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What did playing chess do for Crowley's magical/spiritual development?  

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dom
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16/01/2020 11:42 pm  

I understand that AC when younger became dismayed with being a chess master and this emptiness compelled him to study  magic but he obviously never turned his back on playing chess.    How and why did playing chess continue to benefit his magical development? 

https://www.lashtal.com/wiki/Aleister_Crowley_Timeline


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Jamie J Barter
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17/01/2020 1:28 am  
Posted by: @dom

How and why did playing chess continue to benefit his magical development? 

You state that it did "continue" to give benefit when you appear to be also questioning in the title itself  whether it actually did anything in terms of his magical development in the first place?

Pawn to d4,

NormaN Joy Conquest


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Michael Staley
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17/01/2020 4:32 pm  
Posted by: @dom

How and why did playing chess continue to benefit his magical development? 

It might be that he played chess simply because he enjoyed it, rather than it benefitting his "magical development".

I support Arsenal, but I doubt that it confers any such benefit; au bloody contraire, mate.

 


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dom
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17/01/2020 5:19 pm  

@michaelstayley

 

But he never (spiritually) advised Achad to support Arsenal whereas he did advise him to play chess.

https://www.lashtal.com/wiki/Aleister_Crowley_Timeline


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Michael Staley
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17/01/2020 6:25 pm  
Posted by: @dom

But he never (spiritually) advised Achad to support Arsenal

A omission which he doubtless regretted for many years afterwards.  Some say that it was because Arsenal had a one-legged goalkeeper at the time, Wally Barnes, a signing that they came to view as a mistake.

Chess is an interesting game to play, but I'm not sure that it is of any more magical benefit than Draughts, Monopoly, Ludo, or Strip Poker.


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ignant666
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17/01/2020 7:39 pm  
Posted by: @michael-staley

Some say that it was because Arsenal had a one-legged goalkeeper at the time, Wally Barnes, a signing that they came to view as a mistake.

Probably this is some obscure English football joke that is going over my Yank head, but, while Arsenal did indeed have a player called Walley Barnes from '43-'56, who played at goal once, he was normally a back, and if he was one-legged, wikipedia does not see fit to mention this, which one would think they would. He had a career total of 12 goals at Arsenal, a remarkable feat for either a goalie, or a one-legged man.

I entirely agree with the substance of Michael's post, though.


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dom
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17/01/2020 9:40 pm  

Liam Brady.  He was  a genius. 

https://www.lashtal.com/wiki/Aleister_Crowley_Timeline


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Jamie J Barter
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17/01/2020 10:25 pm  

So dom, we seem to have moved seamlessly from your discussion of chess to that of football, a completely different subject, and you are hereby guilty of the transgression of compounding the derailing your own thread....

Nice goin!

N Joy


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wellreadwellbred
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17/01/2020 11:51 pm  

Michael Staley (@michael-staley): "I support Arsenal, but I doubt that it confers any such benefit; au bloody contraire, mate."

As one Arsenal supporter to another, Michael Staley, does this rule out that being an Arsenal supporter can contribute in a beneficial way to my "magical/spirituAL development?"?

Skjermdump fra 2020 01 18 00 40 06

"Bacon the very concerned-looking dog is your new spirit animal" (Source: https://www.yahoo.com/news/bacon-very-concerned-looking-dog-150726361.html?guccounter=1&guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuZ29vZ2xlLmNvbS8&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAAGL8HAOZtCmuKGs1xNRnz0JaymTUR0WWsQ2BqSFL53TMdQFRVc9JaVvx00MUTOakzpkLsd8glb6NyhLrNGwtIJYQiR_rWKTwYi87fOyMiJ1lknAfGIuiSF0NU2FYiPqnL4LxFztWn4QRja3qqIPSahLeCmnc8BlhRUMuMhDr512Q )

"Is a God to live in a dog? ..."-ingly yours.

'wrwb' (current status: very concerned Arsenal supporter)


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Michael Staley
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18/01/2020 1:05 am  
Posted by: @wellreadwellbred

As one Arsenal supporter to another, Michael Staley, does this rule out that being an Arsenal supporter can contribute in a beneficial way to my "magical/spirituAL development?"?

Not at all. Arséne Wenger is one of the most impressive human beings of recent years. I'd be surprised if he were not a chess player.

I'd guess that both dom and Crowley are thinking about the fleetness of mind of chess, and the ability it inculcates to think several moves ahead. So then the thing to wonder is: how helpful is this to spiritual or magical development? I'd say: zilch.


