The Psychic Chess Trio
Throughout the history of chess there have only been 16 officially recognized World Chess Champions. Would you believe me if I told you that three of them were psychics? Here is the list of the Great 16.
1. Wilhelm Steinitz
2. Emanuel Lasker
3. Jose Raul Capablanca
4. Alexander Alekhine
5. Max Euwe
6. Mikhail Botvinnik
7. Vasily Smyslov
8. Mikhail Tal
9. Tigran Petrosian
10. Boris Spassky
11. Robert J. Fischer
12. Anatoly Karpov
13. Garry Kasparov
14. Vladmir Kramnik
15. Viswanathand Anand
16. Magnus Carlsen
The three players I have bolded, Capablanca, Tal, and Carlsen, are the possesants of psychic gifts from Lords of the Spirit Worlds in their past lives. These are the three that have incarnated, but all in all there are probably seven in total. We will start with the most enigmatic and mysterious of the three, Capablanca.
The Age of Capablanca
“A good player is always lucky.”
-- Jose Raul Capablanca
Capablanca is not known for his incredible wiliness. He is seen as a master of simplicity and winning won endings. But as with the other two chess psychics, Capablanca is often misunderstood. Capablanca once said "I only see one move ahead, but it is always the right move". Just like the other two psychics, a hallmark of Capablanca's play is his ability to create winning positions, seemingly out of luck. This is a famous game played by Capablanca against Emmanuel Lasker and it should teach us a few things about his play.
This is a remarkable game. I have included capa's own notations, but there is a story here that his notations do not tell. If you notice, Capablanca's game does not necessarily look winning right at the start. In fact, from move 15-23, it looks like Lasker has a slight advantage. The sun must have been in Lasker's eyes, then, because Capablanca somehow initiates a long series of forced moves to get a lost ending for white. How can this have happened? It doesn't take a genius to see that against Nimzovitch, Capablanca is doing it again.
Nimzovitch would not have played 16. g4 if he thought he was losing. He was so convinced his positional superiority that he weakened himself. Once again, it is as if the sun is in his eyes while playing Capablanca.
Capablanca's Psychic Gift: "The Sun"
It was dawn on a cold winter morning in what is now the very northernmost tip of Norway. A young slave boy is being transported to the auction center where he will be sold to men traveling south to Briton. The boy knows he will live his life as a eunuch if he does not escape these brutes, but the sun is not yet in the sky, so the young boy prays to the only light that is available: that of the morningstar. The barbarians stop to gather water and Loki appears to the young boy in the form of rabbit. He asks the boy if he wants to go free. The boy emphatically nods. I will break these chains for you, he says, if you will bear a gift which I will place upon you. You will never suffer again, as long as you appear to be less than you are. As long as people underestimate you, you will triumph over them. I wish you luck.
That night, another caravan overtook the one carrying the boy who would someday reincarnate as Capablanca. They killed the Barbarians and took most of the slaves for their own, but seeing that the boy was a runt, they left him to die in the wilderness. The boy found his way to a city where he worked first as a servant, then as a page, then as a butler and then he inherited his master's house. Thus, when this soul incarnated as Jose Raul Capablanca, he drew great power from being underestimated. If we look at Capablanca's games, he always seems to find the positions where he is sound at the end of the game, but it looks like he is losing in the middlegame. His positions have a psychological character, a hallmark of the psychic chess player.
Like Carlsen's gift but unlike Tal's Capablanca's gift does not calculate for Capablanca. Thus he can run into trouble in positions like this one:
It is obvious that Tal would have beaten Alekhine in this position, but for Capablanca this proved to be too much. Indeed, one of the reasons Alekhine could hold his own against Capablanca was his reliance on calculation, Capablanca's weakness. However, generally, Capablanca's psychic intuition would steer him away from dangerous lines. So why did it fail to do so in the last four wins by Alekhine? The energy-based functioning of these psychic gifts leads to a clue left by the eighth World Champion, who was very vocal about the nature of his gift if one pays attention.
