virus: level 3 (here we go again!)

Eric Boyd (
Thu, 17 Jun 1999 21:00:13 -0400


The non sequitur in this argument is that, because minds are composed of memes, that there is nothing else to a mind but its constituent memes.

Hmmm. I see the primary point of memetics being that *we do not need* creativity or consciousness to explain the origin of knowledge and "design" in the memes around us. Your argument here is exactly like the people who argued against Darwin in the early years -- claiming that humans are not evolved becuase "we couldn't be". Emergence is a fundamental principle, but it is still inside of memetics, and I see no reason to assume that "consciousness" or "clarity of purpose" or "level 3" are any less memes and meme driven than other aspects of the mind. Like Dennett said, consciousness is a user-illusion. (like the "desktop" on our computer screens -- it may be what we see, but it does not reflect the actual way the machine works)

The conclusion, then, would be that your purpose is a product of the memes you have been infected with. Nothing more, nothing less. The fact that you apply extreme selection pressure in line with your memes reflects nothing more than the fact that they have you bad...