In the West, competition is the very basis of so much - of democracy, of capitalism, and even religion (start a new church if you disagree). Do you think the church has been part of the problem or otherwise?
When speaking of “Christian virtue”, the Catechism defines " 1833 Virtue is a habitual and firm disposition to do good.
“Competetion” does not fit the description.
Now, people can and do compete with virtue, exhibiting virtues like fortitude, hope, solidarity.
Why is competition necessarily a problem?
This. There is not an inherent problem with people being compared on their merits and sometimes good can be achieved by doing so, but doing so is not inherently good.
I was taught growing up, for instance, that in a sports competition your opponent was giving you a gift by giving their best. You push each other to do better. The activity becomes more fun and more challenging. Sometimes, the physical activity (which can be a lot of fun) isn’t even possible without the other person competing against you. Using a racket to repeatedly hit a ball against a wall can’t compare to actually playing tennis.
In activities that aren’t games, competition still has the goal of drawing the best from the competitors. If done in virtue–such as in mutual appreciation–competition can be a good thing. If not done in virtue…well, it is clear that competition is one of those things that can be either good or bad, depending on how it is done. Competition itself is neither good nor bad, but something that has its place.
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