virus: Rationalism to the point of absurdity

Janet Taylor (
Tue, 24 Oct 1995 08:14:39 -0700

OK, guys, so you are all smarter than the average bear, but please don't
wallow in total mental masturbation.

I have just finished reading Dawkins' "The Selfish Gene", and am amazed at
his ability to "rationalize" away any reality that doesn't meet his theory.
I would love to believe that the meaning of life is as simple as he
proposes. BUT, Help me with this one, when he comes to behavior that can't
be explained by the desire of genes or memes to replicate, he dismisses it
as the "law" of irresistibility". Come on, isn't anyone uncomfortable with
such a gaping hole in his logic? Further, let's talk humans, how would
Dawkins explain humans love of alcohol and drugs, to the point of
loss/damage of life? My weak, cynical theory (I am truly open to new
options other than this one) is that "living" creatures act on whatever
they feel/believe will bring more "pleasure" and less "pain" to their
existence, and that pleasure and pain can be different for each person
(which explains why my mother likes cleaning so much!). Even altruisum is
performed because it brings more joy to be the giver than whatever is given

I recognize that this cynical view does not make for a very meaningful
life, so I'm still searching for some "reason" that we all get up every
morning and struggle with the process of life, yes, even after we have
finished sending our genes on to the next generation...

Signed "no catchy phrase or graphic",

Janet Taylor