The Heroism Phenomenon

Samurai Philosophy

This is a chapter from the e-book Samurai: Legend by A. R. Berg

  • A very special breed has always existed within humankind: warriors who rise to daunting challenges, act, struggle and persevere. They are a distinguished breed forming the heart of the human race. Throughout the ages, their distinctive colour has been red and their element fire. Warriors have always rallied around a single creed, tradition and heroic faith. Indeed, heroism is a phenomenon of a higher order which is fundamentally linked to being human and most distinguishes us from other creatures.

    The actions of animals are completely instinctual, natural. Everything they do is exclusively for surviving and reproducing. But the notion of heroism contradicts nature’s basic laws because it is irrational and super-rational at the same time. Heroism is the driving force behind our unquenchable thirst for the unknown, as well as the passionate desire compelling us to surpass ‘impossible’ limits. Athletes not only push past their limits, they are ready to die setting a record. Race car drivers go full throttle, straining to reach the speed limit knowing that it could cost them their eyesight or make them crash. But they still spend their lives chasing the impossible.


    asgard viking art
    Buddha in the ocean of blood by T. Berg (print & painting)
    || All Artwork

     Scientists are willing to test potentially lethal vaccines on themselves. Warriors attack in storms of bullets. Artists often burn out from the massive physical and psychological strain they endure composing one song or finding the one right word. Humans are willing to put everything on the line to achieve their aim. Victory erases the memories of hardships and yields an unparalleled sense of satisfaction. While not apparent on the surface, the main reason for this is that heroism calls us into higher realms where impregnable heights of spirit fulfill and assert our humanity. Heroism is at once our most dangerous and most gracious characteristic involving curses and salvation, risks and opportunity- a breakthrough into the the unknown world of infinite possibilities, the dream world.

    Risks are unavoidable on the way to achieving a goal since the unknown always lies off the beaten path where only fearless, naturally heroic people tread. They win wars and are responsible for all our achievements and inventions. Without these noble-spirited heroic pioneers, humanity would  resemble... read further in the book


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    This is part of a chapter from Samurai: Legend by A. R. Berg
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