Transcript: Christopher di Carlo on The Evolution of Religion | Mar 13, 2004

Christopher diCarlo stands behind a lectern. He is in his forties, has short side-parted black hair, black moustache, and is wearing a gray shirt, under a black suit.
A screen behind him reads "The Evolution of Religion."

Christopher diCarlo says WE ARE
GATHERED HERE THIS EVENING TO
PAY TRIBUTE TO CHARLES DARWIN BY
CELEBRATING HIS BIRTH DATE AND
HIS LEGACY TO HUMAN KIND.
A GREAT ACADEMIC AND POPULARISER
OF DARWINIAN THEORY, MICHAEL
RUSSE WROTE A BOOK ENTITLED,
"TAKING DARWIN SERIOUSLY."
THINK IT'S A VERY APPROPRIATE
TITLE FOR A BOOK TO CONSIDER FOR
TONIGHT'S CELEBRATION, BECAUSE
IT IS ONLY WHEN WE TAKE AN
EVOLUTIONARY UNDERSTANDING OF
HUMAN NATURE SERIOUSLY, THAT WE
CAN DEEPLY CONSIDER WHAT
INFERENCES MUST NATURALLY FOLLOW
FROM THIS THEORY.

A caption appears on screen. It reads "Christopher diCarlo. University of Ontario Institute of Technology. The Evolution of Religion. University of Guelph, February 12, 2004."

Christopher diCarlo continues TO FILL
US IN ROUGHLY WITH SOME
BACKGROUND HISTORICAL
INFORMATION, ONE OF THE THINGS
THAT A LOT OF PEOPLE DON'T KNOW
ABOUT DARWIN, IS THAT HE
REFRAINED FROM PUBLISHING HIS
FINDINGS ON NATURAL SELECTION,
AND HE HAD GIVEN ORDERS TO HAVE
THESE PUBLISHED AFTER HIS DEATH.
HE WISHED TO SAVE HIS WIFE AND HIS
FAMILY RIDICULE, WHICH HE KNEW
WOULD COME IN VICTORIAN ENGLAND
AT THE TIME.
HIS WIFE EMMA WAS A DEVOUT
CHRISTIAN, AND WHAT HAPPENED
WAS, IN 1858, DARWIN RECEIVES
A LETTER FROM A NATURALIST,
ALFRED RUSSELL WALLACE, WHO
CLAIMS THAT THERE SEEMS TO BE A
NATURAL MECHANISM AT WORK WHICH
SELECTS FOR SURVIVAL SPECIES
WITH WELL ADAPTED TRAITS.
"DID YOU KNOW ABOUT THIS,
CHARLES?"
AND, WELL YEAH, OF COURSE HE
KNEW ABOUT IT.
WHAT HE DID, ACTUALLY SHOWS THE
INTEGRITY OF DARWIN AS A
SCIENTIST.
HE TAKES HIS PAPER, THAT HE PUTS
TOGETHER, A SHORT PAPER ON HIS
THEORY OF NATURAL SELECTION,
TAKES WALLACE'S, SUBMITS BOTH OF
THEM TO THE LINEAN SOCIETY, AND
THEY WERE BOTH THEN SUBSEQUENTLY
PUBLISHED.
SO HE DID THE HONOURABLE, FAIR,
INTEGRAL THING.
I DARE SAY I WONDER HOW MANY
SCIENTISTS WOULD DO THAT TODAY.
I'M NOT SURE, BUT I'M SURE
THERE'S SOME GOOD ONES STILL OUT
THERE.
A YEAR LATER, AFTER HE HAD
SUBMITTED THESE PAPERS, WHAT HE
HAD DONE IS HE HAD TAKEN ALL OF
HIS VIEWS ON NATURAL SELECTION
AND CONDENSED THEM INTO WHAT WAS
TO BECOME "THE ORIGIN OF
SPECIES," AND THIS WAS PUBLISHED
A YEAR LATER, IN 1859.
I DON'T BELIEVE THE WORLD HAS
BEEN THE SAME SINCE, AND THIS IS
BECAUSE, FOR THE FIRST TIME IN
HUMAN HISTORY, WE HAD THOROUGH
EVIDENCE FOR PLANT, ANIMAL, AND
HUMAN ORIGINS THAT DID NOT
REQUIRE THE INJECTION OF SPECIAL
CREATION FROM ANY TYPE OF GOD.
DANIEL C. DENNET RIGHTLY REFERS
TO THIS AS A DANGEROUS IDEA.
IT IS DANGEROUS BE IT PUTS US
SQUARELY ON THE SAME LEVEL AS
ALL OTHER SPECIES, AND FOR THOSE
WHO BELIEVE WE CANNOT BE EQUATED
WITH SUCH LOWER ANIMALS, THIS
COMES AS QUITE A SHOCK.
MANY RELIGIONS MAINTAIN THAT
HUMANS ARE QUITE DIFFERENT IN
MANY RESPECTS FROM ALL OTHER
BIOLOGICAL LIFE FORMS.
FOR SOME, WE HUMANS HOLD A
RATHER EXALTED PLACE IN THE
GREAT CHAIN OF BEING.
AND SO IT IS NOT AN EASY THING
TO FACE IDEOLOGICAL IMPEACHMENT.
RELIGION, AS WE ALL KNOW, HAS A
VERY POWERFUL EFFECT ON HUMAN
BEINGS.
IN HONOUR AND CELEBRATION OF
CHARLES DARWIN'S 195th BIRTHDAY,
I WISH TO PRESENT AN EXTENDED
HYPOTHESIS IN AN ATTEMPT TO
EXPLAIN WHY AND HOW RELIGIOUS
BELIEF, ALL RELIGIOUS BELIEF
EVOLVED.
TO DO THIS IN A RESPONSIBLE
MANNER, WE NEED TO EXAMINE A
NUMBER OF CONTRIBUTING FACTORS.
WE HAVE TO LOOK AT WHAT’S CALLED
THE EEA, OR THE ENVIRONMENT
OF EVOLUTIONARY ADAPTEDNESS.

The screen behind him changes. It reads "Factors: The EEA, The Emergence of Consciousness and Language, Relevant Neurological Factors, Human Emotion, The human drive slash desire to explain events related to Causality, Morality, and Mortality."

Christopher diCarlo continues IF WE LOOK AT THE EEA OR THE
ENVIRONMENT OF EVOLUTIONARY
ADAPTEDNESS FIRST, WE SEE THAT
THERE'S A TIME PERIOD THAT
DEFINES THIS PARTICULAR SETTING.
AND IT RUNS FROM ABOUT 8 MILLION
YEARS AGO TO ABOUT 10,000 YEARS
AGO.

The screen changes. It reads "Time period: Approximately 8mya – 10kya. First brain encephalization slash initial tool use approximately 2.5mya. My interest is with the Paleolithic Period of approximately 70kya to 10kya. Hominid Physiology: Brain Encephalization, Dentition, Gut-size, Pharyngeal Development. Geographic changes. Meteorological slash Climatological factors."

