Religion in sports

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by awmazz, Jun 4, 2010.

  1. awmazz macrumors 65816

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    #1
    The World Cup is just about to start in South Africa, and while I'm an avid fan and looking forward to it (apart from those infernally annoying trumpets the South African crowds use), I really dread the moment I know I will see a player making the sign of the cross or kissing a crucifix around his neck after scoring a goal.

    What are everyone's thoughts? Is it acceptable? If so, then what of the reverse? I recall seeing a tennis player recently thanking Jesus for giving him/her the strength to win the final (and lots of money). My immediate thought was so Jesus wanted the other player to lose? What if the losing player got up there and cursed and blamed Jesus for their loss? Can you imagine the outrage?

    Personally, I can't really see why Jesus would care who won a million dollars in game of sports while people are starving in the world. I understand religion may give them self confidence and suchlike, but please can they keep their private arrangement between them and their god and not make a public display of it to the world that 'Jesus is on my side'.

    I always like to go for the underdog, so I've decided that when I see a player crossing himself I will instantly start rooting for the other team to win instead. You can't get more underdog than playing against God. :)
     
  2. steviem macrumors 68020

    steviem

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    #2
    Does it matter?

    Athletes are known to be very superstitious. It doesn't matter where they get their superstition from, as long as they are good at their sport.

    What next? Ban footballers from backflipping when celebrating a goal because that's from another sport, or maybe ban them from kissing/hugging each other because it 'looks a bit gay' and causes offense.

    *Personal opinion here, men kissing doesn't offend me...
     
  3. awmazz thread starter macrumors 65816

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    They actually *have* banned exuberant displays after scoring. Even taking your shirt off earns you an instant yellow card now. Also players celebrating in front of the opposition's fans as it can be viewed as inciting crowd troubles.

    Another thing they also frown on is players revealing t-shirts with messages or slogans. A few players in the Brazilian team in the 2009 Confederations Cup final had Jesus-themed t-shirts which contravened FIFA laws:

     
  4. Jaffa Cake macrumors Core

    Jaffa Cake

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    #4
    You're not likely to be seeing that, players aren't allowed to wear crucifixes or any form of jewellery under FIFA regulations.

    I couldn't give two hoots if a player crosses himself, or points to the sky after he scores. I'm not religious by any stretch of the imagination, but if a player is and wants to do that sort of thing he's entitled to.

    Off the top of my head I can't think of any England players who do it - it's much more common among Latin players - but at club level we've had a couple of religious types over the years who do that sort of thing, or mention their faith in interviews. Indeed, one player (who's no longer at the club) has based his career moving around clubs in areas that have a church belonging to the obscure denomination he follows (there are, I think, only three in the UK so his choices have been a little limited).

    So no, I've no problem with it myself. However, don't get me started on badge kissing, coloured boots or music after goals are scored...
     
  5. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #5
    Individual players who want to invoke their chosen deity? I don't mind at all. I suppose I would be less happy if a team was requiring certain religious fealty of their players, but it would depend on whether they take or use public funds.

    But someone crossing themselves or thanking Jesus for the assist on a goal doesn't bother me a bit.
     
  6. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #6
    If both teams are praying for the invisible man in the sky to help them win, how does he choose?
     
  7. obeygiant macrumors 68040

    obeygiant

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    I'm trying to wean myself off sports, it's too time consuming. I don't watch football anymore, I gave that up. I got tired of the interviews after the games, because the winning players always give credit to God, and the losers blame themselves. You know, just once I'd like to hear a player say, 'Yeah, we were in the game, until Jesus made me fumble. He hates our team. - Jeff Stilson
     
  8. jbennardo macrumors 6502a

    jbennardo

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    #8
    This always cracked me up. There's a guy in the other locker room who prayed just as hard but didn't get what he wanted. :D
     
  9. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #9
    Yeah, I'd love to see that too. "I prayed to Jesus for the win, but I guess he's a fan of the other guys"

    Jesus is always the reason for their win, but he's never the reason for their loss. And I've always wondered if the nonreligious people on a team feel insulted when a teammate thanks Jesus for the win. Winning is a team effort, not a divine effort, and thanking Jesus seems to be ignoring the efforts of your teammates.
     
