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> >I am not a collection of replicating ideas. I am singular and whole. A
> >self-plex is not a true self. It's a fancy name for ego. Like Dennett,
> >Blackmore confuses the self with our ingrained self-image.
> Try a bit of a thought experiment. What would you be like without
And what would you be like without you? There's got to be a subject of
awareness that perceives these varying degrees of reality and illusion.
Otherwise our thoughts and memes couldn't exist.
> You would be much like a computer with the rudiments of an
> operating system but nothing more. I don't think it would be much of an
Computers aren't subjects of awareness. Without memes I would be a
primordial human, my consciousness fully reflective but not yet limited by
habitual, culturally ingrained patterns of perception. It's the flashback
to this state that gives rise to so-called religious experiences.
> >In my view, memetics is all about the struggle between reflective
> >human self-replicators and unreflective memetic self-replicators.
> I don't understand this conflict business.
The conflict arises because, inevitably, some of our memified notions will
be pathological. Ideas can't distinguish between right and wrong. Any
idea, no matter how ridiculous, can become self-replicating. Though quite
powerful, "L. Ron is God" doesn't contribute to the good of the social body.
It's a freelance meme, much like a carcinogenic cell. When an alternative
social body begins to form around a carcinogenic meme, the result is cult,
> Humans are as adapted to load and run memes as
> computers are to load and run software. Software is useless without
> without hardware and vice versa. In our mental lives we are self booting,
> self programming, start from a single cell organisms. And what we can
> load depends to high extent on what we have loaded earlier. As an
> example, you won't get anywhere with higher mathematics without a
> foundation clear down to arithmetic, and you need a foundation of
> physical concepts you learn as a small child such as counting and
> quantity even before you get to arithmetic.
We need memes in order to progress beyond the simplest level of culture.
But they'll turn around and bite us if we're not careful.
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