"The HEJERA GAMES" - Introduction
This memo describes the plan for a Games System called "The HEJERA GAMES". "HEJERA" is an acronym for the "Heavenly Jerusalem Agency" in a SciFi story "the HEJERA PLOT". The story gives an attractive context for describing the operation of such a game system, but these games might be developed in other contexts as are mentioned below, including commercial computer games.
The whole HEJERA PLOT is a "redemptive scenario" for the Middle East. In it, a secret organization called "The HEJERA" - the Heavenly Jerusalem Association - which aspires for an OldNew type of a spiritual and universal Zionism is being formed. The HEJERA brings about its "P.L.O.T", namely, bringing about the PLO (Palestine Liberation Organization) Transformation into a sister Zionist agency. In other words, this is a story about ideological and psychological reconstruction on an unusual scale.
In that story, these games are described in the process of development (with magical instant performance) as training facilities for Messianic Initiates. Their applications are meshed with another phantasy sequence that replays the journey of Abraham and Isaac, together with Ishmael, Eliezer the donkey and another mysterious stranger, towards Mount Moriah. Thus at each leg of that journey the members of that party may come to other contentions or agreements, and these set the parameters for the design of the next game.
The more general principle that is illustrated by this particular arrangement is that a system of games can act as an integral modelling facility of a complete reconstructive, or even redemptive, curriculum. In this, the contexts, biases and payoffs of the game may be tuned each time to the specific needs of the particular individual, or even group, that play the game. The new understandings reached at each game enable the graduation to the next one. (In a sense, the principle of such a Games System is like the principle of Karma and transmigrations that what one failed in one round must be reformed in the next round, or the one after....). Perhaps different from these oriental scenarios, in these redemptive scenarios also the environment gets reconstructed in an evolutionary manner into the pattern of the ideal city, the New Jerusalem, whatever this means. The contending visions about the ideal are also reconstructed in the course of the games sequence.
The idea behind bringing such complex and even sublime matters into the realm of children's games is that computer games are likely to become anyway the educational workshop of the new generation - for good or bad. This is an attempt to formulate how this attractive, even addictive, new medium could be used for the otherwise apparently faltering attempts to provide moral education and character development to the young. There are specific "moral skills" that are covertly reinforced through the game procedures, such as skills needed for building understandings, out of which this Heavenly Jerusalem is getting built. Such skills are listed in the section on "Hejera Game Procedures" below.
Another idea behind the formulation of "The HEJERA PLOT" and of the Games System is similar to the Rosicrucian manifests where the fantasy about a secret society led to the establishment of such an organization (as discussed in Frances Yates' "The Rosicrucian Enlightenment"). There are already many fun-clubs for "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" and societies of D&D (the Dragons and Dungeons Fantasy Games System), and a game system with marvelous-yet-serious contents, backed by computer networking can be frameworks for building new types of communities and "Reform Clubs". Specifically, such a society for building the Heavenly Jerusalem could mean a rejuvenation of the Freemason Orders which were once of great impact (i.e.- the establishment of the USA!) but have become empty shells.
The core intention behind this whole extercise remains the reform of Zionism into a more universal and spiritual movement. The story and the Games are thus conceived to have appeal not just in the Middle East but in the US MidWest and "Bible Belt" as well, from where new varieties of Christian Zionism are emerging. Our benign "plot" would encompass the contending adherents of Bible resurgence and of "New Age" lore, where Biblical-Kabbalistic insights, images and processes serve their meeting grounds.
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