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← Ants, terrorism, and the awesome power of memes

Ants, terrorism, and the awesome power of memes - Comments

Big Gus's Avatar Comment 1 by Big Gus

Very interesting watch! Dan always is though.

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 14:21:00 UTC | #199191

maton100's Avatar Comment 2 by maton100

Yeah Baby! Keep it up Dan.

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 14:30:00 UTC | #199195

JimmyGiro's Avatar Comment 3 by JimmyGiro

Ooooh! BMW.

So what was the talk about? :))

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 14:54:00 UTC | #199203

Village_Idiot's Avatar Comment 4 by Village_Idiot

Great material, unfortunately this will never reach or be understood by those who should listen. Hence it is sterile. Sad.

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 14:55:00 UTC | #199204

Crazymalc's Avatar Comment 5 by Crazymalc

Dennett is God.

I could listen to Prof. Dennett for hours.

Darwin's Dangerous Idea is one of the most influential books I've ever read. Allowed me to final throw off the shackles of my religion.

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 14:58:00 UTC | #199206

Upgrade01A's Avatar Comment 6 by Upgrade01A

Go to join up! or search on "Dawkins", "Pinker", "Dennett" ... you will not be disappointed. Dennett has a couple of talks. One of my favorite sites. Lots of info on the brain, technology, some nice music as well. The video quality is much better than here or youTube.

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 16:48:00 UTC | #199239

fizhburn's Avatar Comment 7 by fizhburn

Wait, ideas that are "literally alive"? This smacks of type/token distinction failure.

Dennet is a very cool dude. Talking to him in person is just about as fascinating as you'd expect.

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 17:06:00 UTC | #199245

dhweaver's Avatar Comment 8 by dhweaver

"Remember the Shakers"

Hopefully the Quakers follow in their footsteps to extinction.

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 18:50:00 UTC | #199285

JeremyH's Avatar Comment 9 by JeremyH

What I got from the end of his speech is that rather than destroy the religious memes (an impossible task), we should 'immunise' people against these toxic ideas, using mental antigens such as skepticism and critical thinking.

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 19:17:00 UTC | #199290

timtimes's Avatar Comment 10 by timtimes

If we teach the kids about all the other religions then they will more than likely see through the scam that is their own.


Sun, 13 Jul 2008 19:39:00 UTC | #199297

Auld's Avatar Comment 11 by Auld

Dennet seems to have something very interesting to add before he finished/time ran out. Wonder what it was?

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 20:11:00 UTC | #199300

TIKI AL's Avatar Comment 12 by TIKI AL

"Wonder what it was?" (Auld #12.)

While lecturing, I could see in Dan's eyes that he has tied up all loose ends in string theory.

Sun, 13 Jul 2008 22:33:00 UTC | #199328

Cluebot's Avatar Comment 13 by Cluebot

This is in my opinion one of Dan's best lectures, and he's a consistently excellent lecturer. I first saw this last year when it was posted on the TED site. As the text there used to say before it was replaced with the "literally alive" hyperbole, it's unmissable.

Here's a couple more excellent Dennett lectures I found on Google Video:

Darwin's Dangerous Idea

The Magic of Conciousness

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 00:38:00 UTC | #199364

bugaboo's Avatar Comment 14 by bugaboo


You need professional help.

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 01:47:00 UTC | #199376

8teist's Avatar Comment 15 by 8teist

Still no profile? Clearmind ,you don`t exist.

No wonder your posts are unintelligible dribble,you obviously have the very virus Prof. Dennett is speaking about.

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 02:01:00 UTC | #199378

Tyler Durden's Avatar Comment 16 by Tyler Durden


The professor found a so-called book on the table. He opened it up and looked at it. This book's survival letters are of letter evolution. This survived book came together and created meaningful letters.

A professor checked the writer's name found a book on the table and look the book was meaningful.

The memesis of elephant was confused when it was told that survival of memesis ended up in elephant and worse the and and Him were the ancestors to each other; it beats him who came first? when he heard that, He fainted he came from a worm.

What is Stalin, the difference, and between atheism?

So far jungle logic and reason will be failing since it failed and it is not based on, but just an assumption jungle. The funny, maybe as funny as Mr Dennet's video, thing about assumption is that when the first assumption is wrong, then, rest of the dome are all assumptions since they rely on each other like a wrong.

Logical thinking, comes through life, and meaningful Meaning life.

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 02:13:00 UTC | #199386

Shuggy's Avatar Comment 17 by Shuggy


"Remember the Shakers"

Hopefully the Quakers follow in their footsteps to extinction.
You should look more into the Quakers. Of all Christian sects (and many self-professing Christians would deny that Quakers are Christians), they have the least dogma and the most attachment to rationality. They brainwash their kids least.

(Of course I mean the liberal, meeting-house attending, silent Meeting for Worship holding, clergy-less Quakers - not the conservative, church-attending, liturgical, clergy-ordaining, Quakers, of which Richard Nixon is the most famous example.)

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 02:25:00 UTC | #199394

DoctorE's Avatar Comment 18 by DoctorE

Dennett, i love that guy!

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 02:44:00 UTC | #199400

rod-the-farmer's Avatar Comment 19 by rod-the-farmer


You understand, do you, that many of us find your comments unintelligible ? You may have a point, but your ability to explain it clearly is not very high. You jump around, making whatever point you think you have, difficult to see. The standard of debate on this site is quite high, but your contributions don't add much. Try thinking them through a bit more before posting.

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 03:09:00 UTC | #199409

Laurie Fraser's Avatar Comment 20 by Laurie Fraser

Start drinking, pal. I mean, it can't hurt, can it?

