I'm reprinting some entries that were on the old Urban Mystic that got taken down. This one is from 21 February 2007.
A few days ago I finished reading a book, The Empty Land by Louis L'Amour. This book is amazing because it presents something that so few books today (or movies or television programs or anything else for that matter) even consider a possibility: a real hero. The main character, Matt Coburn, is a real hero. He's not some grey area, he's not out for revenge, he's not looking for some boon or reward. Matt Coburn fights for what's right because it's the right thing to do. He is an altruistic hero who seeks to help others and get nothing in return; in fact he knows in return he'll be asked to leave town after he helps free it from crime! Now that's a hero. There are people like Matt Coburn on earth. You hear about them in the news when that labourer pushed the man out of the way of a train or on 9/11 when people went back into the burning buildings to save others when they could have gotten themselves to safety. But books these days don't care about the real honest hero. They want "anti-heroes" or vigalantees seeking revenge. I for one enjoy reading about heroes, actual or fictional. Everyone should go out and read this book; it's good spiritual detox from the materialistic culture that bombards us every day.