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Walking Without Moving, Progress Without Change. A Revelation of One Secret Sect of Chess.

GM Ján Markoš | July 15, 2011 – 12:443 Comments | 1,240 views
Walking Without Moving, Progress Without Change. A Revelation of One Secret Sect of Chess.

Recently, I managed – by coincidence – to make a breakthrough discovery, that will go down the chess history for sure. Suddenly I understood why some strong chess players play with such an ease, while others remain patzers, even though the chess is their lifelong love and they devote a countless time and effort to it.

Translated by: Dusan Turcer

My friends, the point is: also in the world of chess, there is a secret, esoteric wisdom accessible only to the chosen ones. Even in the world of chess there are secret societies or fraternities, similar to the Freemasons and the Holy Grail Confessors.

I managed to discover the most influential of these chess fraternities, in which the strongest chess players of the past or the present pertain, including many world champions. This fraternity was founded early in 19th century by unknown Zen Master, and Zen is also the basis of his teachings.

As you know, one way to achieve the enlightenment according to Zen, is to solve outwardly nonsensical puzzles called a koans. “How does the handclap of one hand sound?”, Zen Masters are asking. “Does the sound of a tree that fell in the deep woods exist, even though nobody was around, who could hear it?”, newly introduced monk frets about this. If you find solutions for similar puzzles, it will be a great step in your spiritual evolution.

That unknown Zen master asked the chess players in one Vienna club the following koan. “Is it possible to walk and still not be moving? It is possible to make a progress, however, to not change anything?” Since then, the solution of this koan has become the center of the interest of the secret chess sect. They call themselves Movers without movement.

I am sure, that Dutch grandmaster Jan Timman, the World Champion Challenger is also one of the members of the secret fraternity Movers without movement. He apparently didn’t get promoted and remained only the novice. He solved the koan in his game against Kramnik, but in a quite ordinary way.

Timman – Kramnik, Riga 1995, White to move:

Timman played 10.Nf6 + Kf8 11.Ne4. Although the white position looks exactly the same, White has the edge, because Black cannot castle anymore.

Peter Leko got a little bit further in this fraternity. The evidence can be found in the game against Radjabov.

Leko – Radjabov, Linares 2006, White to move:

Hungarian grandmaster played a very strong 19.Nf5!! g6 20.Nfe3. Although his position remained unchanged, he achieved the play against the opponent’s king, because thanks to the position of a g6-pawn there is a threat of h4-h5 with the opening of the h-file.

The only known photo of the first meeting of Movers without movement, held in Indian town of Tiruvanamtapuram in December 1866.

The only known photo of the first meeting of Movers without movement, held in Indian town of Tiruvanamtapuram in December 1866.

The higher ranked member among the Movers without movement was undoubtedly the Czechoslovak grandmaster Pachman. In the game played at the Chess Olympiad in Munich in 1958 he demonstrated his mastery in all its glory.

Pachman – Pomar, White to move:

It looks like White didn’t do anything, however, he gained a significant edge over his opponent. As both black knights are exposed, Spanish grandmaster can not defend the threat Nf3-g5xe6.

Advancing higher on the ladder of the secret fraternity, we are getting to the two leaders, the gurus of the sect. We don’t know about all Supreme Pontiffs, however, it is for sure, that great Aaron Nimzowitsch itself, was the leader of Movers without movement in the past. It is proven by his game against Behting. Danish player is writing about it in his book My System in Practice.

Behting – Nimzowitsch, Riga 1910, Black to move:

Nimzowitsch writes: “In ordrer to keep equality, Black needs to prevent the transfer of the white bishop to d4. The following combination is one of my the most favorite ones.”

Black played: 21…Qf7 22.Be3 Nf6 23.Bb3 Bb7 24.c4 (Behting played weaker 24.Rd1) 24…Bc8 25.Bd2 Ne4 26.Be1 Qf6

After six moves, all black pieces returned to its original positions as if they had never been moved. However, Black effectively prevented the bishop transfer to the longest diagonal.

It will probably not be a surprise for anyone, that the biggest current guru of Movers without movement is the reigning World Champion – Visi Anand. His solution of the koan from the game against Karpov was not repeated by anyone else in modern chess.

Karpov – Anand, Bruxeles 1991, Black to move:

In this outwardly boring position, Indian player began to maneuver skillfully. He was creating one threat after another and ex-World Champion was forced to defend carefully.

18…Rdc8 19.Qb1 Bb4 20.Bd2 Rd8 21.a3 Bc5 22.Na4 Bd6 23.Nc3

Wait! Did Black play any move at all? His pieces stay as they always were; only white ones are placed significantly worse than before.

I suppose that under the weight of so much of the evidence presented in this article, the fraternity of Movers without movement will be finally revealed, showing its true face and sharing their knowledge with the rest of chess community. I was personally very happy to dip into the only copy of the book of Nimzowitsch called My System for Dedicated Players, which is hidden in the underground bunker of the fraternity.

Maybe I would not be a lifelong patzer anymore and I would go down the chess history…

A centerfold from the Nimzowitsch's My System for Dedicated Players.

A centerfold from the Nimzowitsch's My System for Dedicated Players.


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