“We all make choices in life, but in the end, our choices make us.” —Andrew Ryan (BioShock)
As a Muslim gamer, there are so many things that come to my mind when I play video games. How much time is spent on video games? Is the game I’m playing morally wrong? Are the actions of my character(s) justified? What do the choices I make in game say about me?
Well, maybe I’m the only one who thinks these questions when playing… Nevertheless, read on, my soon-to-be friends.
I usually prefer role-playing games because in most role-playing games, aka RPGs, you have meaningful options to choose from. The customization and ethics in RPGs are what truly fascinate me.
For example, in Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, you can choose to align with the dark side or the light side depending on the actions you take.
Choices as simple as sticking up for the little guy against clone bullies, or as big as siding with the Republic against the Sith fleet, have consequences (for the Republic!).
It really makes me ponder over all the choices and consequences we have in real life. Personally, I have always tried my best to be as heroic as possible in video games. My hope is that it will rub off on me in real life — that if I spend enough time wanting to be good in game, my mind will start to think goodness and act upon it in real life.
Now, you might be thinking, how is this post even related to most Muslims, and that this kid needs a life. Both are wise thoughts, Padawan, but I guess the point I’m trying to make is that you can’t turn off Muslim mode.
I have to apply it in all spheres of my life. Wherever and with whomever I am, I will be held accountable for everything. Even in the most contrasting of situations, I have to be a role model and a beacon of light for others.
I cannot only act respectable in the mosque, only kind with my friends, or only good when everything is going my way and I’m having a great hair/beard day. I have to be consistent.
We all do… Because the greatest of men and women are forged by the most difficult trials of life.
Just look at prophetic history, or if you are unfamiliar with their stories, look at your own role models and inspirations. Look at how they became who they are today, and what makes you admire them.
On a side note, there are so many industries and hobbies where there are not nearly enough Muslims involved. Even if it is something that seems as trivial as video games, we have to try and excel.
We have to encourage others to excel in what they want to do, as well. Support for others goes a long way. Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could turn this cold, dark world into the Golden Ages?
I believe if we have a will to bring about positive change all around us, we can become excellent in whatever endeavor we choose.
On the Day when every soul will come disputing for itself, and every soul will be fully compensated for what it did, and they will not be wronged. (Quran 16:111)