Olympic Values

I’ve been thinking a lot about the Olympics lately…unsurprisingly.

I’m not a sport kind a girl and I won’t watch much of it. But I will watch the opening. I love the concept of the Olympics. That the world can come together and play/compete in peace. I like that…a lot.

But I’ve been wondering other stuff too. About Saudi women being allowed to participate, about the values of the Olympics, and about whether it really is a good idea that we represent our countries…maybe we could just represent ourselves?

These wonderings of mine were prompted by a post and the corresponding comments I read regarding the participation of Saudi women.  (http://saudiwoman.me/2012/07/20/two-steps-forward/)

In response to a comment I made supporting all woman who wished to compete a man responded with;

“I do not understand why you insist that they must play sport in front of men.”

That stunned me a bit because never had I perceived women competing in the Olympics in that particular light. For me it is about individuals who want to excel at their chosen sport and reach the pinnacle…that being the Olympics.

I do understand the religious and cultural differences that made this man become so virulent in his support of Saudi laws however this did lead me to wonder about the values of the Olympics (rather than values of different countries)…so I looked them up.

“The Olympic and Paralympic Games are about much more than sporting excellence. Underpinning the Games is the philosophy of Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the Modern Olympic Movement.

He saw in the Games an ideal opportunity to develop a set of universal principles – or Values – that could be applied to education and to society as a whole, as well as to sport itself.

These Values are:

  • respect – fair play; knowing one’s own limits; and taking care of one’s health and the environment
  • excellence – how to give the best of oneself, on the field of play or in life; taking part; and progressing according to one’s own objectives
  • friendship – how, through sport, to understand each other despite any differences

The Paralympic Values are based on the history of the Paralympic Games and the tradition of fair play and honourable sports competition.

They are:

  • courage
  • determination
  • inspiration
  • equality.”


You see there is no gender, no religion, no sexual preference, no colour, no political party, not even any nationality divide. Just respect, excellence, and friendship.

Seems a cool thing to aim for.

Regarding representing ones individual self rather that country…it just seems to me that the Olympics are a time when we can come together and celebrate the excelling of individuals and our membership in this quite amazing group called humanity. For this time it doesn’t seem to me that we need the division of geographical boundaries

What do you think?

7 thoughts on “Olympic Values

    • yes Edward I don’t like it either. But that is not what I am discussing here. That is about each individuals moral beliefs and behaviour. I am talking of the over-riding values…the intent of the Olympics.

      • oh, and as a health practitioner I support the handing out of condoms to insure against unplanned pregnancy and sexually trasmitted diseases whatever my personal morals may be.

  1. 150,000 condoms will be given to the participants. It seems that they are going to have orgies in the Olympic village…..you still see values in that?…if you insist on that, that’s your choice based on your belief….but do not force all women to participate…some women in some cultures abhor this immorality and prefer to stay clean and chaste.

    • oh Edward honey you’re missing the point. Firstly values and morals are very different concepts’ and what you are talking about are morals. Secondly, no one is “forcing” anyone to participate but equally so no one should denied participation if they so wish it.

  2. This is such a sensibly, sensitively written post. I was born in the muslim community too and I was so glad that at least this time , the Saudi women could participate. Isn’t is sad that women have to pay the price for what men think distracts them. The distraction is always in one’s own mind…why deny another the chance of exploring the whole range of his/her potential under one pretext or another? And I am with you when you talk of participating as individuals instead of doing it under the banners of nations. In the path of our evolution as better human beings, all external identities should gradually be done away with , except that which may be becomes necessary for administrative purposes. I’d like to share this on my Facebook page, please. I hope you don’t mind.:-)

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