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OfflineI_AM_SWIM
Someone Who Isn't McKenna

Registered: 06/08/09
Posts: 1,337
Last seen: 4 years, 4 months
A Memetic Lexicon * 2
    #577209 - 08/08/11 11:03 AM (5 years, 3 months ago)

Version 3.2
Glenn Grant, Memeticist

"An idea is something you have;
an ideology is something that has you."
    —Morris Berman

What if ideas were viruses?


Consider the T-phage virus. A T-phage cannot replicate itself; it reproduces by hijacking the DNA of a bacterium, forcing its host to make millions of copies of the phage. Similarly, an idea can parasitically infect your mind and alter your behavior, causing you to want to tell your friends about the idea, thus exposing them to the idea-virus. Any idea which does this is called a "meme" (pronounced `meem').
Unlike a virus, which is encoded in DNA molecules, a meme is nothing more than a pattern of information, one that happens to have evolved a form which induces people to repeat that pattern. Typical memes include individual slogans, ideas, catch-phrases, melodies, icons, inventions, and fashions. It may sound a bit sinister, this idea that people are hosts for mind-altering strings of symbols, but in fact this is what human culture is all about.

As a species, we have co-evolved with our memes. Imagine a group of early Homo Sapiens in the Late Pleistocene epoch. They've recently arrived with the latest high-tech hand axes and are trying to show their Homo Erectus neighbours how to make them. Those who can't get their heads around the new meme will be at a disadvantage and will be out-evolved by their smarter cousins.

Meanwhile, the memes themselves are evolving, just as in the game of "Telephone" (where a message is whispered from person to person, being slightly mis-replicated each time). Selection favors the memes which are easiest to understand, to remember, and to communicate to others. Garbled versions of a useful meme would presumably be selected out.

So, in theory at least, the ability to understand and communicate complex memes is a survival trait, and natural selection should favor those who aren't too conservative to understand new memes. Or does it? In practice, some people are going to be all too ready to commit any new meme that comes along, even if it should turn out to be deadly nonsense, like: "Jump off a cliff and the gods will make you fly."

Such memes do evolve, generated by crazy people, or through mis-replication. Notice, though, that this meme might have a lot of appeal. The idea of magical flight is so tantalizing -- maybe, if I truly believed, I just might leap off the cliff and...

This is a vital point: people try to infect each other with those memes which they find most appealing, regardless of the memes' objective value or truth. Further, the carrier of the cliff-jumping meme might never actually take the plunge; they may spend the rest of their long lives infecting other people with the meme, inducing millions of gullible fools to leap to their deaths. Historically, this sort of thing is happening all the time.

Whether memes can be considered true "life forms" or not is a topic of some debate, but this is irrelevant: they behave in a way similar to life forms, allowing us to combine the analytical techniques of epidemiology, evolutionary science, immunology, linguistics, and semiotics, into an effective system known as "memetics." Rather than debate the inherent "truth" or lack of "truth" of an idea, memetics is largely concerned with how that idea gets itself replicated.

Memetics is vital to the understanding of cults, ideologies, and marketing campaigns of all kinds, and it can help to provide immunity from dangerous information-contagions. You should be aware, for instance, that you just been exposed to the Meta-meme, the meme about memes...

The lexicon which follows is intended to provide a language for the analysis of memes, meme-complexes, and the social movements they spawn. The name of the person who first coined and defined each word appears in parentheses, although some definitions have been paraphrased and altered.

Sources:

Richard Dawkins, The Selfish Gene.
Keith Henson, "Memetics", Whole Earth Review #57: 50-55.
Douglas Hofstadter, Metamagical Themas.
Howard Rheingold, "Untranslatable Words", Whole Earth Review #57: 3-8.

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This is all copied and pasted from http://deoxy.org/memelex.htm


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OfflineI_AM_SWIM
Someone Who Isn't McKenna

Registered: 06/08/09
Posts: 1,337
Last seen: 4 years, 4 months
Re: A Memetic Lexicon [Re: I_AM_SWIM]
    #577212 - 08/08/11 11:05 AM (5 years, 3 months ago)

Feels Meme Man

:feelsgoodman:


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OfflineKing Koopa
Natty
 User Gallery Arcade Champion: Bowling

Registered: 06/26/08
Posts: 11,159
Last seen: 22 days, 14 hours
Re: A Memetic Lexicon [Re: I_AM_SWIM]
    #577218 - 08/08/11 11:18 AM (5 years, 3 months ago)

Haven't you posted this before; maybe a different version?


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Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism.

The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for A.A. membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. A.A. is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy; neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.


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OfflineKing Koopa
Natty
 User Gallery Arcade Champion: Bowling

Registered: 06/26/08
Posts: 11,159
Last seen: 22 days, 14 hours
Re: A Memetic Lexicon [Re: I_AM_SWIM]
    #577219 - 08/08/11 11:19 AM (5 years, 3 months ago)

why are you feeling dead, brosif?


--------------------
Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism.

The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for A.A. membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. A.A. is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy; neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.


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Offlinemellowparty
Ribosome user

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 489
Loc: 3'-UTR Flag
Last seen: 3 years, 1 month
Re: A Memetic Lexicon [Re: King Koopa]
    #577221 - 08/08/11 11:33 AM (5 years, 3 months ago)

Quote:

this idea that people are hosts for mind-altering strings of symbols




me gusta


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OfflineI_AM_SWIM
Someone Who Isn't McKenna

Registered: 06/08/09
Posts: 1,337
Last seen: 4 years, 4 months
Re: A Memetic Lexicon [Re: King Koopa]
    #577227 - 08/08/11 11:56 AM (5 years, 3 months ago)

Quote:

King Koopa said:
why are you feeling dead, brosif?




It's from a DMT experience I once had. It's paradoxical in its own way, because you can't 'feel' anything when you are dead. (I may be wrong.)
During my DMT experience, it was like a feeling of pure neutrality; a feeling of no-feeling.

It all occurred as I shattered māyā AKA माया.

I don't feel that way right now, I just haven't changed my status, because I have to prioritize the thangs that I'm doin'.


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Offlineninja cat 09
Made you look
Male


Registered: 12/31/10
Posts: 446
Loc: Mexico Flag
Last seen: 3 years, 8 months
Re: A Memetic Lexicon [Re: I_AM_SWIM]
    #577248 - 08/08/11 04:11 PM (5 years, 3 months ago)

I enjoyed reading that, thanks for posting!


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OfflineI_AM_SWIM
Someone Who Isn't McKenna

Registered: 06/08/09
Posts: 1,337
Last seen: 4 years, 4 months
Re: A Memetic Lexicon [Re: ninja cat 09]
    #577269 - 08/08/11 09:04 PM (5 years, 3 months ago)

no problemo :super:


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