Coubertin Quote for Oct, 23
Modern sports lack the loftiness of goals, the whole patriotic and religious apparatus that surrounded the festivals of youth in ancient times.Share
When Baron Pierre de Coubertin looked back at the ancient Olympic Games and evaluated their influence across the Greek world, he concluded that they were far more than a sporting event. The cultural, religious and patriotic aspects of ancient Olympia infused the Games with a level of symbolic meaning that lifted them above any other competition, celebration or festival. It drew them closer to their mythological gods and produced heroes whose stories became legend. Since the Baron was ambitious to ensure the modern Olympic Games possessed a similar prestige, he made sure the festival evoked spiritual, cultural and patriotic dimensions in its rituals and competitions. And he set the Olympic Movement itself on a quest to unite the world in friendship and peace through sport. Today’s quote is from “Neo-Olympism: Appeal to the People of Athens,” a speech the Baron delivered in the Greek capital in 1894, in which he articulated his intention to clothe the modern Games in the kind of prestige the ancient Games possessed.
“Modern sports lack the loftiness of goals, the whole patriotic and religious apparatus that surrounded the festivals of youth (in ancient times) … Gentlemen, this is the order of ideas from which I intend to draw the elements of moral strength that must guide and protect the renaissance of athletics. Healthy democracy and wise and peaceful internationalism will make their way into the new stadium. There they will glorify the honor and selflessness that will enable athletics to carry out its task of moral betterment and social peace, as well as physical development.”