What do I like about football? It disregards society’s sinister encouragement of individualism and creates an indelible togetherness.
Russian-American writer Ayn Rand once said: “If any civilization is to survive, it is the mortality of altruism that men have to reject.”
Ayn expressed that the fundamental purpose for human beings is to care for oneself. Her statements are reflective of selfish modern societies no matter how affable you feel you are towards others.
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But football rejects individualism vigorously. Whether you are in a stand in the Aviva, Anfield or across the globe in a stadium in Mumbai, an invigorating community spirit is inspired that is unparalleled to anything our societies conjure up.
The planet is being gradually destroyed so a minority can become even wealthier. Community is meaningless to governments. Capitalism enables elites to pursue their self-interests. This is the world we live in. But when you go to football games, an almost Utopian environment awaits.
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During the 90 minutes the outside world is omitted as individuals never pause to think about their individual lives. The beautiful game empowers us to live in the moment.
When a team scores fans lose themselves in exhilarating euphoria and celebrate by hugging strangers. On the streets they would simply walk by one another but on the terraces they are a community. Where else do individuals come together like this? Where else do we truly live in the moment?
In our consumerism driven society we are pressured to believe that we are not adequate. But consumerism fails to stimulate us long enough whereas football can produce unforgettable moments forever ingrained in our hearts.
Moments to cherish
Remember when Ronaldinho scored a splendid goal for Barcelona against fierce rivals Real Madrid in the Bernabéu? It was so special that Real Madrid fans stood up and applauded their enemy’s player.
Society is poisoned with corruption, racism and an excessively wealthy minority. Unfortunately the sport we cherish is also contaminated with this. But for fans it is an escape from reality. No live debate between political party leaders aiming to brainwash us into thinking they will provide change can engage us the same way as millions of TV’s and laptops lit up across the globe when the World Cup is on.
Not every aspect of football is cynically political either. In Germany, Bayern Munich fans are present on their club's board of directors and the close relationship between Borussia Dortmund players and supporters is stunning.
A pure society
Every time in history that America votes in a new party, the group that had the most money in their election campaign has won. When you go a football game and your team scores a momentous goal, you will experience something money can’t buy. The elation shared with thousands of others conquers the feeling of individual success.
As the Government attempts to charge you for water, as multi-national corporations expand their profits and continue to give nothing back and when more wars are started unnecessarily, at least you have a temporary evasion from the chaos.
Once Saturday comes and you are watching the game with friends or you are in the stadium singing your team on, we can do what human beings were built to do, be together and live in the moment.