In last week’s article, we touched upon the difference between playing to win and playing for the love of the sport. But why sport? Why are games such an integral part of human life, and how do we play them with utmost involvement? We take a look at all this and more in this post.

Sadhguru: Essentially, the quality of a game is such that you throw yourself into it. That is how I have played my whole life, every aspect of my life. I am game for anything.

To me, a game means using your body and your mind in a very keen manner. If you want to throw a Frisbee properly, there is so much science involved in it. People may accidentally throw it right once in a while; that is not the point. To throw it the way you want it every time, so much is involved. That is what I am beginning to like about golf also. It takes a lot of mind and body just to hit that little ball into the right place. How successful you are in any area of your life essentially depends on just this – how much you can harness your body and your mind. And a game is a very direct manifestation of that.

I have always enjoyed using my body and my mind in a very intense and keen way. Just see, when twenty-two people are playing a football game, a billion people across the world get excited. Is there anything else like this? If you look at other forms of entertainment, let’s say a movie, people put all kinds of things in the movie but still it will not excite half the population. But with a sport like football, billions of people are just driven crazy by it simply because of the intensity and the involvement. A game cannot be played without involvement. It does not matter what type of game it is, you cannot play a game half-heartedly. That is the best part of it. You can go to your work half-heartedly, you can even handle your marriage half-heartedly, but you cannot play a game that way. You throw yourself into it, otherwise there is no game, it is torture.

Involvement is the key to your very life. Whatever area of your life, if you do not know how to involve yourself, for you there is no life. Whether your family or your marriage or whatever, if you are involved, it is a wonderful place; otherwise it is hell. A game brings that into your life – absolute involvement into what you are doing. This tremendous sense of involvement in whatever you are doing, the focus that it takes and the human ability to stretch beyond their limits to fulfil something that they wish to do at that moment, are essential ingredients for a successful life.

The English expression, “Are you game?” simply means “Are you ready for life?” Playing a game or being in sport is an essential ingredient to build a healthy life – both physical and mental – and I would go to the extent of saying even for a spiritual process, it is important that one knows how to play a game.

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