Friday, November 17, 2006

Arcade Lines Theology

Continuing my theological reflections on the computer games I 'm addicted to, there's Arcade Lines, which you can preview here

Puzzle games like this one relentlessly load up the board with colored balls, and you have to move them into lines, after which they disappear. The nice thing about these games is that you play at your own pace, so you can play them while, say, while on hold waiting for tech support.

Learning to succeed at these games is a matter of learning to see patterns. Although it is easy at first to see where one can move balls to get four in a row, as the board fills up, it gets much harder.

You have to play this game with a certain flexibility of mind, being ready to change one's strategy as new balls appear. The "right" line of balls to complete on this turn keeps changing.

The spiritual quest is like this. Since that Mystery we call God never "appears", all findings of God are a matter of noticing the patterns of Grace that appear suddenly in one's life and following up on them. No strategy has ever worked for long for me. I found Zen style meditation to be very fruitful for about three years, fought with it another year, and finally gave up after another year. I'm a more flexible player of Arcade Lines than I am a spiritual seeker.

1 comment:

Turtle Mountain said...

Enjoy your games. Your fidgeting was good Zen:

"The Master said, 'Stopping the mind and contemplating quietude is pathological; it is not Ch’an (Zen). Sitting all the time constricts the body - how does it help toward truth?'”
The Sutra of Hui-neng
The Grand Master of Zen
Shambala Dragon Editions
Boston and London 1998. p 61