Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Immune Systems

  1. Jul 17, 2004 #1
    Immune system

    We are all familiar with the human physical immune system, which fights off foreign invaders. We are not as familiar with the human intellectual immune system (HIIS), which fights off foreign memes. I am no expert in ether system and my analysis is based upon observation and study. I suspect all those with similar opinions, who seek authorities, can find them if they wish.

    I suspect both systems are results of the evolution Darwin discovered. By the way, I want to note that Darwin’s Theory is a good example of a meme. Some other human authors of memes might be Socrates, Jesus, Galileo and recently the four judges in Massachusetts who made a judgement regarding same-sex marriage.

    The purpose of the HIIS is to protect the intellectual status quo. I am confident that such an immune system is a result of evolutionary forces for the simple reason that it seems to be part of our genetic structure. I guess that every new meme faces an uphill battle against this HIIS and only the strongest memes survive.

    The people, as a community, must guard against the automatic rejection apparatus of HIIS. HIIS is, I guess, an automatic response not requiring reasoned judgement. The community as a group must supply the reasoned analysis to prevent the early rejection of a new meme that might be valuable. The conservative elements of every community seem poised to fight against new memes. The obvious examples being those noted above.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 17, 2004 #2
    i suspect it's all about the trap of choosing the most convenient meme... the one that will give the individual the least worries...
    we have the dark figure in our subconsiousness to deal with those sort of things on a grand scale, but usually it goes by undetected i'm afraid...

    it also takes alot of selfdiscipline to actively investigate every meme and decide whether or not it is the rigth one or just the most convenient one and then whether to record it or not...
  4. Jul 17, 2004 #3
    There is no single "immune system" for the human body, and apparently no single one for the mind either. Like the brain itself, the human immune systems have proven quite diverse and complex.

    Above all else, evolution tends to favor diversity and flexibility. The alternative tends to lead to stagnation and eventual extinction. Hence, humanity possesses the most complex immune system in the animal kingdom, both physically and mentally. So complex are these system, that they cannot be totally distinguished from other processes in the body.

    The idea that our "mental immune systems" exist to protect our memes is therefore a gross oversimplification. According to Darwinian evolution, what survives simply survives. For example, insects have no appreciable immune system and some ninty percent die from infectious diseases. However, they make up for this by the shear number of prodgeny they bear and the ability to adapt to extreme chemical and radiation conditions that would kill just about any other plant or animal. Supposidly they would be among the only survivors of a global nuclear war.

    Does that mean they have a stronger immune system? No, words only have demonstrable meaning according to their function in a given context. In the case of this thread, you are simply redefining the term "immune systems". If this is merely an anology on your part, it is too limited to describe all that can be observed about the functioning of the human mind.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2004
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook