Re: Knowledge, Memes and Sensory Perception

From: Philip Jonkers (
Date: Wed Jan 16 2002 - 09:26:55 GMT

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    Date: Wed, 16 Jan 2002 04:26:55 -0500
    From: "Philip Jonkers" <>
    Subject: Re: Knowledge, Memes and Sensory Perception
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    >I can understand acupuncture and feng shui. The have
    some valid principl=
    >behind them. For Acupuncture, Howard Bloom discussed
    the principle of th=
    >appearance of control in The Lucifer Principle.
    There is also the placeb=
    >effect. If people believe it works, there is a good
    chance that it will=20
    >work for some people. The feng shui thing is based
    on the effect light a=
    >air flow have on how well and comfortable you will
    feel. Chinese were to=
    >never to have the entrance face the north because the
    north wind brought=20
    >sickness with it. A lot of the things the gods
    decreed had elements of=20
    >common sense behind them.
    >I think what keeps astrology going is the art of
    semantics. The predicti=
    >are worded in such a way that they apply to almost
    anyone. I used to pla=
    >y a=20
    >game with my mother, who was hooked on the astology
    column of the local=20
    >paper. I would read my daily prediction and tell her
    it was hers, then a=
    >her if she really thought it described her life and
    her problems. She=20
    >always said it did, even though she is female and her
    birthday is halfway=
    >around the calendar from mine. Then I would read
    hers ask her if she=20
    >thought it fit me. She always did. After I analyzed
    them, I realized th=
    >would fit just about anybody regardless of when they
    were born or what se=
    >they were. The trick was in the wording not the
    predicting. Things like=
    >you will meet a man with dark hair are impossible to
    dispute because you =
    >hardly go through the day without meeting one unless
    you hide in your hou=
    >and don't go out. Only a few people have to feel
    they benefitted and get=
    >the word out to keep the meme going on hope alone.
    Any chance to control=
    >your life is better than no chance at all.

    You may find one of my earlier postings interesting
    in which I present a rational argument with a memetic
    flavor on why horoscopes and the lot work.
    It's called: Debunking Pseudoscienc: Why astrology
    really works...


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