6.13.2005

Dayakattai - Shakuni at work




Lakshmi and I had a serious conversation today. It was about the game of dice and the state our mind is in when we play the game. This is not all about strategy or luck, this is about destiny. Lakshmi is a person who does not take to random theory very easily but knowing the game and having played it, we had this errie feeling that there was more to the game than just playing it.

So we sat down to analyze. Why is it that some guys always win, why is it that some guys always get dayam, why is it that some guys just never ever get it. The probability of getting dayam is reasonably high given that in 30 rounds of trial each with a few extra rounds thrown in there is a good chance. But this not resulting in a dayam even to the middle of the game leaving the person a dummy and starting to play yet, was a little too much to believe. End of the day there are only 7 numbers to play with, yet the number One never comes.

So we broke it down further, bordering on something way beyond our existing logical thinking. The diagram of the dayakattai, looks like a yantra with a lot of squares or "kattams". The four offshoots from the epicenter are in the four cardinal directions. Coins used here in the game are largely dry fruits or edible stuff. The players have a role to play as well, their nature has an impact on the game. The sticks (brass, steel or iron) also have a role to play in the destiny of the game, including even the choice of partners.

The dayakattai board didnt look any different from the horoscope charts they scribble on back home. Each kattam seems to have a value named after some star or force, houses some sort of energy and the probability of winning the game is high if a person knows how to play it right. Now taking the most renound player history has ever known, Shakuni, was very aware of how to play the game, maybe which direction to sit, the kind of coins to pick and the very dice to roll to win. He had it all very figured out, there was no room for error, the kauravas would never have lost the game.

As for the pandavas, they seemed to be the most willing goats to fall into the trap. Dayakattai is not just a game, it is a science I would begin to believe and to get it right would probably be a break through all that western science has tried to prove. I seriously think this game is quite something else.



13 comments:

vimanonym said...

Jumanji! :D Thought provoking...wow...awesome line of thought! U have something there...

joshi uncle said...

For the mature audience:

Let us first of all understand clearly that the absolute basic idea of ‘Hindu Philosophy’, or ‘Absolute Truth’, is that ‘Paramatma’ the indestructible form of energy, ‘Naadbindu’, or ‘the Creator of the universe – i.e., the entire innumerable physical forms of different shapes and sizes within an infinite void created by conversion of His Own energy to material forms - is formless. It is another matter that these forms might only be illusory images within His or Her or Its, head in the present…

Today, we know that a ‘Heavenly Body’, though temporary, exists for apparently longer duration - compared to normal human life span - as an individual body in a defined form because of balance between the gravitational force and the radial pressure exerted by the matter it is composed of. However, what we aren’t convinced today is that there could be a correlation between Heavenly Bodies and humans of any faith or religion, which the ‘ancient Hindus’ apparently had realized... An indirect form of energy, food, is one of the basic needs of animal life. And, today we have come to know that man heads the food chain of the animal life forms that exist on earth. The ancients had realized that like ‘inferior forms of life’ to man, he himself is ‘inferior’ not only to the Creator but even to the Heavenly Bodies or the planetary system members – that he is only an instrument… It was only when Arjuna of Dwaper yuga got convinced by a guru of this fact did he agree to fight his cousins…

In the ever changing world, in the present day context I could briefly cite the example of the most popular game of Cricket that, like any other game at any time, apparently also is a ‘pastime’ only. Going a little deeper, one might observe that the game makes one experience all those emotions which apparently day-to-day human life/ fictitious novel or film does to an individual/ reader or spectator… Going still deeper, one could observe it to reflect as a model our galaxy - the disc shaped stadium packed with star-like spectators watching planetary-system-member-like players demonstrating interaction between different members, resulting basically in interchange of energy, or loss or gain of energy just as a hot pot looses its heat for the gain or increase in air temperature or another cold pot in its vicinity… Yogic exercises aim at reducing loss of energy and increasing gain of cosmic energy by remaining* unmoved by all emotions… Life is a cross section of humanity from minus infinity to plus infinity, below or above the ‘Poverty Line’, representing our globe - the ocean and the land with all its mountain ranges of which Kailash-Mansarovar is a model, which again has a chain of models of different sizes! It is serving Creator's purpose whereas we tend to remain self-centric, like water naturally flows downwards only unless pumped up!

abhilash warrier said...

hey,

I think that there are more chances of any person putting in 3s and 4s in this game. because more combinations of these exist.

i think we need to study probability and computations and permutations to learn the game better.

also, probability says "every event is independent of the event before it."

as for shakuni, as per mahabharata, he had chosen proper dice for himnself. he knew that the pandavas will suspect he's up to something. As he suspected, they did request him to change the dice with which he played. so he changed his dice to improper dice! Therefore, giving him more good chances of getting sixes, 12s and ones!! so he won!

but what you say may be true...

vimanonym said...

