By Jerry L. Walls, Gregory Bassham
What can the movie Hoosiers educate us concerning the that means of lifestyles? How can historic japanese knowledge traditions, comparable to Taoism and Zen Buddhism, enhance our jump-shots? What can the "Zen Master" (Phil Jackson) and the "Big Aristotle" (Shaquille O'Neal) train us approximately sustained excellence and good fortune? Is women's basketball "better" basketball? How, ethically, may still one care for a strategic cheater in pickup basketball? With NBA and NCAA group rosters always altering, what does it suggest to play for the "same team"? What can training legends Dean Smith, Rick Pitino, Pat Summitt, and Mike Krzyzewski train us approximately personality, success, and pageant? What makes basketball any such appealing video game to observe and play?
Basketball is now the most well-liked group recreation within the usa; every year, greater than 50 million americans attend collage and seasoned basketball video games. whilst Dr. James Naismith, the inventor of basketball, first nailed peach baskets on the contrary ends of a Springfield, Massachusetts, health club in 1891, he had little inspiration of the way completely the sport could form American -- and foreign -- tradition. Hoops superstars resembling Michael Jordan, LeBron James, and Yao Ming are actually immediately well-known celebrities all around the planet. So what can a bunch of philosophers upload to the knowledge of basketball? it's a really uncomplicated video game, yet as Kant and Dennis Rodman cherished to claim, appearances might be deceiving. trainer Phil Jackson actively makes use of philosophy to enhance participant functionality and to inspire and encourage his crew and his fellow coaches, either off and on the court docket. Jackson has built-in philosophy into his training and his own lifestyles so completely that it's always tricky to differentiate his function as a basketball trainer from his function as a philosophical consultant and mentor to his gamers.
In Basketball and Philosophy, a Dream crew of twenty-six basketball enthusiasts, so much of whom additionally ensue to be philosophers, proves that basketball is the considering person's recreation. they appear at what occurs whilst the Tao meets the hardwood as they discover the teamwork, persistence, selflessness, and balanced and harmonious motion that make up the paintings of enjoying basketball.
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Additional resources for Basketball and Philosophy: Thinking Outside the Paint (The Philosophy of Popular Culture)
A number of changes in the world of contemporary basketball would suggest that the pendulum is swinging back in the direction of the puristtending game. First, basketball rule books and ofﬁciating seminars have consistently included “points of emphasis” that discourage rough, football-like activity, particularly in the post. Double fouls and charging calls for overly muscular offensive moves are now the norm. Second, NBA rules against zone defenses were recently changed, in part to discourage Basketball Purists 43 tediously repetitive one-on-one play.
And so on. In short, it appears that we’ll get a truer grasp of the clownishness of hacking, not by trying to identify some moral rule that prohibits it, but To Hack or Not to Hack? 29 by reﬂecting on what basketball is and why we value it. Most of us don’t want our kids to play basketball for a coach who will send in the goons. Most of us don’t want a coach who advocates clown basketball. Instead, we want our kids to play for someone who understands basketball and the fundamental values of the game.
Of course, neither history nor Naismith’s intentions provide strong philosophic arguments for one brand of basketball over another. But a knowledge of history helps us understand the distinctiveness of this game—how and why it is different, for example, from games that use vertical goals. An understanding of the game’s roots also allows us more clearly to make choices about preserving a rich diversity of gaming opportunities. The promotion of social justice through variety requires nothing less.
Basketball and Philosophy: Thinking Outside the Paint (The Philosophy of Popular Culture) by Jerry L. Walls, Gregory Bassham