From: Len Adleman The Gold Star of Truth



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e.     Open question: how are memes stored in our brains? I do not suspect that this is a deep question. I suspect that neurobiology will answer it within a few hundred years.

          II.     Memes, behavior and feelings.



a.     I once saw a video of a man skinning a cat alive and throwing it into a kettle of boiling water– it made me angry and sick – however, the man in the video was just preparing his family’s dinner and presumably had a very different emotional response.  So the same external stimuli led to quite different emotional reactions.  Clearly, the difference derives from the meme sets we acquired in our different cultures.  BTW: Do you like lobster?

b.     Why does a person become a suicide bomber? Surely we do not think that his action is genetically determined. No doubt he has, through education, communication or other means acquired the memes that lead to this behavior. The same individual raised in a different environment with different memes would not become a suicide bomber.

c.      Are memes consistent in determining behavior?  No.  I have a meme that suggests that human life is of great value and another that says a woman has the right to control her own body. So how do I vote on the abortion issue?  A useful way of looking at things seems to be that behavior is determined by the meme-set as a whole.  It is as if all of the memes contribute a weighted opinion of how to behave and feel in a particular situation and from these opinions, the actual behavior and feelings are `calculated’.  




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