Finite and Infinite Games by James P. Carse

It is an invariable principle of all play, finite and infinite, that whoever plays, plays freely. Whoever must play, cannot play.

Note: This is reason enough for removing “necessity” by whatever means necessary—the idea of need, financial need (Money Mustache), caloric need (fasting), even moral need (skillful means, Veni, Sancte Spiritus).


Therefore, poets do not “fit” into society, not because a place is denied them but because they do not take their “places” seriously. They openly see its roles as theatrical, its styles as poses, its clothing costumes, its rules conventional, its crises arranged, its conflicts performed, and its metaphysics ideological.


Society is… an attempt to forget that we have willfully forgotten our decision to enter this or that contest and to continue in it.


The joyfulness of infinite play, its laughter, lies in learning to start something we cannot finish.


Death in life can be regarded as an achievement, the result of a spiritual discipline, say, intended to extinguish all traces of struggle with the world, a liberation from the need for any title whatsoever. “Die before ye die,“ declare the Sufi mystics.

Note: Which Sufi(s) say this? Also, I frequently entertain the idea of not hanging my degree certificates on the wall of my office.


Tue 30 Jun 2020 10:50:01 AM CDT