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Switch to Forum Live View Soccer and the Baha'i Faith
3 years ago  ::  Sep 08, 2011 - 11:54AM #1
jrohan
Posts: 18
I am a huge soccer fan and a very lapsed Baha'i.  Of all the sports soccer seems to most aligned with the principles:

  1. It is the most universal (the world cup has 10 times the viewership of the super bowl)
  2. It is played extensively in every country of the world
  3. It emphasizes good sportsmanship. 
  4. The best soccer emphasizes skill (Brazil, Spain, Argentina) emphasizes skill over physicality
  5. Teamwork is essential to acheiving a goal (literally and figuratively)
  6. It is so cheap to play, it can be practiced by rich and poor alike.
  7. It is also practiced by a significant percentage of women.

I don't really agree with Baha'i (or any religious clubs), however.  I don't view soccer as a teaching opportunity (which I don't do because I am so lapsed) but to be admired for itself.

Jim
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3 years ago  ::  Sep 08, 2011 - 4:46PM #2
Aka_me
Posts: 12,632

I dunno, I think it's just me... but I view soccer (all field sports) as a remnant of warfare. with offensive and defensive strategies, victory and defeat, the only advance is at the cost of someone else's mistake, with the difference being everyone lives to compete another day.


with that being said, I still cheer for the US and my wife for her home country of Mexico when they play each other.

the US exports death and corruption globally on a scale undrempt by Iranian authorities. war for corporate profits funded by taxpayers and soldiers' lives plus unofficial war funded by drugs to minorities. wave that flag of corruption in blissful ignorance of the orphans it creates assisting the rich to get richer. it's all good though cause we don't need to do ANYTHING to change... mother nature will create the necessary change.
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3 years ago  ::  Sep 08, 2011 - 6:48PM #3
jrohan
Posts: 18

offensive and defensive strategies, winning and losing are part of life.  What is so bad about them?

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3 years ago  ::  Sep 10, 2011 - 5:28PM #4
Aka_me
Posts: 12,632

Sep 8, 2011 -- 6:48PM, jrohan wrote:

offensive and defensive strategies, winning and losing are part of life.  What is so bad about them?



it's that winning ONLY comes at the expense of someone else's loss (a goal, only at the expense of the goalie's mistake). I like to approach life with a win-win attitude.

the US exports death and corruption globally on a scale undrempt by Iranian authorities. war for corporate profits funded by taxpayers and soldiers' lives plus unofficial war funded by drugs to minorities. wave that flag of corruption in blissful ignorance of the orphans it creates assisting the rich to get richer. it's all good though cause we don't need to do ANYTHING to change... mother nature will create the necessary change.
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3 years ago  ::  Sep 10, 2011 - 6:45PM #5
jrohan
Posts: 18

"it's that winning ONLY comes at the expense of someone else's loss (a  goal, only at the expense of the goalie's mistake). I like to approach  life with a win-win attitude."


 


aqa,


LOL, I guess you are not as big a fan of soccer as I am.  The best goals in soccer are not from a goalie's mistake but from the skill of a striker.  When I watch Leonel Messi(Barcelona) score, it is beautiful, like poetry.  There is no shame or mistake on the goalie's part.  When you think of the skill and practice that went into it, you are filled with admiration.


My daughter is a very talented and skilled soccer player.  When she started out, there were plenty of losses which she learned from.  Her coach looked passed the immediate results and emphasized skill over physicality.  After a couple of years the team progressed and began to win more.  The players accepted loss graciously and were magnanamous in victory(sometimes I see my daughter chatting away with an opposing player).  I will cheer for a skillful play even if it is against my daughter's team, because I enjoy the beauty of the skill.  If taken the right way, there is alot to learn from sports (teamwork, self-discipline, subordinating the self for the greater good, thinking dynamically, and accepting reverses).


Unfortunately, some of the Baha's in my area didn't give my daughter and myself much support,  kind of downplaying it as you are doing.  I am an inactive Baha'i and it just seemed that if you are not doing something to teach the Baha'i Faith it is a waste of time in their eyes.  But I think if the Baha'is had a more open view, and could recognize useful non-Baha'i activities, it would actually be a better way of teaching the faith.  When it is all about Baha'i, Baha'i, Baha'i people put their guard up, and whatever a Bahai says becomes ineffective.


Besides, what about "excellence in all things"?

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3 years ago  ::  Sep 10, 2011 - 6:57PM #6
jrohan
Posts: 18

"I like to approach  life with a win-win attitude"


And why is it only sports that are singled out.  I always have to hear from one of the Baha'is in my area about how well her daughter did on the SAT.  Aren't tests the same thing?  Somebody always gets a better grade, the person with the worse grade feels bad, that is not win, win.  Are you against tests and grades as well?


And what about houses, which was a big thing among the Bahai's in my area.  There is a sense of one-upmanship, look how great I am doing,  people trying to show they are more successful than others.  That is not win-win either.  Should we all live in the same time of houses? 


I remember I participated in a yard sale fundraiser a number of years back, and one of the Bahais look at what I brought with such disapproval,( like I had taking a crap in a paper bag).  That wasn't exactly win/win for me.


