Snakes and Ladders

Snakes and Ladders is a board game that is played with 2 or more players. The board has 100 numbered squares that ascend in the rows. On some squares there is a ladder that will ascend to a higher numbered square. On some there is a snake that will descend the player to a lower numbered square. There is a dice that should be rolled in order to count and step ahead in the game. This game is very popular among young children.

But did you know that this game originated in India ??

I didn't. I just thought it is originated from the British. It is one of my favorite game. I thought it resembles to the situations in your life. There is sometimes "Ladder" that takes you up in your ambitions, career , dreams etc. Sometimes you experience a downfall and it is represented by "snakes" in this game. Lets get the actual facts about this game.

As we know now, that this game originated in India and it was known as "Moksha Patam". It was used to teach essential values to the children. Many people believe that this game was created by the famous poet, Saint Gyandev. But according to some references this game existed even in 2nd Century B.C.

The ladders represent virtues and snakes vices. In the original game square 12 was faith, 51 Reliability, 57 Generosite, 76 knowledge and 78 Asceticism. In these squares there used to be the ladder.

While square 41 was disobedience, 44 for arrogance, 49 for vulgarity, 52 for theft, 58 for lie, 62 for drinking alcohol, 69 for debt, 73 for murder, 84 for anger, 92 for greed, 95 for pride, and 99 for Lust. These were the squares where there used to be the "snake". Square 100 represented Moksha or nirvana. In this way, this game was used in ancient India to teach good deeds to the children and also to teach what is the outcome for bad things.

The snakes represented vices and indecisiveness; while ladders represented virtues and good morality. This game went all the way to England in 1892 where it was renamed as "Snakes & Ladders". Now this game is widely distributed in the world and it has many variations. But the basic idea remains the same.

It is also known as "ups & downs" in canada, "the jungle run" in U.S since there is no one to claim the patent of this game.

Anyway, i felt nice to read this today on the internet ! So i thought of posting it here.


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