Religion in Games

I love Penny Arcade’s Extra Credits videos. They are always intelligent and interesting. They spend about ten minutes at a time exploring an aspect of gaming and story telling. (I’m a bit of a geeky gamer girl).

The other day my boyfriend pointed out that they had a new video up about religion in games. Perfect topic for me!

Check out the parts on religion and games:

It’s a fantastic little series. The creators put all their careful logic into these videos.


So as much as meditation is difficult for me and I don’t do it like I think I should, it still irritates me when people completely misunderstand the concept. I saw a daily poll yesterday and it was just a community of people asking each other questions and then commenting on them. One question was Do You Meditate?

The comments were discouraging. They fell into these three themes:

  • It’s boring, it isn’t fun
  • Who has time? Why do it when there is music?
  • I don’t do disgusting pagan rituals, I read the Bible

These comments revealed to me that the general public really does not understand what meditation is. 

It isn’t supposed to be fun. It’s hard work. It’s very hard work. It is not the same as listening to music, or tuning out, or relaxing. People who believe that meditation is the key to achieving the very purpose of human existence make time for it. And I can’t even touch that third one. It’s people like that who perpetuate my problem with Christians.

About Ambaa

Ambaa is an American woman of European ancestry who is also a practicing Hindu. She is fascinated with questions of philosophy, culture, and the meaning of life. Join her in the journey to explore how a non-Indian convert to Hinduism experiences her religion.

  • Leum

    Ever since I began meditating at a local Buddhist temple I’ve found myself fairly upset with people who talk about meditation as a form of relaxation. I mean, yeah, sure, it can be relaxing, there’s also times when I have to roll off the cushion because I can’t move my legs and everything below my knees is a mass of pain. I don’t meditate to relax, I meditate to become a better person.

    • Ambaa

      Exactly! Its purpose is not relaxation. It may happen to be relaxing as a side benefit, but it’s purpose is something much more difficult than that! My bf pointed out that meditation has been billed to westeners as a relaxation technique, so can’t really blame them for thinking that’s all it is :(

      • Leum

        It must be even worse for people who do yoga as a spiritual practice.

        • Ambaa

          Definitely! I can only imagine people going to yoga in order to connect with God and having everyone talk about how it’s nothing but stretches. Grrrr.

  • Jeramy

    Sometimes I find meditation relaxing.

    Mostly I find it extremely mentally draining AND mentally energizing at the same time.

    I’ve had one instance where I tripped across something, and I can’t for the life of me remember what it was, that upset me so much that I had to stop.

    There was another more recent instance where I had this extreme feeling of dread … like, if you’re walking alone at night in not fantastic area of the city and you’re constantly looking over your shoulder to make sure no one is sneaking up to mug you … but it was that distilled to it’s essence. It was like, if you don’t stop this now, you’re capital-D-doomed … so I stopped.

    Western ideas about meditation are really screwed up …

    • Ambaa

      It can be scary! You’re really diving into these deep parts of yourself. That’s not easy!

  • Cappers Island

    Games play very important role in religion. Games are playing a vital role in meditation.

    • Ambaa

      Could you explain that more?