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 Post subject: [Q] Question about alleged Japanese proverb
Post #1 Posted: Wed Jul 24, 2019 11:09 am 
Oza
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“The person with a Go stone in his mouth feels neither hunger nor thirst.”

Questions:

1. DOES such a proverb exist?

2. If yes, then what does “having something in one’s mouth” mean?
And is it comparable to the German idiom “to carry something {in one’s mouth | on one’s tongue}” = to talk much and enthusiastically about something?

3. Would you please provide the original Japanese?

TIA,
Tom

p.s.: This was allegedly quoted by Lothar Collatz at EGC 1988

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 Post subject: Re: [Q] Question about alleged Japanese proverb
Post #2 Posted: Wed Jul 24, 2019 4:02 pm 
Lives with ko

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I cannot help much. I will point out that pebbles and stones with odd properties appear in the folk tales and myths of many cultures. They can be magical objects or metaphors, distracting mortals from their earthly suffering. Guessing this might have originally meant someone playing go at a high intellectual level is totally into it and will forget or neglect the needs of the flesh.

Just My opinion and I don’t have a background in oriental aphorisms but This statement doesn’t have a Japanese flavor to it.

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Post #3 Posted: Wed Jul 24, 2019 11:06 pm 
Honinbo
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Hi Tom,

I'm guessing google didn't help. :blackeye:

Where did you run across this alleged text ? :twisted:
No sign in the desert forbids you to eat the sand.

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 Post subject: Re: [Q] Question about alleged Japanese proverb
Post #4 Posted: Thu Jul 25, 2019 5:03 am 
Honinbo

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Closest I can recall is by dezomb:


dezomb wrote:
Stones are hard and taste bad


See the KGS soundtrack for more famous quotes!

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 Post subject: Re: [Q] Question about alleged Japanese proverb
Post #5 Posted: Thu Jul 25, 2019 7:58 am 
Dies with sente

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Guys,

not about Go at all, but post-war survivors have mentioned to me the odd time or thousand that having a stone in the mouth helped them satiate hunger and thirst. The feeling, obviously, not the nourishment.

Take care.

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Post #6 Posted: Thu Jul 25, 2019 2:10 pm 
Oza
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EdLee wrote:
I'm guessing google didn't help. :blackeye:
TBH, I didn't even google it b/c this here is already a translation to English, from German … see below.

Quote:
Where did you run across this alleged text ? […]

In the German DGoB forum, where Ingo Althöfer (German maths professor) asked about it, and he seems to have found the following somewhere (I don't know where):

Quote:
In Vorbereitung des EGC 1988 in Hamburg
zitierte Lothar Collatz eine japanische Go-Spieler-Weisheit:

Wer den Go-Stein im Munde hat,
spürt weder Hunger noch Durst.


Transl.:
Quote:
While preparing EGC 1988 in Hamburg,
Lothar Collatz quoted a Japanese Go players’ [proverbial] wisdom:

[s/he] Who has the Go stone in the mouth
feels neither hunger nor thirst.


Ingo is writing a booklet about Lothar Collatz (German mathematician, 1910–1990, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lothar_Collatz) who also was active in the German Go community.

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 Post subject: Re: [Q] Question about alleged Japanese proverb
Post #7 Posted: Fri Jul 26, 2019 1:51 pm 
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Just did a quick Google search about "go" and "hunger", and the following paragraph about a Chinese legend called 述異記 came up:

Quote:
『述異記』(任昉)巻上 晋の時代。木こりの王質が石室山へ行き、数人の童子が碁を打つのを見物する。童子は棗(なつめ)の核(たね)のようなものを王質に与え、それを口に含むと飢えを感じなかった。しばらくして童子が「なぜ行かないの?」と言うので、王質は立ち上がって斧を取る。斧の柯(え)はぼろぼろに爛(くさ)っていた。山を下りて里へ帰ると、誰も知る人がいなかった。


Reference: https://www.weblio.jp/content/%E7%A2%81?edc=MNGTR

Summary of the paragraph:
A woodcutter goes to the mountains and finds children playing go. They give him a seed, which he put in his mouth and made him not feel any hunger. After some time, the children ask him: Don't you need to leave? The woodcutter realized he did, so he went to pick up his axe and the handle had rotten. When he went back to the village, nobody that he knew was there anymore.

This is the only thing I found...


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 Post subject: Re: [Q] Question about alleged Japanese proverb
Post #8 Posted: Sat Jul 27, 2019 9:03 am 
Oza
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Sumatakyo wrote:
[…] This is the only thing I found...

Thanks, that’s quite nice :-)

I knew the “rotted axe” story, but not with the “seed” part … so there may really be a connection.

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 Post subject: Re: [Q] Question about alleged Japanese proverb
Post #9 Posted: Tue Jul 30, 2019 12:00 pm 
Lives with ko

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A similar discussion was also held on a facebook go/weiqi/baduk site:

https://m.facebook.com/groups/2204656513?view=permalink&id=10157575631036514&anchor_reactions=true

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 Post subject: Re: [Q] Question about alleged Japanese proverb
Post #10 Posted: Tue Jul 30, 2019 12:18 pm 
Oza
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bogiesan wrote:
A similar discussion was also held on a facebook go/weiqi/baduk site:

https://m.facebook.com/groups/2204656513?view=permalink&id=10157575631036514&anchor_reactions=true

Yeah, that was me also :)

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