One of My Favorite GOT lines
It is no secret that films, books, and TV series have themes that delve far deeper than we are prepared to process. But, one of the more well known series that I enjoy so very much is a Song of Ice and Fire accompanied by the subject of this post, Game of Thrones. While it has high production value and a great cast and a plot, the most pleasurable aspect of it to me is the philosophical concepts viewers have to contend with no matter how subtle or obvious author intended.
Long ago, in the episode the Climb (season 3, episode 6) Petyr Baelish says: “Chaos isn’t a pit. Chaos is a ladder. Many who try to climb it fail and never get to try again. The fall breaks them. And some, are given a chance to climb. They refuse, they cling to the realm or the gods or love. Illusions. Only the ladder is real. The climb is all there is.”
The significance and relevance of this is so expansive that a philosophical book could be written for it. Most prominently, it finds its relevance in the individual’s ability to grow to become powerful whether it be through wealth, political power, the power of speech, or simply confidence.
This quotation parallels a contemporary issue where the lower classes have limited resources and means to rise up in the social ladder and that there must be reform to fix this. When an individual takes a risk and it ends disastrously it is common for them to give up. This is unfortunate, as most people in fact have the capacity to climb the ladder, but in fact refuse to in complacency. The illusion that Petyr Baelish is the one thatcannot rise up and therefore should grow dependent on things such as faith and the endless pursuit of love without ever truly understanding these concepts.
Many politicians have been arguing that we must establish policies to aid the lower classes raising the minimum wage and bring jobs to America while taxing those at the top of the ladder enormously. This may be counterintuitive. When one is aided to an extent such as this without having to accomplish it themselves it takes away an incentive to work and create aspirations to call their own. If one truly wishes to climb the ladder of chaos which in reality he or she should be encouraged to rise up on his or her own terms, not merely exist in complacency.
There is also a split of opinion on this topic. When an individual views chaos or rather, reality as a pit he or she is deemed to remain down, never able to climb up and accomplish forgotten aspirations. However, when one sees it as a ladder they can climb and reach for the stars. This is why it imperative that any political entity promote this positive mindset throughout society, as Petyr Baelish perceives chaos.
Yet, how is it possible for everyone to rise up on the ladder of chaos to the top? It isn’t. Not everyone can rise to the top of the ladder. Many people have the capacity to, but are unable to grip the motivation to begin the climb, let alone finish it. It is too easy to stay where you are and survive hoping that there is something waiting on the other side. But, it is only in striving to succeed on your terms can you find happiness as well as accomplish your goals.