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What are those unique qualities we call bravery; those almost subconscious qualities that

we can't readily put our fingers on whenever we see a hero in action, but somehow
recognize every time someone does something out of the ordinary? It's almost as if what
they do is superhuman, yet their qualities are far from that, they are qualities we all have
to one degree or another - it's only a matter of perfecting them.

The most important quality of heroes is being present. Not much is going to get past
them. When it is time to act, a hero can't be lost in personal thoughts or concepts; he or
she must be street smart, which is the opposite of being academic. Being intelligently and
fully in each moment protects the hero from missing what is going down and making
false assumptions, because false assumptions are followed by flawed actions.

A hero questions things, all things, and is not one to believe blindly or be easily fooled. A
hero is never a sheep, and although he or she might act like one to fit into society
somewhat, down deep, they are fiercely independent.

A hero is always involved. There is a certain power and energy about them, and an
untiring resolve because of their passion, which is justice, fairness, and truth.

If there is one other thing that defines heroes, it's delight. They find great delight and joy
in doing what in their hearts is right, regardless of their own safety. And what is right for
a hero never involves hatred, resentment, fear, or jealousy in their hearts. They would
never find delight or joy in harming anyone in any way, and only think of helping. If their
duties involve harming others to protect the innocent, the harm done is always regretted.

Their actions exhibit a certain internal stillness in the face of grave danger. This can only
come from a deep understanding of what they are and a coming to terms with that. Afraid
of being hurt or making a mistake does not resonate with a hero -- they will act as if they
don't even exist. All that exists is the challenge before them, and because they see so
clearly, there is no reason for nervousness or hesitation. There is only the direct action
that involves them fully. As far as a hero is concerned, to die one death completely, right
now, is far better than worrying about dying a thousand cowardly deaths over a lifetime.

Common distractions, such as fear of death or fear of danger never distract a hero. A true
hero concentrates intently on only what they are facing now, and nothing else, and is
never concerned about the outcome.

A hero's composure takes attentiveness a step further. Not only is a true hero calm, but
unattached to the results of his or her actions as well. Worrying about losing or winning
would take a hero's eye off the ball and could prove deadly.

Watchful, inquiring, energetic, joyous, internally still, attentive, composed-- these are
attributes of a hero, and qualities that we, ourselves, can develop. The most direct way to
develop them is to conquer our own minds, because until we conquer our own minds, we
can conquer nothing else of consequence.