virus: Re: virus-digest V2 #207

Reed Konsler (
Sun, 3 Aug 1997 14:44:39 -0400 (EDT)

>Date: Sat, 2 Aug 97 18:31:46 -0400
>From: "Wade T.Smith" <>
>Subject: virus: A Rosa by any other nomenclature
>>So the name is itself an example of memetic engineering, deliberating
>>pushing the "danger" button in order to increase awareness. Of course
>>there will always be a percentage of the intended audience that are
>>lost because they can't get past the name; it is a tradeoff and a
>>calculated risk.
>Consider the equal, if not more-often violent reaction, to hearing the
>words Catholic, or Sikh, or Protestant, or Satan, or....
>Virulence is an attribute many churches understand very well. It's about
>goddamned time it was thrown back in a few faces.
>The only problem is constructing a church without the usual xenophobic
>boundaries. A problem which appears to this observer, in this church, to
>be minimal if not non-existent. Kudos.

The Buddha did it. And he didn't have a computer analogy.
Of course, he lived in an organic world.
Marshall McLuhan talks a great deal about the difference between
tribal (mythical) space and mechanical (objective) space.
Very interesting.
The Mayans (? I think so) had a complicated calendar system
predicting the comming (sometime around 2000) of
"The Sixth World".
FASA (A Roleplaying Game publisher) did something interesting
with that idea within the game "Shadowrun" in which magic
and high-tech were juxtaposed. Initially, the magical world
and the technological world were seperate and mutually
antagonistic, but as the game developed there was an increasing
fusion (Hegelian synthesis?) of the paradigms of mechanical
and organic power.
Kevin Kelly, in his book "Out of Control" discusses a similar concept
of "the organism from the machine".
The "penis shrinking" sorcerers are also an expression of a common
pattern (witch burning). Howard Bloom has expressed the most
convincing, understandable, and succinct expression of the principle
power, and potential pitfalls of the way of the sorcerer in his book
"The Lucifer Principle". Therein you will find a scheme relating
these episodes of "magical thinking" with science, politics, and
evolutionary biology. I've recommended the book before, and
do so again.

The only way to construct a church (or any entity) which has no frontier
is to create a "strange loop" in which, like a mobius strip, the inside
and outside are the same. This constuction is a border without a
territory...thus undermining the very concept of border.

In the end such a construct is more symbolic than real. Like a klein bottle
it contains both the universe, and nothing.

Even so, the world is constructed of symbols. The strange loop makes
obvious the inconsistency of existence. This is the first step towards
what Richard tries to describe in "VoM" as "Level 3", or as he
insinuates, the Zen principle of No-Mind.

Douglas Hofstadter, in his book "Godel, Eshcer, Bach" explains the concept
of the strange loop and some of it's many occurances.

David is a Hofstadter fan.


Reed Konsler