needs to be someone who is there for others and there to make a difference in the little details of life.

    All in all, a hero is someone who possesses qualities that others look up to. A hero is someone who makes you want to become someone that someone else can consider a hero.

  17. In today’s media we think of heroes as super humans from comic books or graphic novels. We generally believe that a hero is someone that can or will perform acts of courage and bravery. A hero is someone who is willing to put others before himself. There are many examples of heroes in our world today that people seem to overlook everyday. For example our daily firefighters or the men and women in the military. These people risk everything for the safety and protection of others, putting themselves last and others before them. Today people tend to think of heroes as having to be able to perform tremendous feats that are just not very realistic. A hero should be praised for his or her work, but never asked to be praised. We tend to overlook the everyday heroes in our communities without even saying a simple thank you. To me a hero is anyone who is willing to put others before themselves. One may see someone as hero to them specifically while another may see him as a villain. We all see our heroes differently.

  18. what is a hero?

    A hero to me is not always just like you see in the movies everyday it is not always a man on the battlefield jumping on a grenade thrown into their foxhole, a hero is the mom or dad or friend that goes through everyday life fighting through their own problems yet still striving to care for others around them. A hero is someone that is fighting to stay alive due to a life threatening illness and still manages to see the good in everyone as well as their own life. A hero is that grunt on the battlefield selflessly going in and out everyday knowing hes protecting his family regardless what he is asked to do. There are hero’s all around us every minuet of everyday, never asking for recognition but just humble in the fact that they can look around and see the fruit of their labors.

  19. There are many different heroes across the world and while some of those heroes have some similar characteristics they are ultimately different. This is because a hero is the ideal of that culture, meaning they display the characteristics that the culture was looking for the best part of that ideal that most cultures understood is that no human or hero was perfect. Odysseus, while being incredibly intelligent, he had to go through so many trials because he had excessive pride and did not give credit to the gods for the idea of the Trojan horse. Heroes like Odysseus showed that people understood that while heroes are great, they always have a weakness.
    Today because the culture has changed so too, have heroes. While there are still “superheroes” that replace the old meaning of heroes, a hero today is an ordinary person who does their best to help people in need. These heroes are not battling monsters or are the children of gods, and because of this, modern day heroes fit very well with the American culture of freedom, the American dream, and equality.

  20. What is a myth?

    Myths are central to most everyone’s way of life. They are stories passed down from generations to generations. The most special aspect of myths though, is that myths can be viewed as fact or fiction. For those who believe in a god and religious stories, Adam and Eve and the ideas of creation are not myths, however to a nonreligious person, these stories are just that: stories. I find it interesting how one persons fact is another man’s fiction. For a lot of people, “myths” dictate behaviors and ways of life. At first, myths were used to explain phenomenons that weren’t quite understood. They were created and passed down until science and technology were strong enough to really explain the misunderstood.

  21. What is a hero? My household dictionary considers it to be a man or woman of distinguished courage or ability, admired for his/her brave deeds and noble qualities. Society tends to add to the typical idea of a hero and throw in powers and abilities beyond the typical human beings talent and also an angle of bitterness or mystery because of a past experience that caused the person to want to fight against the injustices of the world, root against all evil, help people in general, etc. Personally, I see a hero to be someone who has such a deep rooted sense of ought, of what is right and just and good, that they battle against what is wrong in societal standards while retaining a humble demeanor. He or she doesn’t do it for glory or recognition but because its what he or she believes. His or her main concern is the well being and safety of the citizens and the capturing or annihilating of evil in any and all of its forms.

  22. What is a myth?
    Myths have been passed down from generation to generation starting with the ancient times. Many of these myths have modern variations and are adapted into many different stories. Many of the modern stories about “Superheroes” and monsters and such have origins from the ancient myths. Many of the modern variations of the myths are very popular today. The Percy Jackson series about the Greek myths is one of my favorite book series and is very popular. Rick Riordan did a very great job making modern connections and appeals to the youths of today. Myths also are great for teaching lessons and getting important points across. Myths are and always will be some of the most popular stories that people tell, as you can take them and relate them to basically anything. As you can tell, they never die, as most have been around since ancient times.