Christopher diCarlo continues THIS IS WHEN THE FIRST BRAIN
ENCEPHALIZATION, OR THE
ENLARGEMENT OF THE BRAIN, AND
INITIAL TOOL USE APPEARED
APPROXIMATELY 2.5 MILLION YEARS
AGO.
MY INTEREST, PERSONAL INTEREST
IS WITH THE PALAEOLITHIC PERIOD
OF APPROXIMATELY 70,000 YEARS
AGO TO ABOUT 10,000 YEARS AGO.
IN TERMS OF HOMINID PHYSIOLOGY,
BRAIN ENCEPHALIZATION, OR THE
ENLARGEMENT OF THE BRAIN,
TEETH IN THE FOSSIL RECORDS, THE
GUT SIZE OR HOW THE INTESTINES
AND STOMACH SHRANK, PHARYNGEAL
DEVELOPMENT OR THE DEVELOPMENT
OF THE THROAT, THE LARYNX, THE
PHARYNX AND WHATNOT.
WHAT WE SEE IS, ABOUT 70,000
YEARS AGO, THE PHYSIOLOGICAL
FACTORS OR HOMO SAPIENS IS
PRETTY MUCH IDENTICAL TO OURS
TODAY.
THAT IS, BRAIN DEVELOPMENT HAD
EVOLVED FROM SOME 400 CUBIC
CENTIMETRES WITH OSTELOPYTHICUS
AFERENSIS, TO A CURRENT AVERAGE
THAT WE NOW HAVE OF ABOUT 1,350
CUBIC CENTIMETRES.
BUT IT'S NOT JUST SIZE THAT
COUNTS, OR SO I'M TOLD...
REPEATEDLY.
IT'S WHERE THE BRAINS GOT BIG.
ALTHOUGH APE AND HUMAN BRAINS
SHARE SOME SIMILARITIES, LEFT
AND RIGHT HEMISPHERES, FOUR
DISTINCT LOBES, PARIETAL,
OCCIPITAL, FRONTAL AND TEMPORAL,
APES HAVE LARGER OCCIPITAL
LOBES, AND SMALLER FRONTAL
LOBES, WHEREAS IN HUMANS THIS IS
REVERSED.
OUR DENTITION AND OUR GUT SIZE
CHANGED ACCORDING TO A TRANSFER
FROM A HERBIVORE'S DIET TO AN
OMNIVORE'S DIET, WHICH INCLUDED
SCAVENGING FOR MEAT.
HIGH PROTEIN WOULD HAVE BEEN
REQUIRED TO FUEL SUCH A HIGH
ENERGY CONSUMING ORGAN SUCH AS
THE HUMAN BRAIN.
WHETHER YOU REALISE THIS OR NOT,
YOUR BRAINS REQUIRE ABOUT 20 percent OF
YOUR BODY'S ENERGY.
IT'S A VERY EXPENSIVE ORGAN, AND
IT'S THE ORGAN THAT BECAME
HIGHLY ADAPTED FOR HUMANS.
WE DON'T HAVE SHARP CLAWS, WE
DON'T HAVE SUPER YOU KNOW,
POINTY TEETH, WE DON'T HAVE
GREAT CAMOUFLAGE OR GREAT SPEED.
WHAT WE DO HAVE IS LARGE,
BULBOUS BRAINS AND THIS HAS
ALLOWED US TO MANIPULATE OUR
ENVIRONMENTS IN WAYS NO OTHER
SPECIES CAN, OR HAVE.
THE HUMAN PHARYNGEAL DEVELOPMENT
EVOLVED TO A POINT IN WHICH THE
LARYNX DROPS IN THE THROAT.
WE SEE EVIDENCE OF THIS OF ABOUT
150,000 YEARS AGO WITH HOMO
SAPIENS.
YOU MIGHT THINK, "WELL, SO WHAT?
WHAT'S THE IMPORTANCE OF THAT?"
IT'S ACTUALLY A HUGE POINT IN
HUMAN EVOLUTION, BECAUSE IT
OPENS UP THE CAPACITY FOR THE
HUMAN THROAT TO ARTICULATE AND
MAKE SOUNDS WITH GREATER
VARIANCE.
SO THERE'S A GREATER
ARTICULATION OF SPEECH AND
SOUNDS, AND WHAT HAPPENS IS, IT
DOES NOT DROP UNTIL WE'RE ABOUT
2 YEARS OF AGE.
IT STAYS UP HIGH IN THE THROAT
WHEN WE'RE BORN, BECAUSE THAT
ALLOWS FOR CIRCULAR BREATHING,
RIGHT?
INFANTS CAN SUCKLE AND NOT
CHOKE.
YOU CAN TRY TO DRINK A GLASS OF
WATER AND TAKE A BREATH, BUT
YOU'RE NOT GOING TO LIKE IT.
YOU'RE GOING TO LEARN THE HARD
WAY THAT YOU CAN'T DO THAT.
THE REASON WHY IS BECAUSE YOUR
LARYNX DROPPED ABOUT THE AGE OF
2, AND SURE ENOUGH, WHAT WE CAN
USE IS INFANTS AS A MODEL TO
REALISE THAT AS SOON AS THIS
HAPPENS, AT AROUND THE AGE OF 2,
1 1/2 TO 2, YOU CAN'T SHUT THEM
UP, RIGHT?
BECAUSE THEY NOW ARE BETTER
CAPABLE, BETTER ENABLED TO MAKE
SOUNDS AND TO ARTICULATE SPEECH.
GEOGRAPHIC CHANGES... THE LAST
OF THE ICE AGES WAS IN RETREAT
BY ABOUT 20,000 YEARS AGO, AND
THIS WOULD HAVE HAD A PROFOUND
EFFECT ON NUMEROUS FACTORS IN
THE EEA.
WE NEED TO CONSIDER
METEOROLOGICAL AND
CLIMATOLOGICAL FACTORS.
WITH THE GRADUAL RETREAT OF THE
LAST ICE AGE, CHANGES OCCURRED
IN WEATHER PATTERNS, FLORA AND
FAUNA DEVELOPMENT, CHANGES TO
SURVIVAL STRATEGIES IN TERMS OF
HUNTING, GATHERING AND
SCAVENGING. THE
NEURO-BIOLOGIST HARRY JERRISON
HAS NOTICED THAT PATTERN CHANGES
INDICATE A STRONG CORRELATION
BETWEEN THE ORIGIN OF NEW FAUNAL
GROUPS AND THE ACCOMPANIMENT
OF ENCEPHALIZATION OR BRAIN SIZE
INCREASE.
SO WHAT THIS MEANS IS,
PALAEOBOTANISTS AND
PALAEOBIOLOGIST LOOK AT WHAT WAS
EXISTING AT THE TIME IN WHICH
OUR ANCESTORS WERE SURVIVING, TO
SEE THE TYPES OF STUFF THEY
WOULD HAVE BEEN EATING TO TRY TO
PUT THE PIECES OF THE PUZZLE
TOGETHER IN DETERMINING WHAT
CAUSED WHAT TO OCCUR AT CERTAIN
TIMES IN OUR ANCIENT HISTORY....

The screen changes. It reads "The EEA (Continued). Food Availability slash acquisition: flora and fauna: Paleobotany slash biology. Gene Mutations, Tool Use, Other artifact records."

Christopher diCarlo continues OUR ANCESTORS WOULD HAVE
EXISTED IN RELATIVELY SMALL, KIN
BASED NOMADIC GROUPS, HUNTING,
GATHERING AND SCAVENGING FOR
SUBSISTENCE.
ARCHEOLOGICAL RECORDS INDICATE
THAT FIRE WAS DEFINITELY USED BY
HOMO ERECTUS AROUND 400,000
YEARS AGO, DUE TO THE FINDINGS
OF HEARTHS, RINGS OF STONE,
BURNT BONES AND OTHER EVIDENCE
WHICH MUCH MORE CLEARLY
DEMONSTRATES THE CONTROLLED USE
OF FIRE.
GENE MUTATIONS... WE NEED TO
CONSIDER TO WHAT EXTENT OUR
ANCESTORS COULD HAVE EXPERIENCED
GENE MUTATIONS WHICH WOULD HAVE
PROFFERED CERTAIN TYPES OF
ADVANTAGES TO THEM.
MORE THAN NOT, MUTATIONS ARE
HARMFUL TO AN ORGANISM, BUT AS
DARWIN NOTED, EVERY NOW AND THEN
YOU GET A MUTATION THAT IS QUITE
FAVOURABLE TO AN ORGANISM.
RICHARD KLINE, THE
ANTHROPOLOGIST, MAINTAINS THAT
THE FOX P2 GENE WAS MUTATED
PERHAPS ABOUT 50,000 YEARS AGO,
AND IT IS THIS GENE WHICH HE
BELIEVES WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR
SPARKING LANGUAGE, ART, AND
CULTURE.
HOW DOES HE KNOW THIS?
HE STUDIES GROUPS OF INDIVIDUALS
WHO DO NOT HAVE THIS PARTICULAR
MUTATION AND OBSERVES THE GREAT
DEAL OF DIFFICULTY THEY HAVE
WITH LANGUAGE.
IN TERMS OF THE DEVELOPMENT OF
TOOL USE, FOR SOME HOMINID
SPECIES, TOOL USE REMAINED
FAIRLY SIMPLISTIC FOR HUNDREDS
OF THOUSANDS OF YEARS.
HOMO ORGASTER USED THE STONE
HAND AXE IN A FORM WHICH
REMAINED STATIC FOR 980,000
YEARS.
THE STONE AXE ARE THOSE KIND OF
TEAR DROP SHAPED STONE AXES YOU
SEE IN MUSEUMS AND WHATNOT, AND
YOU'LL SEE THEM IN DOCUMENTARIES
AND THAT SORT OF THING.
FOR ALMOST A MILLION YEARS, THIS
PIECE OF TECHNOLOGY REMAINS
UNCHANGED.
THAT'S ALMOST UNFATHOMABLE FOR
US TO CONSIDER SOMETHING
LASTING, AT LEAST IN THIS AGE OF
IMMEDIACY, LONGER THAN A FEW
MONTHS BEFORE SOMEBODY COMES OUT
WITH A NEW SPIN ON IT.
ALL RIGHT, WHY DID IT REMAIN
UNCHANGED?
YOU TEND TO THINK, WELL, IF IT
AIN'T BROKE, DON'T FIX IT.
IT WAS OBVIOUSLY WORKING TO SOME
DEGREE, AND THE ENVIRONMENT MUST
HAVE BEEN RELATIVELY STATIC THAT
IT DID NOT REQUIRE ANY OTHER
TYPE OF TOOL, AT LEAST ANY OTHER
KIND OF STONE TOOL.
THEY COULD HAVE HAD ALL KINDS OF
WOODEN TOOLS THAT DECAYED OR
ROTTED OR WHATNOT, BUT THOSE
DON'T HANG AROUND.
SO AT ANY GIVEN TIME, WHAT I'M
TRYING TO DO IN PIECING TOGETHER
THE EEA, IS BASICALLY DOING AS
RESPONSIBLE A JOB AS I CAN,
GIVEN THE INFORMATION THAT IS
AVAILABLE TO ME AND TO ALL OF
US.
SO I'M CURRENTLY IN THE MIDST OF
PUTTING TOGETHER A VERY LARGE
DATABASE WITH A NUMBER OF
DIFFERENT SCHOLARS FROM AROUND
THE WORLD, SO THAT ANYBODY, AT
ANY GIVEN TIME, CAN LOG INTO
THIS DATABASE TO BE ABLE TO SEE
WHAT WAS HAPPENING IN THESE VERY
SPECIFIC AREAS AT CERTAIN TIMES
IN HOMINID EVOLUTION.
I THINK THIS WILL BE A VERY
POWERFUL TOOL IN HELPING US TO
PIECE...
TO PUT THESE PIECES OF THE
PUZZLE TOGETHER IN A MUCH MORE
RESPONSIBLE WAY.
SO THE HAND AXE REMAINS
UNCHANGED FOR ALMOST A MILLION
YEARS, BUT BY ABOUT 40,000 YEARS
AGO, WHAT WE SEE IS A REMARKABLE
IMPROVEMENT IN THE MANIPULATION
OF A MUCH WIDER VARIETY OF
MATERIALS, AND THE DEVELOPMENT
OF MANY DIFFERENT TYPES OF
TOOLS.
IN TERMS OF OTHER ARTIFACTS AND
RECORDS AND WHATNOT, WHAT WE SEE
IS, ALONG WITH AN EXPLOSION IN
CREATIVITY AND DESIGN IN TOOL
USE, WE ALSO SEE A RAPID
DEVELOPMENT, AROUND THE 40,000
YEAR MARK WITH MANY OTHER
ARTIFACTS, AND THERE ARE A
NUMBER OF SLIDES THAT WE HAVE
HERE THAT INDICATE THAT.

