Friday, July 09, 2010

Lessons from the World Cup part VIII: "There's no I in team"

As the World Cup tournament progressed, we saw team after team leave the field. We saw  some of the hottest teams unceremoniously dismissed. France is seething at their team that fell apart, English fans want to know why their players are paid so much (they didn't even make the quarter-finals) and South America's giants bowed out early.

In the build-up to the games, people ogled over Rooney, Ronaldo, Kaka and Messi. None of them will play in the final game on Sunday. Having a celebrity sportsman on your team doesn't guarantee success, because one man cannot win a soccer game. It's a team effort, where everyone has to play in harmony or everyone goes down. It's those teams who have played as a cohesive unit who have made it to the finish line, not those that boasted the fanciest names of football.

Judaism is team effort. You can't connect to G-d on your own; you need to join a team. You can't rely on a professional Jew (your rabbi) to look after your spiritual needs. No matter how good your rabbi is, one man can't win the game. For that matter, you can't expect your child's school to insure his child's spiritual wellbeing. Sure, you send your youngster to an excellent school, but his teachers need you on the team to ensure that he turns out a success.

No comments: