Re: playing at suicide

From: Grant Callaghan (
Date: Wed Jan 09 2002 - 03:56:08 GMT

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    From: "Grant Callaghan" <>
    Subject: Re: playing at suicide
    Date: Tue, 08 Jan 2002 19:56:08 -0800
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    For a loner, you seem to communicate with a lot of people. Can't we be
    considered part of your tribe now? But if you look at the statistics, most
    people grow up embracing the religions of their parents, whether they were
    indoctrinated or not. I spent several years of my childhood going from
    church to church to see what they had to offer. My grandmother, who raised
    me, was Baptist but did not practice the religion. My mother eventually
    took me in and sent me to a parochial school and where I was exposed to the
    Catholic philosophy. In the end, I created my own philosophy and now don't
    embrace any other. But most of the kids I grew up with were not really
    indoctrinated. They just went along with what their parents were doing
    because that's what they felt comfortable with. The tribal part came with
    the peers they decided to hang around with.

    In school I picked peers who dared to rebel. I can't remember never hanging
    around with anyone. I joined the Marine Corps at an early age and the Air
    Force after that. But unless you live on a desert island, you belong to
    some group and have a circle of friends. I'll bet the friends you choose
    have similar views on religion. This group certainly has a positive
    attitude (as a group) about the subject of memetics. If you choose to talk
    with agnostics, that's as much a religious choice as going to church. But
    I'm not talking about individuals here. I'm talking about how members of
    societies act.

    You've no doubt heard that a child who is isolated and does not pick up any
    language in the first few years of his/her life never learns a language.
    Any language. But no matter what society you are born into, that is the
    language you learn first. People exposed to multiple languages at an early
    age usually learn all the languages they were exposed to. Few of them have
    to be indoctrinated into it. They learn those languages because they want
    to communicate with the people who speak them.

    My own daughter came to the United States from Taiwan not speaking a word of
    English. She only spoke Taiwanese. By the end of one year in kindergarden
    her Engish was as good as anyone else's in her class. In spite of attending
    a Christian school when we returned to Taiwan, her religious views are
    closer to my own than those she was indoctrinated in. I never tried to
    teach her any religion. While at school, however, she was a regular little

    Why, I wonder, to protestants in Ireland band together and try to kill or
    intimidate Catholics? And why do Catholics do the same for protestants? We
    have athiests in America who are constantly filing court suits to keep
    prayer out of school. They really believe in separation of church and
    state. My theory is that humans have learned to treat ideas as property and
    will defend them the same way they defend their home and family. It's a
    genetic trait we share with other animals to defend our territory.

    A great many college professors think they "know the truth" about the
    subject they teach and will make life difficult for the student who
    challenges their truth. They do this in spite of the fact that what we
    believe about any subject in science or history is in a constant state of
    revision as new data comes in. The professors who think alike attend
    meetings together and meet each other at international conferences to talk
    shop. People whose ideas don't agree with theirs are not invited or are
    attacked in magazine articles. Daniel Dennett and Roger Penrose might be
    thught to belong to different tribes from the way they react to each other's
    ideas. They use words instead of sabres, but defend their intellectual
    territories with vigor and panache.

    So, Kenneth, though you may think you stand like Cyrano de Bergerac "not
    high, it may be, but alone," the fact that we're having this conversation
    argues against it.

    My own brother joined the Air Force in California. He'd never been east of
    Arizona before. They sent him to Texas for training and service. When he
    returned four years later, he talked like a Texan. I don't think he was
    indoctrinated into it. The people he worked with were from all over the
    U.S. He just saw a set of memes he liked and picked them up. He, too,
    thought of himself as a loner, but he didn't get those memes from drinking
    the water.

    >----- Original Message -----
    >From: Grant Callaghan <>
    > > The child finds the adoption of the cultural norms of his society
    > > by allowing him to fit in and become a part of it. There is a genetic
    > > to belong to a tribe and religion or a belief system is one of the
    > > that defines the tribes to which we belong. Not fitting in causes fear
    > > anxiety. Not having a tribe can kill you.
    >Hi Grant,
    >Can 't agree ! The child did not adopt anything, he is, like Wade said
    >trained, indoctrinated with "belief -systems " about how to live his life
    >and to what kind of God he should pray to !
    >In cases like this, I take my own personal life as example to contradict
    >your assumption. There is, and I do know that for sure no genetic need
    >inside me to belong to a group, I do not belong to a tribe or to whatso-
    >ever. I feel no fear nor anxiety, I am a ' loner ', absolutely !
    >And yet, there was no need, nor a desire to kill myself... others, is a
    >whole new ballgame !!
    >If of course, belonging to a group includes being part of the working-
    >class, than I belong to a group, than I am a piece of a greater whole,
    >but than again it is not with my content !
    From a peer with a loose bladder, ;-)>


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