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A game of wit, debate, knowledge, conversation, reason, cooperation, 
and synthesis.
Based on the idea of the Glass Bead Game from the book of the same name 
by Herman Hesse.
One or more players.

The edification of all participants.

A Deck of "Contemplation" Cards. 
Blank Index cards.
Writing implements.

The game proceeds in 8 phases.
1. Draw Phase
2. Research Phase
3. Idea Phase
4. Comparison Phase
5. Conversation Phase
6. Outline Phase
7. Conclusion Phase
8. Contemplation Phase

Draw one card from the Contemplation deck.
The idea described on the card will be referred to as the Primary Sentence.
The primary sentence is the main theme of the game.

Optional phase.
Players may independently, use books (internet, etc.) to research aspects 
of the primary sentence.
Players should agree on a time limit for research activities.
All phases may require the setting of time limits.
This phase may be merged with other phases.

Players independently write ideas down on index cards.
These ideas should in some way comment on, support, refute, 
clarify, illuminate, or expound upon the Primary sentence.
These ideas are known as secondary sentences or idea cards.
These secondary sentences may be one word, or a whole paragraph.
A player may fill up as many index cards as he likes.
Use only the front side of the cards.
The idea cards can include quotes from famous individuals.
Players should try to use ideas from a wide range of disciplines:
Science, Literature, History, Philosophy, Theology, etc.
The idea cards may reference works of art and music.

Players look at each others idea cards.
Particularly insightful ideas should be given due praise.
Irrelevant idea cards may be discarded.

Players discuss the primary & secondary sentences.
They may collectively do additional research and idea cards.

Players cooperatively arrange the idea cards into an outline.
There are no set rules on how this outline must be organized.
Some debate will be inevitable.

Players combine to write a conclusion which summarizes their response 
to the contemplation card.
This is written on a single card and is known as the tertiary sentence.
The conclusion card is added to the outline.

Players may stand back and admire the structure & content of their outline.

List the reasons for the fall of the Roman empire.
Discuss the possibility of life on other planets.
Define the causes of racism.
Give solutions for the problem of overpopulation.
Argue for and against abortion.
Discuss instances and consequences of treating people like objects. 
List the dangers and benefits of cloning.
List the dangers and benefits of genetic engineering.
List the impacts of imperialism on Great Britain and her colonies.
Contemplate the history of Science Fiction.  
Discuss the differences between comic books now and then.
Debate Creationism vs. Evolution.
Speculate on the next 50 years of Human history.
Describe applications of nanotechnology.
Discuss the origins and impacts of Jazz music.
Describe your presidential platform.
Plan a moon colony.
List potential paradoxes of time travel.
List the evidence for and against the existence of UFO's.
Debate moral relativism vs absolutism.
Discuss your theories about the Kennedy assassination.
Describe the consequences if the Axis had won WWII. 
What is the Dark matter in the universe?
Is there life after death?
Debate the existence of God.
Compare the philosophies of Plato and Aristotle.
Reflect on the differences between the Bible and the Koran

The contemplation cards must be controversial, or at least interesting.
Players are encouraged to design their own primary sentences.
Not nearly as elegant as some GBG attempts, but I think it has it's merits.

FREE ASSOCIATION (a poem I think)
The glass bead game:
Tool of meditation,
Internal debate, 
Creativity tool,
A learning tool,
Structured argument,
Record of a thought process.
Playing pieces are ideas (beads).
Game of synthesis,structure, 
position, juxtaposition, links;
Supporting evidence.
Non-random yet
outcome unknown.
Beads arranged on board should
produce a gestalt effect;
Emergent properties.
A thing is greater than the sum 
of its parts.
Requires great knowledge.
Infinite number of beads.
An arrangement of beads is itself
a "superbead" a metabead.
The tyranny of wit.
A conversation that is a game vs
a conversation conducted in the 
form of a game.


Hermann Hesse and Glass Bead Game Design

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