The Olympics are a peaceful celebration of our warlike natures, ie our contradictory natures. F. Scott Fitzgerald believed that the mark of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to sustain opposing opinions.
The athletes smile in a celebration of warmth and fellowship at the opening ceremonies, which then turns into a celebration of competitive virtues. The opening ceremony is win-win , the rest of the games is win-lose. The opening mimics peace, the competitions mimic warfare in a civilized manner.
The Olympics appeal to our desire for fellowship, and our desire for status.
Putting these considerations aside, the Olympics places the hopes, dreams and lifelong struggles to succeed of athletes from around the world, front and center for a short three weeks. We meet all these fine people and marvel at their beauty and then gasp in wonder at their prowess in their chosen sport, while the media tries its best to keep us abreast of daily action across the globe. When the competitions are over, we are filled with desire to improve our own ability to run, jump, swim, etc., or to simply stay in shape. We are tired from all the television coverage, but we wouldn’t have missed a minute of it.
In the spirit of comradeship, we wish them all well.