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 Anonymous
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18/01/2020 2:03 am  

Visualization practice? It's been claimed he could play without looking at the board.


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Jamie J Barter
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18/01/2020 2:37 am  
Posted by: @mal

It's been claimed he could play without looking at the board.

According to Israel Regardie, when at Ivy Cottage, Knockholt in the late '20s he could play two games simultaneously with him & Gerald Yorke while calling out all the moves from another room.

Posted by: @mal

Visualization practice?

Whilst impressive enough in its own right, how does such a feat of visualisation actually help progress his "magical/ spiritual development" in any way?

Castleing in order to check,

N Joy


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djedi
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18/01/2020 2:41 am  
Posted by: @mal

Visualization practice? It's been claimed he could play without looking at the board.

If I remember, I once read in one of Dr. Regardie's books that one evening he and another young man each played simultaneous games of chess against Crowley, who called out his moves without once looking at either board. The young men would call their moves out to him and move both sets of pieces. Realizing that the G.'.D.'. initiations required officers to individually visualize hundreds of gods at once speaks to the development of this talent, I'm sure.

As for development spiritual or otherwise, any game or instrument or objet d'art (or really anything at all) can be used; for all things intelligible are so by virtue of an intelligence grasping it, which thereby imparts the principle of intelligibleness. Recall the Platonists, and their fathers the Pythagoreans, and their fathers the Orphics and how they danced to the Lyre of Orpheus. A slave sees a lyre, Orpheus sees himself.


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dom
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18/01/2020 10:11 am  

 

@djedi

If I remember, I once read in one of Dr. Regardie's books that one evening he and another young man each played simultaneous games of chess against Crowley, who called out his moves without once looking at either board. The young men would call their moves out to him and move both sets of pieces. Realizing that the G.'.D.'. initiations required officers to individually visualize hundreds of gods at once speaks to the development of this talent, I'm sure.

 

 Were these long games?   We don't know.    Were the opponents experienced chess players who didn't know that there were tried and tested moves such as 'the Queen's gambit' or 'the Slavic defence'?  We don't know.   Yeah I guess it's impressive even though I'd say any 12 year old chess master could also pull this trick off.

Chess playing  can apparently increase IQ apparently, prevent dementia and develop the cerebral muscles used in problem solving.

 Maybe we should send computer chess games to our great leaders. 

https://www.lashtal.com/wiki/Aleister_Crowley_Timeline


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dom
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18/01/2020 10:54 am  

Apologies for double post but in the Book of Wisdom or Folly immediately after lecturing Achad on the benefits of contemplating  zero AC discusses chess.  He says chess is 'worthy to exercise (people) in 'Thought' ie presumably all of the benefits I mentioned above.   He goes on  about how when one enters the game of chess such an activity is 'not proper to his nature' and is not necessary for his survival as such  and the rules of the game are a purely human construct which have rules.     Embroiling oneself in such restriction/rules thereby induces 'pleasure' he states.      Why?   Because the chess player is willing to endure possible 'loss, indignity and defeat (to an opponent)' for the sake of sticking to the illusion (i.e. the artifice) of the rules of the game.    In other words I guess he is saying that existence is 'a Shadow world' or  a game  with it's own rules  that AIN/AIN SOPH/AIN SOIP AUR  constructs for pleasure.    

https://www.lashtal.com/wiki/Aleister_Crowley_Timeline


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Tiger
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18/01/2020 11:13 am  

Thanks dom spot on the G

divinity of man
magnum miraculum
Divinus Cupido
for loves sake


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Jamie J Barter
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18/01/2020 2:18 pm  
Posted by: @djedi

Realizing that the G.'.D.'. initiations required officers to individually visualize hundreds of gods at once speaks to the development of this talent, I'm sure.

Nonsense!  Evidence?

Posted by: @dom

 Were these long games?   We don't know.    Were the opponents experienced chess players who didn't know that there were tried and tested moves such as 'the Queen's gambit' or 'the Slavic defence'?  We don't know.

We don't know, but is it particularly relevant?

Posted by: @djedi

[A]ll things intelligible are so by virtue of an intelligence grasping it, which thereby imparts the principle of intelligibleness.

So we do know, but ditto.  And - ?

Posted by: @djedi

As for development spiritual or otherwise, any game or instrument or objet d'art (or really anything at all) can be used

Posted by: @dom

[T]he chess player is willing to endure possible 'loss, indignity and defeat (to an opponent)' for the sake of sticking to the illusion (i.e. the artifice) of the rules of the game.

A shame AC apparently didn't play the game of GO as well...

