THE NEW RELIGION?
"Look where we worship"
Those words are the beginning of a poetry book I’m reading called “The Lords and The New Creatures” by Jim Morrison, yes THAT Jim Morrison. It was first published in the late 1960’s to critical scorn. Maybe they just didn’t get it, maybe it was just ahead of its time, or maybe Morrison was just a little TOO “out there”. Regardless, I recommend picking it up. I’m not trying to turn this into a poetry critique, after all, this is a sports blog right? The reason I mention it is because those first few words spoken by The Lizard King woe those many years ago made me stop and think…..where DO we worship? And WHAT do we worship?
Anyone reading this may immediately say “well, I’m a Christian, Jew, Muslim, Hindu or what have you” and I don’t doubt that, but are any of those really the religion many espouse to follow? Or is there another that we truly follow?
Is Sports the World’s newest and greatest religion? You may not think so at first glance, but look again.
All religions have the basic things in common; masses of believers, places of worship, prophets and heroes.
This year is a prime year to prove the point that Sports is the new religion. What are the most watched events in modern history? Is it The Papal Easter Mass? Could it be a World Leader’s speech that could affect our very lives? Or perhaps it’s some other profound occurrence that could mould human history or ingrain itself on our collective psyche? No, none of these seemingly important events can begin to compare to the attention of The Super Bowl, The World Cup, or the Olympics. In fact, they are almost insignificant in comparison…at least according to viewers.
Everyday millions turn to their favorite Sports Page, website, or TV channel to get the latest scores, news and happenings from the World of Sports, these are their Bible, the place they receive the good word, and get emotional and spiritual confirmation about their cherished teams or heroes. Every Sunday they turn out en masse to their chosen places of worship, to bask in the glow of competition. What are these places? They’re a couch placed in front of a high definition altar, they’re the local pub or bar where they meet with the other faithful to rejoice or commiserate the deeds of their idols, and they’re 75,000 all-seater cathedrals with retractable roofs, where the truest believers can enjoy air conditioning and a full compliment of eating establishments, not to mention the alcoholic ambrosia available for about $5.00 a pint. Some places have wine and bread, others, beer and a hotdog. To each his own
Would these folks ever consider missing a day of worship? Don’t even think about it. Get up for church? Nah can’t be bothered, it’ll be there, but miss the big game…now that’s sacrilege.
Still not convinced? Think about this. Most people who profess to be religious, are not really devout, and only show up when it’s important, you know the big days like Easter, Christmas, etc. They feel it necessary to be there when all eyes are watching. They may not be true believers, but they’ll say “hey, at least I’m there when it matters” Same with sports. Look around you everywhere, there are those who say they don’t like or care about sports. But lo and behold when its Super Bowl time, suddenly everyone is a sports fan, even if it is a superficial need to be seen.