Re: virus: Sexuality

Steve (
Wed, 11 Sep 1996 07:20:06 +0800

On Tue, 10 Sep 1996 00:47:24 EDT, KMO wrote:

>The fact that the adherents of a faith don't understand how consciousness
>works doesn't mean that a religion qua meme-complex won't evolve into a
>self-replicating self--sustaining cutural entity which acts as if it
>knows about consciousness. A cold virus doesn't understand the structure
>and operations of the celluar machinery it hijacks. Natural selection
>crafts viruses that seem to understand what it takes to get a living cell
>to replicate the virus. Religions, crafted by the selection pressures in
>their environment, have evolved into mind viruses which seem know what it
>takes to win over new believers.
I could have worded the first paragraph of my own post with more care. KMO,
you are correct that living systems are self-sustaining entities that do not
have to understand the processes that sustain their existence. One point I
was implying in my first paragraph was that there was some kind of universal
truth that, when realized in a culture of people, increases the quality of
life and the surviveability of that culture. I recall someone on this email
group (was it David McFadzean?) speculating about the possibility of a meme
religion. This comes closer to what I am hinting at. By understanding how
memes work - more importantly, by understanding how memes are important to
every living organism - you understand precisely how transient/robust life
can be, and you have better insights on how life can be improved, prolonged
and made more worthwhile. Our western cultures that are presently so
clueless about the nature of consciousness, *appear* to have survived
extremely well. But when measured against the survivability of other
cultures, ours are but a flash in the pan. I don't think that our cultures
will be around too much longer in our current forms. I think that the truth
about memes (a truth that we have only just started to touch on) might be
verging on the truest truth that could ever be attained. Anything else is
just a manifestation of the 'truest' truth, a verification of how memes
work. Everything else is a by-product of memes and so, the person who best
knows memes wields the most power. The truth about concepts/memes (as they
apply generally, to all organisms including man), I believe, comes closest
to a truth about truths and as such, is more inclusive, more general and
universal than any other system of thought - and therefore, most enduring.
Once realized and established culturally, it will be here for the long haul.
Anything else will be ever so briefly transient in comparison.

Memetics is an innovative and new field of enquiry. We should not be
quibbling about semantics, but considering possibilities to broaden our
horizons. Here are a couple of sites that might shed some light on systems
and chaos theory:

Nonlinearity and Complexity Home Page
(a lot of great links here)

Symposium: The Evolution of Complexity
>From here, you can link to "Einstein meets Magritte" (from memory, at the
head of the site).

The Chaos Network On-Line
(I haven't accessed this site for a while - from memory, good links)

The following might be a good overview of the systems theoretical approach
(I have not had the opportunity to look at it in detail).
Autopoiesis and Enaction: Observer Web

steve tramont