Written By: Dan Rival
The core value of Reverence, by Neumann’s definition, is to honor the worth and dignity of those around us. On the men’s soccer team, we live up to this value by showing respect toward ourselves, our coaches, our opponents, and our teammates. The way we accomplish this is by creating a compassionate and welcoming atmosphere to which everyone feels welcomed and desires to be a part of. When we first meet for the day, we always shake hands with everyone on the team; this shows that we respect one another and enjoy being around each other. We also do this at the end of practice. If it was a rough session and tensions were high, this shows that regardless of what happened, we’re still teammates and friends.
Reverence is a core principal of ours that guides us to success. An example where reverence was a core aspect to our team was a practice last year right before our playoff run. Two of our players disagreed on where the ball should be played in a certain situation. One player wanted to shoot, the other wanted him to pass the ball. Rather than get angry at each other and cause a rift in the team, they worked out what was the best course of action and moved on. While they had different opinions, they respected each other and listened to what the other person had to say. This incident exemplifies who we are as a team; if things aren’t going flawlessly, we communicate and collaborate to make ourselves better.
Reverence can be directed toward other things than people, and for our team, our field is a sacred place that we revere. Regardless of what is going on in our lives, whether struggles of school are bothering us or other issues are getting us down, the field is our outlet. A wise man once said, “Being on the field is the most meaningful thing that you can do in a day”. The soccer field gives us an opportunity to be ourselves. After long days in the classroom, being out on the field allows me and my teammates to release our anxieties and built up energy. When we take the field, being with our friends and doing something we love moves our daily struggles to the back of our minds. The camaraderie, the hard work, the fun of being on the field with the team, allows us in that moment to feel something of the spiritual. As competitors, it is difficult to view our opponents as equals. It is important to remind ourselves that playing this sport is more than a game and each one of us, teammate or not, has value. Being a sacred place, the field reminds us to respect ourselves, our coaches, our teammates and our opponents and most importantly to value the opportunity to play the game.