Earlier this year I read Jane McGonigal's Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change teh World and blogged my way through it. You can catch those posts under the Games category link below.
Today I was working on a plan to play her game Bounce with my confirmands later this month and was looking back over her website, when I came across this paragraph which I had not noticed before, but which speaks to why there I find her work very conducive to spirituality and ministry:
Since you’ve come so far, let me share a secret with you. I don’t talk about it as much as the positive psychology influences, but my work also draws deeply on Buddhist philosophy. I am inspired by the Buddhist goal of ending suffering on Earth — and I know that when we are immersed in a good game, we do not suffer. My research shows that games are an extraordinary and universal way to alleviate all kinds of suffering — including boredom, anxiety, depression, loneliness, despair and even physical pain. For this reason, I believe most game developers are on a humanitarian mission (whether they know it or not!). I am also curious about the ways in which good games seem to help us develop the seven positive traits that Buddhists believe can help end suffering: mindfulness, investigation, energy, joy, relaxation, concentration, and equanimity. Is it possible that games and Buddhism share the same epic win?