Essay on Warrior Ethos

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This is a different sort of Pressfield book. Unlike the historical fiction genre in which he’s written such best-sellers as “Gates of Fire,” “The Afghan Campaign, and “The Profession,” “The Warrior Ethos” is the culmination of years of discussions Pressfield’s been having with Marines and others who were taken with the blend of courage-under-fire and humanity shown by Leonidas, Dienekes, Matthais, Gent, and the other characters in his books. “I wanted to give something back to our men and women fighting overseas,” Pressfield told Gazette, so I put together the best anecdotes and stories from all my research about the Spartans, Alexander's Macedonians, the Romans, and Rommel.” Pressfield then printed 18,000 copies at his expense, which…show more content…
But as Philip of Macedon, Alexander the Great, Xerxes, and others marched into history as they fought their way across the Mediterranean and Central Asia, civilization was spread as conquerors and conquered traded goods, took wives, and exchanged ideas. This sort of intermingling led to the Indian warrior epic “Bhagavad-Gita” expanding the warrior ethos to a loftier plane - from the war against one’s neighbor to an internal struggle to reach one’s better nature as Arunja, the Gita’s hero, battles against enemies whose names can be translated as greed, sloth, and selfishness – all moral weaknesses that must be overcome. It’s that need to test oneself against both physical and moral adversity, coupled with the blunt Spartan courage in the face of overwhelming odds, Pressfield believes, that gives us the warrior ethos of today. But despite the military component of society being increasingly marginalized in the West, young men and women still flock to recruiting stations to challenge themselves and see how well they perform under adverse conditions. Pressfield writes “each of us struggles every day to define and defend our sense of purpose and integrity, to justify our existence…to understand, if only within our own hearts, who we are and what we believe in.” This struggle might be Fallujah for a chosen few, or working the night shift for others. “The Warrior Ethos” does not provide a definitive answer as to what makes someone a warrior,
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