Spiritual Growth, Exploration, and Healing through Games  

When we meditate, pray, ritually use psychedelics, do yoga, chant, encounter sacred text, we enter a space where the rules of daily living are suspended. We have an experience and leave transformed. We gain insight, learn/accept a little more who we are, decide how to respond to challenges.

 The same happens in games. We enter a space where the rules of everyday life are changed, we play, we are transformed. Maybe in a soccer games we don’t solve the world’s problems, but we do learn a little more about how we move through the world. Johann Huizinga termed this phenomenon the magic circle.

 In roleplaying games like Dungeons & Dragons, players create a character with abilities, equipment, powers, and personalities, then go on an adventure with other players. I’ve played such games for 40+ years, learning much about myself. Many people now use games for education, building social skills, and in therapeutic settings.

I have been working with people on their spiritual lives and existential questions the last 2 decades. Now I help people with such questions by playing games. You can be one, in a group or individual sessions.

Spiritual Discovery Dungeons & Dragons

Play a wily wizard, a peace loving warrior, a flashy thief--all while learning about yourself.  

We will make a character with whom you can explore questions about life, the universe, and everything. Then we’ll play 6 games with a group, every other week. Each game will include short opening and closing meditations, where we will set intentions for the game and reflect on how things went. In-between games you’ll have the opportunity to meet 1:1 with me for spiritual direction where we can go deeper into the experience and any other aspects of your spiritual life.

A new 6 week session starts Tuesday, March 9th, evenings.

Catching Dreams with Dreamchaser 

When I first discovered Dreamchaser by Pete Petrusha of Imagining Games I immediately saw that it could be used for personal work. I became friends with Pete, edited part of the rule book, beta-tested the games, and then ran it at conventions. Pete then brought me on to adapt the game for use in therapy and spiritual direction. 

Sessions are 1:1, anywhere from weekly to monthly. You will create a character that is either yourself or a fantastic version of yourself--an astronaut, a soothsayer, an aspiring wizard, etc. Through play we will delve into personal questions and goals. 

All games and spiritual direction sessions with Menachem Cohen. Menachem is a spiritual director, rabbi and game designer. Much of their work is in the design and use of roleplaying games for spiritual and existential work. 

No D&D experience required. All games will play on Zoom. 

Racism, sexism, homophobia, white supremacy & other forms of hate will not be tolerated. Groups will create covenants for behavior & expectations.

For more info email menachem@whatmakesyoucomealive.net

"Just wanted to thank you so much for this, Menachem--it's been so great for Y, who hasn't really been enthusiastic about any kind of extracurricular-type thing for a while.  But this has energized and engaged him in a totally different way--and besides knowing l’hatchila/from the beginning, how thoughtful you've been about the process and the journey you're leading them on, it's been fun to peek in now and again and see this in action."

 --D, Camp parent.