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How to Be a Hero (Also, Philosocom's Directory on Heroism)

Updated: Jul 9

(For more articles on heroism:


Ms. Tamara Moskal's Synopsis

To classify someone as a hero or a villain is often a matter of perspective. The subjectivity of good and evil deeds is especially apparent in politics and wars. Collective allegiances, affiliation bias, and the long-term consequences for different sides shape diverse views on the righteousness of one's actions.
You can become a hero if your contribution to humanity is significant and recognized by others. Promote a noble cause by working in a highly appreciated field and consider volunteering. Be a role model for others and a decent person. Individuals are considered heroes when they significantly impact the world and are remembered for their contributions.
They serve a greater purpose than themselves, such as justice, altruism, and freedom, and are also inspiring leaders. If someone wants to be a hero, they must maintain a respectable and honest reputation throughout life. The author doesn't see himself as a hero but aspires to do selfless good in the world, inspired by the noble character Lazlo from a game.

Heroism and Villainism in a Complex World

The relationship between heroism and villainism is often far more intricate than a simple good versus evil dichotomy. This complexity becomes especially apparent in arenas like politics and war, where motivations, consequences, and perspectives can be questioned as well as lambasted.

These blurred lines highlight the difficulty of objectively labeling someone a hero or villain. Perceptions are shaped by collective allegiances, affiliation bias, and the long-term impacts of actions of different sides. Even violence against a seemingly "evil" force like the Nazis can be a source of debate. Should we, in our actions, enable the same aggression we condemn? Is it the right thing to do, or a way to express a natural evil?

Leaving a Legacy Through Good Deeds

As long as you don't fight or shoot people for a living, you too can get the chance to be considered a hero, as long as you fulfill the following criteria:

  • Be significant: You do not have to be globally famous like a celebrity, but you do need to be known enough in order for your deeds to be recognized by someone. Some are recognized during their lives, some after their deaths. Nonetheless, a person who, on a daily basis, feeds pigeons isn't necessarily a hero. Your significance can come from many sources, such as a certain position, certain deeds you have done throughout your life, your goals in life, and so on.

  • Present an example: Be a model for whatever is considered good and valued. People will not only remember you for the deeds you have done, but also for who you were. Be polite, listen more, and appreciate the existence of others in your life. As long as you're a decent person and not a jerk, this should be the least of your worries when becoming a hero.

Why should one become a hero? Because those who are considered heroes have a chance to be remembered not only for the rest of their lives but also far after their deaths. With such remembering, one can leave a great impact on the world, and if you care for both your own image and for your contribution to humanity, the hero's path should be considered regularly.

I had one "friend" throughout my childhood and early teen years; his name was Lazlo and he was a video game character, that I literarily used to identify him with me (even though, of course, I knew I am not him). To this day I consider him to be a role model for me.

One that is brave, kind and gets the job done. That is the ultimate way of becoming a true hero -- by becoming a role model for others to study and follow after his or her image and example. One, therefore, doesn't have to have superpowers, or strength or even high intelligence -- all a hero needs is to do good and to serve as a proper example to follow by.

A hero is also one that serves a greater purpose other than themselves; their inner sense of duty has to multiply itself and be within other people as well; they serve as triggers for good that spread throughout the planet. Because of that, a hero must be an "authority" of some sort, one that people would look at, admire and respect his or her intentions.

Without a sense of servitude, a hero can fall into the pit of narcissism. Thus, he or she is both a "master" and a servant. -- the "master" of those who follow them, and the servant of whatever is good -- justice, altruism, equality, freedom and so on. And the more serving they are, the less they would prioritize themselves. That is if they are willing to be more heroic.

Finally, there is a great obstacle in the path of heroism, related to the issue of reputation. Those who want to preserve their good name after their deaths, must make sure that they won't do anything that is greatly frowned upon, such as sexual harassment, and other crimes that involve abuse.

Michael Jackson, while not necessarily a hero, got his name stained by his p****philic intentions. Because of that, his reputation will probably never be the same, despite his contributions to music. If you're a politician, make sure you won't take bribes or do anything corrupt. Your corruption can be both discovered and forever stained by your legacy as a public servant.


We can say that once one achieves the status of a hero or any other grand status, achievement is insufficient. After achieving much, you now need to preserve it through your deeds and decisions throughout your life. Even if you're to die like a hero, your secrets might be ultimately discovered, and there's nothing you can do other than not committing these secrets in the first place. A hero may be more honest, as honesty is a virtue.

As for myself, I don't view myself as a hero, but I do aspire to do good in this world, even if I won't necessarily get something in return. Merely because I basically have all I'll ever need to live.

I was merely taught to be a good human being and to avoid the exact opposite. If I ever wanted to be a parent, I'd try to teach my children to do the same. I was also inspired by that character, Lazlo, to be good, as he has never done a bad deed (canon-wise, of course).

Mr. Nathan Lasher's Feedback

I believe heroes and villains all exist on a spectrum with our actions determining which way we lean. Nobody can be defined as one or the other by them simply being who they are. Your actions determine which you are so therefore only you can decide if you are a hero or not. Can’t be a hero or a villain if you don’t do anything. (Apart from the world about to be blown up and you decide to do nothing) You can be a hero as much as you can be an action. Heroes and villains are those who act.
You aren’t a hero because you say you're a hero, unless you're Donald Trump, because who knows what is going through his mind, you are a hero because your actions say you are. [Being a] hero is all about nonverbal communication. What you do is more important than what you say. You become a hero by acting like a hero. Actions are the best defense against people saying otherwise.
Being a hero is nothing more than accumulating the right characteristics. The more characteristics you gain the more likely that people will notice it. Anyone can be a hero if they so choose to be. But who wants to live with that kind of pressure?
Nobody can fathom what it would be like to be perfect like that. Plus most humans tend to occasionally do bad here and there. What makes the anti-hero such an attractive concept? [There's] no pressure as you aren’t the type of person who people would expect it from.
Added bonus is that it doesn’t mean you aren’t capable of taking actions and surprising them. If people understood, you really are the one who creates yourself. You create yourself by actions. Simple as that. You want to be the best in the world at something? Start by having the same actions and habits of a person who would be. Imagine what first place would look like and do the actions which are required to make it a reality.
Life is all about action. If you want to be someone, start by taking the actions of the person you want to become.

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Tomasio A. Rubinshtein, Philosocom's Founder & Writer

I am a philosopher from Israel, author of several books in 2 languages, and Quora's Top Writer of the year 2018. I'm also a semi-hermit who has decided to dedicate his life to writing and sharing my articles across the globe. Several podcasts on me, as well as a radio interview, have been made since my career as a writer. More information about me can be found here.

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