Wednesday, June 02, 2010

To Be Really Powerfull

To be really powerful, love what you have.  To know but one good rook ending, or twenty, not 1,000, not buying ten ending books--what a concept!  To sit in your own galoshes.

Maybe even read a trashy old endgame book till the binding disintegrates, surpassed by nineteen new slick endgame books by Gambit or Batesford or DVD's by chessBase, or chessCafe's Russell Enterprises.  Yes, all fantastic.  But I say the search is over.  Work with what you have--but I say, 'Please Lord, let me finally do some REAL work'.

Shinryu Suzuki in his classic Zen Mind, Beginners Mind described it well: To paint a bamboo, become a bamboo. It takes great skill to grasp totalities simply; to be really simple, it takes an act of much sophistication cultivated by great reduction. 

Let us use what we have, not run and get more.  More what?  Distraction as Blaise Pascal called it.  

Years ago, I set out with great infatuation to collect chess classic games.  I did so.  First 350, then 932, then compiling 1,500+ of the certifiably agreed upon greatest, most stunning, exemplary chess games EVER played, till I gushed out all over the place at as many as 5,020, my current mushroomed, swelling collection.  

When it was carefully firm at 932 games, I had viewed or studied each and every one of them.  But after 1.5K, I lost my way.  More is less.  Become bamboo, don't run and buy ten bamboo photo albums.  Be a bamboo.  A single bamboo.


Blogger wormwood said...

yep, that always works. simplify, simplify, simplify. :)

Sat Jun 05, 07:24:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Blue Devil Knight said...

It is so easy, when I struggle with one thing, to just move on to something else. The act of finishing any project started is a major feat, whether it be Reinfeld or Aagaard or the Circles or slow tournaments in person. Whatever it is, marinate!

Sun Jun 06, 06:19:00 PM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting, I was just perusing a trading blog (Stock Bee), where I learned about the concept of Cognitive Load which seems very applicable to your post here. You can read about it on Wikipedia.

Sun Jun 06, 08:53:00 PM PDT  
Anonymous Oilburner said...

Yep. I totally agree... Thanks for the post... I was on the spree of collecting books on chess. The post brought me to my senses.

I ll stick to 1 good book at a time and work it over.

Thanks a Ton

Wed Jul 07, 09:05:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Temposchlucker said...

I read Beelzebub tales to his grandson 15 times. Start to understand a few things.

Tue Jul 13, 01:43:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Chris Gray said...

Since I discovered this last December I return to it every so often. Very wise but ....
but ....
this is the fourth time in a few weeks that someone has mentioned Suzuki's Zen Mind, Beginners Mind, so I can at least order a copy of that, right?

Mon Jun 20, 06:11:00 AM PDT  

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