Updated: Oct 3
Picture your mum sending you this iffy post about the benefits of Mahjong one morning. How true can it be...
Whenever we talk about benefits, we normally refer to health benefits. In this case, however, we will like to dive deeper into other aspects as well.
Some readers may think that we are simply squeezing out content, but, we can guarantee you that our content is legitimate and truthful. Proper research is done to back our statements along with our anecdotes. Without further ado, let us "WOW" you with the benefits of Mahjong.
Based on research done by Chinese scientists who studied the elderly-age communities in a few villages, it was discovered that Mahjong did play a significant part in their life. Since Mahjong is not a single-player game, others have to join for the game to start. Mahjong then helps to bring people out of their own homes and forces bonding among other players. Provided that no gambling is involved, Mahjong is an avenue for others to make friends and socialize. Instead of being cooped at home without the presence of their children, the elderly can also entertain themselves through Mahjong. This prevents overthinking for the elderly who stay by themselves for a long period. Furthermore, they can occasionally check up on one another. And if one of the players does not appear for their regular sessions without prior notice, this can immediately alert the others to know that something is amiss.
Aside from the social gains, there are a lot more medical benefits in light of playing Mahjong. If we were to name all of them, it will take forever to finish. Hence, we will narrow it down to just a few important points that stand out in our opinion. First and foremost, Mahjong helps to improve critical thinking and decreases the likelihood of dementia. Dementia is prevalent amongst the elderly, especially as many do not exercise their brain regularly at that age. By playing Mahjong, they are forced to think strategically using their intelligence. Similar to board games like Chess, Mahjong also actively stimulates cognitive skills. Thus, it also prevents other health issues like depression. Not to forget, Mahjong also enhances memory and concentration.
You may not know about this but Mahjong can be an educational game for the young. Based on the history of Mahjong, Mahjong was traditionally used to teach nobles important life virtues. For instance, the mentor will teach his pupil about patience through the game. How you may ask? When your tiles are not in your favor, you should always sit in patience and not throw the winning tile. Even if the dry run lasts for all four winds, you should never tilt. Just like in every professional gambler's career, their winnings will always fluctuate. Mahjong is still a numbers game and a low probability does not mean your opponent cannot win. Hence, never flip just because your opponent won you with such a marginal chance. Remember, emotions can fog your decision-making ability. Never let a moment of fit affect your decisions. As observed, patience is just one of the essential values that Mahjong can teach us. There are many other lessons Mahjong can teach us but we shall not dwell too much on them.
Convey a Message
Credits: Crazy Rich Asian
Sometimes, Mahjong acts as a medium for people to communicate and share their opinions. You may choose to doubt our stand albeit it is the truth. At times, there are difficult topics to bring up during normal conversations. Hence, people resort to other means to share their true thoughts. And, as mentioned, Mahjong is one of the many avenues for some to raise their point subtly. Let us give you an example.
If you remember the Mahjong scene in Crazy Rich Asians clearly, Rachel (Constance Wu) and Eleanor (Michelle Yeoh) were both seen playing Mahjong together. Rachel is Nick's (Henry Golding) fiancee while Eleanor is Nick's mother in the movie. This Mahjong game was the perfect analogy for illustrating their disputes over Nick. Because, when Eleanor threw the winning tile for Rachel, she could have won. The winning tile represents Nick proposing to Rachel. However, Rachel chose not to game which suggests how she did not just plan to marry Nick without Eleanor's stamp of approval. Rachel's action was subtle but straightforward. Rachel wanted Eleanor to know that her marriage to Nick was within her grasp, but Rachel does not want to simply marry for Nick's wealth. Thankfully, Rachel's act during the game made Eleanor change her mind about Rachel for which she then approved Rachel to be her daughter-in-law. Therefore, we can see that Mahjong can indeed help pass a message subtly under tense situations.
In summary, Mahjong is a game that meets more than the eye. Other than providing a form of entertainment for the public, Mahjong also brings more pros than cons. As long as you do not suffer from Mahjong addiction, Mahjong is very beneficial. And of course, we will recommend the young and old to play the game.