Is there an Alternative to Competition?

In this world in which we live, where our minds have been tainted by the traumas and desires, experienced through many lives. We have reached the ‘dark night of the soul’. In Sanskrit, it is called the ‘Kali Yuga’ or the age of darkness. This is a very difficult period for most of us, as we grope in the darkness confused and without awareness. Now is the time we go through experiences and gain our wisdom. It is quite a painful time, as we experience hatred, separation and anger. Slowly, we become aware that our true reality is love. Then all our negative tendencies and feelings dissipate and we discover our true selves. We experience lessons in this life personally and also from a global perspective.


We know that we are still in this dark period because of what is happening around us. Take, for instance, the football competition ‘Euro 2020’. The people who have a passion for this game forget that this is a game to enjoy and not a war. Unfortunately, it has turned out to be more like a war. Where even fans from the same team abuse their own players because of the colour of their skin, calling them names and allowing racism to overtake their sense of morality. They are not aware of the ugliness of their actions. Instead of celebrating the joy of football, they smash bottles and glasses and leave rubbish everywhere. The city was made ugly by their riotous behaviour; getting drunk, vomiting and other unpleasant conduct.


The problem here is the actual competition, it is divisive, focusing on each other as separate. There is also the inherent pride of each country to see who is the best. This competitiveness brings out the negativity in the fans. Instead of enjoying the competition, they choose to abuse each other. It is not only the fans but also the national newspapers and media that employ racist language and symbolism to denigrate each other. To top it all, even ministers encourage this racism by not censoring their behaviour.


The rewards of competition create a climate where cheating has become normal. Recently, I watched a documentary where all the national team members are drugged routinely in order to cheat and win medals for the pride of their country. Even after it was proved that the country cheated, politics allowed them to escape punishment. The reason they were caught was because there are people who disagree with this behaviour. There are more and more people coming forward as ‘whistle-blowers’ in all walks of life. This is because more and more people are becoming aware of actions that are illegal, illicit, unsafe, fraudulent, immoral, or unethical in government, or in organisations.

The Principle of Cooperation

A short video about the Sports Meet at Puttaparthi – Sri Sathya Sai Sports and Cultural Meet – A Documentary | Prasanthi Nilayam by Sri Sathya Sai Official

In the university in India, Puttaparthi, that my teacher, Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba started, the principle of cooperation is encouraged. On their annual sports day, the students are encouraged to conduct whatever they do as teams in cooperation and collaboration with each other. Putting in their best effort to display their abilities to those who have come to witness and celebrate their achievements, not as competitors but as comrades, dependent on each other to fulfill their goals.

If the same principle is developed among all the countries participating in the Tokyo Olympics 2020, without the need to compare and compete to see who is best, there would be less cheating and more cooperation with each other. Competition is about challenging each other to see who is best. This is the province of the ego. Then the question arises if the person feels unloved is being the best at a certain sport make them feel loved? Will the rewards and attention they receive make them feel complete? The truth is, the rewards and attention are only temporary in this world.


Feeding the poor in Puttaparthi

We will not see differences in each other if we know we are Atma (Pure Love) and part of Paramatma (GOD) and one in that consciousness. As long as we see ourselves as separate and identify with the body, we will be blind to the fact that we are all One. This separation only serves to focus on our differences in race, colour, language and religion. Where is the oneness when we spew hate and anger at each other? This separation will only lead to suffering. What if we chose not to compete with each other but to encourage each other to be the best that we can be in any field that we choose and help each other in the spirit of Oneness? What if every activity we participated in was an offering of Love to Love?

Love and Blessings, Eddie

Eddie Appoo is a spiritual teacher and author dedicated to guiding others on their journey of Self-Realisation. He embarked on a journey of spiritual exploration from a young age and had his first glimpse of Self-Realisation in the early 1980s. In 1992, Eddie experienced himself as Atma (One with God) guided by his spiritual master Sri Sathya Sai Baba. Alongside his wife, he co-created LiberatingTouch®, a spiritual development system. Eddie’s teachings and writings, including “Detachment: The Secret to Infinite Peace,” reflect his dedication to sharing joy and facilitating spiritual progression.

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