June 23, 2010
Despite the nearly worldwide fascination with the ongoing World Cup, Buddhists in China have been involved in some very different games, including badminton, basketball, and even tug-of-war. Held in China's Yunnan province, one of the country's most ethnically diverse areas, the "Religious Games" sought to build camaraderie among members of different religious groups, as reported in The Washington Post. The competition, held this past weekend, brought together nearly 1,000 athletes, competing in 21 different teams, including some teams composed of members from different religious traditions.
Photos from People's Daily Online show some of the activities, including the special robes worn by Tibetan Buddhist monks during basketball games (mentioned in the Post article):
Exhibiting a combination of characteristic non-attachment and support for religious unity, a Buddhist nun, after losing a badminton game, explained:
"We have never trained for this. We are not here to win, but to participate"
Hopefully, such religious tolerance will continue to bloom in China.