Proud Citizen of the World…

Posted: June 18, 2010 in Dream World
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Maybe, I am not your stereo typical guy, in that I am not a huge sports fan. I just don’t have any desire to spend hours glued to the TV watching football, baseball, basketball or even hockey. But every 4 years that changes when the Olympics roll around. I am suddenly irresistibly drawn to the TV to watch any and all the events that I can. I am in total awe of each and every athlete as they show their athletic abilities in their various events. I marvel at the dedication, the determination and the work that each and every one has put in to get them to the point where they are now. The thousands of hours of work and training they have put in to prepare for this time. I admire and respect every one of them irregardless of the country they come from.

I AM A PAKISTANI and very proud of that fact. I am proud of my country and I suppose there for it is natural that I do cheer for PAKISTANI athletes.

Now I am not really sure if it is because I do seem to see things slightly differently on a lot of occasions since my mental abilities have enhanced or what. But, last year, it seems I am viewing the Olympics with a different mindset.

I admit there is still a large part of me that wants the Pakistani athlete to win. But, more and more I am coming to realize, I really don’t care which country the winning athletes are from. When watching the events on TV, they usually show a quick flash of the athlete, who usually wave to the camera. During this brief introduction it is mentioned which country the particular athlete is representing, fair enough as each is there proudly representing their own country. I realized my attention was drawn more to the country being represented than the individual participant. Think about it, how wrong that is.

I have always liked watching the Olympics and I am sort of embarrassed to admit but back in my younger days, I often found myself cheering AGAINST particular athletes simply because of the country they represented. Had nothing to do with the individual competing, it was just I didn’t want THAT country to get any glory. How wrong is that? I lost sight of the fact it was an individual competing and not a country. In my mind I suppose I was penalizing the individual because of the country they represented. How wrong is that?

Now, I see the athlete, the individual. I both marvel at and admire the strength and determination they have to have worked so very hard. The years of training and very hard work it has taken to get them to this point. I see an individual that has put so much effort into making their dream come true. The dream of competing in the Olympics. Is that dream any less real to any of the participants, irregardless of anything? I don’t think so.

Last night I was watching the men’s diving off the high board. I found myself cheering for each individual diver as his turn came. I was hoping each diver would each hit that perfect dive and score 10′s. I saw individuals living their dream and I was cheering for them all.

Yes, I am a citizen of Pakistan and very proud of that. I have realized I am more than that, I am a citizen of this world and also very proud of that. I see the feats individual athletes can accomplish and it makes me proud to be a citizen of this world. Never again will I allow the country of origin to blur my vision of the individual. Maybe if we all tried to carry this thought, here at the Olympics yes but also in our daily lives. Could we even try to carry it over to people of a different faith or religion, I don’t see why not.

I am only human so I still do have my individual biases. There is still a group of athletes that I do cheer AGAINST. No countries athletes are exempt from being placed on my no cheer list. I hate arrogance. If I see any individual showing what I feel is arrogance in say a semi final, that individual will be on my no cheer list for the final. This is something that has just to do with the individual and nothing to do with countries of origin.

  1. Martha Singh says:

    Excellent point: making the Olympics represent what it is supposed to represent, the uniting of people and countries, and not the divisions amongst them. We are all people, striving to do our best, let’s cheer that–for the world community.

  2. Mel Carter says:

    I too am a real Olympics fan! I really admire anyone, regardless of country of origin, who has the guts to commit themselves to the Olympic task. It kind of bothers me when the athletes feel it necessary to apologize for not meeting the expectations of others, especially during the post-event media frenzy.

  3. Jo Hart says:

    I figure if you finish your event, whatever that is, is all we can ask. One athlete many years ago, competing in a marathon, was obviously going to be dead last, but he didn’t stop. He continued right to the very end. When asked by the media why he refused to quit, he replied: My country did not send me here to start the race, my country sent me here to finish it. I figure it’s pretty much the same thing in life. The Good Lord put us here to finish life’s race and to finish it well. Giving up and giving in really shouldn’t be part of the equation. Doing the best we can with what we have and what we know–that’s our “game”.
    Thinking of you often, Wiseman.

  4. Sameen Shah says:

    I especially loved the line: “Doing the best we can with what we have and what we know–that’s our “game”. Love life to the fullest, do the best we can with what we have. Right on my friend

  5. Mohsin Kamran says:

    Thankyou for ‘popping over’, whilst I slept on the other side of the world. That was you, wasn’t it,.. who left that messy gold dust all over the place, oh well, nevermind, I guess that’s what you do!

  6. Helen says:

    I’m Honoured with a capital H to have been added to your blogroll.;
    And, quite taken aback, moved to tears as I write actually, at your kindness and encouragement at the task that is before us. Knowing I am in good company adds just that little more grace in the endeavour.
    Cheers, and thankyou once more,

  7. Namrita says:

    Just thinking of you Miqdad and thought I would stop by to say hello. Nam

  8. Altamash Jiva says:

    so nice to hear from you. I do hope all is well, I will try to stop over for a visit shortly.

  9. Salwa Sharif says:

    I’m loving all the individual stories that evolve during the Olympics. It isn’t about a particular country (although the USA “redeem team” has redeemed themselves…sorry…I had to say it…lol), but about individuals and their struggles to reach their goals. It is about the endeavors and hardships endured, some that haven’t even been mentioned, and it is about pride in accomplishment that each individual has, who has made it to the Olympic level.

  10. Sara Parker says:

    I also was addicted to the Olympics this year. I think China did a great job! Your comments about citizen-of-the-world are certainly nice and on the most part I agree, however, as a very proud Canadian if there is a Canadian competing I’m cheering against everyone else!

  11. Sabika Khan says:

    You are so right, it is all about the individuals, their stories of hardship, hard work and sacrifice to get to where they are.
    All should be proud medals or not.
    Nice to hear from you

  12. anika says:

    A great post…you are right and i agree with you. We should pay attention to the athlete and the hardwork that he goes through before reaching that stage, and not his country of origin..

  13. Ammar Haque says:

    sara, you are right from everything I saw, China did a great job. I am with you in that I might show a “little” bias when a Canadian athlete is involved. Go Canada Go!!

  14. Salma Hayat says:

    very true and attractive 🙂

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