I believe that Kavitha is hinting at something known in the far east as principles of Feng Shui chi. Although the game of ludo may seem like a game of chance, the line of thought is that the chance favors the prepared ones who can align themselves in relation to the overall flow of energy in the cosmos, thus ensuring success. And since cosmic energy may be constantly moving direction, the people who have the tendency to cleanly fit in with the movements during the period of the game usually win the game and Shakuni was a master at that.
It is very possible, that this can apply to all games or scenarios if applied with the same rigour..being in one with the universe...

Incidentally Uncle Jo' why dont u start a blog of your own since many a time i see your posts not at all pertaining to the train of thought of a current post...So they might actually make better sense as individual articles rather than comments which need to have a linking thread....While of course i agree that the Naadbindu connects all the apparently disconnected (its maya you know)and different posts are just manifestations of the same absolute truth about the infinite monkey principle....;)

JC Joshi said...

I give below what I wrote to a nephew. He too has no patience and fails to grasp the central idea of thoughts... It is a common observation that maturity of mind might not come with maturity of body, however the thoughts might germinate at a later date when the time is ripe... I did not want to say it earlier, but I am sorry to say that you speak first and think later... I have already said why I don't write books etc... I often send my comments to the newspaper I read, and only two of my reactions have seen the light of the day so far...
Best wishes.

"When you eat, your body does all the work of digesting it, distributing the right chemicals to each vital organ, and so on, without your knowing it. Only when you fall ill, then only you go to a doctor. He too without telling you all about human anatomy prescribes some medicines... But, when you read with two eyes, the body doesn't help you in digesting it - you need to digest it with the help of your mind's eye, or 'Shiva's third eye', that needs to be activated and kept open... Too much of food/ reading purposelessly also could result in loosies and puking... Now, not only read what I had commented but also tell me what you have understood with your third eye"...

vimanonym said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
kavitha said...

hi vimanonym,

i expect a certain sense of decency in blog comments. i do not appreciate the outburst, and i have removed it so as not to hurt Joshi uncle in anyway.

he has experience and he is commenting based on that. if you can have a healthy discussion, go for it. else, do not get personal with other people who visit my blog.

your points of view are most apreciated but your judgement of people openly is not.

as regards your third eye, well i would suggest you dont ridicule religion, for you are far far away from opening it.

end of the day i want mr joshi to come back to my blog and i will do anything to have him back. i dont want anyone offending him.

btw the comment you posted had nothing to do with my ORIGINAL POST.

kavitha said...

there is another point to shakuni throwing the dice in the mahabharata. the original book seems to have said that all 100 brothers could roll the dice and not just shakuni.
i am not too sure about that. it might beat my theory about possibly magic in the board of dayakattai.

abhilash had another theory, that probability of 3 and 4 is higher compare to dayam as there are only 2 combinations on teh stick that can give dayam. but is it all a matter of chance that a player just doesnt put it even when the game is nearing the end?

would i want o believe that its all a matter of chance and nothing else, or am i trying to give it more importance than it deserves... its anybody's guess.

vimanonym said...

I suppose you are right. Two people should not be fighting in another persons yard. Apologies for posting an irrelevant piece of information on a Dayakattai article!;)
btw i dont understand where i ridiculed relegion? Care to open my eyes?

JC Joshi said...