 


 


 

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3 years ago  ::  Sep 11, 2011 - 2:30AM #7
Lilwabbit
Posts: 2,926

Sep 10, 2011 -- 6:45PM, jrohan wrote:


I am an inactive Baha'i and it just seemed that if you are not doing something to teach the Baha'i Faith it is a waste of time in their eyes.  But I think if the Baha'is had a more open view, and could recognize useful non-Baha'i activities, it would actually be a better way of teaching the faith.



I don't know about you but in my neck of the woods the Bahá'ís are the ones who arrange soccer matches in neighbourhoods. For two reasons really: (1) it's a great way to interact with anyone, Bahá'í or non-Bahá'í and (2) for the sheer beauty of the game. :)


When it is all about Baha'i, Baha'i, Baha'i people put their guard up, and whatever a Bahai says becomes ineffective.



Aye aye, very true. 'Abdu'l-Bahá was the first to remind the Bahá'ís that sometimes teaching the faith does not require a single mention of the word "Bahá'í" or "Bahá'u'lláh".


Aka_me, life is also about win-lose (win spirit, lose ego, win truth, lose lie).


Best,


LilWabbit


 

"All things have I willed for you, and you too, for your own sake."
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3 years ago  ::  Sep 11, 2011 - 11:31AM #8
jrohan
Posts: 18

Lilrabbit,


That is music to my ears.


Sports  and entertainment usually are the forefront of integrating minorities.  This is especially true of the US, where the integration of professional baseball pre-dated the successes of the civil rights movement.  It tends to break down stereotypes.  Imagine if there was a top Baha'i striker on the Iranian national team?  How would it affect the view of the Iranian working class on the Baha'is


As far as winning, (that is really important and will be so even in the future).  According to what I read from the guardian, evil can never be eliminated in the world, no matter how much we progress.  Here are some examples where you don't want a win/win situation.


  1. A policeman subduing a violent criminal
  2. A defense attorney defending an innocent man.
  3. A general and his soldiers when conducting a military operation
  4. A statesman when trying to make his points to a general population

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3 years ago  ::  Sep 11, 2011 - 11:42AM #9
jrohan
Posts: 18

Lilrabbit,


I hope the soccer clubs are not organized by religion (Christian or Baha'i clubs,  its great for organization to sponsor clubs though).  I think those are terrible ideas because they tend to be very mediocre.  Also, sports should be played for their inherent merit, not for some ulterior motive.  It was very irritating for my daughter's soccer club to play a Philly club, which was the darling of the liberal press, because it was all minorities.  The press always tried to racialize the sport by extolling the virtues of the poor kids, and tagging the kids on my daughter's teams as daughters of Richie Rich (which was so unfair,  the kids were from middle income parents, whose parents made alot of sacrifices and the kids worked very hard as well).  The Philly club was good but our team was better.

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3 years ago  ::  Sep 12, 2011 - 12:43PM #10
Aka_me
Posts: 12,632

Sep 10, 2011 -- 6:45PM, jrohan wrote:

My daughter is a very talented and skilled soccer player.  When she started out, there were plenty of losses which she learned from.  Her coach looked passed the immediate results and emphasized skill over physicality.  After a couple of years the team progressed and began to win more.  The players accepted loss graciously and were magnanamous in victory(sometimes I see my daughter chatting away with an opposing player).  I will cheer for a skillful play even if it is against my daughter's team, because I enjoy the beauty of the skill.  If taken the right way, there is alot to learn from sports (teamwork, self-discipline, subordinating the self for the greater good, thinking dynamically, and accepting reverses).



my son (now beginning 6th grade) loves to play both soccer and basketball. I never played sports as I was involved in karate. he is an excellent player, and is picking up all the benefits sports has to offer in the way of teamwork, concentration and focus, discipline, etc.


it's just that we live in what's both a "high-diversity" and "low-income" neighborhood. we are surrounded by neighborhoods of high wealth from Microsoft employees that happen to be highly motivated and send their kids to "sports camps" where they get an edge over the competition.


having played 2 sports for 5 full years... he can count the combined victories on one hand. he does believe me when I repeated say "it's about developing the fundamentals and basics, just like playing drums, just like snow skiing, everyone must develop basics first".


Sep 10, 2011 -- 6:45PM, jrohan wrote:

Unfortunately, some of the Baha's in my area didn't give my daughter and myself much support,  kind of downplaying it as you are doing.  I am an inactive Baha'i and it just seemed that if you are not doing something to teach the Baha'i Faith it is a waste of time in their eyes.  But I think if the Baha'is had a more open view, and could recognize useful non-Baha'i activities, it would actually be a better way of teaching the faith.  When it is all about Baha'i, Baha'i, Baha'i people put their guard up, and whatever a Bahai says becomes ineffective.


Besides, what about "excellence in all things"?



excellent points here! I will turn this topic into a thread of it's own.

the US exports death and corruption globally on a scale undrempt by Iranian authorities. war for corporate profits funded by taxpayers and soldiers' lives plus unofficial war funded by drugs to minorities. wave that flag of corruption in blissful ignorance of the orphans it creates assisting the rich to get richer. it's all good though cause we don't need to do ANYTHING to change... mother nature will create the necessary change.
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