The screen changes. It shows a stone with thin line carved on it, under the title "The Artifact Records to the Upper Paleolithic." Below, it reads "Cross-hatchings on red ochre object dated to be from 77kya found a Blombos Cave, South Africa."

Christopher diCarlo says THIS IS ONE OF THE OLDEST,
CONSIDERED TO BE ONE OF THE
OLDEST OBJECTS OF ART.
IT'S ABOUT 77 KYA, MEANS
THOUSAND YEARS AGO, SO ABOUT
77,000 YEARS AGO.
THIS WAS FOUND AT BLOMBOS CAVE
IN SOUTH AFRICA, AND YOU CAN SEE
THE CROSS HATCHINGS ON THIS
PIECE OF RED OCHRE, AND WHAT
THAT MEANS IS A DIRECTED
THOUGHT.
THAT THIS WAS INTENDED TO BE
LIKE THAT.
COULD IT HAVE BEEN ACCIDENTAL?
YEAH, I SUPPOSE THAT'S POSSIBLE,
RIGHT?
SOMEBODY WAS JUST SITTING AROUND
AND DOING THIS KIND OF THING,
AND "WHOA, LOOK WHAT I DID."
BUT WE TEND TO THINK BY ABOUT
THAT TIME, WITH THE SUFFICIENCY
OF THE BRAIN AND THE PHARYNGEAL
DEVELOPMENT, AND THE MOVEMENTS
WITHIN AND OUT OF AFRICA, THAT
SO FAR TO DATE, THAT REPRESENTS
ONE OF THE OLDEST INTENDED
OBJECTS OF MATERIAL
MANIPULATIONS IN STONE THAT
WE'VE FOUND, AND I EMPHASIZE, IN
STONE.
CAN WE SEE THE NEXT ONE?

The screen changes. It shows three perforated shells. Below, it reads "just a few of the thousands of beads found by Stine and Kuhn’s team at the dig site in Turkey (notice the perforation which clearly indicate intentionality for suspension and adornment)."

Christopher diCarlo continues THESE ARE ABOUT, DATED AT ABOUT
41,000 YEARS AGO.

The screen changes. It shows a figurine with a lion head. The screen reads "The Lion Lady from Hohlenstein-Stadel. Height 28 cm, about 6 cm diameter. Made of mammoth ivory. Found in the cave of Hohlenstein-Stadel in the Valley of Lone, Baden-Wurttemberg (Germany), in 1931. Date as Aurignacian, in a 32000 year old level."

Christopher diCarlo continues HERE IS THE LION LADY
FROM HOHLENSTEIN-STADEL
HERE YOU SEE KIND OF A LION HEAD ON
KIND OF A HUMAN-LIKE BODY, AND
THIS IS ABOUT A 32,000 YEAR OLD
ARTIFACT AND IT INDICATES SOME
KIND OF MATERIAL MANIPULATION
FOR A SPECIFIC PURPOSE.
WHAT, EXACTLY, WELL WE'RE JUST
GOING TO HAVE TO TELL STORIES,
BECAUSE NOBODY REALLY KNOWS.
I MEAN TO DO HARD CORE
ANTHROPOLOGY AND MAKE IT AS
PRECISE A SCIENCE AS SOME PEOPLE
WOULD LIKE, WOULD REQUIRE A TIME
MACHINE.
WELL WE DON'T HAVE A TIME
MACHINE, SO WHAT WE HAVE TO DO
IS PUT THE PIECES OF THE PUZZLE
TOGETHER AS BEST WE CAN, AND TRY
TO TELL THE MOST RESPONSIBLE
STORIES WE CAN, GIVEN THE
INFORMATION THAT WE HAVE.
NEXT ONE?

The screen changes. It shows the carving of a woman on a rock. The screen reads "A venus from Laussel, Dordogne. 44 cm high. Musee d’Aquitane, Bordeaux. The body swells out towards the viewer from this convex block of limestone. It formed one of a set, a frieze which included other female figures and a male figure. It probably dates to 27000- 22000 b.p."

Christopher diCarlo says WE HAVE, BASICALLY A FEMALE WITH
A HORN WITH BASICALLY 13 NOTCHES
THAT MAY INDICATE FERTILITY, IT
MAY INDICATE LUNAR PHASES OR
MENSTRUAL CYCLES.
THIS IS ABOUT 27,000 TO 22,000
YEARS AGO.

The screen changes. It shows a rock in the shape of a woman. The screen reads "Perhaps the most famous of the so-called Venus statues is the Venus of Willendorf. A study published in 1990 of the stratigraphic sequence of the nine superimposed archaeological layers comprising the Willendorf deposit now indicates a date around 24-26000 BP."

Christopher diCarlo says 24,000 TO 26,000 YEARS AGO.

The screen changes. It shows two ivory horses.

Christopher diCarlo says THE HORSE FROM VOGLEHERD, THERE
WAS ALSO A BISON THAT WAS FOUND
IN THIS CAVE, AND VERY INTRICATE
DETAILS THAT WERE DONE ON THIS
HORSE THAT YOU MIGHT NOT BE ABLE
TO SEE FROM THOSE SLIDES, BUT
AGAIN, 26,000 YEARS AGO, WE WERE
SEEING CLEAR INDICATIONS THAT
THE VERY CONCEPT OF HORSENESS
HAD TO HAVE BEEN IN THAT
PERSON'S MIND IN ORDER TO HAVE
CREATED THAT.
AT WHATEVER LEVEL THAT THEY
UNDERSTOOD HORSENESS, IT HAD TO
HAVE BEEN IN THEIR MIND, AND
THEN THEY HAD TO DIRECT THEIR
THOUGHTS AND ACTIONS IN ORDER TO
CREATE THIS.
NOW WE CAN LOOK AT...

The screen changes. It shows the painting of a horse on a cave wall.

Christopher diCarlo continues YOU HAVE
KIND OF A ROUGHLY DRAWN HORSE
THERE, BUT AS WE CARRY ON, WE
SEE THIS ONE HERE.

The screen changes. It shows several horses painted on a wall. The screen reads "A large painting of various animals-horses, rhinoceroses and an extinct species of ox is just one of many paintings which adorns the walls of France’s Chauvet Cave. A team of researchers led by Dr. Helene Valladas of the Climate and Environmental Sciences Laboratory at the National Centre for Scientific Research in Gif sur. Yvette used carbon dating to confirm the age of the Paintings at between 29000 and 32000 years."

Christopher diCarlo continues YOU SEE HORSES, ALONG HERE
YOU'LL SEE A RHINOCEROS DOWN AT
THE BOTTOM.
IN OTHER PARTS OF THE CAVE YOU
MIGHT SEE LIONS AND WHATNOT.
AND THIS IS IN FRANCE, AND THIS
HAS BEEN DATED ABOUT 29,000 TO
32,000 YEARS AGO.
I HAVE TO CONFESS,
THE VERY FIRST TIME
I SAW THIS, I SAID, "OH, COME
ON, THAT'S NOT 29 OR 32,000
YEARS, SOMEBODY DID THAT, LIKE,
LAST WEEK OR SOMETHING.
THAT IS INCREDIBLY IMPRESSIVE,
THE DETAIL AND YOU KNOW, THE USE
OF IMAGERY AND THE WAY IT'S BEEN
PUT TOGETHER.
UM, COULD IT BE A FAKE?
I SUPPOSE, SURE, IT COULD BE A
FAKE.
YOU TAKE ALL OF THIS EVIDENCE ON
THE CONDITIONAL THAT THE DATING
TECHNIQUES HAVE BEEN CARRIED OUT
PROFICIENTLY, AND THAT WHAT YOU
ARE TOLD BY ANTHROPOLOGISTS AND
ARCHAEOLOGISTS IS, TO THE BEST
OF THEIR KNOWLEDGE, INDICATIVE
OF THE TIME AT WHICH THESE
PAINTINGS TOOK PLACE.