Rook taking Queen,

N Joy

 

 

 


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 Anonymous
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18/01/2020 3:38 pm  
Posted by: @jamiejbarter

Whilst impressive enough in its own right, how does such a feat of visualisation actually help progress his "magical/ spiritual development" in any way?

That would be speculation. That's the reason for query if it was visualization practice. It wasn't a statement. 

If you're wondering what prompted the inquiry then I can say that finding a recreational pastime that also helps with the spiritual practices or lead to a realization one might employ in their development would be beneficial.


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Jamie J Barter
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18/01/2020 4:17 pm  
Posted by: @mal

If you're wondering what prompted the inquiry then I can say that finding a recreational pastime that also helps with the spiritual practices or lead to a realization one might employ in their development would be beneficial.

That would be speculation.

Check?

N Joy


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 Anonymous
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18/01/2020 4:36 pm  
Posted by: @jamiejbarter
 
That would be speculation.
Check?

N Joy

Not in that context. The meaning was that the developmental results, from a particular recreational exercise, suitable for one person won't always be suitable to another.


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Shiva
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18/01/2020 5:41 pm  
Posted by: @djedi
Posted by: @djedi

Realizing that the G.'.D.'. initiations required officers to individually visualize hundreds of gods at once speaks to the development of this talent, I'm sure.

Nonsense!  Evidence?

I never hear of that one either.
 

 


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RuneLogIX
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21/01/2020 6:14 pm  

I am an adult player in US tournaments. Chess provides a few tangible cognitive benefits to adult players: short term memory improvement, problem solving practice, concentration skills, will to power (to win), will to win (the skill to fight on despite lost positions), and humility (without it you will not persist as a player).

As an aside I practice ancient languages (Latin) and programming languages (Lisp) which offer gratifying learning experiences as well.

Academic studies have cited chess playing by adults delaying the effects of dementia and mental illness. 

 

“Chess teaches foresight, by having to plan ahead; vigilance, by having to keep watch over the whole chess board; caution, by having to restrain ourselves from making hasty moves; and finally, we learn from chess the greatest maxim in life - that even when everything seems to be going badly for us we should not lose heart, but always hoping for a change for the better, steadfastly continue searching for the solutions to our problems.” Ben Franklin.

Force and Fire is not metaphorical. In Prophetes Veritas Venit.


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newneubergOuch2
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26/01/2020 6:38 am  

I vaguely recall reading an account somewhere that he had one or two miniature chess peg boards. And that was how he was able to accomplish the feat. Especially from another room under the covers!


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dom
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26/01/2020 7:58 am  

Haha the 'Crowley as liar' mythos goes on.

https://www.lashtal.com/wiki/Aleister_Crowley_Timeline


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kidneyhawk
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26/01/2020 5:45 pm  
Posted by: @newneubergouch2

I vaguely recall reading an account somewhere that he had one or two miniature chess peg boards. And that was how he was able to accomplish the feat. Especially from another room under the covers!

If I recall correctly, that account is from Russell's Znus is Znees. Along with the pegboard (which Russell discovered while making Crowley's bed as part of his chores at Cefalu), Russell wrote that, whenever he was about to win a game against Crowley, the Beast would erupt into a huge coughing fit and knock the board and pieces all over the floor. 


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Shiva
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26/01/2020 6:23 pm  
Posted by: @newneubergouch2

I vaguely recall reading an account somewhere that he had one or two miniature chess peg boards. And that was how he was able to accomplish the feat. Especially from another room under the covers!

I specifically recall this exposition. It was not with Regardies or Yorke, it was with C.F. Russell - at Cefalu. Crowley was in bed (under the covers), and Russell was sitting chairside. Crowley was blindfolded or something. The chess game was on. Then Crowley went to the ladies' room to reinforce his internal pharmaceutical ratio, and Russell peeked under the bedcovers to discover (as you say) a miniature chessboard with the little men poked into holes by their pegs.

You (anyone) can read this in Znus is Znees - Contains the cryptically written memories of C. F. Russell. Free downloads available. Set your Borg to Znus is Znees.

 


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Jamie J Barter
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26/01/2020 10:08 pm  
Posted by: @kidneyhawk

Russell wrote that, whenever he was about to win a game against Crowley, the Beast would erupt into a huge coughing fit and knock the board and pieces all over the floor. 

Posted by: @shiva

and Russell peeked under the bedcovers to discover (as you say) a miniature chessboard with the little men poked into holes by their pegs.  

