the og dark knight

the og dark knight
Photo by Serge Kutuzov / Unsplash

“Because he’s the hero Gotham deserves, but not the one it needs right now. So we’ll hunt him. Because he can take it. Because he’s not our hero. He’s a silent guardian, a watchful protector. A dark knight.”

These lines by Jim Gordon at the end of the movie The Dark Knight never fail to give the ardent Batman fans goosebumps. Because they reveal who he truly is — a savior who will fight whatever evil befalls his city no matter what.

As Batman rides away into the dark of the night, knowing that he just saved Gotham, he is fine with disappearing and hiding in the shadows for the foreseeable future.

Batman didn't want the people of Gotham to see Harvey Dent as a madman and murderer and lose hope, so he told Gordon that he would take the fall. He knew that Harvey was the hero that the people needed at that point of time. That’s why Gordon tells his son that Batman was the hero that Gotham deserved but not needed right that moment. Nonetheless, he’ll always be there to protect the city and help its people, even if they lose faith in him. Because this is who he is.

We all too have a dark knight, a supernatural being who constantly looks over us. He knows that He’s the hero we deserve, but not the one we need right now. Just because we can’t see Him, can’t touch Him, so many of us neglect His presence, lose faith in Him, and even condemn Him from time to time. But He never leaves our side.

He lets the heroes of the world shine while taking a backseat, because He knows we need them to inspire us, work for the common good, and elevate our lives and others’. But He always remains vigilant, ready to defend us at a moment’s notice.

One of the most powerful and comforting pair of shlokas (verses) in the Bhagavad Gita is Lord Krishna’s promise to the warrior prince Arjuna, and through him, to all humanity. (These words also never fail to give goosebumps to His most loyal devotees.) He tells him that whenever, wherever, unrighteousness begins to take over, He will incarnate himself on Earth to fight against it.

Here are the shlokas in the original Sanskrit language along with their English translation:

यदा यदा हि धर्मस्य ग्लानिर्भवति भारत ।

अभ्युत्थानमधर्मस्य तदात्मानं सृजाम्यहम् ॥४-७॥

Yada yada hi dharmasya glanirbhavati bharata.

Abhythanam-adharmasya tadadmanam srijamyaham.

Whenever there is a decline of righteousness and rise of unrighteousness, O Bharata, then I send forth Myself. (4-7)

. . .

परित्राणाय साधूनां विनाशाय च दुष्कृताम् ।

धर्मसंस्थापनार्थाय सम्भवामि युगे युगे ॥४-८॥

Paritranaya sadhunam vinashay cha dushkritam.

Dharma-sanstha-panar-thaya sambhavami yugey yugey.

To protect the good, to destroy the wicked and to establish righteousness, I will return, from age to age. (4-8)

. . .

Interestingly, Lord Krishna is also referred to as Shyam on numerous occasions because of His dark complexion (the Sanskrit word "Shyam" means dark).

Therefore, we can say Lord Krishna is the OG dark knight — a watchful being with superhuman abilities who’s always there to protect us from the evils of the world.