The Game

When we play we open for ourselves the lightness of being, moving its finality aside

Editors letter Lara Lychagina


To paraphrase the Bible in the beginning was the Game. Or maybe like this: there always was the Game. Even eternity becomes a unity of time if it is a demand of a given simulacrum. I suppose that everything born in the universe is made for playing. Or the Game as an absolute builds the universe, it depends on the point of view. First if a child’s, second, an adult’s.  Yet that doesn’t assert the naivety of the first or the absolute wisdom of the second. For example, Einstein was sure that investigating the behaviour of atoms was a play-game in comparison to the child’s game. In some sense his concepts connecting material and energy proves that the greatest openings and creations are based on the Game as a victory of imagination over the calculation.

When we play we open for ourselves the lightness of being, moving its finality aside. Every creative game contains a smile as the sign of wisdom. I remember my first meeting with Dzogchen Ranyak Patrul Rinpoche. I was amazed how his words drew a map enlightening all of my paths in the past and  dotting my future ways at  his lessons for Russian Buddhists in Moscow. Tibetan  Rinpoche said that the absence of lighteners and joy ‘just like that’ is one of the main problems for mankind. He said ‘You shouldn’t brush your teeth with a serious face, believe me this is a game too’.

The Game is beautiful by its consonance to the human nature and environment. Motivation that lies in the base of the animals’ games – from mating to socializing – is the same as humans’, there are three whales defining game types: desire for power, last for sex and the wish to satisfy hunger. We can add the fourth one to them, the desire to communicate.

Beginning of the 21st Century. Long flight to Hong Kong makes a metamorphosis in me changing me from the passive person to the one with a backgammon bag in my hands. It was a mega international flight, we were all going to an exhibition. Eleven hours of flight helped me to understand that even if you don’t know a rare language you still have a chance to get to know a person. You just have to play with him. The Game built its impossible to be broken Babylon Tower over the clouds. I played with Japanese, Chinese, German and got to know them perhaps better than I could ever do even knowing their mother tongue. The language of competition occurred to be more functional and made visual all the things people try to hide at the first meeting, even after a glass of wine. A game of short backgammon lets you know a stranger and tell him about yourself. And maybe reach the sky. After all eternity in the Game is just a unity of time. And it’s not a sonorous pathos.

It is known that in chess there’s more than nine million possible positions after three moves. American mathematician counted the minimum quantity of not repeating games and picked the Claude Shannon number. According to it there’s more possible variations of chess games than atoms in the visible Universe. The quantity of atoms is estimated as 10^79 and chess games are 10^120.

In my opinion the power of Homo Sapiens is to choose new software for his soul and fate despite of the factory settings of nature. The main rule of the game called lifeis to go on playing and care about each of your roles sincerely and as if played for the last time, creating and not breaking. And then maybe the irrepressible curiosity of Babylon will be enough to build the Jacob’s Ladder. Stairs to the sky for comprehension of the highest worlds, the main Game with its first goal, to comprehend your own self.