Culture sets up rules plus goals to accomplish and from the placement of the goal posts you strive to try and win the game. We get totally involved in our contests whether it is scholastic, employment related, or a competition we are playing. It gives you a thrill when the outcome is on the line and a sense of satisfaction if the goal is accomplished. Conversely if you fail at the game or lose a deciding contest, there is a sense of disappointment or worse despair. Humans love games, so much so that I think gaming is divine and is something universal that creates adventure and excitement. Take it from the standpoint of being omnipotent with the power to control everything. You would be totally bored so you would start relinquishing this power in order to create outcomes that are not predetermined. The thrill is there but you still hold onto some control so you don't get lost in the game. We are adventurous and like to take chances so you give it all away and enter your own creation, perhaps leaving the key to get out with a trusted friend but they are not to use it unless you really foul up your game.
We judge success in anything and everything by wins and losses and we must compete. In our capitalist society business is all about competition; even as a worker you are in competition for employment as well as the constant striving to move up the corporate ladder. Have to kill it at work and become the best, better than the rest. Gotta get the latest fancy and trendy car to let others know I've made it! Have to get the hard won degree from an institution of higher learning, an institute created by other game playing humans, that demonstrates how smart I am and that my hard work is rewarded. Even set is the trap that in order to gain enlightenment you have to climb the spiritual mountain and win that game. Making the announcement you are enlightened is the ultimate in absurdity.
Do you see it? We create all these artificial cultural goals and then we attach this way of thinking onto everything. So what will happen when I die? Well if you were good or did the religious institution of choice's bidding then you get rewarded in the afterlife. You can see it now that I have pointed it out. How good do I have to be? Do I need a perfect score? Who decides? Is it the celestial arbiter that grants me the ultimate win? We have done this to ourselves.
There's no game you have to win, you are creating your game and all that goes along with it. You know when you sit in meditation and finally come to the realization that letting go of thoughts leads to you just being aware? Well it's a similar situation I am describing with the game. A game is in the same category as a thought. Stop playing games and what are you left with? Experience. This journey in human form is an experience. There's no competition, nor winners and losers. It’s like playing music or dancing that has no ulterior motive. You are just playing for the sake of playing. Remember to play I was reminded of often last fall while travelling through Peru and Ecuador.
Unconditional Love for all will come from dropping the need to play the game, to not compete with your fellow humans but to come together, share, and create harmonious bonds.
Most of us play the game all our lives down to our last breath. We are so ensconced in it we don't want it to end. And then posthumously we are offered the chance to roll the dice and play the game one more time. Okay weeeeee let's go! When it is finally time to go home you step off the merry go round and leave the carnival via the main gates. The game was fun but I don't want to play it anymore.