Master Game

A Game Worth Playing
FromThe Master Game, by Robert S. DeRopp

          
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Table I. Meta-Games and Object Games

GAME
AIM

      Master Game       awakening
      Religion Game       salvation
      Science Game       knowledge
      Art Game       beauty

      Householder Game       raise family

      No Game       no aim

      Hog in Trough       wealth
      Cock on Dunghill       fame
      Moloch Game       glory or victory

Life games reflect life aims. And the games men choose to play indicate not only their type, but also their level of inner development. [DeRopp, a biochemist, used the term game not to denote frivolity but as "a trial of strength or a trial of wits played within a matrix which is defined by rules."] Following Thomas Szasz (more or less) we can divide life games into object games and meta-games. Object games can be thought of as games played for the attainment of material things, primarily money or the objects which money can buy. Meta-games are played for intangibles such as knowledge or the "salvation of the soul." In our culture object games predominate. In earlier cultures meta-games predominated. To the players of meta-games, object games have always seemed shallow and futile, an attitude summarized in the Gospel saying: "What shall it profit a man if he gain the whole world and lose his own soul?" To the players of object games, meta-games seem fuzzy and ill-defined, involving nebulous concepts like beauty, truth or salvation.


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