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 03:20:00 UTC | #199418

Crazymalc's Avatar Comment 21 by Crazymalc


Meaning life comes through meaningful and logical thinking.

Couldn't agree more!

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 03:25:00 UTC | #199422

Cluebot's Avatar Comment 22 by Cluebot

"What is the difference between atheism and Stalin?"
- clearmind

Simple question, simple answer:

* Atheism is a philosophical position.
* Stalin was a man.

See the difference?

Okay, let me elaborate:

* Atheism is the rejection of theism (i.e. rejecting claims a personal, interventional God exists.)
* Stalin was an evil, dogmatic dictator who ruled by exploiting those who placed too much faith in him and killing those who opposed or might rival him.

Is this clear now, clearmind?

You see, claiming atheism leads to Stalin is about as rational as claiming atheism leads to traffic jams. Industrialisation and modernity brought growth of our capability for all things, good and evil. That your laser guided amnesia forgets all this and homes in on atheism shows just how sloppy the thinking in your "clear" mind really is.

Let me give an example: Isn't it reasonable to suggest the success of Hitler's "big lie" has far more to do with state controlled mass media than atheism?

Incidentally, note the similarity between the power structures of dictatorships and that of monotheism: Both have a Godhead to whom followers must be thankful for all that is good and must not offer any criticism. Both have scapegoats to whom all that is bad are held accountable. Both often have texts which are uncritically held in reverence similar to that of their Godhead.

Let me pose a similar question: "What's the difference between Yahweh and Stalin?"

I'd propose the main differences are Stalin was less inscrutable, more accountable and had fewer people speaking on his behalf claiming to somehow know his own mind.

Of course, I utterly condemn Stalin's brutality, just as I condemn the sick tribalism of the Old Testament stories. Given that human population was far lower at the time, a normalised body count of the Old Testament genocides might actually be higher; I'd be interested to hear if anyone's done the maths on that one.

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 03:32:00 UTC | #199424

Rick Stromoski's Avatar Comment 23 by Rick Stromoski

Got to TED talks and find Sir Ken Robinson's lecture on how modern education stifles creativity. It is funny as well as brilliantly inciteful.

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 04:41:00 UTC | #199444

Wosret's Avatar Comment 24 by Wosret

15. Comment #210144 by clearmind

That definitely was a "tale". I can't argue with that.

Well, if letters could survive, and have offspring letters, and all the evidence supported the idea that there was "letter evolution" then I'd agree that there was. Though your analogy is clearly foolish. By your logic, cake isn't edible because rocks aren't.

You can't just claim, by analogy, that X isn't true of A because it isn't true of B. You need to demonstrate why X must be true for B if it is true for A. Otherwise you're just talking nonsense.

What is "memesis"? Are you trying to conjugate "meme"? Or is that suppose to be a pun on like "nemesis" or something? Even if I assume either of the options I offered I still can't make heads of tails of that part. Also, "the ancestor of each other" that is logically impossible. That is equivolent to saying "you are my grandfather, and I am your grandfather". Maybe if time travel were involved...

Atheism isn't trying to do anything. You need to look up the word.

What's the difference between clearmind and hitler? Hitler killed people, and clearmind kills the english language, coherence, and intelligibility.

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 04:43:00 UTC | #199445

Richard Feldmann's Avatar Comment 25 by Richard Feldmann

What's the difference between clearmind and hitler? Hitler killed people, and clearmind kills the english language, coherence, and intelligibility.

Nice post, MG. That last sentence was gold.

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 06:22:00 UTC | #199487

MAS2007's Avatar Comment 26 by MAS2007

Here I am reading thoughtful comments, not paying close attention to Comment by ____. When I start having difficulty understanding one of the comments, then it gets harder to comprehend. I think to myself, "what the hell?" Checking the by line closely, I now understand it's just clearmind(sic) polluting the stream of reason.

Note to self: avoid reading clearmind posts may cause brain discomfort, extended exposure can cause permanent damage.

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 06:28:00 UTC | #199491

Dinah's Avatar Comment 27 by Dinah

Re: Comment #210144 by clearmind

Your mind is certainly clear of anything remotely rational. You evidently think like you write. If you have something worth saying, which I very much doubt, then the onus is on you to make yourself understood, not to expect your readers to wade through your ungrammatical and unintelligible drivel.

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 06:30:00 UTC | #199492

David J's Avatar Comment 28 by David J

TED is a great website. I've seen Dan's work there before.

Clearmind, nice Engrish.

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 06:43:00 UTC | #199498

David J's Avatar Comment 29 by David J

Second you are killing me softly when you talk about coherence and intelligibility imagining you leaning to SOOOOO complicated evolution tree as an evolin

LOL! Oh, the irony!!! LOLOLOL

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 07:00:00 UTC | #199507

Ishruul's Avatar Comment 30 by Ishruul

Clearmind you've defeated evolution with logic????

Wow, you should have a tea party with VenomFangX, you clearly have the same view on what is logic!

BTW, lying to oneself until he is convince of it doens't apply to logic just indoctrination.

And what's that? Killings and massacres cannot attach to any religion! Perhaps on some distant fantasy world of yours!

Of course all the holy wars, jyhad, crusade, holocaust and genocide or all atheist-based-slaughter. Thank you for opening my eyes on such warped view of the world.

For (insert your god's name here) sake!!! Read an HISTORY book for your own benefit (bible, coran, book of mormon, Walt Disney encyclopedia and such are not history book for your information).

Mon, 14 Jul 2008 07:03:00 UTC | #199509