  10. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #10
    Jesus died a long time ago, I don't know why they are thanking him still.

    As for a deity who would help with a sports game while people are dieing around the world.. hm..
     
  11. Sydde macrumors 68020

    Sydde

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    #11
    Seems a little self deprecating to me. "I didn't have what it takes, even with all the practice and talent and effort I put into becoming the best player I could be, but thank goodness I had my invisible friend to help me and my team along to victory."

    (I think this is the same invisible friend that they hear whispering in their ear.)
     
  12. Desertrat macrumors newbie

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    #12
    Since that athlete's religious beliefs of whatever sort won't affect me in the slightest, I figure that worrying about it is pretty much like picking fly poop out of pepper. There must be something more trivial about which to worry, but I'm at a loss to discover it...
     
  13. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #13
    so OP....players can't be religious now? Is that the jist I get from you? Why should it matter?

    I don't have any issue with it
     
  14. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

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    #14
    Really, you dread the sight of someone making the sign of the cross? Kind of sad and petty if you ask me.
     
  15. TheAppleGeek macrumors 6502a

    TheAppleGeek

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    #15
    He died ... then rose again three days later. He's alive today! :)
     
  16. Gelfin macrumors 68020

    Gelfin

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    #16
    Hey, that's racist! I suppose it's "sad and petty" that I burst into flames in sunlight, too.
     
  17. Grey Beard macrumors 65816

    Grey Beard

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    #17
    And it's a woman who is the goddess of victory, a Greek called Nike

    KGB
     
  18. obeygiant macrumors 68040

    obeygiant

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    #18
    I don't really mind it either so go ahead and thank god. Although it is odd that the god of the entire universe would actually come to our blue speck and help anyone make a touchdown or enhance their acting enough to receive an Oscar.
     
  19. awmazz thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #19
    Inversely, kind of sad and petty to cross yourself when you score a goal. A bunch of people trying to get a ball over a line is about as secular as you can get, so to try and inject religious superiority into it as in 'God is on my/our side' is very sad and petty, to the point it's childish and groan-worthy.

    So really, I do dread seeing it. An audible groan whenever I see it. I even pray myself when I see it. Oh God, not another one, Lord give me strength...

    Which is probably how they think of Jesus - giving them strength to win. Which to me actually shows the person has absolutely no idea whatsoever of the teachings of Jesus, which never included such things as:

    Beat thy neighbour 1-0.
    Score unto others as you would not have scored unto yourself.
    Defeat them for they know not how to play.

    I personally think Jesus would be groaning himself and rolling in his grave at such displays, if he had one. ;)

    PS. This is just a personal observation, but I have found that those who do the cross-themselves displays are also the ones most likely to feign injury or being tripped to dupe the referee into awarding a free kick or penalty. They're charlatans.
     
  20. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #20
    At least we can all agree on something, soccer shouldn't be considered a sport.
     
  21. awmazz thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #21
    True, on a technicality. The sport is football. Soccer is the competition or association. From associated football.

    ie, you can play football in the park with your friends, but it's not soccer. Soccer is when you play football in an organized competition of associated teams.
     
  22. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #22
    You just ruined my joke. :(

    :D
     
  23. awmazz thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #23
    I know. I just couldn't help pontificating when the opportunity presented itself, sorry. :D
     
  24. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    #24
    There are worse things than making signing a cross or pointing up to the heavens after scoring.

    I always :rolleyes: when someone survives a plane crash or some horrific incident and says they were saved by God, implying that the same God must not have thought as highly about the other hundreds of people who It just squashed like bugs.
     
  25. awmazz thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #25
    That's a good point. It's exactly the same thing isn't it. The implications of "God wanted me to survive " = "God wanted the others to die".

    Maybe if I go down to my basest instincts, that could be what really annoys me. "God thinks I'm special and they're not". And my instinctual reaction is "what a wanker".
     

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