Coubertin Quote for Oct, 20
Altruistic joy is a perpetual dawn.Share
The French philosopher Auguste Comte (1798-1857), who died a few years before Baron Pierre de Coubertin was born, created a humanistic philosophy known as “positivism,” which had a great ethical influence in guiding the social evolution of French society and its leading intellectual lights. Comte’s central thesis was the importance of the greater good in building a just, equitable and free nation. He coined the phrase altruism, which emphasized the welfare and happiness of others in counterpoint to the self-centered focus of egotism. The Baron knew Comte’s philosophy well and sought to integrate its ethical principles into his own philosophy of Olympism. Pierre de Coubertn believed the ideas of mutual respect and friendship, which can trace their Olympic antecedents to altruism, were essential in the character formation of the modern athlete—and citizen. And further, that the athlete’s joy would only be complete when he looked beyond himself to others. In these words, which are drawn from “Olympic Letter VII: The Recipe for Becoming Olympic,” which the Baron wrote in 1918, we see the foundation of his optimism and the eternal hope of Olympism.
“Of course, athletes know the price of good muscular humor and the strength of the contentment that it provides, but it is not enough to create the total joy in which another element plays a part: altruism. Now we have gone from Olympism to the Gospel. "Love your neighbor as yourself," commands the Good Book … Rejoice in humanity that is constantly being reborn, advises Olympism. Have faith in it, pour out your energy on it, mix your hopes with its. Egotistical joy is not an intermittent sun. Altruistic joy is a perpetual dawn.”