September 4, 2015

Finding Mindfulness in Deflategate: Do They Really Hate Us, ‘Cause They Ain’t Us?


“Sports do not build character, they reveal it.” ~ John Wooden

New England Patriots fans all over the country are celebrating today.

U.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman overturned the NFL’s decision to suspend Tom Brady from four games over last season’s deflategate controversy,

The debate began when Brady was accused of purposely tampering with game balls during the AFC Championship against the Indianapolis Colts in January of 2015.

Despite the lack of evidence the NFL had no reservations against pinning this scandal solely on Brady—and it leaves me wondering, do they really hate us—‘cause they ain’t us?

Throughout history those who have great accomplishments have often battled with the small minds of those that were resentful of their success—and it seems Brady is no exception from this type of persecution.

But, what is it about those who live above the line that make others so uncomfortable with their success?

It seems that we are more at ease in mediocrity, and that despite all of the mindful living and spiritual awareness that we have evolved into—we still like to see others fail.

We like it when those who shine brighter fall to earth and remind us that we are all in fact human.

And although, we may say otherwise, it seems that those who are gifted and talented will always be the source of rumors and attempted take downs.

But why? Why is it so difficult for us to see a great team and congratulate them on their success?

Instead, we assume that they can’t naturally be that good—and that they must have cheated.

It’s easier for us to believe that the Patriots cheated than to actually think that they are one helluva good team that doesn’t deserve these allegations.

Not only that, but as a society we jumped on the band wagon to bring down the golden boy.

These thoughts in fact say more about us than the Patriots or Brady.

Haters are always going to hate.

We live in jealousy and we look forward to the demise of those that enjoy success. We feel threatened when others find success at something that we believe we are not capable of.

While this translated into a big social media expose for the Patriots and Brady—these very same lessons are with us each day in our lives.

It started in elementary school when we first felt those pangs of jealousy because our friend scored better on a test than we did—or they were able to run faster than we are.

As we get older the situations change, but ultimately the same feelings of inadequacy and jealousy still arise when others accomplish what we believe we are unable to.

But this is the thing, these feelings of incompetence are in our own minds—they are not true reality.

In order to move past these negative feelings we first have to look inward at our own selves and what we believe to be true.

Not everyone can be an amazing quarterback like Tom Brady—but that is okay.

We all have amazing gifts that we can bring to this world, whether that translates into our careers or family life—we each bring something unique to the table.

How boring life would be if we were all talented at the same thing.

The only thing that separates Patriots fans, from well—everyone else—is the ability to be happy for another’s success.

The ability to look at another and feel sincerely happy for their gifts and success is the very basis of mindful living.

How often do we hear others putting people down because of their looks, their successful jobs, or their happy marriages—all of these feelings and comments are based solely on our own insecurities.

If we can instead realize that nothing special separates us from them except for hard work and innate talent then we can start moving towards a more mindful and confident way of living our lives.

To be able to take a long hard look at ourselves, and be confident in our own abilities signifies not only maturity, but a higher level of spiritual consciousness.

To be happy for another’s success without feeling like their accomplishments are taking away from ours is the true definition of being a confident person.

While American football and mindfulness don’t seem like common bedfellows—in this case, it is a prime example of attacking someone whom we feel threatened by.

Instead of pointing fingers at Brady or the entire Patriots franchise we need to take a closer look at exactly why so many of us wanted to jump to conclusions.

While the truth of it is that some people are always going to hate—there are others that continually stand in a place of authenticity and truth and are not only happy for the success of another, but also take a stand to end the backlash of unsubstantiated claims and rumors.

Today’s ruling was about vindication—not just for Tom Brady, but for all of those that are successful. Those individuals that have natural gifts others look up too—and possibly even envy.

The overturning of the suspension was about making things right and while the NFL has said they will appeal the case—right now we are celebrating.

We are celebrating in the freedom of Tom Brady and in the ability for all those who are talented and successful to be able to keep doing their own thing—without worrying that someone is trying to take them down.

As the Patriots—and Tom Brady—take the field in the regular season opener in Foxboro next Thursday we aren’t just starting a new season—but celebrating the end of a scandal to take down one of the best teams in NFL history.

Now, the only thing left to do is give the haters something new to talk about—like winning a fifth Super Bowl ring.


AP: Judge Sides with Brady on ‘Deflategate’, NFL Appeals



Two Simple Truths to Beating Jealousy.


Author: Kate Rose

Editor: Travis May

Photo: Flickr/U.S. Department of Agriculture

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