The meaning of Go for modern Russia


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Thibault de Vassal    (2007-04-30)
The meaning of Go for modern Russia

An interesting (as usual) article from IGN "Goama" newsletter -

Alexander Rodin, the member of Go Federation
"The meaning of Go for modern Russia"

I'll try to state my thoughts about the meaning of the Go for modern Russia.

To begin with I suggested that we extrapolate Go models on the political and economical maps. These maps are very important as the spheres of social life, because the questions that are discussed at political and economical levels touch upon our lives, the lives of ordinary Russian citizens. In these spheres they continue the fierce struggle for life and death; in these spheres rivalry is especially keen and the made decisions define the vectors of our country development.

Let's imagine a situation if somebody inadequate came to power and set the totalitarian regime! Then all social "dissident" institution would start dying and so would do the Go Federation as a phenomenon which unifies people with independent thinking. Then it would be inevitable to start "hiding in basements" to keep the organization and set the secret addresses. Under conditions of modern Russia such kind of reasoning seems to be mostly fantastic than real. But if we look behind into our history well remember that we have already had this phase of social development and know everything about it.

I am for that only "adequate" people, patriots, must hold power (I mean all its levels: federal, regional, local and busyness elite as well). These people must think independently and it would be just perfect if they were the people who both understand the very notion of strategy and use in their activity all the arsenal of strategic instruments and among them principles, stratagems and Go philosophy.

Someone can argue: "What are the patriots who set Japan draughts?" the heart of the problem is not in the fact that somebody sets draughts and even the Japan ones. The matter of fact is that there is a "pacific" model the centre of which is the idea of balance and peaceful division of the territory and influence. If someone of us can offer something better, so let him rule. In my opinion, it's the same as to rewrite the Bible or "The Treatise of Military Art" Soun Tsi.

The Go essence manifests in the state scale in the following aspects:

The first one is historical and cultural. The game has a great history and longstanding traditions. Go is no less than a civil game with the development of which hand by hand goes statehood making in many countries. Besides, it's followed by strengthening of spirituality and moral principles of society.

The second aspect is social. Go unifies people, sets friendly relationships between them. Through Go a man manifests quickly, through it s/he can see his/her reflection. Owing to "open spiritual fight" your adversary is likely to become your best friend without saying a word during a game.

The third aspect is pedagogical. Through Go they bring up the grown generations and form their active civil position. Like chess, Go forms and consolidates dynamical stereotypes showing in following behavioral models of people. Penetrating and consolidation happen imperceptibly when sleeping, during the junction of conscious and unconscious.

The fourth aspect is economical. Why are business people interested in Go? Because through the game model a man learns how to manage material and non-material resources. Via the game s/he realizes economical and management notions: market (territory), economical integration, SWOT-analysis (the analysis of weak and strong aspects) etc. Managers start realizing the importance of interconnection and interaction of structural subdivisions ensuring. These subdivisions shouldn't be isolated from each other. They should work time in time like a well-tuned tuning fork.

The fifth aspect is political. The idea of community in politics is as relevant as the idea of group of stones. When a group is weak there is always a possibility of dividing it and this is a sign for the whole group. When our country, being a federal union of equitable subjects, was going through its stage of making a number of subjects had a wish to use the weakness of this chain. So, in 1992 1994 for the first time after the collapsing of the USSR there appeared first separatist tendencies. E.Rossel, the governor of Sverdlovskaya region, A. Philipenko, the governor of HMAO, claimed about the possibility of Ural republic creation. The emissary of Chechen separatists Gokhar Dudaev proclaimed the independence of Chechen-Ingush republic. The detachment didn't happen but the country paid with blood for it. Nowadays we can see demonstration of political integration and isolation on the modern political world map. Take a strong unity of the European Union and states-outsiders: Democratic People's Republic of Korea and Iran.

In terms of remaining of the USA's striving for establishment of world hegemony (from V.V.Putin's speech at the recent Munich conference), Russia needs the processes of integration and consolidation with other countries aimed at its strengthening. The unified countries have a lot of dame. Now we can observe the stronger split in the CIS as a consequence of energetic and territorial policy of Russia that uses economical instruments of pressure upon "unfriendly and opposing" countries. Is it good or not? It's more likely that its bad. But there are some positive tendencies: the role of the EurAsEC as a community which's built not on the basis of "strange brotherhood" and the role of Russia in it are increasing. Go is an ideological and spiritual base making us related to the countries of Asia-Pacific region. Go teaches how to see and distinguish creative and destroying processes.

The sixth aspect is psychological. The game develops thinking, in particular such processes as analysis and synthesis. It develops the ability of seeing the whole board and its details, the ability of seeing processes proceeding at global and local levels.

The seventh aspect is verbal and lexical or even philosophical. Through studying of the game theory we realize such categories as life and death, territory and influence, reliability, stability, the whole and the parts etc.

So, what is the Go meaning on the country scale? I assume that Go, as philosophy (an ideological and spiritual base), is a very important instrument of upbringing of strategic leaders, those who make decisions at high economical and political levels that influence the country's fate. Because in Go the idea of peaceful co-existence shows the way to harmony. The most pleasant is the fact the "Go way" doesn't have an end and there sky's the limit.