The screen changes. It shows the painting of a bull in a cave.

Christopher diCarlo says HERE IS
THE GREAT HALL OF BULLS.
THIS IS ONLY 11,000 TO 13,000
YEARS AGO.
YOU CAN CLEARLY SEE NUMEROUS
INDICATIONS.
OBVIOUSLY THERE'S SOME NEED FOR
REPRESENTATION, OKAY?
YOU CAN CALL THIS YOU KNOW, CAVEMAN
WALLPAPER, YOU CAN CALL IT
WHATEVER YOU WANT, BUT THERE'S
AN OBVIOUS NEED TO BE ABLE TO
MAKE A REPRESENTATION FOR SOME
REASON, TO SOME INDICATION.
TO WHAT EXTENT IS RELIGION TIED
INTO THIS, WE MAY NEVER KNOW.
BUT WHAT IS IMPORTANT TO KNOW IS
TO SEE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN
HOW OUR ANCESTORS HAD EVOLVED
FOR THE LARGE MAJORITY OF TIME,
2.5 MILLION YEARS, LET'S SAY, TO
A TIME IN A VERY COMPRESSED
PERIOD, AT ABOUT SAY 40,000
YEARS TO THE PRESENT, WHERE AN
AWFUL LOT OF ARTIFACTS START TO
APPEAR, AND FAIRLY SOPHISTICATED
ONES.

The screen changes. It shows three different animal paintings in a cave. Below it reads "In 1879, the first cave with Stone Age paintings was discovered at Altamira in northern Spain. The images are presumed to have been painted by the Magdalenian people between 14000-7000 b.p."

