Alan Rickman, the incredible actor who has had roles in Die Hard, Little Chaos, Love Actually, and of course, the beloved Harry Potter series, has passed away on January 14, 2016. While he is no longer with us, he has left behind the Severus Snape legacy, something that we all can learn from.
Severus Snape taught us to be brave… To do the things that we know are going to be difficult but to find courage from what we know to be right. Even if that means your best friend does not support you, you have to have to be brave and do it anyway. Snape also showed us the importance of standing alone. While acts of bravery can sometimes separate us from others, this does not mean what we did is wrong. When Snape received an impossible task from Dumbledore, Snape knew he was going to stand alone and break all ties but he had to have enough bravery to do the right thing. We must find the bravery in ourselves to do the impossible and difficult tasks regardless if we stand alone because we know it will be the right thing.
Snape taught us to have the courage to stand up for what we believe in. From a young age, Snape stood up for Lily against her older sister picking on her and this propensity to defend what he loves progressed to standing up against Lord Voldemort. While neither were easy, Snape showed us that standing up for what we believe in is what is most important, that this will define our character and make us who we are. What we believe in and what we fight for determines not only how we are seen by others, but also how we learn what is most important to us.
Lastly, Snape taught us how to love. He fell in love with Lily and never ceased to love her until the moment he died in the final Harry Potter movie/book. This is the type of love I dream of receiving and this is the type of love I dream of giving; Snape taught us that it was possible to fall in love with someone so incredibly hard that no matter what happens you will always feel the same way towards that person. Possible to love everything, even if it can not or does not love you back. And also possible to fight for love, to do anything to love and receive that love. Even though Lily passed away early in the series, Snape did everything he could for her, even keeping Harry alive. The beloved character of Snape taught us to live a life full of love.
Alan Rickman has portrayed amazing characters, but it was arguably Severus Snape who was the best and most influential. His character taught everyone who knows the story to be brave even when it is most difficult, to stand up for what we believe in even if no one stands with us, and to love fully in everything we do. Alan Rickman is an actor who is cherished by all and will be incredibly missed.
Featured Image via screengrab from Harry Potter.