An idea, belief or thought pattern that replicates via non-genetic means; a parasitic code or virus of the mind.
Idea, Belief or Meme?
How does the meme benefit?
By calling attention to itself in dramatic fashion
By encouraging people to investigate the meme so it can spread
And by reinforcing the belief in those who are already infected
Assume you are hijacked
If we assume we are hijacked by beliefs we can challenge our current beliefs and be more vigilant about what we choose to believe in the future. We will demand evidence before believing. We will develop critical thinking skills to evaluate arguments. In short we can inoculate ourselves against con artists, fake news and propaganda.
This also helps us to change our perspective towards other people. What appears to be irrational or stupid behavior makes sense once you understand the belief system behind that behavior. Do not blame the person blame their worldview. Separate the person from their beliefs and expose the irrational nature of the belief not the person.
Realizing that beliefs are parasitic replicators that have evolved ways of controlling us is our first defense. Knowing they use our own brain chemicals to keep them in place and help them to spread keeps us on alert. Being aware that people have a hard time changing their minds because it feels so bad to do so makes us more tolerant.
We all have a moral obligation to make sure that our beliefs are aligned with reality. If we do not there is the real possibility of repeating the atrocities of the past for the benefit of false beliefs.
With this new understanding of human behavior we can now answer questions and solve problems that were previously insoluble. So let’s get to it.
Watch Episode #01 – What is a Belief?