Crowley & Enochian Chess
AFAIK, Enochian chess is/was used for divination, spiritual initiation, and magic (actively influencing the world(s)). The Golden Dawn did not use it as a strategy game. Mathers wrote the "Original Ritual" document describing it; I don't know if there was any older source.
Checking it out I see that Regardie also wrote a document on Enochian Chess in The Golden Dawn. He speculates that "knowledge of the system died with the early members".
Although Enochian Chess was most certainly employed for magical purposes, it was nevertheless also employed as a game. Israel Regardie s not always a reliable source on GD information. That he does mention that Enochian Chess went almost extinct following the decline of the original GD is just one example, numerous groups and individuals continued the game, my Grandparents taught me the game in the 1960's. Traditional Chess has been and always will be my favorite game. My kids are becoming quite adept at both games.
My question was with regard to Crowley's game strategy and style, which Geomantic was his favorite? You can learn alot about someone by understanding how they play, this applies to Enochian Chess as well as to the Traditional game. IMHO Crowley's innate magical ability far surpassed that of his mentor Mathers, a fact which Mathers himself realized early-on. Joe
In a 1984 letter from Regardie to Steve Nichols (an Enochian Chess supplier) Regardie wrote “Crowley was a fine chess player but I have no recollection of him ever been interested in Enochian Chess. As you say there is mention of the business in Liber 777 but that is all”
[In Liber 777 it’s mentioned as “Rosicrucian Chess”]
Steve Nichols himself, who has done considerably research on Enochian Chess, makes the observation that the Golden Dawn members could not have practised the game much due to the many flaws in the account of the G.D. rules, which would have got ironed out with regular practise.
R.A. Gilbert in his book ‘Golden Dawn, Twilight of the Magicians’ describes Enochian Chess as a recreation popular with Mathers, WB Yeats and his wife. They played it as 3-sided with a spirit moving the forth set of pieces – presumably though the physical mediation of the players.
As I wrote elsewhere, "Enochian chess ... looks more like Warlords http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warlords_(arcade_game) than chess."