Mikhail Tal consistently lost his first game in tournament, and always talked about being "streaky", saying he would heat up. It is apparant to me his psychic gift has to "heat up" to function and funnily enough, it can overheat, as often happened when he played too many blitz games in a row. But Capablanca's gift is different. It starts hot, but can grow colder if he works too hard...One of the reasons he always tried to NOT focus on chess was because if he played too much chess or worked too hard at it, he wasn't capablanca anymore, he was Joe Schmoe No Name:
The Age of Tal
There is too much to be said about Mikhail Tal. Perhaps this is because, despite having the very shortest reign as World Champion, he left the deepest etching on our hearts. Tal has been King and Conquistador in his numerous lives, but the one thing all those lives have in common is the occurence of miracles, small and large, around him. He is not a normal man, though many will attest that he is just like them. And when they call him the Magician from Riga, they allude to the hard truth that he is a real Magician and wields magical powers in many of his lives. But Tal's chess is really extraodinary. They called him the master of fantasy because of games like this.
But what if I told you that Tal never calculates very far ahead, but that his incredible "luck" is the by product of a psychic gift? You see, Tal is possessed of an eye. Not a third eye, like the chakra, but a fourth eye. And that eye has the power to see exponentional amounts of images thus creating the illusion of a tight-rope-walking chess God. A god possessed of "God Sight". Tal's dizzying style of play accompanied by ridiculous future sight and mind-blowing sacrifices is surely the result of a psychic gift. There is little doubt to that when you look at games like this one.
Who is attacking who in this game? It is unreal, the complications. A normal human cannot wade through these, but Tal, a psychic, can. We note one this about Tal's games. They defy evaluation. Notice how one always evaluates Capablanca's games as losing for him and Tal's games as unclear. I will make you guess the psychological nature of Carlsen's games when we get there. One important thing about the God Sight is that it seems revel in complications. The God Sight basically works by sheer imagination, it is not like an engine which runs on concrete evaluation. Instead, the calculatory nature of Tal's famous psychic ability seems to see everything at once. Here is what is probably Tal's most famous game versus Botvinnik. It features a queenless middlegame in which black is a piece down.
Enter God Sight
A wayfarer wanders through a deep dark forest alone. He is lost. He cannot mind his way out of this mad place where noises abound like lightning and eyes peer from every crevice. The shapes of the wood seem to bend about and nothing makes sense. Every which way leads to nowhere but all roads lead back to a clearing where in the dead of night moonlight pierces the grove. The traveler tries for hours to leave the wood, till he has lost his wits and fear overtakes him. Fearing madness, hunger overtaking him, he fears for his life and knows that soon his time is at an end. He takes the star of david from his pouch, the insignia of his kingdom. "My Lord, you shine so high and bright from above. Answer my prayers! I am lost and alone and I need you, My Lord! Oh my Lord, often have I prayed to you at sundown, aside my windows. My Lord those prayers have not been answered, but those were petty things, and I would glad trade them all to be heard right now. I don't want to die My Lord, please if you are truly the Lord of the Heavens take mercy on my pitiful life. Save it please, save me from the darkness." The traveler begins to cry and his tears coalesce on the ground. Suddenly it begins to rain, and thunder comes from on high, pouring orblike to the ground. There, standing before him, is Yahweh, Lord of the Moon. "What, so much beguiles thee that you pray unto tears for a life that's worth so much? Come, boy, the light is shining upon ye and you cannot so much as see it?" He puts his hands on the travelers head "This wood is filled with darkness, and what traps you is that you fear it. No more. The darkness shall not touch thee so long as you hold with you this vase." The traveler takes the vase but to his surprise it evaporates. "It is yours now. In it flow the cool waters of the moon, whereby are reflected the many realities that flow through me." Before the traveler could thank the green robed man with a serpent coiled around his staff, they had disappeared. To his surprise, the man knew suddenly the exact way he needed to go leave the forest. The many winding paths were suddenly as clear as day, and he did not even need to fear them, he never had. He left the winding wood with certainty in his heart. He would carry that fearlessness with him through many lives, right up unto the present day.
