Srila Prabhupada

1. The average person is illusioned in childhood, playing frivolous games. (Transcendental Teachings of Prahlada Maharaja)

2. In this age, men are victims not only of different political creeds and parties, but also of many different types of sense-gratificatory diversions, such as cinemas, sports, gambling, clubs, mundane libraries, bad association, smoking, drinking, cheating, pilfering, bickerings, and so on. Their minds are always disturbed and full of anxieties due to so many different engagements. (Srimad-Bhagavatam (1.1.10), purport)

3. Demons arrange many kinds of performances to see the glaring beauty of a beautiful woman. Here it is stated that they saw the girl playing with a ball. Sometimes the demoniac arrange for so-called sports, like tennis, with the opposite sex. The purpose of such sporting is to see the bodily construction of the beautiful girl and enjoy a subtle sex mentality.(Srimad-Bhagavatam (3.20.35), purport)

4. Aristocratic girls would not play in a public place.(Srimad-Bhagavatam (3.22.17), purport)

5. Generally, people think that childhood is meant for enjoying life by engaging oneself in sports and play, youth is meant for enjoying the company of young girls, and when one becomes old, at the time of death, then he may try to execute devotional service or a mystic yoga process. But this conclusion is not for devotees who are actually serious. (Srimad-Bhagavatam (4.8.32), purport)

6. Although they were impartial by nature, those followers of the Vedanta blessed me with their causeless mercy. As far as I was concerned, I was self-controlled and had no attachment for sports, even though I was a boy. (Narada Muni in Srimad-Bhagavatam (1.5.24))

7. The inner member shall not indulge in unnecessary indoor or outdoor games, sporting or gambling habit. (Rules for inner members willing to live with us for spiritual upliftment.) (Letter, Allahabad, 1 January 1955)

Illusion of Sports

8. Although one may be born in a family of Aryans, where there are restrictions against meat-eating, intoxication, gambling and illicit sex, still one may want to enjoy these forbidden things. There is always someone who wants to go to a prostitute for illicit sex or to a hotel to eat meat and drink wine. There is always someone who wants to gamble at nightclubs or enjoy so-called sports. All these propensities are already within the hearts of the living entities, but some living entities stop to enjoy these abominable activities and consequently fall down to a degraded platform. (Srimad-Bhagavatam (4.29.4), purport)

9. By nature children are restless and playful, so in the kindergarten they are given toys and games to interest them in learning. Similarly, a neophyte is trained to perform activities in the mood of sacrifice, and he is encouraged to worship the Deities according to the scriptural injunctions. The expert Vaisnava preceptor then gradually draws him toward the platform of pure devotion by narrating the spiritually potent topics of Krsna consciousness and giving him the remnants of food offered to the Supreme Lord. (Renunciation Through Wisdom)

Krsna Games for Kids

Illusion of Sports

We train our children in Krsna consciousness, just be keeping them always attending our regular program and associating with Krsna’s devotees, teaching them in spiritual realization by giving them the idea that sacrifice and tapasya for achieving the highest goal of life is a very nice way of life. Not that we shall give them many games for playing. (Letter to Satyabhama, Mayapur, 28 February 1972)

The children should always be instructed by taking advantage of their playful mood and teaching them to play Krsna games like become cowherd boys, cows, peacocks, demons and in this way if they always think of Krsna by playing just like they are actually present in association with Krsna then they will become Krsna conscious very quickly. (Letter to Stoka-Krsna, Los Angeles, 13 June 1972)

Teach the small children to play Krsna games: one child is a cow, another is cowherd boy, they go to the forest, there are demons there, Krsna kills the demons, like that. (Letter to Giriraja, Amsterdam, 30 July 1972)

 The Panòavas, all being devotees of the Lord, certainly venerated family Deities in the royal palace for worship. Children who appear in such families fortunately generally imitate such worship of the Deities, even in the way of childhood play. (Srimad-Bhagavatam (2.3.15), purport)

The Sporting tendency comes from Krsna

Lord Krishna

In this way the boys spent their childhood in the land of Vrndavana playing hide-and-go-seek, building play bridges, jumping about like monkeys and engaging in many other such games. (Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.14.61), purport)

Lord Govinda’s pastimes of stealing butter, drinking the gopis’ breast milk, tending the calves, playing His flute and playing childhood sports are extraordinary even in comparison with the activities of the Lord’s Visnu expansions. (Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.14.2), purport)

Srila Sanatana Gosvami explains that the word adyaih, “by other such sports,” indicates such games as chasing one another and building bridges. Another pastime would occur at noon, while Lord Krsna was taking rest. Nearby, the young cowherd girls would be passing by, singing, and Krsna’s boyfriends would pretend to inquire from them about the price of milk. Then the boys would steal yogurt and other items from them and run away. Krsna, Balarama and Their friends would also play games in which they would cross the river in boats.

Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura further explains that the boys would play with fruits by throwing a few in the air and then throwing others to try to hit them. The word netra-bandha indicates a game in which one boy would approach a blindfolded boy from behind and place his palms over the blindfolded boy’s eyes. Then, simply by the feel of his palms, the blindfolded boy would have to guess who the other boy was. In all such games the boys put up stakes for the winner, such as flutes or walking sticks. Sometimes the boys would imitate the various fighting methods of the forest animals, and at other times they would chirp like birds. (Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.18.14), purport)

Lord Caitanya

The boys played at catching ball with fruits such as bael and amalaka. They played blindman’s buff, challenging and touching one another. Sometimes they imitated the forest deer and various kinds of birds. They joked with one another by imitating croaking frogs, and they enjoyed swinging underneath the trees. Sometimes they would play amongst themselves like a king and his subjects. In this way, Balarama and Krsna, along with all Their friends, played all kinds of sports and enjoyed the soothing atmosphere of Vrndavana, full of rivers, lakes, rivulets, fine trees and excellent gardens filled with fruits and flowers. (Krsna Book, Chapter18)

There are many sports wherein people enjoy striking a ball or similar object with a stick or bat. This sporting propensity exists originally in the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who playfully (lilaya) pulverized the deadly boulders hurled at Him by the powerful Dvivida. (Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.67.23), purport)

There were many gardens near the Gundica temple, and Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu and His devotees used to perform the pastimes of Vrndavana in each of them. In the lake named Indradyumna, He sported in the water. (Cc. Madhya (14.75)