I often think back to the fellowship that went on the journey to mount doom to destroy the One Ring. The fellowship that was assembled in Rivendell by Lord Elrond. Frodo, Sam, Merry, Pippin, Gimli, Logolas, Boromir, Aragorn and Gandalf. From the 9 of them who do we know suffered the real threat and temptation of the One Ring that Frodo was bearing? We know about Boromir, Gandalf, Sam and other members that were not part of the Fellowship like Faramir and Galadriel.
What about Aragorn?
Was he tempted by the One Ring? I know the movie shows two instances where he could have behaved differently. One (also in the books) was at the council of Elrond. Aragorn is offered the ring by Frodo but he quickly declines. So if he was tempted, he passed with flying colors. Aragorn was, literally, the best of the best of men, and the best human alive in Middle Earth at the time. He was humble and knew the thing was beyond his power to control.
The second time was not in the book at all but depicted beautifully in a scene in the movie. Just before the breaking of the fellowship.
Wow. Aragorn knew exactly what Frodo was referring to. He knew that even though he has successfully resisted the temptation of the ring now he cannot guarantee it later. As Frodo said: Can you protect me from yourself? Were they not interrupted by the Orc attack I’m sure Aragorn would not have let Frodo go alone, but this is how the events played out.
We see Aragorn resist one of the strongest forces of temptation ever. Through-out the entire series and history of the ring we learn how men failed at the mercy and power of the Ring. Yet Aragorn succeeded. I ask myself what made him so strong? Is it because he was Dunedain? In his blood? Or is it his character? I believe it is his character. A character of humility, love, confidence, strength of will and mind.
Fast forward to today we can ask ourselves what is the One Ring we face temptation of every day? Are you resisting? Failing? We all fail but the key is to get up and get going again. Do you have love for others, for yourself? Do you reflect the character of Aragorn? Or are you impulsive and lose control like Boromir?