May 23, 2013

Life as Game Philosophy

Things are coming together as things are falling apart. The idea that people share a common prospectus is a secular myth that appears difficult for the common person to grok. When you lose touch with the things you are supposed to be interested in, then you find yourself stretched for conversation. When we politely exclude religion and politics from affable discussion, we are left talking about TV shows and gossip. Most people feel in their element – they can handle conversation at this depth.

I find it difficult to get most people any deeper than superficial. Those friends that I keep contact with are either as depth defying as I, or have a civic cause that they are dedicate to pursue. The common thread is the development of community, but sometimes I know that I am fooling myself … the common cause is self-preservation. Each attempt at community has turned to failure because the pull of the universal system requires focus on making money to pay one's way.

I prefer the weigh, my interpretation of the Tao, the book of changes. I misplaced my yellow copy, on a shelf with books, likely in NoCal with a lot of my other stuff. I intend to return, but the whirled changes quicker than one can imagine when not paying much attention to detail. The better immersed in a specific focus, like mining, the less time there is to worry about the mundane whirled of the muggles. The I-Ching (Tao) is a compendium of eastern philosophy written by Lao Tzu and edited for America by Americans. I found a paperback using Legge's interpretation, three penny roles can replace the three chinese coins that were broken during travel.

There are other weighs of approaching the grid of sixty-four besides the Tao. The chess board supplies a wealth of eight by eight thought in a checkerboard pattern where white plays against black at a slight opening advantage. Rather than limit the game to chess, I enjoy using chess pieces to play other derivative games of chess. The website Scheming Mind has a handle on all these variants and for $25/year allows unlimited access, one move at a time. Tell em lemme set ya.

The game Lao Tzu chess is very much like the real life situation we find ourselves in today. The chessboard is set up with the pawns on the second row, but the pieces are scrambled behind them. The king is centered somewhere between the two rooks. The game is a dark game, you only get to see the parts of the board where your pieces can move, which initially is your own side of the board, covered by the pawns opening moves. If a piece is blocked, you do not get to see the blocker, unless you can take it. As the game progresses, the squares of the board wink in and out of darkness as the pieces develop into their forward positions.

When you take a piece, it gets removed from the board and placed into your reserve pile. At any point of the game, instead of making a move on the board, you can place a piece down onto the board. You may only place it on a square that you can see. Pawns may not be placed on the front or back row, but placing a pawn on the seventh and queening it by advancing to the eighth row is a valid stratagem. You may deliver a new piece with check, but often the game is a hunt for finding the opponents king. I like to call the game Mushroom Chess, because we are kept in the dark and shoveled lots of shit. The material advantage can be lost in an instant, and giving up pieces for location information is a pseudo-artform.

Another different favorite is Benedict's chess. Here everything starts our seemingly normal, until you attack an opponents piece. As with Benedict Arnold during the Revolutionary War myth, the piece attacked changes color and becomes your piece. Change the king, win the game. I suppose that red and blue might be better colors than black and white – white moving first has a large but not fatal advantage. There is a lot of variance in the play of this variant – the game can change appearance on every move.

To play these games takes a bit of patience and good internet access. The moves are made one at a time. You post a move and it starts your opponents clock, and adds a period of time to your clock based on the initial time of game – usually either 10 or 30 days. I check in once or twice per day and generally have about 25 games going – three or four waiting. If I have lots of 10 day games, the frequency is higher. The site also features an old type of on-line bulletin board and the ability to kibbitz in on other people's games. You can make a game private to outside viewers, if you are not playing in a tournament. There are public and private tourneys and generally you can find a slot to play a game. The best weigh is to dive right in, but find an opponent who is willing to give advice. Games are rated and ratings are updated monthly.

Scheming Mind is based out of Great Britain. The players come from all over the globe – I have been on-line long enough that I have established friends world-wide, even before instant messaging and skype were prevalent. When I lose my net access, I stress because I lose chess games. Thus, I have my own illusions within the Matrix and can focus off the beaten path with plenty of distraction to avoid the MSM.

The MSM is the main stream media : I prefer to call them the LSM as in lame stream media. They are the bankster's folly; the game is to provide all the information that you might need to know to keep you distracted and under their spell. The education system prepares us with common myths of history and economics, science and technology, social studies and most of all entertainment. How we choose to entertain ourselves is a very telling portion of the human condition.

The current myths are running dry; we have been to the well too often. We believed the game as it was developing – as a child of the sixties, the television was my baby-sitter. I was five when Kennedy was shot – they broke into the game show Concentration to have me watch Lee Harvey Oswald get blown away by Jack Ruby. No wonder that our society is inured to violent behavior – the box scatters bodies left and right. When the X-boxes and game machines came out – the simulations of death were a common theme. The shoot em up games were way more popular than the investigation games – I remember the Castle Wolfenstein and the hunt to erase the Nazi plague. When you killed Hitler, a little Hitler popped out and ran – and the game continued …

Used to play games until I won, then I discovered that life was happening when I was consumed by the game environment. As I was brought up by TV, my boys were brought up by computer games. We played together when Civilization came out – the history lessons took myth into a differential myth and the character types became archetypes for reading people. As life's pressures developed, I quit games and began to focus on work – being pushed to earn a living while maintaining a lifestyle with a connection to nature. Nature is not a player in artificial reality.

I became a vehicle for everybody else. By working hard with focus, I allowed a saddle on my back – volunteer efforts to do the right thing were often co-opted by the overall movement – we rise to the level of our ability and then one step further – the Peter Principle. It would be nice to take that last step back into the old comfort zone: that illusion is never an option in a society that is always progressing. That progress was the central myth to the American religion is a concept develop by the Arch Druid in his latest series of essays – the myths of today derive their basis from this common learning grid that schools provide inadequately. How to learn is an individually developed skill. We all know what works best for us, and rarely is learning accomplished by being lectured at.

I learned to limit an essay's volume – more on this topic next thyme.

Namaste' doc 051413

No comments: