Heavy Duty Games

The HipBone games can also be played as a means of exploring scholarly topics in a creative and artistic way.

Better yet, you can consider these games as providing a polyphonic prose format, in which different points of view and shadings of opinion can be juxtaposed -- where in a conventional article they would have to be presented one after the other with segues in between: "on the other hand", "it may, however, be pertinent to mention also"... and so forth.

Or again, you could consider them as an art form in which the similarities and oppositions between ideas set up a sort of stereo effect, comparable to the addition of a "depth dimension" in stereophonic sound or stereoscopic vision.

In the Gossip, Pop and General Interest Games sub-index, we explored some fairly light-hearted games. Serious scholarship is another thing altogether, and the games can certainly be played as a means of exploring scholarly topics in a creative and artistic way. Hell, there's little enough joy in the academic "publish or perish" rat race as it is, and not every pursuit that's passionate has to be trivial...

The games that follow will probably be most interesting to those who are seriously involved in the kinds of topic they each deal with...

You have been warned...

For serious poets, then, and scholars who don't mind a touch of spirituality with their scholarship, the game of Stephen vs Charles would seem a good choice to begin with. Plenty of Rilke and Eliot. Played very fast with a friend one night on the TenStones board.

Games within Games takes a look at the origins of games and playing -- it's a Joseph Campbell sort of game, full of mythology and ancient lore, which I played on the Magister-L mailing list with Steven Cranmer. We used the TenStones board.

Yeats and Jung is a high-serious scholarly Game exploring the fascinating parallelisms between the thoughts of these two Modern Greats. It was written in collaboration with LeGrand Cinq-Mars, on the TenStones board because both Yeats and Jung had an interest in Kabbalah...

A Solemn Requiem for Sir Laurens van der Post salutes novelist, poet and explorer van der Post, who died in December 1996. Sir Laurens was Jung's friend and most insightful biographer, and a friend and mentor to Prince Charles. This requiem takes the form of a TenStones Game, and is intended for liturgical performance and private meditation. See also Why a Requiem in the form of a Glass Bead Game?

The Phoenix and the Peacock is a game George Hersh and I played, in which we explored the symbolism of alchemy east and west -- and more specifically the symbolism of birds... moving from the western peacock and eastern phoenix, via black crow and white swan, to the fabulous P'eng of China, and thence to Athena's owl, the sufi Simurgh, and the unnamed water-bird of a Buriat shaman's tale... And once again, we used the TenStones board.

A Glass Bead Game for Marie-Louise von Franz was written as a contribution to the Festschrift in that grand lady's honor to be edited by James Hall and Murray Stein for Chiron Press, but was not selected for publication. Appropriately enough, perhaps -- for it revolves around the alchemical notion of the "stone that the builders rejected". Played on the WaterBird board.

Finally, Quintessence: a Glass Bead Game suggests an altogether different framework in which to write Glass Bead Games: two "themes" of five "parts" each are proposed, contrasted, repeated, and finally reconciled.

As you've no doubt gathered by now, the HipBone Games can be played in any number of ways, for sheer fun, for artistic or scholarly purposes... or as aids in education and psychology...

To read some sample games for educational and therapeutic purposes, continue on to our Dreamwork, Therapy, Education and Creativity sub-index.

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HipBone Games rules, boards, sample games and other materials are copyright (c) Charles Cameron 1995, 96. See Concerning Copyright for full copyright details.