Before we leave Tal behind, we must understand something else important. The moon water in the vase that Tal was given doesn't just calculate, it can also predict the future. Actually, it can predict all possible futures and know which one will come to pass. Thus, Tal always somehow knew exactly when his opponent was going to make mistakes, playing inexplicably inferior lines which led to a win. In this game, he does just that.
Many have shown this game while trying to understanding the Magician's bizarre capabilities as a chess player. Truly, his psychic abilities allowed him to do what no one else could do.
The Age of Carlsen
People ask what my goal is. I don’t have a goal.
In the civilized world, we are entering an age in which we can choose where we live, what we eat, who we talk to, who we spend time with, who we marry. We get to choose what gender we are, even if that gender doesn't exist. We get to choose whether we believe in God or Science, we get to choose who we hate because they don't agree with us, we get to choose what they identify with when we attack them and it is always the other side. But most of all, in the modern age, we get to choose what is true, not what we believe to be true, but what is actually true. In this age, truth ceases to exist.
In an age in which truth is relative, the only people who can survive are those who always know what is true. This is the age of Carlsen, a man blessed with a psychic gift granted to him by the Sun God. Some may call him Apollo, some Jesus Christ, but Carlsen has a psychic ability to always move TOWARD what is true. Usually a single point, the best square on the board. To understand Carlsen's style, one must realize that isn't playing for a single goal. Throughout a game, his intuition can be focused on as many as 25 squares. Usually the BEST ONE at that moment. In doing so, Carlsen's style, though not a calculatory one, generally makes it hard for his opponents to understand what he wants, because in terms of planning he is three steps ahead of whoever he is facing up against.
In 2009, Carlsen played this game against Radjabov.
From the 10th move on the game, Carlsen is focused on a single square, b7, on which sits a bishop. This trend continues until he plays 19. Bg5, at which point he switches focus to the e7 square. From there, he sets up what one might consider to be a mind-blowing combination, which wins the game. Ultimately, then, Carlsen's psychic powers relate to planning and of course, the plan that is most likely to perturb his opponent. Carlsen intuitively knows which plan is most likely to fluster his opponent and thus his play takes on psychic character, just like the others. In this line, Carlsen plays a line which psychologically rattles Nakamura, because Carlsen forces the situation so that they must each race against each other, something Nakamura does not like to do!
Truly Carlsen is a master causing his opponents to feel afraid. Intimidated by his mad dog stare, his opponent's make mistakes they wouldn't normally make. Why Nakamura would push g7 instead of taking on f7 I cannot say, but he felt afraid to take the pawn. Perhaps Carlsen does not have the utter certainty of all possible occurrences like Tal, but he knows what he wants to do and he does it, and his opponents, afraid of that kind of confidence, falter again and again in the face of it.
It is December 31st and a giant of a man has won the greatest gauntlet in the land. He is the champion of a wrestling match to decide who is the chosen one of Apollo. He has felled men of incredible strength and brutality to get to this point. How did he get to this point? His iron will. He has always known that he was the greatest of all of them. His self-told prophecy had come true. As he stands before the Sun God, he is bestowed with the honour of honours, a pendant to put upon his brow. Now as men stare upon him, they are filled with fear. He is much larger and stronger than they are, and they cannot fight him. In combat, he always goes for their weak point, he knows how to hurt them badly, and now, as Magnus Carlsen, he continues to champion the Sun God.
It is not clear to me who will unseat a psychic player of the dominance of Magnus. It will not be Wei Yi. The kid, talented as he is, knows fear, and only someone who knows no fear like Karjakin did has a chance to beat him. Maybe Tal has incarnated somewhere and is working his way back to the chessboard as we speak, but in the end, who can tell?