Re: virus: Belief and Knowledge (was: The truth about faith)

Eric Boyd (
Wed, 09 Jul 1997 01:20:27 -0500

Wright, James 7929 wrote:
> I am not apologizing for anything. I simply propose that there are areas
> that science either does not address well, or at all, and that powers of
> the mind may exist that the general populace either does not or will not
> develop. If you choose, you can label this the "non-physical world", or
> whatever.

Yea, these powers exist. I call them "reason" or "intelligence" or
"Critical thinking" or "faith" or "belief" etc.

Science has tryed, and is trying, to say things about them.

Whether they exist in the "real-physical-world" has more to do with how
you define said world than the "powers" themselves.

And a large point, here. I just finished writing a short essay for John
about "What is Spirituality, and what is it's place in the modern
world"[1]... and I think I missed a really big point. And that is this:
spirituality is about the human feeling that we are *more* than the sum
of our parts. That, in fact, as far as science may go in determining
how our brains works, and why, and naming and defining all the little
parts, even going so far as to be able to "make" a human, such a
creation will not be "human"... it would still lack tthis is the essence
of all the spiritual positions and religions. Whether such a position
is valid or not is, of course, highly questionable.

But I, for one, would like to think that *I* am more than the sum of my
parts. How about you?

Now, an interesting point to consider here is Prof. Tim's questions
about meme's:

> BTW, Wade, do memes exist physically or are the physical manifestations
> only the phenotype? If they have no physical existence 'where' *do* they
> exist?

Now, since meme's do seemingly *not* exist as physical manifestations,
(that is, I can't point *anywhere* with my finger, or even use EKG's or
other devices to detect memes) it follows that indeed these memes
*could* be the source of the feeling that we are more than the sum of
our parts. Not only do we have a body and a brain, but we have this
"mind" filled with "memes"... and these memes bring "meaning" to our
otherwise *pointless* lives. (For those interested, I said that
"meaning" was the *reason* behind spirituality, in my essay to John.)
In that way, the entire debate comes full circle back into the debate
about memes. If someone can show they are physical manefastations, then
I will conceed that the "non-physical world" does not exist. Until
then, party hard and *spread*those*meme's!*


[1] Follow this link:

I'll see if I can update it to include the new part...