Christopher diCarlo says HERE'S THE CAVES AT ALTAMIRA IN
NORTHERN SPAIN, FROM ABOUT
14,000 TO 7,000 YEARS, AND AGAIN
WE'RE SEEING AGAIN, BULLS AND
HORSES AND THINGS OF THAT SORT.
SO OBVIOUSLY HAD CONSIDERABLE
IMPORTANCE IN THE LIVES OF OUR
ANCESTORS AT THIS POINT.
SO, BACK TO THE EEA.
WE CAN NOW CONSIDER BIOLOGICAL
EQUILIBRIUM.
WHAT THIS IS, ESSENTIALLY, IS,
IT'S THE MAINTENANCE OF A
BALANCE THAT ANY BIOLOGICAL
ORGANISM HAS WITH ITS
ENVIRONMENT OR ITS NICHE WITHIN
THAT PARTICULAR ENVIRONMENT.
SO HOW ONE SURVIVES WITHIN A
PARTICULAR NICHE AND HOW WELL
ONE CAN SURVIVE AND REPRODUCE
WITHIN THAT PARTICULAR NICHE, IF
IT'S AT A CERTAIN LEVEL
OF SUFFICIENCY, WHERE IT
CONTINUES TO THRIVE TO SOME
DEGREE AND MATE AND REPRODUCE
AND CONTINUE, AND CONTINUE, AND
CONTINUE, WE CAN REFER TO THAT
AS A BIOLOGICAL EQUILIBRIUM.
YOU ALL HAVE BIOLOGICAL
EQUILIBRIA.
YOU USE THIS AS SOME KIND OF A
BAROMETER TO DETERMINE HOW
YOU'RE FEELING.
YOU KNOW OF YOU HAVE A VIRUS,
YOU KNOW IF YOU'RE COUGHING OR
WHATNOT.
YOU KNOW IF SOMETHING IS NOT
QUITE RIGHT, IT DEVIATES FROM
THIS EQUILIBRIUM.
YOU KNOW
YOURSELVES FAIRLY WELL.
YOU MAY NOT REALISE WE CAN GIVE
IT THIS NAME, AND WE CAN CALL IT
AN EQUILIBRIUM AND THEN YOU TEND
TO USE THIS.
SOME OF YOU WILL TIE IN RITUALS,
WHETHER YOU'RE AWARE OF THIS OR
NOT, TO YOUR BIOLOGICAL
EQUILIBRIUM. SOME OF
YOU I CAN BET, WHEN YOU GET UP
IN THE MORNING, DO VERY SIMILAR
THINGS EVERY DAY, IN CERTAIN
RESPECTS.
YOU'RE NUDGING THAT GENTLEMAN?
OKAY, SO YOU KNOW WHAT I'M
TALKING ABOUT?
OKAY.
AND MEN TEND TO BE A LITTLE MORE
ANAL ABOUT THIS SOMETIMES THAN
WOMEN.
YOU KNOW, THEY LIKE THEIR SOCK
DRAWER KEPT IN A CERTAIN WAY,
AND THEIR UNDERWEAR DRAWER IN A
CERTAIN WAY AND WHATNOT, AND THE
CAR'S GOT TO BE IN A CERTAIN WAY
AND WHATNOT.
YOU MIGHT BRUSH YOUR TEETH 8
TIMES THIS WAY AND 14 TIMES THIS
WAY, AND WHATNOT, AND IF
SOMETHING DISRUPTS YOUR
REGULARITY THROUGHOUT THE DAY,
YOU CAN RECOGNISE IT.
WHY IS THAT?
BECAUSE IT'S A COMPARATIVE
ASPECT WITHIN EVERY HUMAN THAT
ALLOWS THEM TO TAKE SOME KIND OF
CONTROL OVER THEIR LIVES.
IT ALLOWS THEM, WHETHER THEY
REALISE IT OR NOT, TO MAKE
INFERENCES ABOUT WHAT THE FUTURE
IS GOING TO BE LIKE OR COULD BE
LIKE.
AND THEN THEY USE THEIR PRESENT
SITUATION...
THEIR PAST SITUATIONS AS A
COMPARISON, OFF OF WHICH THEY
MAKE THOSE COMPARISONS.
NOW I THINK WE NEED TO TALK
ABOUT THE COEVOLUTION OF
CONSCIOUSNESS AND LANGUAGE.
WHY?
BECAUSE IT SEEMS THAT THIS IS
WHAT WAS OCCURRING AROUND THAT
40,000 YEAR AGO TIME.
IF WE WERE TO TALK ABOUT
CONSCIOUSNESS AND WHAT IT IS, I
MEAN, THERE ARE...
THERE ARE CONFERENCES ANNUALLY
THAT TRY TO DISCUSS WHAT
CONSCIOUSNESS ACTUALLY IS.
I'M NOT HERE TO PROVIDE ANY KIND
OF DEFINITIVE EXPLANATION FOR
WHAT CONSCIOUSNESS IS, BUT I'M
GOING TO GIVE US A FUNCTIONAL
WORKING DEFINITION OF WHAT IT
WOULD HAVE MEANT TO OUR
ANCESTORS AS IT WAS EVOLVING.
BECAUSE CLEARLY I THINK WHAT WE
HAVE TO SAY IS, WE ARE CONSCIOUS
NOW, WE ARE CONSCIOUS BEINGS
NOW, AND I THINK WE COULD COME
TO SOME AGREEMENT ON THAT.
AND WHAT WE COULD ALSO AGREE
UPON IS, THERE WAS A TIME IN OUR
ANCESTORS' HISTORY WHEN THEY
WERE NOT CONSCIOUS.
SO WE CAN TALK ABOUT
CONSCIOUSNESS AS A KIND OF
EMERGENT PROPERTY, GRADUALLY
BUILDING AND GRADUALLY
DEVELOPING UNTIL IT REACHES A
CERTAIN DEFINITIVE POINT IN OUR
ANCESTORS' LIVES.
SO I OFFER A FEW DEFINITIONS FOR
WHAT CONSCIOUSNESS IS.
I TALK ABOUT PERCEPTUAL
AWARENESS, AND WHAT THIS IS, IS
YOUR ABILITY TO KNOW AND BE
AWARE OF YOUR ENVIRONMENTS,
WHICH WE ALL ARE TO SOME DEGREE,
RIGHT?
BUT EVEN ANTS AND BEES AND
EDUCATED FLEAS, THEY'RE ALL
SOMEWHAT AWARE OF THEIR
ENVIRONMENTS.
SO THEY HAVE PERCEPTUAL
AWARENESS JUST LIKE HUMANS.
THAT'S NOT ENOUGH TO TALK ABOUT
AND PROPERLY DEFINE THE TYPE OF
CONSCIOUSNESS WE NEED TO DISCUSS
TONIGHT.
SECONDLY, WE HAVE TO REALISE WE
POSSESS SELF AWARENESS, AND THIS
INVOLVES A DISTINCTION FROM
OTHERS AND OUR ENVIRONMENT.
WE KNOW, COMPARATIVELY, WE'RE
DIFFERENT FROM OTHER PEOPLE.
WE KNOW WE EXIST APART FROM AN
ENVIRONMENT.
NOW IMAGINE, AS THIS IS EVOLVING
AND EMERGING IN OUR ANCESTORS,
HOW THIS WOULD HAVE CARRIED A
CERTAIN AMOUNT OF IMPORTANCE
WITH IT.
THIRDLY, WE HAVE TO LOOK AT THE
ABILITY TO RECOGNISE THE
RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN OUR BELIEFS
AND OUR ECOLOGY.
AND I THINK THIS IS VERY
IMPORTANT IN THE EMERGENCY OF
CONSCIOUSNESS.
WE CAN MODIFY OUR BELIEFS AND
OUR ACTIONS IN ORDER TO INCREASE
THE LIKELIHOOD FOR SURVIVAL AND
REPRODUCTION.
AND THIS WOULD HAVE BEEN
EXTREMELY IMPORTANT.
BECAUSE ONCE WE CAN CONSCIOUSLY
ACKNOWLEDGE THAT THERE ARE
CERTAIN CAUSE AND EFFECT
RELATIONSHIPS IN OUR
ENVIRONMENT, AND OUR ANCESTORS
COULD HAVE TAKEN A MEANS TO
EFFECT THAT IN SOME WAY, AND
SEEING RELATIONSHIPS THAT WERE
EITHER CONDUCIVE TO, OR HARMFUL
TO THEIR BIOLOGICAL EQUILIBRIA,
THEY COULD HAVE MANIPULATED
THEIR BELIEFS AND THEIR ACTIONS
ACCORDINGLY.
AND THIS WOULD HAVE BEEN AN
EXTREMELY POWERFUL TOOL IN THE
EVOLUTION OF HUMAN COGNITION AND
THE EMERGENCE OF CONSCIOUSNESS
AND LANGUAGE.
FOURTH, WE NEED TO CONSIDER A
SENSE OF MORTALITY.
I'LL DEVOTE AN ENTIRE SECTION ON
THIS, BUT ESSENTIALLY WHAT THIS
LEADS US TO BELIEVE IS THAT WHEN
OUR ANCESTORS EVENTUALLY
REALISED THAT THEY WERE GOING TO
DIE IN SIMILAR WAYS TO THEIR KIN
AND THEIR GROUP, THAT WOULD HAVE
HAD A PROFOUND EFFECT ON THEM IN
TERMS OF LETTING THEM KNOW THAT
THEY ARE A BEING IN THE WORLD,
SO TO SPEAK.
YOU MIGHT HAVE...
SOME OF YOU MIGHT HAVE READ
HEIDEGGER, A PHILOSOPHER TALKING
ABOUT BEING IN THE WORLD.
WELL THIS IS SORT OF CAVEMAN
HEIDEGGER VERSION OF COMING TO
THE REALISATION THAT, THAT
FRIEND ISN'T GETTING UP ANY MORE
AND THAT'S GOING TO BE ME AT
SOME POINT.
THIS WOULD HAVE HAD A PROFOUND
EFFECT IN THE DEVELOPMENT AND
EMERGENCE OF CONSCIOUSNESS.
IT WOULD HAVE HELPED TO HAVE
CRYSTALIZED A CAUSE AND EFFECT
RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN OUR HOMINID
ANCESTORS AND THEIR WORLD.
AND FIFTH, WE CAN TALK ABOUT
WHAT'S CALLED A THEORY OF MIND,
AND WHAT I CALL REFLECTIVE
IGNORANCE.
A THEORY OF MIND IS JUST ANY
SPECIES' ABILITY TO BE ABLE TO
PUT THEMSELVES IN THE PLACE OF
ANOTHER.
AND THE MOMENT YOU CAN DO THAT,
AND SEE THE WORLD FROM THE VIEWS
OF ANOTHER, IT PINPOINTS YOUR
CONSCIOUSNES YOUR AWARENESS,
YOUR SELF THAT MUCH MORE CLEARLY
BECAUSE IT IS A COMPARATIVE
ANALYSIS BETWEEN YOU AND
SOMETHING ELSE.
REFLECTIVE IGNORANCE IS THE
CAPACITY TO BE ABLE TO LOOK AT
SOMETHING IN YOUR ENVIRONMENT,
REALISE YOU DON'T FULLY
UNDERSTAND OR CAN CONSCIOUSLY
NAVIGATE THROUGH THAT PARTICULAR
EXPERIENCE, AND THEN TO TAKE
MEASURES TO TRY TO OVERCOME THAT
LEVEL OF IGNORANCE.
AND THAT CAN BE DONE BY INVENTING
CONCEPTS, INVENTING STRATEGIES,
INVENTING RITUALS, TOOLS,
PROCEDURES FOR DOING CERTAIN
THINGS THAT TRY TO OVERCOME
THESE OBSTACLES, THESE MENTAL
KIND OF OBSTACLES, THESE LEVELS
OF IGNORANCE.
IN TERMS OF LANGUAGE, WHAT IS
LANGUAGE?
WE CAN BASICALLY DEFINE IT AS
ANOTHER TOOL.
IT'S A TOOL THAT REQUIRES
INTELLIGENCE, THAT IS TO SAY YOU
HAVE TO HAVE THE REGIONS OF THE
BRAIN THAT WILL ALLOW FOR A
BEING TO BE ABLE TO CREATE
CONCEPTS MENTALLY THROUGH
EXPERIENCES AND THEN TRANSFER
THEM SYMBOLICALLY THROUGH SPEECH
AND, AS WE SAW WITH THE CAVE
PAINTINGS AND STATUES AND OTHER
ARTIFACTS, THROUGH THE
MANIPULATION OF MATERIALS.
WE NEED SYNTAX, THAT IS TO SAY
RULES.
YOU CAN'T JUST UTTER WORDS IN
ANY ORDER AND EXPECT PEOPLE TO
UNDERSTAND WHAT YOU ARE SAYING.
THERE ARE RULES, GRAMMAR AND
WHATNOT, AND SYNTAX, THAT
LANGUAGES TEND TO FOLLOW.
SOCIALISATION IS IMPORTANT,
BECAUSE YOU USE LANGUAGE IN A
SOCIAL CONTEXT.
AND AS WITTKENSTEIN SAID, THE
LIMITS OF MY LANGUAGE, MEANS THE
LIMITS OF MY WORLD.
THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN AS TRUE
DURING OUR HOMINID ANCESTRAL
TIMES, BECAUSE WHAT THEY CAN
KNOW ABOUT THEIR ENVIRONMENT, IS
IN SOME WAYS, IN MANY WAYS,
LIMITED TO WHAT THEY'VE
EXPERIENCED AND HOW THEY'VE
TRANSFERRED THOSE EXPERIENCES
INTO SYMBOLIC REPRESENTATION.
AND THOUGHTS AND IDEAS ARE OFTEN
SENTENTIAL, AND AS LANGUAGE IS
STARTING TO EVOLVE, CO-EVOLVING
WITH CONSCIOUSNESS, YOU CAN
IMAGINE THAT THEY ARE INCREASING
THEIR AWARENESS OF THEIR
ENVIRONMENT BY BEING ABLE TO
NAME THINGS MORE, UNDERSTAND
CAUSE AND EFFECT RELATIONSHIPS
MORE, AND BE ABLE TO
SYMBOLICALLY AND MATERIALLY
REPRESENT THOSE THINGS.
THERE'S VOCALISATION... ALL OF
THIS WOULD MEAN NOTHING IF THE
PHARYNGEAL DEVELOPMENT DID NOT
OCCUR AND THEY HAD THE NECESSARY
VOCAL MEANS TO BE ABLE TO
DESCRIBE AND COMMUNICATE WITH
EACH OTHER WHAT IS GOING ON.
AND FINALLY THERE'S A CERTAIN
LEVEL OF CREATIVITY.
THERE WOULD HAVE BEEN THOSE
ANCESTORS WHO WOULD HAVE HAD THE
ABILITY TO CREATE CONCEPTS AND
WORDS AND WHATNOT TO BE ABLE
TO DESCRIBE THINGS.
NOW, I'M GOING TO INTRODUCE A
CONCEPT TO YOU.
SOME OF YOU WILL ALREADY BE
FAMILIAR WITH THIS CONCEPT, SOME
OF YOU MAY NOT.
BUT BASICALLY I'M GOING TO TALK
ABOUT MEMES.
AND WHAT ARE MEMES?
ONCE HUMAN CONSCIOUSNESS AND
MORE SOPHISTICATED LANGUAGES AND
MEMES HAVE DEVELOPED, IT NOW
BECOMES APPARENT THAT WITH THIS
HEIGHTENED UNDERSTANDING OUR
ANCESTORS HAD OF THEIR
ECOLOGICAL RELATIONSHIP, A
REFLECTIVE NORMATIVITY WOULD
HAVE DEVELOPED, IN OTHER WORDS,
VALUE.

The screen changes. It reads "Value equals Naturalized Normativity. Goodness equals Survival-Reproductive (S-R) Value. Memetic Equilibrium. Maintaining a balance within one’s memetic niche."

