Boromir and Faramir

Both had courage, but only one had wisdom. Why do I say so?

But first, let us sidetrack a bit.

Many a time, we have big dreams, goals and ambitions. But why aren’t many of them fulfilled?

Simple, lack of courage.

Dreams can vary, from a child’s wish to get an ice cream from the stall across the road, an athlete’s dream to break world records at the olympics or a young man’s desire to chase the girl of his heart.

Whether or not it comes to pass, the first step always takes courage. Without a move, there won’t be a result!! Simple right?

Many a time people struggle with a lack of courage (thus being discouraged). So the million dollar question: where to get courage from?

Through your mouth, yes. Encouragement.

Speak words, good things. The power of the tongue and the spoken word is underestimated.

Remember, you are in control of how you react.

Because words form our thinking, then it becomes action, action becomes habits, and habits become character, finally character determines destiny.

James 3:3-8

3 When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal.

4 Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go.

5 Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark.

6 The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.

7 All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind,

8 but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.

As inferred by scripture, our speech defines our destiny, determines our hearts, and steers your course of direction. So instead of putting yourself down, why not let your tongue lift you up? So remind yourself of the past victories, remind yourself that you are happy, that you’re gifted. It helps. If there’s no courage, speak it into existence, then put it into action.

Then watch your situation start to turn for the better.

However, this brings me to the next value: wisdom.

As per my example above; Boromir and Faramir had courage.

Both were sons of the Steward. Both were captains of Gondor’s Army.

Boromir was the one in front. He’s the kind who’ll openly challenge opponents and batter them to submission. That was possible with his stamina, brute strength, great pride and belief in his Peoples. Which was where he drew courage from.

However, as he was always at the front. It requires plenty of bravado and courage to fight bravely at the front (the kind of mindset that they’re inferior to you and you’re stronger) and in time to come, will lead to excessive pride that defies wisdom. And he was always favored by his father, the prodigal son. With a lack of wise counsel, there was nothing left to check his pride from overcoming him.

And it brought him to his ruin.

Though he redeemed himself by defending Merry and Pippin from the Uruk-Hai. And gave his life for theirs

Now let’s look at Faramir.

In his father’s eye, he’s the lesser son, the inferior one. As Boromir was leading the defense of Gondor from the front, Faramir was relegated to be captain of the Ithillien Rangers: far away from the courts and throne of Minas Tirith.

But Faramir learnt wisdom, Wisdom comes first from respect, respect and acknowledgement of how vulnerable you can be. Without losing your sense of self-worth.

First, being a ranger requires cunning, an intimate knowledge of the land around yourself. To be able to set ambushes, against enemies that constantly outnumber you. And being a ranger captain taught him the art of planning strategically, tactically and crucially: patience. Many years spent in the wild has taught and reminded him of how vulnerable he is in the wilds and that he is to have the utmost respect to the foes he faces. Yet having the courage to fight.

So you see, wisdom comes to the humble and meek.

Proverbs 9:9-11
9 Instruct the wise and they will be wiser still;
teach the righteous and they will add to their learning.

10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom,
and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
11 For through wisdom your days will be many,
and years will be added to your life.

When both brothers faced the temptation of the ring, Boromir had noble intentions: He wanted to use the ring to defend his people. Without understanding that it has corrupted many a man’s heart in the past including Isildur(the last king of Gondor, hence the ring known as Ísildur’s bane)

“True-hearted Men, they will not be corrupted. We of Minas Tirith have been staunch through long years of trial. We do not desire the power of wizard-lords, only strength to defend ourselves, strength in a just cause. And behold! In our need chance brings to light the Ring of Power. It is a gift, I say; a gift to the foes of Mordor. It is mad not to use it, to use the power of the Enemy against him. The fearless, the ruthless, these alone will achieve victory. What could not a warrior do in this hour, a great leader? What could not Aragorn do? Or if he refuses, why not Boromir? The Ring would give me power of Command. How I would drive the hosts of Mordor, and all men would flock to my banner!”

So you see, his pride clouded his judgement, he fell into temptation and it led to his death.

 

What about Faramir? Was he tempted when he faced the ring? Of course he was!! But it took words of warning to shake him, and his wisdom came to the fore as he realised what it did to his brother:

“But fear no more! I would not take this thing, if it lay by the highway. Not were Minas Tirith falling in ruin and I alone could save her, so, using the weapon of the Dark Lord for her good and my glory. No, I do not wish for such triumphs, Frodo son of Drogo”

And while the ring led Boromir to his death, Faramir let it pass and he survived the war. Even going on to marry and settle down with Eowyn.

Thus the difference between both brothers: Boromir had courage without wisdom, Faramir had both.

 

What can we learn from this example?

 

Yes, we still need courage. It is the stepping stone for all our actions. But we need wisdom to guide our actions. And it comes from humbling yourself, ridding all excessive pride (have quiet confidence instead). Learn from your surroundings, acknowledge your weaknesses and look around, learn from those with more knowledge and wisdom than yourself (and have the right mentors).


James 3:13-18

13 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom.

14 But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth.

15 Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic.

16 For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.

17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.

18 Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.

 

Courage is fire, it is contagious, it is powerful, but easily combustible and has as much potential to hurt as well as to inspire.  Having courage without wisdom is similar to an arrow without an aim.

Wisdom is direction, knowing where the goal lies, knowing what are the steps to take, the route to follow to its’ target. But without courage it is useless, pointless having the goal without making an effort to reach it. Having wisdom without courage is like having a bow with a target in sight, but no arrow to fire at!!

But, with courage and wisdom, the arrow is shot straight and true, and it will hit its’ target.

 

‘Speak courage into your life, and seek the wisdom to guide your steps’

Advertisements