Our dear friends / fellow travelers / fellow fighters,
The only philosopher emperor of all times, Marcus Aurelius, used to say that, “all sports entertain; Pankration builds morale.” These six words codify perfectly the essence of Pankration.
We are blessed with the privilege to be serving one of humanity’s greatest values: we are at the service of the mother of all martial arts, the quintessential womb that gave birth to all others, whose past traces back to the depths of prehistory. It is with Pankration blows that Heracles, the ultimate classical Greek superhero and demigod, performs his legendary 12 Labors. In his world-renowned epic poem Iliad, Homer describes a Pankration fight taking place between Aias and Odysseus. All leaders of global philosophy do not fail to ascertain the sanctity of Pankration: Socrates serves it as an athlete himself; Plato becomes the Pankration champion at both the Pythian and the Isthmian Games; Pythagoras, the father of mathematics and civic thought, imposes it on his disciples; Philip of Macedon demands it from his troops. All charismatic leaders of antiquity adopt the Pankration, enthralled by its transcendence: it lies somewhere above the human plane and very close to the divine.
Pankration makes its first Olympic Games appearance in the 7th c. BC. According to historian Philostratus, the Pankration matches would be held on the very last day of the games, as a culmination of the event, as Pankration was considered to be “the most beautiful of all the games in Olympia” («των εν Ολυμπία το κάλλιστον»).
We are extremely proud to be serving a universal truth of mankind: the right to defend our honor, our family, our friends and, lastly, our country. This was the reason why civilians celebrating the return of Olympic winners used to tear down the cities’ walls to welcome back a Pankration Olympic champion, the highest ranking of all Olympic champions. And only the cities that celebrated the return of a Pankration champion would tear down the city walls; no other Olympic champion was deemed worthy of such an immense honor.
My dear friends,
Let us work together, tight as a fist, and let’s all together strive to reroute Pankration on the path of continuous regeneration. Our beloved sport requires all our efforts in order to regain its splendor and prestige.
I wish you all good health, good teamwork and utmost effectiveness.
The President of the World Pangration Athlima Federation