  23. What is a Hero?
    That question was probably a lot easier to answer 20 or so years ago if you look at older action movies. The Hero was the one who was stronger, smarter, funnier, and most importantly more just than the Villain. Now we look at today in movies and see less black and white and now only see shades of grey with neither side being clearly in the right and both fighting for their lives. Batman is a good example since by his own definition he is someone who is not in the right. He does things outside the law in ways that are blatantly illegal and his motives are shrouded in doubt as to whether he should continue or not. So looking at the first question I brought up I think a hero could be defined in a massive number of different ways. But I believe a hero is someone who directly faces against his personal challenges whether it be the villain or his own thoughts and actions.

  24. What is a hero?

    In today’s day and age you can’t really define a hero specifically. Most hero’s aren’t who you would expect them to be. They can range from all different types of people, and be anyone you want. In someone’s eyes a hero could be a christian singer who sings about the beliefs of Christianity and spreads god’s message. In another persons eyes their parent could be their hero. You can’t really define a hero, based on their actions. You can only base them on the qualities that make up a hero in your own mind.

  25. What is a myth?
    In my opinion a myth is a traditional story or tale of some kind. Usually they are passed on throughout generations. They are often found to be fake stories, and usually have a reason behind each one. Mythical elements are presented in the twenty-first century today by keeping tradition. Some we learn when myths even when we are little, and learn what to do and what not to do from them sometimes. Throughout literature you read certain famous mythical pieces, which are kept around and talked about today. This is why students such as myself are still learning about the Celtics, Beowulf, Shakespeare’s writings, and so on. Often in myths there is one legend, or hero in the piece. This is the typical character which saves the day. A hero is someone who solves the uneasy situation which has occurred. They are found in many shapes and sizes. Sometimes they are animals, objects and so on. A hero is someone or something that others look up to. They have courage, and bravery.

  26. What is a Hero?
    A hero is not something that can simply be categorized. They exist in all different forms. A hero can be a man or woman, child or elder, even a dog or cat. The thing that makes these beings a hero is their actions. A hero is a being that uses their abilities or strengths to aid others. We typically think of the stereotypical heroes as Superman or Lassie. Though these characters don’t actually exist there are examples of them among us everyday. A citizen who aids in a fire or a dog who saves a drowning child is a hero as well. You can have the largest muscles or the quickest reactions but if you do not use them for the benefit of others then you are not a hero. A hero is a being that uses their abilities or strengths to aid others. Just using strength to make a difference in someone’s life makes you a hero. It is a common kindness we find in these people that draw us to commemorate them on their good deeds. Heroes exist all over this planet, in the past, present, and future. As long as you lend a helping hand you are considered a hero to someone somewhere.

  27. The word myth is misunderstood on a daily basis. A myth is something like a Unicorn or Griffins. I know it sounds silly but its true. Anyone can make their own myth come to life. I could simply say hey look a cat with the body of a cow! as long as I have compelling evidence who knows how many people would believe me. It is something as simple as beliefs. A hero is a man or woman of great respect and power. Hercules for example is a man who rose up from nothing and protected his people with all his might. Heroic, brave, resilient, he never gave up until victory was his. that is a hero. A legend could be described in many ways. I would simply put it as a person who does good to protect the well being of others. Or if you are looking at it in a mythical way the lockness monster could be a legend. A creator or thing that has photo evidence but no alive specimen.

  28. A hero is a person who exemplifies extraordinary ability when it comes to being a human being. With this being said a hero breaks down into two categories; a hero and a tragic hero. A hero in the most basic sense would be Beowulf. Beowulf earns his fame by killing Grendel and Grendel’s mother and later on in life kills the dragon. This of course wins over all the ordinary and non heroic people around him, blessing him with fame. Hamlet, on the other hand, is a tragic hero. This is because he starts off with the noblest intentions in order to avenge his father’s death, but due to his surroundings and own actions he is left with his own death.
    Therefore, a hero is not just a person who saves everyone from evil or death, but someone who does something with an honest purpose. The noble qualities in these individuals are what makes them a hero.
    It is my understanding that tragedy means death. In order to go through a tragedy, there must be great suffering. So a tragic hero is someone responsible for their own death whether they know it or not. By being born into their life of tragedy or great suffering, a reader is able to understand the fate behind a characters life, such as Hamlet.

  29. A Hero?

    A hero is as simple as someone who goes out and makes people happy and gives people encouragement. A hero does not need to be a person who you would typically think is considered one. Such as a police officer or firefighter. A hero is someone who says that today they will make a difference. They go out and support/help others that really need it. Heroes are always thought to be of authority, or of higher class. When thinking of a hero I think of someone that has changed another persons life for the good. Heroes are different from person to person, no matter what someone you dislike, could be a hero to someone else.

