MKE Week 15 – Go Without The Rope

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Category:  Week Fifteen


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I just thought of a new Continuing Education Course on Ethics while on a walk. “GO WITHOUT THE ROPE… A Lesson In The Importance Of Fear, From The Dark Knight Rises.”

The topic is on fear, and how awareness is the beginning of change, and the touchstone of growth. Not sure if I can cover it all in 2-hours, it may turn into 3 or 4 sprint courses. The CE course is inspired in part by the 3rd Batman movie, and as Bane puts it, “There can be no true despair without hope.”

Also, fear is why you fail, yet others, seem to always half-attempt and never really push themselves –because they think they’ve got a safety net, or a “rope” so that every leap they make is cushioned sub-consciously, and they never make a true effort.

There can be no winner when half of you is only striving for success, and the other half is aiming for your own destruction.

When there is no fear of failure… there is no true will to succeed. In the context of the movie, the blind prisoner tells Bruce Wayne… “Go without the rope.” When you go without a rope, you have no option but to succeed.

A simple question someone might ask oneself is, “Why do I do the things I don’t want to do, and don’t do the things I know I ought to?” The course objective is to better understand fear in practice and in business.

The course outcome is essentially this: how to avoid handing off problems to your future self by giving vitality and life to virtue while refusing to nourish the shortcomings that hold us back. It’s a rough, rough draft.

You know that wiggly, butterfly feeling you get in your stomach when you do something new, or something you don’t want to do? Is it excitement, fear, or terror?

Quoting a line from “The Heart of Life,” by John Mayer… “Fear is a friend who’s misunderstood.” Oftentimes fear masquerades as something else… such as arrogance, ego, or criticism. And I know whatever feelings we have are the constant irritation to become better than we already are.

I’d get those feelings every time I testified in court… The only thing that matters is the feeling we attach to the thought, which becomes a belief and our subsequent habits and actions. We get to decide, it’s always been our light, not our darkness that frightens us most. The clinical term for it is Neurologic Associative Reactive Conditioning, (NARC).

This year I’m working on becoming a better non-judgemental observer, exercising the power of choice. For me, this year’s phrase is: “I am nature’s greatest miracle with courage to dare and faith to do.” It’s a prompt to release the potential that’s always been within you and me. It’s also called the Law of Growth.

Because after all, we are the choices that we make, and what we think about grows. When we see it, identify, and recognize what other people are doing, focusing on a different virtue weekly, it begins to grow and it multiplies within you, improving that aspect effortlessly. Instead of feeling a lack of enthusiasm, when you see it, recognize and acknowledge it in others you actually preempt a negative thought of your own, and that’s called the Law of Substitution.

Here’s the thing, you wouldn’t be able to recognize enthusiasm or anything else like kindness or courage if it didn’t already exist within you. It will help you develop and improve virtues you’re focusing on easily and without a second thought about one of your own shortcomings or fears.

With practice, you’ll begin to see and hear these virtues everywhere, in adults, kids, animals, at work, shopping, streaming, driving, you’ll hear it on the radio, on podcasts, and see it on the TV. The bigger pay-off is that as you do so you’ll begin to recognize them in yourself. Awareness is the beginning of change, and the field will return what we plant…. strawberries or hemlock, it doesn’t care.

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  • What a wonderful analysis, Lewis! Bringing your future self and current self together as one is always enlightening and very freeing. I recall that you and Marie were two of my first new members before I had to discontinue my intern guide duties, and it’s very satisfying seeing that you both are still with us at the MKE. 🙂

  • Sounds like a wonderful class. And…“There can be no true despair without hope.” Yawza!

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