|STEPPING OUT OF THE BOX|
STEPPING OUT OF THE BOX: You have read books, been
taught, and played Bridge. You have, maybe even
unknowingly, developed a sort of Bridge belief system. As
with any belief system, there is always some heresy afoot.
And the heretics might prove you wrong and they in turn
become the mainstream belief system. So be open to new
ideas and methods. Be ready to step out of the box of your
own particular orthodoxy.
The Eastern approach to learning is with empty pockets
and an overturned cup. That is, enter the arena with a tabula
rasa, a blank slate, ready to receive. Do not approach the
game with locked in, preconceived ideas. Watch out for
hardening of the categories. Diet and Lipitor won't help here.
There are moments in life, and in Bridge, when we have
to say or do something that is totally at odds (or orthogonal)
to what we hold to be certain truth. But absolute truth is
relative (Rob's paradox #1). So be ready to change. Remember the status quo is in a state of flux (Rob's paradox #2). So it might be correct to overtake dummy's King; or trump your partner's Ace; or not win the trick; or win a trick with an unnecessarily high card; etc. That is, go counter intuitive: against what you deeply believe is correct; against your first impulse; and against what you would normally do. Step out of the box that keeps you locked in to one particular consciousness.
There are no shortages of rules or maxims in Bridge. But
for every rule there is an exception; and even an exception to
the exception, which is back to the original rule. Though it is
crucial to know the rule, it is also important to be flexible
enough to know when to break the rule. When you do go
counter make sure you have a good sound reason for doing so. For if your partner is not quite the tolerant or understanding type, you might encounter objects flying across the table
aimed at your head.
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