    Making people happy is the best way of seeing the true side of life. Heroes change lives and make people realize who they truly are. For example a hero of mine is as simple as little kids, such as my cousin. Little kids are full of life and are always making people happy. Dogs are the same way. I have heard from kids, who had this to say about dogs “the reason dogs do not live long lives is because the whole purpose to life is to be happy. Dogs are always happy and that is why they do not live as long as humans.”

  30. Everyone has those family stories about a past relative doing something completely crazy and just entirely unbelievable, but no matter how many people tell you such a story, the teller always believes it. There may be no proof or truth to it whatsoever but that is what makes it so intriguing and something called a myth. As for a legend, it is similar to a myth in the sense of being a story passed on, however what separates it completely is that there is more truth and evidence that support such a story. It may not completely true, but more true than a myth. Also, often you will find “heroes” in legends while myths contain beings such as gods if it is dated back long enough. A hero is usually the main focus of a story, or legend in this case, and is often viewed in a positive light. They are strong, brave, charismatic, and idols to individuals surrounding these heroes. However, heroes may not always be those awesome beings one would expect to be, but very dark and destructive. These types of heroes are often referred to as byronic or tragic heroes as they are often destructive and go through sufferable times which is usually not under their control. As for the word “tragedy,” it is often considered a gloomy word just like a tragic hero. In today’s terms a tragedy is known as a severe, negative event in one’s life that causes great deals of suffering which nobody ever wants to experience.

  31. (Class #2)

    —A myth is a traditional story, especially one concerning the early history of a people or explaining some natural or social phenomenon, and typically involving supernatural beings or events…….textbook (internet) definition of course.
    To simply put it, a myth is an explanation to describe a natural occurrence. A myth can be used to teach a lesson or to just entertain us today.

    EXAMPLE: The changing of the seasons is something that affects us now and will continue to affect us in the future. Before, people didn’t know what this “supernatural” occurrence was. Now we have a “scientific” explanation…..personally, I love the myth. Please feel free to click on the link if you have not guessed what myth I was talking about in the beginning.


    —A legend is an unverified story. Some people say that a myth and a legend are the same. This is not true. A myth explains something that happens that people have no “scientific” explanation for. A legend is a story that is very well-known.

    EXAMPLE: For me, legends were bedtime stories….is that weird?……anyway…..they are always entertaining but we have to remember what exactly a legend is. NOT PROVEN REAL. Here are some urban legends that you guys might find interesting….

    WARNING: Not suitable for those that have a weak stomach and people that get nightmares easily….It’s really not that bad….just giving the warning for those that want it.


    Hope I did this right…

  32. What IS a hero?

    I think a hero can be a myriad of things, dependent completely on the context they are placed in. We have the obvious, fictional superheros that we see on TV and in comic books. We have the people commonly referred to be everyday heroes, such as police officers and fire fighters. People personally have their own “hero” in their life, whether it is a family member at home or a celebrity they’ll never meet. That is when I start to realize how ambiguous the term “hero” is, because its completely subjective from person to person. A hero to one may be the villain or enemy to another. An example is a soldier. A soldier may be considered a hero by his nation for fighting for their country, but can certainly be seen otherwise by the opposing force who may suffer from his patriotism. It’s all about the context they are placed in, and the situation of the person judging them to determine who is a “hero”.

  33. What is a hero?

    When thinking of a hero, one thinks of someone who has presented actions that were admirable, helpful, and selfless. The word hero is commonly associated with characters from television, novels, and comic books. However, a superhero or a fictional character are not the only heroic candidates. In reality, a hero is anyone who has helped or impacted someone’s life in a positive way. A hero does not just have to save lives, everyone has their own hero in their lives, whether it be a parent, guardian, a teacher, etc.,as long as that person has impacted their lives in a way in which they cannot show enough gratitude, they may be considered a hero. People may even have several heroes in their lives, someone who has changed their perception on the world or even just been there in times of need, everyone has a different opinion on who or what is a hero. In the end, the world is full of heroes of all shapes and sizes, fictional or real or even heroic figures from the past. Regardless of who is your hero, or who you consider a hero, as long as they have helped you or impacted your life or others in a positive way, then they deserve to be labeled as a “hero”.

