As controversy rages about a pivotal non-call during the last minute of Super Bowl 47 that likely would have reversed the outcome, this just in from Europe about soccer: Investigation Finds Global Betting Scam Fixed Hundreds Of Matches. According to a Reuters story, about $3 billion a day is wagered on soccer matches and investigators have unearthed "a network involving couriers ferrying bribes around the world, paying off players and referees in the fixing which involved about 425 corrupt officials, players and serious criminals in 15 countries."
The only surprise in these two stories is that anyone with a modicum of intelligence would be surprised. 3 billion dollars a day in bets, and that's just soccer? How much was won and lost on that one Super Bowl moment? Can anyone seriously believe that big bettors would leave their money in the hands of Lady Luck and skill?
Let's just expose the whole thing: cheating to win is the norm, not the exception. Lance Armstrong anyone? A-Rod? We love to rhapsodize about the honor of the game, hold professional athletes to high moral standards, cheer and weep when our teams win and lose, but any serious sports fan must suspect, through seeing countless "incidents" over the years, that the fix is in. Always. And how could it be otherwise, when winning is all it's ever been about?
Such is the world of competition, the playground of egos seeking to immortalize themselves in any way they can. Trophies, rings, halls of fame... all tributes to separation. From a spiritual perspective, we understand it's all just reveling in "who we are not." As for who we really are, we are simply witnessing the spectacle, judging no one, including cheaters. Simultaneously, we are busy playing our own game, the greatest game of all: the play of consciousness, where the goal is not winning but growing and we do it by cooperating not competing with each other.
The consistent bliss of that state eclipses anything the fleeting "sweet smell of victory" could ever give us.