The ‘Celebrate Humanity’ campaign which was launched in the run up of the 2000 Sydney Olympics remains one of the most effective Olympics campaign. Seven smart creative not only communicate the core values of Olympic Games but also invite the world to celebrate these values. This promotional campaign had touched my life deeply – every time I come across this campaign I feel inspired.
As the Olympics 2012 is round the corner, I thought of revisiting the campaign and understand what these values mean to us.
I would like to start with the Creative ‘Giant’ (primarily because of the things I would like to say via this post) – go through the embedded video or just read through the narration below:
To be a giant - This has forever been our passion, this desire to be a giant.
Not to stand on one's shoulders or have one for a friend, though these may be fortunate things, but to be one. Giants step over barriers that seem never-ending. They conquer mountains that appear insurmountable. Giants rise above fear, triumph over pain, push themselves and inspire others. To be a Giant, To do Giant things, To take Giant steps, To move the world forward.
At times I feel that, in today’s world, we need more such ‘Giants’ than ever before. Look around and you would find that scepticism, gloom and despair are working hard to take over the reins. And somehow we are seeing less and less of the ‘Giants’ in every sphere of our lives. While a few are willing to rise above the ordinary, most of us have become the victims of the ‘mediocrity’.
The recent controversy in the Indian Tennis over the selection of teams for Olympics is a prime example of this syndrome. Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi are supposed to be the legends of Indian Tennis – as the first ‘world-beaters’ from Indian Tennis, they are supposed to inspire thousands from the future generation to excel in the sport. Olympic Medal or not (Leander has one individual medal from 1996 Olympics) they were destined to be the ‘Giants’ of their field.
Alas, with this recent controversy, they have all but lost the chance to be the ‘Giant’. As illustrated in the lines above –
Giants step over barriers that seem never-ending – these guys cannot even step over the self-inflated ego for the sake of their country. The fact that they are fighting their ‘turf-war’ under the garb of serving the ‘interest’ of the nation hurts more.
They conquer mountains that appear insurmountable – Bhupathi says that as they have not won in the previous four attempts, they stand no chance - This coming from someone who has 12 Grand Slam titles under his belt and on the prospect of a team whose members cumulatively have won 25 Grand Slam titles. Shame!!
And this comes at a time when India desperately needs its ‘Giants’ – otherwise pessimism, cynicism and apathy would lead it to a downward spiral in near future.
The ‘Giants’ are needed in every field – Public Life, Sports, Art & Culture, Technology, Business and what not. Unfortunately, in today’s world, we are witnessing a scarcity of the ‘Giant’ breed. And I think we are mostly responsible for such a situation. I think that in our desire to add chutzpah to our otherwise boring lives, we have become over-critical (being critical is good, not over-critical) and over-cynical. We have created a situation where we have lost the passion to be a ‘Giant’; where we seek pleasure in pulling down everyone who is a pedestal up; where we try to ‘nip the bud’ if we chance to see signs of someone being a ‘Giant’ – that ‘Giants’ still come up is a reflection of the caliber of those individuals and not of us as a society.
I think it is time that we start bringing change as a society – change is a slow process and will take time in institutionalizing. However, we must resolve to build a culture which nurtures the passion to be a ‘Giant’; which salutes the ability to bring positive change and inspire others to do so; which does not rest on past laurels but incentivise the process of creating a better tomorrow; which creates an India where we must never face scarcity of ‘Giants’; which creates an environment where ‘hope’ always has an upper hand on ‘cynicism’ and ‘despair’.
I may have mixed up a few thoughts here and there but what remains the core of this post is that we must all endeavour to be a ‘Giant’ in our respective domain – and once we do that, probably, we would be looking at a better tomorrow.