  34. A hero can be anyone, which is why they have fascinated people throughout the years. They don’t necessarily have to be stronger or smarter or braver, but they all persevere to help the people and defeat the villain. They choose to do what’s right and in the end they always succeed which inspires everyone to be a hero of their own.

    Myths and legends have a similar idea behind them. They were used thousands of years ago as a method of teaching valuable lessons and morals. They described attributes such as hubris and narcissism as bad and traits such as loyalty, bravery, and and compassion as good. When myths and heroes are combined they produce a powerful story that reaches out to the listener and shows them the difference between right and wrong so that they can improve themselves

  35. What is a hero?

    If you were to type into Google “what is a hero?” the response you would get is “a person, typically a man, who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities”. That is what people now a days believe a hero to be; that is what the media has portrayed heroes as. This is not always the case though. People believe in order to become a hero you have to accomplish a courageous act, like help someone out of a burning building or save a person from drowning. While these acts are heroic, they are not and should not be the only knowledgeable ways of becoming a hero.

    Heroes are everywhere. A hero is not only a person who does a courageous act but also someone who gives someone a compliment, calls 911 for a situation they are unsure of or someone you look up too. The person that gave someone a compliment, just stopped them from committing suicide. The person that called 911 for the noises they thought they heard going on next door, just stopped a robber from hurting a family. The person that you look up too and go to in your time of need, helped you get through the rough times that you were not sure you could make it through. That is what a hero is, someone who will be there and is willing to lend a helping hand. Heroes are everywhere, they are not always the center of attention, but sometimes just the person in the background who was at the right place at the right time.

  36. What IS a hero?

    A hero is a figure who succeeds in what we think is impossible or too difficult to complete. This is an image constantly highlighted through media because we as human beings like to model/look up to larger-than-life figures. It gives hope that while we can’t do something, someone else can. If you were to ask a child this question, they would point to their Superman sheets or princess tea set. But soon they grow to learn that society lies. You can’t always be the damsel in distress or call out to with a signal to Batman. At the end of the day, heroes are ordinary people doing “extra” ordinary things and it is our choice to decipher what is the extraordinary quality. This ranges from a mother bandaging a cut to a police officer catching a criminal. Heroes are everywhere; they just might not be flying at the moment.

  37. In today’s world children are often taught to look to television, book, and movie characters as their heroes. In reality though, these are just fictional role models, not true heroes like those people in our lives that actually make a difference. I would say parents and grandparents are the true heroes of society. They are responsible for shaping the next generation and, for the most part, are who kids truly look up to. Parents and grandparents are always the ones that both children and adults look to to save the day. Whether its a scrape on the knee before your first day of kindergarten or your credit card debt after graduating college your parents are there to rescue you. The media often gives us this false image that a hero has to have some sort of magical super power and save us from a villain or evil. The truth is that a hero is some one who is not so blatantly obvious but is often over looked and always offers love and help no matter the circumstance.

  38. What is a hero?
    A hero is, I would consider, a person that is larger than life. A person that has taken on a cowl of perception that embodies qualities that put them above their fellow man. A hero in many cases can have supernatural abilities, have high upstanding morals and ethics, and heroes can even have dark, sometimes evil qualities while still retaining their heroic persona. Heroes usually perform tasks that no other person is able to do, such as stopping a powerful threat, or defying supernatural forces. Men idolize heroes. Almost obsessed at the very concept of their being.

    What makes a legend?
    What makes a legend is a story that someone can connect with not only on a literal level, but both morally and ethically. I have found legendary stories in both modern and ancient texts. Such as the Odyssey, the legend of Hercules, and even of Frodo in Lord of the Rings. All the legends involved tell tales of courage, bravery, and wisdom. But they also showcase qualities such as gluttony, selfishness, and evil. Both good and bad themes make a legend affect someone. Because for a legend to be truly great a person should be able to take away both after reading it.

  39. As “The Babe” said, “Remember kid, there’s heroes and there’s legends. Heroes get remembered but legends never die, follow your heart kid, and you’ll never go wrong,” (The Sandlot).
    Legends never die; you pass a story on because you see it as important information that must survive and be taught to future generations. Heroes go down in history, but legends are kept alive through the people that believe in them. With regards to individuals, legends are people whom have gained a famous reputation. In the story sense, legends are tricky because usually there is truth to the story, but no real way of proving that the story ever took place. Nonetheless, a legend is essentially something or someone a culture values. Legends come from all over the place, and influence peoples’ personal values, morals and beliefs. Similar to the phrase, “beauty is in the eye of the beholder,” the same holds true for legends. Individuals spread specific legends because within them is what people believe to be significant.