Christopher diCarlo continues VALUE I DEFINE AS BEING EQUATED
WITH NATURALISED NORMATIVITY.
UNLIKE ANY SPECIES BEFORE HOMO
SAPIENS, THEY WOULD NOW HAVE HAD
A SENSE OF WORTH RELATIVE TO
THEIR VIEW OF THEMSELVES, OF
OTHERS AND OF THEIR ENVIRONMENT.
FOR THE FIRST TIME IN OUR
HISTORY AS A SPECIES, THIS WOULD
HAVE A CONSCIOUS RECOGNITION,
AND INCENTIVE TO MAINTAIN
BIOLOGICAL EQUILIBRIUM.
THEY COULD NOW, SORT OF, WORK
OUTSIDE OF THE BOX SO TO SPEAK.
THEY COULD ACTUALLY SEE
THEMSELVES IN SITUATIONS AND BE
ABLE TO CONSIDER WHAT WAS GOING
ON BETWEEN THEM AND THEIR
ENVIRONMENT.
AND THIS HAD NEVER OCCURRED
BEFORE IN THE HISTORY OF OUR
SPECIES.
THAT'S WHY THIS IS SUCH A
CRUCIAL TURNING POINT IN OUR
ANCESTRAL EVOLUTION.
SO THE VALUE OF GOAL DRIVEN
IMPROVEMENT IS ENTIRELY
ARBITRARY.
ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS LOOK AT
THE VAST NUMBERS OF WAYS IN
WHICH HUMANS HAVE EVOLVED
CULTURALLY, RIGHT?
AND WE DIFFER DRASTICALLY IN
WHAT WE VALUE AS BEING GOOD,
RIGHT?
YOU HAVE TO KILL THE SHEEP THIS
WAY, NO YOU HAVE TO KILL THE
GOAT THIS WAY.
NO, YOU DO IT THIS WAY.
NO, I THINK YOU SHOULD DO IT
THIS WAY, RIGHT?
EVERYBODY HAS THEIR DIFFERENT
WAYS OF DOING THINGS, AND THEY
CREATE VALUE SYSTEMS BASED ON
THOSE, RIGHT?
SO THE MEMES THEY DEVELOP ARE
EXTREMELY IMPORTANT.
SO GOOD, THEN IS DEFINED HERE,
NOT AS PLATO WOULD DEFINE IT, AS
SOME UNIVERSAL FORM, BUT IS THAT
WHICH IS GROUNDED IN THE
FUNCTION OF AN ORGANISM WITH ITS
ENVIRONMENT.
SO WHAT HAPPENS IS WE GET THIS
KIND OF RECIPROCAL FEEDBACK LOOP
WHICH EXISTS BETWEEN AN
ENVIRONMENT AND AN ORGANISM.
AND NOW FOR THE FIRST TIME, THE
ORGANISM UNDERSTANDS ITS PLACE
IN THAT FEEDBACK LOOP, AT FIRST
CRUDELY AND THEN LATER MUCH,
MUCH, MUCH MORE REFINED, RIGHT?
AND SO WHAT WE HAVE HERE IS
BASICALLY A CONCEPT OF GOOD,
WHICH CAN BE DEFINED IN TERMS OF
WHAT IS CONDUCIVE TO BENEFIT AN
ORGANISM, THROUGH THE
INTERACTION OF GENETIC
PREDISPOSITIONS WITHIN A GIVEN
ENVIRONMENTAL NICHE.
SO GOODNESS, THEN IS MEASURED
PURELY IN TERMS OF FITNESS FOR
SURVIVAL AND REPRODUCTION.
GOODNESS THEN EQUALS S-R VALUE.
WHAT IS GOOD IS WHAT ALLOWS OUR
SPECIES TO SURVIVE AND
REPRODUCE.
SO GOODNESS THEN, ACROSS THE
BOARD, HAS THAT SAME VALUE FOR
ALL BIOLOGICAL ORGANISMS, BUT
NOW, FOR THE FIRST TIME IN THE
HISTORY OF THIS PLANET, A
SPECIES HAS EVOLVED TO RECOGNISE
THIS RELATIONSHIP, A MAJOR
TURNING POINT I THINK, IN THE
EVOLUTION OF INTELLIGENCE.
BY 40,000 YEARS AGO, IT APPEARS
THAT THE NECESSARY CONDITIONS
FOR CONSCIOUSNESS AND LANGUAGE
HAD REACHED A CRITICAL POINT.
WITH VARYING ECOLOGICAL NICHES,
BANDS MOVING OUT OF AFRICA AND
INTO EUROPE AND ASIA AND
WHATNOT.
CULTURES DEVELOPED IDENTITIES
THROUGH WHAT'S CALLED MEMETIC
TRANSFERENCE.
THEY DEVELOPED IDEAS, MEMES AND
WHATNOT, AND THEY THINK THEY
BECOME CONDUCIVE TO THEIR
SURVIVAL AND REPRODUCTION, OKAY?
ALTHOUGH THEY DON'T GET TOGETHER
AND SAY, "HEY, I THINK THIS IS
GOOD FOR, YOU KNOW, LIVING AND
SCREWING."
IT'S NOT AS THOUGH THEY GET
TOGETHER AND DO THAT.
IT CAN BE DONE IMPLICITLY, AND
WHATEVER THEY THINK IS IMPORTANT
CAN THEN BE TAUGHT TO THE
YOUNGER GENERATIONS AND SHOWED
IN A CERTAIN WAY.
SO WHAT HAPPENS IS YOU SEE THE
EMERGENCE OF NOW WHAT'S CALLED,
WHAT I CALL MEMETIC EQUILIBRIUM.
SO THIS MEMETIC EQUILIBRIUM NOW
EMERGES.
MEMETIC EQUILIBRIUM IS THAT
WICH INVOLVES MAINTAINING A BALANCE
WITHIN ONE’S MEMETIC NICHE.
ESSENTIALLY, AS THE MEMES
DEVELOP AND WAYS FOR DOING
THINGS AND BELIEFS DEVELOP, ANY
FLUCTUATIONS FROM THAT
EQUILIBRIUM CAN INDICATE
POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE VALUE.
FOR THE INDIVIDUAL, THE KIN, THE
RELATIVES, THE GROUP, THE ENTIRE
GROUP.
DEVIATIONS IN THE MEMETIC
EQUILIBRIUM DIRECT ACTION AND
CHALLENGE CURRENT BELIEFS.
THE TWO MACRO PROGRAMS WE NEED
TO REMEMBER FOR ALL SPECIES ARE,
IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER,
SURVIVAL, AND SEX.
THE THREE RULES FOR COMPLYING
WITH THESE DRIVES, AS SOME OF MY
STUDENTS WILL BE ABLE TO TELL
YOU, ARE EAT, DON'T GET EATEN,
MAKE LITTLE BABIES.
IF AN ORGANISM ABIDES BY THESE
THREE PRE-PROGRAMMED RULES, IT
STANDS A PRETTY GOOD CHANCE FOR
MAINTAINING BIOLOGICAL
EQUILIBRIUM AND SURVIVING.
BUT CONSCIOUSNESS AND LANGUAGE
HAVE ALLOWED OUR SPECIES TO
MANIPULATE OUR ENVIRONMENTS IN
EXTREMELY COMPLEX AND SUBTLE
WAYS.
JUST IMAGINE THE ADVANTAGES IN
TERMS OF ECONOMY AND ENERGY,
LANGUAGE AND CONSCIOUSNESS HAVE
GENERATED FOR THE TRANSFERENCE
OF INFORMATION.
THINK ABOUT THIS.
INSTEAD OF VISIBLY HAVING TO
CONSTANTLY CONFIRM EXPERIENCES
OR FALSIFY EXPERIENCES, ON CAN
CONCEPTUALISE AT A DISTANCE SO
TO SPEAK.
SO IF THERE'S A PROBLEM
OCCURRING OVER A HILL, YOU KNOW,
THERE'S ANIMALS GATHERING OR
THERE'S ANOTHER GROUP OF
INDIVIDUALS THAT WISH TO BE
WARRING OR WHATNOT.
INSTEAD OF HAVING TO TAKE
ANOTHER PERSON UP ON TOP OF THE
HILL AND POINT.
AH, AND NOW IT BECOMES CLEAR IN
THAT PERSON'S MIND... INSTEAD IF
THEY COULD JUST SAY, "THINGS
AREN'T LOOKING REALLY GOOD OVER
THAT HILL."
"REALLY, WHY?"
"NASTY ANIMALS OVER THERE."
"OH, OKAY, LET'S GO THIS WAY."
THE AMOUNT OF ENERGY, RIGHT?
THE ECONOMY OF LOCOMOTION THAT
IS PRESERVED THROUGH THAT FORM
OF COMMUNICATION, IS GREAT.
SO IN THAT RESPECT, LANGUAGE
CLEARLY HAS HIGH S-R VALUE.
ONCE AN EXPLANATORY SCHEMA HAS BEEN
ESTABLISHED, A COLLECTION OF
MEMES, HOWEVER CRUDE AND EVEN
THREATENING TO BIOLOGICAL
EQUILIBRIUM, THE VALUE PLACED
UPON MEMES MAY BRING ABOUT BOTH
BIOLOGICAL AND MEMETIC
EQUILIBRIA.
IN THIS SENSE, VALUE IS MEASURED
IN TERMS OF MAINTAINING BIO-
MEMETIC EQUILIBRIA.
ONCE THIS IS ATTAINED,
DEVIATIONS FROM THE EQUILIBRIUM
ARE FELT MUCH MORE ACUTELY.
SO BIO-MEMETIC EQUILIBRIUM IS
BASICALLY EQUIVALENT TO A
NATURALIZED VALUE, WHICH IS...

The screen changes. It reads "Bio-memetic Equilibrium equals Naturalized Value i.e. that which is perceived or believed to be conducive to survival and reproduction (S-R Value). Causality, Morality, Mortality."

