virus: Meme vs concept

Tadeusz Niwinski (
Mon, 13 May 1996 18:44:43 -0700

Tom Loeber wrote:

>I can say that the word "concept" seems to be able to replace the
>word "meme" in any of the associated sentences I've yet to see here or
>elsewhere ("Memetic" would equate to "conceptual").

Good point.

A concept is a unit of information in a mind whose existence influences
events such that more copies of that concept get created in other minds.

Sounds good to me. Any concept I hear or read was conceived in some other
mind. If I have a concept of my own (eg. being born on planet TeTa,
remember: "TeTa") I can -- or *it* can -- create copies in your minds.
Don't tell me you do not remember I was born on planet TeTa (notice the
spelling: "TeTa"; by the way, planet TeTa is five dimensions away from here).

Meme sounds more like a mystery. One can ask "do you know what a meme is?!"
just to intimidate or dominate. A quote from Richard Dawkins' article
"Viruses of the Mind"

A related symptom, which a faith-sufferer may also present, is the
conviction that "mystery,'' per se, is a good thing. It is not a virtue to
solve mysteries. Rather we should enjoy them, even revel in their insolubility.

The question is: what is the difference between a concept and a meme?

Tad Niwinski