Re: New meme-ber!

Lloyd Robertson (
Tue, 08 Jun 1999 10:23:36 -0600

Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 08 Jun 1999 10:23:36 -0600
From: Lloyd Robertson <>
Subject: Re: New meme-ber!
In-Reply-To: <v03110700b3812aaecb30@[]>

At 07:51 AM 07/06/99 -0700, Rich & Linda Speel wrote:
>Hello from California,
How do others on this
>list acknowledge 'spirit' as an influence on life? I don't think
>consciousness is just a chemical occurence, but is connected through the
>nature of 'being'.
>I look forward to seeing this conversation continue.

I think that with memetics we have a definition of the "spirituality" that
religionists of all types have been sensing for millinia. If the meme-world
is an ecosystem made up of our collective minds (loosely paraphrasing
Dennett) and if there are far more memes than minds to hold them (a limited
resource) then various meme-plexes will evolve that will promote just the
kind of effects of which the previous writer is alluding.

Those memeplexes that offer "spiritual truths" have shown a greater ability
to replicate than those that do not. Why? I would suggest because our minds
have evolved the compulsion to find meaning. We become suckers for
metaphysical answers that promise us "purpose" and "meaning".

Does this mean that "spirituality" is just some ethereal ad man's hookum?
Not if we separate the metaphysical valuing (e.g., the worth of the
individual, the group, humanity, life) and the emotional constructs (love,
awe, wonder, etc.) from the magical thinking that has been used to
propogate many memeplexes.

I am torn as to where I am going with this one. On the one hand, I would
like to suggest that a secular spirituality is something useful that we can
distill from the above process. On the other hand, I am tempted to suggest
that this "meme-world" is synonomous with "spirit-world". I would like to
hear other's views on this.


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