Received: by alpheratz.cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk id FAA18371 (8.6.9/5.3[ref firstname.lastname@example.org] for cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk from email@example.com); Wed, 23 Jan 2002 05:26:01 GMT Message-ID: <006701c1a3ce$0103c7e0$4686b2d1@teddace> From: "Dace" <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: <email@example.com> References: <NEBBKOADILIOKGDJLPMAAEAGCKAA.firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: Re: Selfish meme? Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 21:22:49 -0800 Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit X-Priority: 3 X-MSMail-Priority: Normal X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook Express 5.50.4133.2400 X-MIMEOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V5.50.4133.2400 Sender: email@example.com Precedence: bulk Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> Hi, Ted -- fortunately, 'that memes are or may not be 'selfish' is not the
> whole idea of memetics. 'Selfish' implies motive, and to ascribe motive
> to unthinking things seems useless.
You sure about that? Motive is a physical concept. It's all about force
and movement. Psychological motive is no different than a lot of other
terms that originated in the lingo of our physical experience. Far from
being confined to human intelligence, motive is universal to life. To be
animate is to have motive and to express it, though at first these would
have been indistinguishable. Bacteria are surely unthinking, but they're
self-organized, self-referent in their behavior, and self-propagating, in a
word, self-determined. Life itself is self-generated, as are all species
(evolution not creationism) and all individuations of them, including
ourselves. Not only are humans self-existent, but so is the culture that
emerges from our self-conscious interaction and the self-propelling memes
that carry it.
> Now, if we were to say that memes -- like
> everything else -- simply do what they do (a cybernetic view)
In cybernetics everything is conceptual. Outside of our imgaination,
there's no computation or information or simulation, no "virtual reality" or
"cyberspace," just wires and electrons and silicon. It's a magic show.
Aside from matter and physics, nothing's in that box that you didn't put
there with your mind.
Bacteria, on the other hand, are real. They exist intrinsically. Their
motive arises from themselves. Not merely nature but self-nature. Neither
supernaturally nor physically determined. Both forms of mechanism,
theological and genetical, are corrupt. Both evade the simple fact that
being alive-- thinking or not-- means being oneself.
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