Monday, June 28, 2010
Batman's True Meaning of Rest
In ‘Made of Wood’ by Ed Brubaker, Batman says this -
‘There’s a moment… right before my grapple cable goes taut… when it’s just me and the ground hovering somewhere far below… a moment of freefall… a moment of total calm. I will never tell anyone how much I enjoy that moment. Or how good it feels on some mornings to see the sun rising over my city… after a full night’s work. In the light of a new day, it almost feels like Gotham is lifting itself out of the mire… Feels like all my work, all my sacrifice, is worthwhile. Seeing the sun gleaming off those skyscraper… gives me something I need to go on each night. Helps me carry on my mission.’
Batman manages to enjoy brief respites in mid air despite the tedium of his continual mission – a moment of suspension in ‘nothingness’, when all is let go off, including his attachment to justice and aversion to crime. Isn’t this the true meaning of rest – that is both physical and spiritual? There is also rest that comes from knowing a worthy hard night’s work is done. True contentment must arise from having done one’s best; not from doing nothing. Later, he tells Green Lantern this -
‘I know that feeling [of despair, when the police radio announces more crimes]. That moment of satisfaction that’s always ripped away too soon. But there’s good people here, too… people worth fighting for.’
The only reason Bodhisattvas stay in Samsara is not because they are samsaric, but that we are. There is only one kind of despair that it alright – that which leads to the end of despair, which enlightened beings realise, as they continue aiding those in despair.