I've been giving some thought lately to why I play disc golf; why I do anything for that matter but disc golf is one of my favorite pass-times so it comes to mind above other things. I'm going to avoid my love of physics, being outdoors, and doing something well as excuses for playing this game because I've found something that I think is much more at the root of my happiness and satisfaction with life in general.
Consider for a moment what use any activity or endeavour in life would be if you were the only person on earth. What satisfaction could we derive from anything that we do if we did not have a collective group that judged us or by which we could compare ourselves. What fun would going out on the disc golf course be if we didn't have that one good friend that we could compete with or just have someone to engage in conversation with while we were out.
On the whole I've found that we humans are amazingly interconnected and we often take that for this for granted. You'll notice after your first 1000 rounds of disc golf that the game itself becomes a bit redundant. On your favorite course you likely know each and every fairway down to the movement of debris on the course. "Oh," you'll say, "somebody has moved that branch that fell in the storm last night." You probably know within a stroke or two what score you'll get and the improvements become minute and incremental. The proverbial learning curve applies across the span of our experiences. Its at theses times that we ask ourselves questions like, "why do I do this?" and "is this really how I want to spend these precious moments of my life before I die?"
I do not discount the satisfaction that we get from watching a disc fly or from seeing our scores consistently improve. We are also made to enjoy progress and growth but I am still most interested for now in what use any of this would be if we had no other human being to relate these experiences to. My theory is that the talent that we have and how we use it is ultimately arbitrary and that the more important points in our lives are the relationships that we build along the way. How we relate to people, who we know, and who we feel most known by are infinitely more satisfying in our human existence than becoming the number one player in the world at anything.
It is my belief that if you sacrifice the relationships along the way for anything, be it skill, money, or fame, you are going to find dissatisfaction and grief when you finally achieve the thing that you've given all to achieve. On a smaller scale, consider each trip out to the disc golf course as an opportunity to make new friends or improve on existing friendships and the sport and your life are going to take on a new vibrancy. Also consider how you are treating people along the way as this is in essence how we are relating to these people. If we treat people badly it will usually make us feel a sense of guilt or shame, and if not these then at the very least a sense that we are probably a bad person at heart and will pay for it in some form or fashion later in life. However, when we treat people good, then we feel a sense of accomplishment and pride in our lives, we make great friends and find our lives satisfying and enjoyable.
These are some of my idle thoughts from the disc golf course and I've found them so true up till now that I thought I might like to share them and see if you all agree.