I wouldn't have thought that AC was, by his general presentation, "a bad loser" - i.e., in other words having an emotional attachment to winning at any price. And I would have thought, given his familiarity and expertise with chess, and given his mental capabilities suggested by the concentration exercises undergone with Eckenstein and his own suggested by the A..'. A.'. practices recommended in various Libri, that this prowess with two chess boards would have been that far beyond him anyway.

Neither can the possibility be excluded either though: and either Russell was causing trouble and stirring it up, or he was telling the truth as he saw it.  A lot depends on how often "whenever" occurred as well; it's altogether not beyond the bounds of possibility it may have occurred just the once and been exaggerated.

Disappointing if Crowley did have to resort to such measures, though, and by association would call into question his word "as a gentleman" and integrity elsewhere also.

In which case, "Black mark, Beast!"

N Joy

 

 


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Jamie J Barter
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27/01/2020 1:17 am  
Posted by: @jamiejbarter

this prowess with two chess boards would not have been that far beyond him anyway.

(A possibly unnecessary correction, given the perspicacity & intelligence of most Lashtalians)

Nevertheless rounding up a vanished not

N ojY


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frater-r
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28/01/2020 7:29 am  

I don't think chess did anything for Crowley except  help his skills with concentration. I have an elo rating of Expert(the rating just below national master), and it hasn't done much for my spiritual career.


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dom
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28/01/2020 6:58 pm  

I'm still looking for the quote from Wilson or Regardie where he  infers that AC's chess amongst other things instigated a spiritual crisis (words to that effect anyway).  

https://www.lashtal.com/wiki/Aleister_Crowley_Timeline


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dom
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28/01/2020 8:09 pm  

From Regardie's The Eye in the Triangle (2011 New Falcon publicationsChapter 11, pages 311/ 312 the author describes AC's capacity for concentration and visualization simultaneously whilst playing chess with someone from a different room and how this would be conducive for his building of an 'inner temple' when crossing China.      

https://www.lashtal.com/wiki/Aleister_Crowley_Timeline


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christibrany
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28/01/2020 9:15 pm  

@Dom

Yes, visualisation practise will help with magick and mysticism immensely (of course) but it doesn't necessarily have to be chess does it?

Tattwas/tatvas....godforms... hexagrams....colours...full body projection etc etc

 

 


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dom
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28/01/2020 9:40 pm  

@christibrany

No as others have said but it shows an amazing capacity for control of memory. 

https://www.lashtal.com/wiki/Aleister_Crowley_Timeline


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christibrany
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28/01/2020 9:43 pm  

This could branch into interesting territory in regards to 'types' or 'styles' of memory/learning.

I would not be able to learn to memorise chess piece placement remotely as easily as, say visualise and feel myself walking around in another room I am not in/astrally, imaginatively.

 

Perhaps there is spatial memory, then there is scent memory etc.  I wonder what 'chess memory' would fall under.  Perhaps less spatial and more mathematical/grid based. 


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djedi
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28/01/2020 11:46 pm  
Posted by: @christibrany

I would not be able to learn to memorise chess piece placement remotely as easily as, say visualise and feel myself walking around in another room I am not in/astrally, imaginatively.

These two operations, I think, are worlds apart. Chess positions are memorized by compartmentalizing different openings and the variations of those openings, which is something everyone who plays at a level higher than dilettante must do, usually through the standard mnemonics or method of loci that you'd use to remember any set patterns. Seeing as how there are only so many viable openings with so many viable answers, we begin to understand how small a task it is for a chess player to visualize a chess game, because the hard work has already been done -- the memory is already there, you only have to conjure it up, and this usually happens automatically.

(Imagining yourself somewhere else, along with all the phenomena you'd experience there, is much more active and involved than just opening a mental filing cabinet, to me at least.)

By the time a game advances to such a state of play that this method is of no more use, there are so few pieces on the board that unaided visualization isn't so difficult. This late game visualization can also be compartmentalized, though, as every piece has a relationship to another on the board, and it's my experience that the more complex a relationship a few objects have to one another, the easier it is the get ahold of them in your mind.


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dom
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28/01/2020 11:52 pm  

@djedi

Seeing as how there are only so many viable openings with so many viable answers, we begin to understand how small a task it is for a chess player to visualize a chess game

 

Exactly he would've known every tedious avenue of the early stages of the game and the obvious pits that beginners fall into .  

https://www.lashtal.com/wiki/Aleister_Crowley_Timeline


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dom
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28/01/2020 11:58 pm  

@christibrany

This could branch into interesting territory in regards to 'types' or 'styles' of memory/learning.
I would not be able to learn to memorise chess piece placement remotely as easily as, say visualise and feel myself walking around in another room I am not in/astrally, imaginatively.

