Re: Words and memes: criteria for acceptance of new belief or meme

From: Wade T.Smith (
Date: Mon Feb 18 2002 - 16:16:17 GMT

  • Next message: Wade T.Smith: "Re: Words and memes: criteria for acceptance of new belief or meme"

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    Subject: Re: Words and memes: criteria for acceptance of new belief or meme
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    On Monday, February 18, 2002, at 08:33 , Lawrence DeBivort wrote:

    > The nuclear family -- can you say more about your thought on this?

    What I said was-

    > The narrow range of a cult's cultural environment is also a mirror of
    > the nuclear family.

    I was directly thinking of the kind of truly disgusting insulation that
    the nuclear family gives to a central power, most usually the father,
    and how patriarchal states mirror that insulation.

    Not long ago, a man was arrested, and it was discovered that his family
    were literally trapped within the fences and walls of the house and
    yards. This man ran a small junkyard, and people would see the wife and
    daughters occasionally, but, as it turned out, they were all being
    sexually and physically abused for years. What insulated this man from
    punishment, and these victims from aid, was the patriarchal sacrament of
    the nuclear family. It was indeed a cult, using all the same forces of
    coherence that cults use. Power, fear, punishment, seclusion.

    And today, we see a mirror this family structure, strongly patriarchal,
    having protected and sheltered and insulated dozens of pederasts, and of
    failure to aid and protect hundreds, perhaps thousands, of young victims
    of these criminals. I am talking, of course, of the Catholic Church.

    The nuclear family itself presents knowledge from one source, in its
    most stringent form. And it maintains something analogous to the strong
    nuclear force that rejects and repels the outside world's inclusions.
    The tide of victims has just grown too large for the walls of the church
    to hold back.

    Cults have strong bonds that reject and contain. The nuclear family was
    a model for this, as is the atom that gave us the word 'nuclear'.

    Tribalism is a mirror of this. To kill the enemy, you don't need to kill
    them all, just the men- the ones that will attack. You take the women-
    they are like neutrons- they are just particles, after all. You can add
    as many as you like- they are just mass.

    (And, it ain't just the patriarchs, there are matriarchal sororities of
    power as well, fewer perhaps, but just as insulating in their own right.
    They are mirroring the men, perhaps, more than anything else, but, women
    have their own power structure when they can. But, I don't begin to
    think I've got a handle on this part of it all, so, parentheses for now.)

    And, there are mirrors of this insulation in all realms. Diplomats are
    insulated from local laws. Police are insulated within their ranks. The
    school bully is insulated from punishment by that strange silence that
    grows from not being a stoolie.

    So, we put a ring of seclusion around the nuclear family, which can hide
    it from being seen doing wrong, until, too late.

    Anyway, way too much ramble, but that first story is what set it off.
    Cults survive because of the veneer of respectibility a central
    father-figure gives them.

    I've wondered that atheists really missed the boat, having set up a
    woman as their figurehead, regardless of how strong she was.

    - Wade

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