Games run September 11-21 worldwide—anyone can play
“We behave ourselves into new ways of thinking,
as distinct from thinking ourselves into new ways of behaving.”
—from the Hoʻoponopono practice of forgiveness
SEATTLE, September 9, 2013—Announcing the Compassion Games: Survival of the Kindest, a worldwide “co-opetition” running September 11 through 21, 2013. To date, 18 communities in four countries have signed on, and the number of teams and local activities is growing daily.
Opening ceremonies and local festivities will kick off the Games September 11 in communities around the world. Over the following 10 days, neighborhoods, organizations, businesses, and individuals will organize and participate in games of their choice. Scores will be tallied and displayed online, so the progress of teams and individuals can be tracked across the globe. Closing ceremonies will take place worldwide on September 21, coinciding with the International Day of Peace, established by the United Nations in 1981.
Organized by the nonprofit Compassion Games International (CGI), the Compassion Games are designed to help and inspire individuals to make their communities safer, kinder, more just, and better places to live. The Games provide a network through which individuals, organizations, and businesses can actively participate in and lead societal change—being empowered and caring citizens, while putting kindness at the center of fun, good-natured, competitive play. CGI offers tools and an active online community to help organizers form teams and participate.
Compassion Games International was formed in response to a “community challenge” issued in 2012 by Mayor Greg Fischer of Louisville, Kentucky (recognized as a model city of compassion by Compassionate Action Network International) to Seattle, Washington (which affirmed the Charter for Compassion in 2010 and committed to a 10-year Compassionate City campaign). Both cities put thousands of acts of compassion on the map during this friendly challenge, and the idea of the global Games was born.
“The Compassion Games are a rallying cry for a new way of taking action and being with our neighbors in a time when increasing violence and political discord can often lead to despair,” said CGI founder Jon Ramer. “They inspire and challenge us to create new ways of learning, serving and playing with each other and the world. We call them a ‘co-opetition’ because we’re cooperating to compete – we’re competing with each other to create a culture that promotes compassionate action. There are no losers and the more people that play, the more winners there are.”
Participants can choose to do: random acts of kindness; sign up to be a Secret Agent of Compassion and receive a daily mission by email; play Compassion Tag on Facebook; participate in or create a service project. Players will record their activities by submitting a quick online report. Results from all participating communities worldwide will be tallied and shown on a Compassion Map on the website. Details and instructions for participating are at compassiongames.org. An events calendar identifies all local gatherings, festivals, and opportunities for service during the Games.
The Games have connected with other compassion-based initiatives worldwide, and are joining forces to expand the reach and impact of the Games around the world.
James R. Doty, M.D., Founder and Director of the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education (CCARE) at Stanford University, of which His Holiness the Dalai Lama is the founding benefactor, said, “CCARE is very excited about the Compassion Games: Survival of the Kindest. Cultivating compassion and promoting altruism is core to our work at CCARE. Through social-impact games, the practice of compassion can be advanced and shared. We are looking forward to connecting the Compassion Games with the World Compassion Festival happening in September 2015.”
“The Compassion Games are a huge part of the transformation of consciousness that we’re now witnessing,” said Andrew Himes, Executive Director Charter for Compassion International. “By this time next year, I predict we’ll see participation in the Compassion Games and in our International Compassionate Cities Campaign by millions of people in such critical places as Cape Town, South Africa; Cairo, Egypt; Karachi, Pakistan; and Jakarta, Indonesia. This is truly a global explosion of the compassion movement, with amazing things happening on every continent.”
In addition, organizations such as 11 Days of Global Unity, The Shift Network, Council for a Parliament of World Religions, 350.org, Campaign to Protect the Sacred, A Big Project, and The United Religions Initiative are partnering with CGI to encourage participation and amplify the impact of the Compassion Games. Sponsors and media partners are contributing to the Games in each of the participating communities. Volunteers and additional sponsors are welcome.
Visit compassiongames.org to learn more, find events, get involved, submit reports, and check the leaderboard for the status of the “co-opetition.”