The Glass Bead Game
aka 'Magister Ludi'.
(Translated from the German
'Das Glasperlenspiel' 1943)
The rules, sign language and grammar of the Game, constitute a kind of highly developed secret language drawing upon several sciences and arts, but especially mathematics and music, and capable of expressing and establishing interrelationships between the contents and the conclusions of nearly all scholarly disciplines.
The Glass Bead Game is thus a mode of playing with the total contents and values of our culture; it plays with them as, for example, in the great age of the arts a painter might have played with the colors of his palette.
All the insights, noble thoughts, and works of art that the human race has produced in its creative eras - on all this immense body of intellectual values the Glass Bead Game player plays like an organist on the organ.