  40. What is a hero?
    Everyone has their own definition and/or image of what they call a “hero”. Personally, I believe a hero is someone who does a courageous act which end in a result of something/someone being saved. If I were to be drowning, and some man/woman risked their own lives to save me, I would consider that person to be my own personal hero. To me, the the world is filled with a bunch of heroes. Firefighters, police officers, troops, etc., all risk their lives on a regular basis, which in my opinion makes them heroes. It doesn’t take a history book-changing incident to create a hero, it just takes a courageous act to help someone in need.

  41. Mythology is an incredibly difficult thing to properly explain ,but the best explanation comes from the origins of the word itself. In Attic Greek the word “mythos” , from which we derive the word mythology, meant history and what we refer to as mythology was called “paramythos” , which quite literally means “by the side of history”. What being by the side of history equates to, is a sense of truth that comes from things being almost real ,which is to say that while not all the heroes of antiquity and even Gilgamesh are exactly as they are described in myth there is truth at their center. The heroes of mythology have no need to be historically accurate as their power comes from the concept that made them larger than life in the first place, heroism. Mythology has the habit of focusing on larger than life battles and events like the Norse Ragnarok or The Trojan War and the reason this happens is that people have a hard time seeing heroes in the everyday so they are instead introduced to heroism at a legendarily large scale. Mythology is the reason why modern society has heroes or ,at the very least, it is the reason why they are recognized because mythology takes something very real yet overlooked like the goodness of a hero and puts it on such a high level that it becomes something on the forefront of the mind. In short, the purpose of the mythological hero is to be almost real because,as anyone who has ever read a good story will admit, people want to be like their favorite character or even live in their world and so mythology and it’s heroes create a world both ours and theirs in order to teach people that they can become just like those they admired or even the heroes of the real world who fight for well being of others just like those they read about.

  42. What is a hero?
    I feel as though that a hero is someone that others look up to. In most classic tales a hero is someone who is born of a powerful family or granted great power upon birth. However, in some cases, a hero may achieve his/her title all on their own. Whichever the case may be, once they become a hero and all of the bystanders see that, they believe in this person/creature. The hero usually has super human abilities such as Beowulf or Hercules. This is so because the people believe in them, if they were an average person, that would mean anyone could be the hero. In myths and legends an average person could never be the hero. Therefore, that is why the ones who are chosen to be that hero are looked up to by those who can not be what they see.

  43. In biology, phrase, “to evolve” is used commonly. But that phrased doesn’t just have to be categorized by the evolution of beings throughout time. Evolution can be seen in other subject areas like politics and english. In politics new laws a created while some are taken away to keep up with the current societal needs of a given culture. In english, something as simple as a definition can change along with the time period at hand. Take for instance the word, ‘hero’. What a hero was categorized during ancient Greek times is not what a modern 8 year old boy or modern middled aged man might say. The ancient greek will tell you that a hero is a son or daughter of the gods, granted with some magnificent power, possibly the gift of knowledge or something. The 8 year old boy would say a man who slipped into a radiation leaked and know has the ability to fly. The middled aged man might say, a hero is someone who is admirably for a noble act of bravery and courage shown with selflessness. Its all how you personally perceive the world. What your take is and what time period you’re currently living in. The term hero may be over used more in modern times because theres more things that us clumsy humans may do without realizing as opposed to someone living during the 1800’s. Today, if you leave your phone charger at home and someone yells, “hey, go ahead and use mine”, you may personally call them a hero. But back in victorian times, the man who ran to the market for you was the hero. Times have changed, people have evolved. I dont think that you could say one true definition of what a real true hero IS.

  44. Myth is false which we can determine by comparing the actions and characters inside the myth cannot connect to reality, what we know to be physically possible. Myths and dreams are closely related both sitting in the realm of imagination, never reaching reality. Myth gives us a feel for different perspectives and historical backgrounds in which the myth was written. Each myth has it’s own specific information that lead others to belief or comfort. Legends are told in certain areas localized in communities. Theses types of verbally told stories are often overly dramatized, making things more than they actually were or will ever be. Each myth has it’s very own message and that is what ensures it uniqueness. These stories willingly welcome our deep questions about the world and will answer them with no necessarily logical answers but messages in which we can interpret into reality. The legends along with myth lead us to wonder about other possibilities other worlds within our own.

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