Re: virus: Critical Mass of Enlightenment

Dr Sebby (
Thu, 15 Apr 1999 22:48:28 CEST

...Marketing aside and other obvious realms subject to "fad", this concept qualifies as one of my all time favorites. It's one of those 'thingies' we try to explain(or at least i do)so as to make someone realize that just because i stop using plastic grocery bags (example #6,098,225,803) it will have effect on the grand scene of plastic bag much as we'd like to believe otherwise, my personal anti-plastic bag policy will have no effect whatsoever! According to popular convention or "Melros-ian" theory as i like to call it, doing my share will "help get things going" or "make the situation that much closer to resolution"....i.e. "if you're not part of the solution, you're part of the

problem"....consider additionally, "Ya gotta do your 
part!"..or..."what if everyone just sat around and said, that's 
impossible"...etc.  This is why the '100th monkey' concept is 
interesting....the actual claims are quite ridiculous but the beanie 
baby comments etc...bring it into an interesting light - what qualifies anything to a point of mass-popularity/acceptance? What are the ingredients for a successful 'movement'(don't say coffee and cigarettes in the morning)? Generally there seems to be this 'cosmic ghost of unilateral consent' which we all imagine to feel...i know that even if i spent my entire life protesting fossil fuels(or rather the burning of them)I would make zero progress - i could be the greatest orator in the world and it wouldn't do a thing. why? because the loss of this 'convenience' horribly outweighs the benefits in the minds of the very ephemeral, human being. This phenomena is directly related to the state of desperation the subject groups members' posess combined with their relative sense of importance within both their immediate society and the global society...primarily the former. woops...more on this later...i gotta go...sorry...don't tear my head off for an incomplete project...hopefully someone will see what i'm saying and finish it?

>From: Eva-Lise Carlstrom <>
>Subject: Re: virus: Critical Mass of Enlightenment
>Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 13:45:58 -0700 (PDT)
>On Mon, 12 Apr 1999, David McFadzean wrote:
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: TheHermit <>
>> Sent: Sunday, April 11, 1999 10:42 PM
>> > The "Critical Mass of Enlightenment", sometimes known as
the "Hundredth
>> > Monkey" phenomenon, and also sometimes known by the more
>> > sounding, but equally bunkum term "morphic resonance" invented
by Rupert
>> > Sheldrake, is far from being a new idea.
>> To play Devil's advocate for a moment, I'm not sure that the idea
>> critical mass is completely without merit when applied to memes.
>> I'm not suggesting that there is anything mystical going on, but
>> rather that social systems sometimes have positive feedback loops.
>> How else does one explain Beanie Babies?
>> David
>Consider also the fact that a popular book has a better chance of
>becoming more popular, as more people hear of it.
>eyeing the new Beanie kiwi sitting in a handmade Adirondack chair on

Get Your Private, Free Email at