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> >So it makes no sense to assume that memories
> >are contained in the brain. The brain is precisely that aspect of mind
> >that cannot retain the past. The only other option is to assume that
> >there's no such thing as memory, that no one actually recalls the past.
> >Instead the brain, by amazing coincidence, happened to evolve into
> >an information-storage device, similar to our computers. This view
> >appears to be driven by memes that exploit our desire to project
> >ourselves (and our technology) onto nature. No different than the
> >anthropomorphic meme behind "God."
> Well, we pull the bits and pieces out of somewhere to recreate what we
> remember. If not from the brain, where? The bits may not all be stored
> in the same place within the brain, but even if they're scattered about,
> it must be within that repository of past experience where we watch
> dreams and memories flash across the backs of our eyes as if our eyes
> were seeing them. At least that's how it seems to me.
If memory involves storage of information, it's not memory. To remember
is to recall the past, not to look up information about it. The concept of
memory implies that the past is in some way present. If reality is reducible
to matter, then memory is impossible. To accept memory on its own terms,
we must find a ground of material existence. We must find something that
*precedes* matter and the space it occupies. That thing can only be
time. If time is intrinsically real, then it doesn't need matter to exist. In
other words, the past still exists. That it takes up neither space nor matter
has no bearing one way or the other. This is why the mind can perceive the
past but the eye sees only the present. The mind is made of time, while the
eye is made of atoms. What we call the brain is the moment-to-moment
spatiomaterial manifestation of the mind. What we call the universe is the
moment-to-moment spatiomaterial manifestation of time. Time is universal
life (animation) while life is local time (anima).
It's because organisms are intrinsically temporal beings that their
activities are habitual rather than automatic. While a machine is motivated
entirely by deterministic processes, a body functions according to ingrained
memory. An organ remembers how to function based on the functioning of
similar organs before it. An embryo develops properly because it follows
the developmental pathway established by its predecessors. There's no set
of instructions or mechanical constraints that guides it automatically on its
route. Organisms are animated, not automated.
Mechanistic ideology eliminates far more than just habit. You can't just
pull one thread out and expect the remaining fabric to hold itself in place.
Mechanism eliminates time, memory, novelty, self, subject, mind, will,
freedom, creativity, representation, feeling, quality... in short, everything that
comprises human existence. Is it any wonder that a society that produces
this lunatic science manufactures fusion bombs by the thousands, destroys
soil and clean water across continents, plows over whole ecosystems, and
tampers with the chemistry of our atmosphere? It's as if a vast, inhuman
evil were out to eradicate us, and we're helplessly disoriented because it's
coming at us from within as well as without.
Of course, the impersonal evil is our own progeny, our cultural offspring,
the memes that propagate by exploiting our egoistic fear and powerlust.
Memes are the memories that got away.
This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
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