Everyday Spirituality

Everyday Spirituality


Heroes and Heroines

posted by Cheryl Petersen

Humankind has a history marked by heroes and heroines. Confucius, Ruth, King David, Christ Jesus, Mohammad, Sojouner Truth, Abraham Lincoln, Corrie Ten Boom, the list goes on ad infinitum. We observe, study, and revere our heroes and heroines. Religions have tapped into this human tendency and applied it to God, even pushing us to have no other gods beside the one God.

I’m inclined to debate this religious ideal, not as an advocate for more than one God but as a realist that humankind needs their heroes and heroines. As a researcher and writer who has written material about the human nature and God, I think human protagonists inspire us to explore and experience spirituality (religions are optional).

God is not all that simple to understand. Moreover, the religions that hype a perfect understanding of God—right…I don’t think so. God is infinite and although I’ve experienced amazing spiritual healing in prayer to the one infinite God, more progress is needed. I still study what can be chalked up as heroes and heroines. The key is not to adore the human protagonists to the point of idolization.

Human beings who idolize, also hate.

Anyway, a true hero or heroine does not want to be idolized or worshiped. Christ Jesus was remembered to have said, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone.” (Mark 10:18) Yet, Jesus told people to follow him.

How can we have heroes or heroines without infringing on our love and respect to God? By applying the principles they stood for.

Protagonists who disregard their own life while taking a stand for the ideals of spirituality and equality are an inspiration. They show me how to choose empathy and altruism over the pursuit of worldly status or control. It takes a lot of guts to buck the human egos that pigheadedly take great pains to imprison the spirit in the letter, to defend a myopic human agenda, or to divide and conquer, but to know someone before me did it successfully, helps.

I’ll continue to observe the ideals of my heroes and heroines then translate those observations into experience that embody those ideals.



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