In Srimad Bhagvadgita, the golden words of ‘wise’ Hindus have been preserved as per design of the Creator, carried through thousands of years fortunately for the lucky ones who are able to read between the lines, or draw essence from it, and not just read it as a pastime even if one reads it. For, most people excuse temselves by saying that they don't have time…

Krishna says that He has made only two categories of men, that could be interpreted to mean ‘selfless’ and ‘selfish’ in the present day context… As already predicted by the wise ancients, due to the characteristic property of time or Kala most of the people turn selfish or demons*, while the number of angels or devatas reduces to negligible in Kaliyuga… The fight between the two ever continues down the Yugas... Epics like Ramayana and Mahabharata are all about it

The ancients had understood man to be a model of the universe. And, as is well known, a scalar model only helps one to visualize the prototype. A photograph of an individual, for example, is his two-dimensional model, which can help one to correlate it with the concerned just by visual examination. Its projection any time later can generate illusionary performance like the individual, if it is shot with a movie camera... Whereas his statue is his 3-D model, like for example the wax models in Madame Tussaud’s museum…

A sincere individual or a seeker of truth need not have a feeling of inferiority complex… As a child I too couldn’t understand the significance of ‘Ma Yashoda seeing the entire universe in child Krishna’s mouth’! I could understand it only later when I read the Gita, i.e., the part where Krishna (model of the void of the universe) says that the entire creation resides within Him, etc… (IX: 6, X: 20, etc for example)

To whomsoever it may concern, a wise ancient Hindu called himself (a model of) Shiva. He realized from the functioning of the brain, ‘mind’s eye’ to represent Shiva’s ‘third eye’ or the ozone layer that permits only selected colours or energy to enter earth’s atmosphere… As it is one of the ‘Truths’ of the human body, “Satyam Shivam Sunderam,” and “Satyameva Jayate”, it can be seen even today how a brain retains only the essence or satva while literally burning ‘Kamadeva’ or the useless material away… For example, if one is asked to write the material covered in ten pages, only a tape recorder would be able to reproduce it word for word anytime one plays it...

Now, when an average man sees a film, he could perhaps narrate the story scene by scene, if you ask him immediately after he has seen it. Asked after a year, he might give you just the essence of the story. Asked after ten years, unless it was a classic, perhaps he wouldn’t even be able to recall the name of the film. He might just say that it was so-so or good!

They advised the seeker to find answer to, Who am I?" They advised one to search it wihin one and not outside.

May God bless our souls!
___________________________________

* Translated version in Gita Press, Gorakhpur publication, “Hypocrisy, arrogance and pride, and anger, sternness and ignorance too – these are the marks of him who is born with demoniac properties. (XVI: 4) Also refer VII: 15, “Those whose wisdom has been carried away by Maya, and who have embraced the demoniac nature, such foolish and vile men of evil deeds do not adore Me.”

JC Joshi said...

About the game and Shakuni's role, the background of Hindu Philosophy first to comprehend properly.

The ancients believed in three components that went into the formation of human body, irrespective of one’s caste, creed, belief, faith, religion, and so on – the physical, the mental and the spiritual, or belief in a formless Creator with physical manifestations, to cover the three aspects of creation, sustenance, and transformation of the physical forms inferior to those…

The Yogis, although as per a grand design, apparently attempted a balanced and integrated development along all the axes, and prescribed certain exercises to cover all these aspects for the sake of the public at large. For, an average individual, engaged in day-to-day activities that took most of his time, generally developed more along the physical and mental axes only...

The selfless people, like Pandavas, had Krishna the Yogiraj on their side, but not until their inclination was clearly demonstrated. While, on the other hand, the Kauravas, being selfish, attracted characters, viz., Shakuni et al…

Regarding demons acquiring skills for underhand practices, it is reportedly on account of their approaching lesser souls and disbelief in Krishna, who ever exists in His celestial form, and therefore considered inferior by the wise…

A software programmer makes use of exercises in mathematics to generate software for generating random numbers. The Internet provides the following by Ion Saliu (Jan 2002):

"The Universe is the GamblingHouse where Almighty Number CreatesDestroys the EverythingNothing with the roll of the unbiased dice. May Its Random Almighty give us our consistent winning streak, in addition to our necessary losses. For the winner without a loss is like the horse without a wagon."

jon said...

compatible horoscope info is so cheesy but we were looking at it anyway...why i dont know. I guess it is fun to play around online. Anyway, I saw your compatible horoscope posts and though it was cool...Alright, well...have a great night, I am back to compatible horoscope surfing LOL : )

Jon

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