Christopher diCarlo says TO MAINTAIN BIO-MEMETIC
EQUILIBRIUM, CONSIDERABLE EFFORT
WILL BE MADE RELATED TO THREE
VERY IMPORTANT MEMETIC FOCAL
POINTS CAUSALITY, MORALITY AND MORTALITY
HAVING CO-EVOLVED SOPHISTICATED
LANGUAGES AND THE CONSCIOUS
ABIITY TO OBSERVE THEMSELVES IN
THE EEA, WOULD HAVE GENERATED
NATURAL EVENTS WHICH WOULD HAVE
REQUIRED EXPLANATION.
VARIOUS FORMS OF SYMBOLIC
REPRESENTATIONS EMERGE,
ARTIFACTS, DIFFERENT CULTURES
DEVELOP.
SYMBOLIC REPRESENTATION IS
IMPOSSIBLE WITHOUT CONSCIOUS
AWARENESS AND DIRECTED THOUGHT.
YOU JUST DON'T ACCIDENTALLY GET
THESE STATUES OF A VENUS, YOU
KNOW, FUMBLING AROUND WITH THE
CLAY, "WHOA, LOOK AT THAT!"
NO, THAT DOESN'T HAPPEN.
I'M NOT SAYING IT COULDN'T
HAPPEN, I JUST THINK IT'S HIGHLY
UNLIKELY.
ALONG WITH THE CONSCIOUS AND
PRACTICAL NEED FOR EXPLANATION
REGARDING CAUSALITY, MORALITY
AND MORTALITY, THERE IS ALSO A
BIOLOGICAL MOTIVATING FACTOR,
WHICH IS THE NEUROLOGICAL
PAYLOAD, ENDORPHIN ACTIVITY.
IT IS MY HYPOTHESIS THAT AFTER
OUR ANCESTORS DEVELOPED THE
CAPACITY TO CONSCIOUSLY REFLECT
ON THEIR ENVIRONMENT, AND
DEVELOP STRONG CULTURES WITH
THRIVING MEMETIC TRANSFERENCES,
FUTURE EXPERIENCES WOULD HAVE
REQUIRED EXPLANATION AT SOME
LEVEL.
WITH THIS NEWLY DEVELOPED
CAPACITY FOR INFORMATION
ACQUISITION, THE DESIRE TO SOLVE
PROBLEMS IN THE EEA WOULD HAVE
INVOLVED THE INVENTION OF NOVEL
MEMES.
THE GREATER THE ABILITY FOR
THESE MEMES TO SATISFY
PARTICULAR INDIVIDUALS WITHIN A
SOCIAL GROUP, THE GREATER THEIR
VALUE, IRRESPECTIVE OF WHETHER
OR NOT THE MEMES WERE ULTIMATELY
CONDUCIVE TO INDIVIDUAL, KIN OR
GROUP SURVIVAL.
SO LET'S LOOK AT SOME OF THE
NEUROLOGICAL FACTORS, AND WE'LL
CONSIDER CAUSALITY.
I HEADLINE UNDER CAUSALITY WHAT
I CALL THE SHOCK AND AWE
HYPOTHESIS

The screen changes. It reads "Neurological Factors. Causality. Shock Hypothesis: Endorphins are a payload for solving problems and reducing stress. Human Reasoning Skills. Emotions and Endorphins: Feedback Loop. Facticity."

Christopher diCarlo says ENDORPHINS ARE PEPTIDE
HORMONE NEUROTRANSMITTERS WHICH
AFFECT OUR MEMORY RETENTION,
PERCEPTION OF PAIN, MOOD, AND
ABILITIES TO LEARN.
BY BINDING THE SPECIFIC RECEPTOR
SITES IN OUR BRAINS.
IN TERMS OF HUMAN REASONING
SKILLS, AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF
COGNITIVE ABILITIES, LEARNING
AND PROBLEM SOLVING INVOLVES AN
INTIMATE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN
EMOTIONS AND THE ENVIRONMENT.
AND OF COURSE IT WOULD HAVE.
WE'RE SITTING HERE, VERY NICE,
FAIRLY COZY, YOU'RE ALL VERY
NICE AND CONGENIAL AND WHATNOT,
BUT WE DON'T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT
TIGERS THAT ARE GOING TO RUSH
THROUGH THE DOOR THAT ARE GOING
TO EAT US.
WE LIVE IN AN ENTIRELY DIFFERENT
WORLD FROM THOSE OF OUR
ANCESTORS, SO YOU HAVE TO
APPRECIATE, YOU HAVE TO PUT
YOURSELF IN THAT
PHENOMENOLOGICAL MODE TO TRY TO
IMAGINE WHAT IT WOULD HAVE BEEN
LIKE WITHOUT WHAT WE NOW HAVE.
IT WOULD HAVE BEEN A VASTLY
DIFFERENT WORLD, AND THERE WOULD
HAVE BEEN AN INTIMATE CONNECTION
BETWEEN THE EMOTIONAL REACTION
AND THE STATES OF OUR ANCESTORS,
AND HOW THEY THOUGHT AND TRIED
TO SURVIVE IN THAT WORLD.
SO WHAT I'VE DONE IS I'M TRYING
TO CONNECT THAT EMOTIVE CENTRE
OF THE BRAIN WITH THE
EXPERIENTIAL ASPECT AND THE CO-
EVOLUTION OF LANGUAGE AND
CONSCIOUSNESS, TO TRY TO EXPLAIN
WHY RELIGIOUS MEMES ULTIMATELY
BECAME SO IMPORTANT, OKAY?
ONCE THE CAPACITY TO CONSCIOUSLY
AND SYMBOLICALLY REPRESENT
VARIOUS TYPES OF OCCURRENCES,
OUR ANCESTORS WOULD HAVE FOUND
THE NEED TO MEMETICALLY EXPLAIN
GAPS WITHIN THEIR CONCEPTUAL
SCHEMAS.
SO THEY HAVE A SET OF MEMES,
THEY EXPERIENCE THE WORLD IN A
PARTICULAR WAY, SOMETHING
OCCURS, IT'S A DEVIATION FROM
THAT EQUILIBRIUM.
THERE'S DISEQUILIBRIA NOW.
THEY WANT TO MAINTAIN MEMETIC
EQUILIBRIA, SO THEY HAVE TO COME
UP WITH SOME TYPE OF EXPLANATION
TO GET BACK TO THAT LEVEL OF
EQUILIBRIUM.
THERE'S ALL KINDS OF WAYS YOU
CAN DO THIS, RIGHT?
THOSE GAPS, MOST ACUTELY
RELEVANT TO THEIR SURVIVAL AND
REPRODUCTIVE CAPACITIES WOULD
HAVE CAUSED THE GREATEST AMOUNT
OF STRESS DUE TO THE POTENTIAL
DECREASE OF S-R VALUE AND
DISEQUILIBRIUM.
WE CAN MAKE A RELATIVELY SAFE
ASSUMPTION THEN, THAT ONCE THE
CAPACITY FOR CONSCIOUS MEMETIC
GAP FILLING WAS POSSIBLE, THIS
WOULD HAVE BEEN A POWERFUL TOOL
IN DEALING WITH ENVIRONMENTAL
STRESS CONDITIONS.
SO LET'S LOOK AT EMOTIONS AND
ENDORPHINS, WHAT I CALL THIS
FEEDBACK LOOP AND TRY TO PUT
OURSELVES INTO WHAT'S KNOWN AS
THE FACTICITY, OR THAT POINT AT
WHICH OUR ANCESTORS WERE GOING
THROUGH THESE VARIOUS TYPES OF
EXPERIENCES.
IT IS CLEAR THAT THE REDUCTION
OF ENVIRONMENTAL STRESS
CONDITIONS BY NEURAL PEPTIDES IS
A FEATURE OF HUMAN EVOLUTION
THAT IS INTIMATELY TIED TO
SURVIVAL STRATEGIES.
THE CONDITIONS UNDER WHICH
HUMANS EXPERIENCE SUCH
PHYSIOLOGICAL ACTIVITY IS WELL
DOCUMENTED IN THE MEDICAL
LITERATURE.
IT IS THEREFORE SAFE TO MAINTAIN
THAT THE EVOLVED PHYSIOLOGICAL
RESPONSES TO STRESS INDUCED
SITUATIONS, COMBINED WITH
INCREASINGLY MORE EVOLVED
CAPACITIES FOR CONSCIOUS
AWARENESS, AND SYMBOLIC
REPRESENTATION, LED TO THE
EMERGENCE OF A BIO-MEMETIC
FEEDBACK LOOP OF GAP FILLING
THROUGH WHAT SCOTT ATRAM REFERS
TO AS A SUPERNATURAL AGENCY,
THAT IS TO DETECT AGENCY WHERE
NONE IS PRESENT, WHICH IS TRIP
WIRED BY A PREDATOR PREY
DISTINCTION SCHEMA.
BUT WHERE DR. ATRAM MAINTAINS
THAT RELIGIOSITY IS NONADAPTIVE,
BECAUSE RELIGIONS HAVE NO
EVOLUTIONARY FUNCTIONS, I
BELIEVE THIS SPEAKS MORE TO
ORGANISED RELIGIONS OF A MUCH
LATER TIME PERIOD THAN THAT OF
THE UPPER PALAEOLITHIC.
I BELIEVE THAT THE INITIAL
EMERGENCY OF RELIGIOSITY WOULD
HAVE BEEN BROUGHT ABOUT
SPECIFICALLY FOR SURVIVAL
PURPOSES, THAT IS TO SAY, TO
MAINTAIN BIO-MEMETIC EQUILIBRIA,
AND THAT OUR ANCESTORS WERE
EMOTIONALLY FUMBLING FOR
WHATEVER MEANS THEIR PRIMITIVE
CONCEPTUAL SCHEMAS COULD COME UP
WITH IN ORDER TO BRING ABOUT AN
ENDORPHIN PAYLOAD, AND REDUCE
INDIVIDUAL AND KIN STRESS
LEVELS.
WHEN KARL MARX SAID, "RELIGION
IS THE OPIUM OF THE PEOPLE," HE
MAY HAVE HAD LITTLE IDEA HOW
ACCURATE THIS STATEMENT IS.
SO WHAT WE SEE IS BASICALLY A
PROCESS OF WHAT OCCURS WHEN WE
EXPERIENCE SOMETHING THAT IS
EITHER A REAL OR PERCEIVED
THREAT.
SO LET'S SAY SOME OF YOU NOW IN
THE AUDIENCE ARE ARACHNOPHOBIC.
YOU HAVE A GREAT FEAR OF
SPIDERS, AND I SAY, "WELL THAT'S
UNFORTUNATE, BECAUSE I BROUGHT
MY PET TARANTULA WITH ME
TONIGHT, AND I REACH INTO MY
POCKET AND I WALK OUT INTO THE
CROWD.
NOW WHETHER YOU THINK I'M
KIDDING OR NOT, IF YOU HAVE
ARACHNOPHOBIA, THIS IS WHAT
YOU'RE GOING TO BE EXPERIENCING
ON A VERY FUNDAMENTAL LEVEL.

