Re: Islam and Europe

From: Jon Gilbert (
Date: Fri 22 Nov 2002 - 05:37:30 GMT

  • Next message: "RE: Islam and Europe"

    > > No, "true" is that statement which... everything you said. A true
    >> statement is a logically infallible one. But "Truth" is completely
    >> different and has nothing to do with logic or arguments. Truth, for
    >> me, is something related to the feeling (unaccompanied by words or
    >> thoughts) of my heart beating in my chest while I am meditating.
    >In otherwise, "Truth", for you, is that meme which hooks into your
    >emotional triggers.

    It doesn't have to do with emotion, but the phsyical, somatic, visceral pulsing sensation. I can use the beat to verify a proposition: my own existence. Each heart beat says, "I... am...". The one Truth is that I am. I don't like Descartes' statment, "I think therefore I am," because that requires thought for existence. I rather prefer the visceral experience of the raw Truth of my own heart beating. When you're lying in the hospital after a car wreck, hooked up to tubes, half-aware, and you can feel your heart beating, and hear the EEG, then it is like an anchor to something real, a fact about yourself -- you are alive. Again, that's just my subjective experience of Truth, and yeah, it's a meme.

    >Logical perspicacity is not a flaw, but an essential virtue, when
    >presented with such claims. And several religions may share memes
    >which are not true, but merely effective - such as the proselytizing
    >meme that Christianity and Islam shares.

    I'm not sure I understand what you mean by "memes which are not true". What makes proselytizing a false meme?

    >Nope. Our perceptual gestalts are broken up into their constituent
    >impressions, and and these components are recombined in differing
    >ways. In dreams, this is not consciously directed, in imagination, it
    >more often than not is.

    That is one idea about how dreams are formed, and it is not a bad idea, but yet it is hardly proven. You seem to deny the brain the ability to creatively anticipate the future while dreaming. I rather tend to think that there are a lot of pattern generators in the brain that are constantly searching for new patterns, and that during sleep, they enter into feedback loops that can fractalize outward in ways incomprehensible to the primitive field of modern neuroscience.

    > >
    >> An 'apprehender' [sic] reads or interprets a message only through what
    >> they already understand, through the meme-constructs they already
    >> possess. The message itself could have had a completely different
    >> original meme than the one that infects the mind of the 'apprehender.'
    >> There are subtle signals that a woman gives a man which he may
    >> apprehend, but that doesn't mean he will get the message.
    >This is the well-known hermeneutic dialectic of explanation and
    >understanding. However, "besiege the unbelievers and kill them
    >wherever ye shall find them" is not open to multistable interpretations
    >which are equally likely on a fitness landscape.

    I agree that certain statements are less ambiguous than others; this one being a rather infamous exo-toxic meme typical of fanatical religions. However, I think that it is open to one other interpretation: "Whoever wrote this was an asshole!" I.e., total rejection is a way of deriving meaning from a statement.

    - JS Gilbert

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