Perhaps there is spatial memory, then there is scent memory etc. I wonder what 'chess memory' would fall under. Perhaps less spatial and more mathematical/grid based.

 

So you can hold a tattva clearly in your mind's eye for long periods but you can't figure out how a leader like Trump creates an enabling environment for the proliferation of  sectarian dumbfuckery?   What does that tell us about the practical usefulness of these 'visualization exercises'?

https://www.lashtal.com/wiki/Aleister_Crowley_Timeline


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christibrany
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29/01/2020 4:34 am  

@Dom

 

I don't know who is more annoying and worse at reading comprehension, yourself or Mal. 

 

I never insinuated that chess was more difficult to visualise than other things, let alone shall I steep to responding to your political baiting.  I said that to me personally at this point in time, chess seemed more difficult to visualise (because I haven't practised playing it that way). 

What is your exact malfunction? 

Never mind, I really don't want to know. 

 


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christibrany
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29/01/2020 4:36 am  

@djedi

I agree with you. As I said in harsher terms to our 'boy' Dom here, above, chess is more of a rote system/game memorisation kind of thing whereas the other kind of 'visualising'/'memorising' is a bit more layered.

I just have never approached any game like that. Because most games bore me after awhile. I have played chess for years but never got the drive to go beyond being medium level.  I am neither excellent nor terrible. I am just sometimes good or sometimes bad. 

 

 


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Shiva
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29/01/2020 6:53 am  
Posted by: @djedi

and this usually happens automatically.

Aha!  Yes, this is the hallmark of genius. Not the memory itself ... that's just programmed into the limbic brain by repetition. It's the calling up of the memory, and then doing something. If "something" is a pre-programmed, or consciously-decided move of a Bishop, well, that's a good technician. In martial arts, that's a 3rd degree black belt (sandan) = technically Perfect.

But when that "automatic" things comes into play, heck, that's wu-wei.

Posted by: @christibrany

I don't know who is more annoying and worse at reading comprehension ...

i am.

Posted by: @christibrany

What is your exact malfunction? 

I am.

Posted by: @christibrany

most games bore me after awhile.

That's why they're called games. There is only one Great Game, and it is synonymous with the Great Work. Other games are permitted, but the have to be in line with the Great game. (GG = more mysterious Gs, but no ac-style, double cross wacko.


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RuneLogIX
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29/01/2020 12:38 pm  

WRT to the topic visualization, which chess helps exceedingly well with, you can begin in the following manner. Imagine a chessboard in your mind and begin identifying which square names (from a1 to h8) are which color. When this is sufficiently practiced imagine a knight in it's starting square and make legal moves to every square on the board. There are 64 squares thus 64 moves to return you back to your starting position which is quite a feat. When that is handled with sufficient proficiency begin calculating the simplest endgame positions to a win or draw (king and pawn) and when practiced to perfection add a piece or pawn to the configuration. Eventually the goal is to increase your visualization in complexity until the full 32 pieces can be visualized with astral clarity. The worlds best players can do this for dozens of games at the same time. I personally end up visualizing the pieces as energy spheres that behave in certain ways and I'm not much better then visualizing simple endgames but this also has not been a topic for me to practice in great depth. The fun part is when you start to play chess games in your dreams (which has happened to me) so that you are practicing and hopefully learning on an unconscious level.

I concur that chess is a game about memorization but more important is pattern recognition which sounds like the same thing but is more akin to how the memory gets imprinted with familiar objects. I frequently replay the tactics of Bobby Fischer for example and a study session will have me repeat 100-1000 moves of which I get 90%+ correct with practice, whereas my beginning accuracy was closer to 0%.

Force and Fire is not metaphorical. In Prophetes Veritas Venit.


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christibrany
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29/01/2020 3:48 pm  
Posted by: @christibrany

I don't know who is more annoying and worse at reading comprehension ...

i am.

Posted by: @christibrany

What is your exact malfunction? 

I am.

Posted by: @christibrany

most games bore me after awhile.

That's why they're called games. There is only one Great Game, and it is synonymous with the Great Work. Other games are permitted, but the have to be in line with the Great game. (GG = more mysterious Gs, but no ac-style, double cross wacko.

@Shiva

I see your point.  I am that I am. אֶהְיֶה אֲשֶׁר אֶהְיֶה

 

@Runelogix

 

Thank you for the interesting idea/practise. And for being on topic unlike some people. 


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