(RNS) Religion at the Olympics, from ancient Greece to London

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The London Olympics will try to accommodate religious athletes with 193 chaplains, a prayer room in every venue and a multifaith center in the Olympic Village.

Athletes at the ancient Olympics believed their training honored the gods, and victory was a sign of favor from a deity. As contests like wrestling, boxing, and horse racing were added to the Olympic roster, they supplemented devotional sacrifices, hymns, and ceremonies.

“The idea was that you were training to please Zeus. But part of the festival would be to visit the temple, visit the cult statues, making offerings, celebrating and seeing your family,” said David Gilman Romano, a professor of Greek archaeology at the University of Arizona.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchGlobalizationReligion & CultureSports

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Posted July 26, 2012 at 4:05 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]
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