“The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not winning but taking part; the essential thing in life is not conquering but fighting well.”

–Pierre de Coubertin – 1894.

Before 1894, the Olympic Games were a long lost tradition. They were a buried relic of the Greek civilisation, never to be dug out again. However, in the late 19th century, Europe’s fascination with Greek culture was rekindled. In 1896, the first Games were inaugurated in Greece and since then this sports ritual has not come to a halt. Though not completely successful in the earlier days of their inception, Olympic Games picked up pace in 1924, when 3,000 athletes from 44 nations participated in them. This year, the games are being held in the seaside city of Brazil, Rio de Janeiro, with a total number of 11,000 participating athletes from 206 National Olympic Committees. In the words of the United Nations Secretary General, Ban-Ki Moon, nations have the opportunity to put aside their differences during the games and cooperate with each other. This year the Olympic theme song titled ‘Rise’ has been sung by well-known American singer and song writer, Katy Perry. The majestic opening ceremony of the much awaited games took place on August 5. Matches have been scheduled and some of the tournaments have already begun. All players are ready to fight and win. However, putting the festivities aside, what’s truly special about the Olympic Games is the spirit it promulgates. The Olympic spirit of striving, striking, falling and surviving is the true spirit of human life and we should all hold on to it.