There's no more powerful emotional fuel in sport than defeat on a grand and public scale and the All Blacks' loss in Yokohama is both an end and a beginning.
For 10 years the All Blacks have sat atop the rugby world – a summit they reached through a desire to find redemption.
A decade of unprecedented success was fuelled by a need to bury the abject failure of the 2007 Rugby World Cup and all the frailties and flaws that one defeat exposed.
At some point, that emotional tank was going to run empty. Success can't be a sustainable fuel for more success. Humans aren't built like that – they need a spanner in the emotional works as it were which is why success is cyclical.
There is a natural ebb and flow to the world order and while the All Blacks have done an incredible job in distorting that by preserving their place at the top for an unprecedented period, it couldn't last forever.
They were chasing great which is noble and exciting, but ultimately beyond the scope of possibility.
And as the All Blacks sift through the rubble of their collapsed World Cup campaign, they should realise once the dust settles that their semifinal loss to England was an evil necessary.
They didn't want it, but they probably needed it to expand their emotional palette and to provide a number of young and hugely promising players with the adversity they require to fulfil their potential.
Nothing stokes the internal fire quite like failure and while there are legions of sports psychologists employed these days to plant all sorts of motivational seeds in players' heads, it's a simple truth that athletes find it easier to chase redemption than they do trying to sustain a place on top of the world.
The hunger to get to the top is always more intense than the hunger to stay there and the All Blacks' played with all the desire they could muster in Yokohama, but England, who had suffered the most intense humiliation four years earlier, had more.
They had the taste of failure still fresh in the system. They had the near demonic determination that comes with the need to put things right while the All Blacks were chasing more of what they already had.
In a sense it came down to the old argument of what motivates best - fear or reward and in top level rugby, fear will win almost every time.
The All Blacks learned this in 2007 when a World Cup loss to France paved the way for the most successful decade in New Zealand's rugby history.
Failure at that tournament made a generation of good players, great players.
That loss to France drove Richie McCaw for the next eight years of his career and was the inspiration for him becoming the greatest leader the game has ever known.
That loss fuelled Daniel Carter's desire to stay in New Zealand and only leave once he had won a World Cup with him at the helm, the undisputed best play-maker on the planet.
They, and teammates such as Tony Woodcock, Ali Williams, Keven Mealamu, Conrad Smith and Mils Muliaina, took the hurt and the humiliation of that dreadful night in Cardiff and stored it some place deep within themselves where it poked into their respective souls, only easing once redemption came in 2011.
That defeat 12 years ago was New Zealand's darkest rugby hour and while it felt in the immediate aftermath that it was the end of everything, it proved to be the beginning of something unimaginably good.
And what shouldn't be missed in the inevitable gloom of introspection that comes in the wake of landmark defeats, is that there are a handful of young players in the All Blacks with the potential to write a history every bit as impressive as the likes of Carter and McCaw.
Anton Lienert-Brown and Jack Goodhue are both only 24 and could end up surpassing the midfield combination of Ma'a Nonu and Smith in terms of experience and contribution.
Richie Mo'unga could be a brilliant All Blacks No 10 and Sam Cane and Ardie Savea could be one of the greatest flanker combinations the game has known.
Forget not that Beauden Barrett could be even better in another four years, as could Brodie Retallick and by accepting the power of defeat to reshape the emotional landscape is to see that the loss to England is not only the end of one era, but also very much the beginning of one.
The likes of Lienert-Brown, Goodhue and Mo'unga needed to feel the full pain of World Cup defeat and experience the emotions that come with failure.
They need to be driven by the more powerful goal of finding redemption and ridding themselves of the taint of failure rather than endlessly trying to sustain the legacy of those who went before them.