The Dark Knight Rises: About fear, trial and error, risk and success, via a cool Quora post

from graduate student Brandon McLaughlin

This is a pretty recent one but it’s an amazing scene and everyone should see it. Bruce Wayne trying to escape the underground prison in The Dark Knight Rises. No one has ever escaped from this prison before, except for one child years before Bruce Wayne was in this situation. The only way out is to climb up what almost seems like a giant well. At a certain point, there are no more rocks to grab and one must jump along the wall to get to the next point where there is surface to step on/grab. Everyone attempts doing this with a safety rope tied around their waste and fails. Even Bruce Wayne tries many times and fails. It is not until this moment that he is able to escape:

Blind Prisoner: You do not fear death. You think this makes you strong. It makes you weak.
Bruce Wayne: Why?
Blind Prisoner: How can you move faster than possible, fight longer than possible without the most powerful impulse of the spirit: the fear of death.
Bruce Wayne: I do fear death. I fear dying in here, while my city burns, and there’s no one there to save it.
Blind Prisoner: Then make the climb.
Bruce Wayne: How?
Blind Prisoner: As the child did. Without the rope. Then fear will find you again.

In order to accomplish great things one must be freed from the safety nets that hold them back. With the rope, in the back of one’s mind it is known that worse case scenario is missing the ledge and being saved by the rope, only to have failed and given another chance to attempt later. Only when the choice is escape or death will one put forth the effort necessary to escape, no matter how bad you think you want to. It isn’t until great risk is taken that greatness will be achieved.

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