Received: by alpheratz.cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk id QAA25761 (8.6.9/5.3[ref firstname.lastname@example.org] for cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk from email@example.com); Wed, 16 Jan 2002 16:21:10 GMT Message-ID: <C4C20D0AEF0BF84B90CFEA0105EEB0BD29AD73@selene.shu.ac.uk> From: "Price, Ilfryn" <I.Price@shu.ac.uk> To: "'firstname.lastname@example.org'" <email@example.com> Subject: RE: Has anybody read this book? Date: Wed, 16 Jan 2002 16:16:49 -0000 X-Mailer: Internet Mail Service (5.5.2653.19) Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1" Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Precedence: bulk Reply-To: email@example.com
> From: Keith Henson [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
> Sent: 16 January 2002 14:49
> Memes and genes have been co-evolving for long enough for our
> genes to
> become fully dependant on the meme class that helps stabilize
> our mental
> systems against the negative effect of being able to
> anticipate the future
> and worry about it. The ability to anticipate has high
> survival value, of
> being able to plant in anticipation of a harvest, to store up
> firewood for
> winter, and to move with the seasons to take advantage of
> seasonal resources.
Unless we grant, say squirrels or swallows, with a high susceptibility to religion we must assume some at least of the anticipation is
genetic. Firewood could be a 'Maybe' but we would have to assume harvests are memetic, so much of your thesis may only for 8,000 years odd
(difficult perhaps for genes but not necessarily impossible)
> But this ability comes with problems. Once you have it, it is nearly
> impossible to avoid applying it to your own future--leading
> to time and
> energy wasting worry about a problem (death) our ancestors
> could do nothing
> about. Enter the religious memes which provide "answers" to the
> unanswerable, comfort to the grief stricken, and let the
> genes get on with
> replicating (I.e., taking care of the kids).
The religous memes also provide 'comfort' to the 90++% of post agrarian revolution populations compelled to see their economic surplus
devoted to building wealth and monuments for others, including many religous or religous / military power structures.
> Do this long enough, give it enough of an advantage, and you
> get genes
> building a place in the brain to accept religious class
> memes. If you dig
> about in the literature the location (temporal lobe) is
> known. Seizures in
> this area are connected to extreme religious feelings and
> (for unknown
> reasons) to "hypergraphia," writing incessantly.
Given limits to upward mobility of genetic exchange perhaps those with a propensity to accept the status quo just lived long enough to breed
at all. The rest got burnt / crucified / enslaved or whatever. Writing as you say is a puzzler.
>It's a patch, but evolution is like that, patch upon patch.
Its also - as is my version - a just so story. Interesting to test it. I'm not sure whether the variables could be eliminated.
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