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Re: Memes - Myths or Miracles?

Nov 28, 1996 02:16 PM
by Joseph K PricE

Message text written by BC Crandall
>now, with the advent of new technologies,
"our" stories, these memes, *can*, for the first time,
really change the matter of the world. In this new
context, we must examine and refine the memes that
generate our consciousness (our stories of what "we"
are and what "the world" is), weeding out old certainties
that are potentially dangerous in our new condition.
Assuming (for what ever reasons) "a creator,"
posits an external locus of control/responsibility.
This sends us scurrying to determine "the correct"
response, that is, what is desired *of* us, rather
than working -- as do all successful biological systems --
from always local intelligence. It is the coordinated
(through communication) actions of the many trillion
"individual" cells of our bodies seeking their local
well being that leads to "our" moment to moment
survival and happiness. Not some effort by each cell
to satisfy an external order. (All this is familiar to
those versed in emergent behavior of chaotic systems;
for a wonderful introduction, with examples drawn
from many fields, see Kevin Kelly's _Out Of Control:
The Rise of Neo-Biological Civilization_,
Addison Wesley, 1994.)

>>For "me," the fundamental "reality"
>>has become that of memes precipitating subjectivity.
>        Aren't those memes also the PRODUCT of our collective subjective
>activity in history, not just a "precipitation" in each individual
>subjective "self"?

Absolutely. Stored memes are history.
Experienced memes generate our sense of
what we are as humans. The rise of external
storage devices (writing) marked an inconceivable
(for "us") advance in memetic, that is human, culture.

>>What does one do when it becomes abundantly clear
>>that it is -- now -- the end of the world as we know it? Not as some
>>sort of religiously ordained apocalypse, but rather as the "natural"
>>working out of a particular "strange attractor" (to use the language
>>of chaoticians), that of mathematics-based technoscience, which
>>is the dominant memetic force in the world today.
>        Wasn't it "the end of the world" at EVERY moment in history?

Again, yes. But today, the end is being worked out
at the molecular level (the level of technology now).
Thus the two possible "ends" we now face are extinction
(as "stupid" molecular machines reorganize the matter
of the world beyond our bodies capacity to live) and
space migration. We will determine, through our
physical actions, which is our fate.

>I think some other, quite ancient, fundamental
>meme is more important as it "shows" us THE end (also in the meaning of:
>eventual purpose) of our journey and also should be our lead at this very
>moment. We're on our way to organize all creation (including all our mental
>potential and memes) in such a way that the Creator be praised with all our
>might, "songs" and "dances" (including science).

See above discussion on the untenable
and increasingly dangerous assumptions
regarding a creator and a preordained end.
Flexibility is the mark of life; rigidity death.

>        Thank you! Things are much clearer to me now (at least in my own
>opinion, I hope I didn't add to confusion with my comments, is so please
>correct me)

Memetic exchange continues as longas we live
(as humans). May we all live long and prosper.

Keith:  I know the concept of memes is more complex but don't they have a lot in
common with:

1. prayers
2. thought forms (in the Annie Beasant- CWLeadbeater thesophical tradition
3. propoganda (in the political and machiavellian tradition)
4. hypotheses  in the scientific traditon
5.myths in the primitive culture vs. us tradition
6. glamour in the fashion tradtion
7.  illusion in the magic tradtion


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