The screen changes. It shows a human body and brain, and arrows of different colours going back and forth between the brain and the heart, and several other organs.

Christopher diCarlo says THE PROCESS BEGINS WITH AN
ACTUAL OR PERCEIVED THREAT.
AND THIS ACTIVATES THE SENSORY
AND HIGHER REASONING CENTRES OF
THE FRONTAL CORTEX.
THE CORTEX THEN SENDS A MESSAGE
TO THE AMYGDULE, THIS IS THE
PRINCIPLE MEDIATOR OF THE STRESS
RESPONSE.
SEPARATELY A PRECONSCIOUS
SIGNAL MAY PRECIPITATE ACTIVITY
IN THE AMYGDULE.
THE AMYGDULE RELEASES
CORTICOTROPIN RELEASING HORMONE,
WHICH STIMULATES THE BRAIN STEM
TO ACTIVATE THE SYMPATHETIC
NERVOUS SYSTEM VIA THE SPINAL
CHORD.
IN RESPONSE THE ADRENAL GLANDS
PRODUCE THE STRESS HORMONE
EPINEPHRIN, A SEPARATE PATHWAY
SIMULTANEOUSLY TRIGGERS THE
ADRENALS TO RELEASE GLUCOCOR...
CORTICOIDS, IM SORRY.
THE TWO TYPES OF HORMONE ACT ON
THE MUSCLE HEART AND LUNGS TO
PREPARE THE BODY FOR A FIGHT OR
FLIGHT RESPONSE.
IF THE STRESS BECOMES CHRONIC,
GLUCOCORTICOIDS INDUCE THE LOCUS
CORIOLIS TO RELEASE
NORAPINEPHRINE WHICH
COMMUNICATES WITH THE AMYGDULE,
LEADING TO THE PRODUCTION OF
MORE CRH AND TO ONGOING
REACTIVATION OF STRESS PATHWAYS.
IN OTHER WORDS, WHAT WOULD
HAPPEN IF I WERE TO REACH IN AND
PRETEND I HAD A TARANTULA, AND
ONE OF YOU IDENTIFIED YOURSELF
AS BEING AN ARACHNOPHOBE.
WE COULD TAKE...
WE COULD DO A SWAB AND MEASURE
THE CORTISOL LEVELS IN YOUR
MOUTH AT A HEIGHTENED OR
INCREASED LEVEL, RIGHT?
WHAT IS GOING TO REDUCE THAT IS
A CHANGE IN THE ENVIRONMENT.
I HAVE TO SAY, "I'M JUST
KIDDING," OR IF I DO PULL OUT A
SPIDER, YOU RUN OUT OF HERE, AND
CATCH YOUR BREATH OUT IN THE
LOBBY OR LEAVE THE BUILDING
ALTOGETHER AND THEN YOUR BODY'S
SYSTEM WILL GRADUALLY GO BACK TO
BIOLOGICAL EQUILIBRIUM.
BUT IN CASES WHERE WE CAN'T RUN
AWAY, WHERE THINGS ARE VERY
ACUTELY THREATENING TO OUR S-R
VALUE OR THE S-R VALUE OF OUR
ANCESTORS, THEY WOULD HAVE HAD
TO COME UP WITH SOMETHING TO
REDUCE THAT.
AND SOMETIMES THAT REQUIRES THE
INVENTION OF MEMES, BECAUSE IN
CERTAIN CASES, THEY WOULDN'T
HAVE BEEN ABLE TO EXPLAIN
THINGS.
IMAGINE A GROUP OF INDIVIDUALS
ON A SOUTH PACIFIC ISLAND THAT
HAPPENS TO BE VOLCANIC, AND IT'S
ACTIVE.
AND IT THREATENS THEIR VERY
SURVIVAL AND REPRODUCTIVE
CAPACITIES.
THEY CAN'T JUST PICK UP AND
LEAVE.
THEY DON'T HAVE THE TECHNOLOGY
TO GET AWAY FROM THE ISLAND.
THIS VOLCANO ISN'T GOING AWAY
ANY TIME SOON, THEY HAVE TO TRY
TO EXPLAIN IT AND DEAL WITH IT
SOMEHOW.
SO AS THE LANGUAGE AND
CONSCIOUSNESS IS CO-EVOLVING,
AND THEY NOW REALISE THIS THING
IS A THREAT TO US, WE HAVE TO DO
SOMETHING ABOUT IT.
FIRST OF ALL, IN TERMS OF
CAUSALITY, WHY IS IT DOING THIS?
THEY DON'T HAVE CONCEPTUAL
SCHEMAS THAT INCLUDE PLATE
TECTONICS, FISSURES IN THE
EARTH, MAGMA FLOWING UNDERNEATH
THE MANTLE AND COMES UP THROUGH
VENTS IN THE EARTH'S CRUST.
IF THEY DID, THEY'RE VERY, VERY
CLEVER, BECAUSE THAT'S NOT WHAT
YOU WOULD IMMEDIATELY THINK,
RIGHT, IF YOU ALREADY DIDN'T
HAVE SOME KIND OF TRAINING IN
VULCANOLOGY.
IT SEEMS TO MAKE PERFECT SENSE
TO SAY SOMETHING BIG AND NASTY
IS CAUSING THAT, AND THEN TO
PERSONALISE THOSE EVENTS ONTO
YOURSELF.
WHY?
BECAUSE YOU ARE THE MOST
IMPORTANT THING IN THE WORLD,
YOU, YOUR KIN AND YOUR GROUP.
NOTHING COULD BE MORE IMPORTANT
THAN THAT.
WHY?
BECAUSE OF THE STRONG DNA
ATTACHMENT YOU HAVE FOR SURVIVAL
AND REPRODUCTION.
SO NOW THIS THING IS GOING OFF,
IT'S THREATENING YOUR S-R VALUE.
YOU HAVE TO FILL IN YOUR GAPS.
WHAT'S CAUSING IT?
AN INVISIBLE FORCE, A GOD, A
DEMON, WHATEVER.
WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT IT?
CHUCK A VIRGIN IN.
WHY?
I DON'T KNOW, IT'S THE MOST
VALUED THING YOU HAVE.
NOW IF THAT TURNS OUT TO BE AN
ACTUAL MEME UPON WHICH YOU ACT,
YOU CAN BET THAT AT ANY GIVEN
TIME ON AN ISLAND WITH AN ACTIVE
VOLCANO, YOU'LL SEE A LOT OF
NERVOUS VIRGINS.
WHICH MAKES ME THINK IF
THAT ACTUALLY OCCURRED,
WOULD THE VIRGINS BE
MORE APT TO NOT WANT TO BE
VIRGINS ANY MORE, AND I DON'T
KNOW, A WHOLE NEW STRATEGY OF
SURVIVAL THERE I SUPPOSE.
BUT UH, "NO, NO, NO I'M NOT...
NO, WITH HIM.
LAST NIGHT... SORRY.
MY SISTER..."
SO WHAT HAPPENS IS MEMES BECOME
INVENTED IN THE FACE OF AN
ADVERSARY FROM WHICH YOU CANNOT
SIMPLY LEAVE.
I PULL OUT THE SPIDER, YOU CAN
LEAVE.
I DON'T REALLY HAVE A SPIDER,
THE CORTISOL LEVELS GO DOWN,
OKAY, THE ENDORPHINS COME
THROUGH AND YOU'RE ALLEVIATED
FROM YOUR STRESS SOMEWHAT.
IF YOU CAN'T LEAVE, IT BECOMES
VERY STRESSFUL, SO YOU HAVE TO
COME UP WITH SOMETHING.
YOU HAVE TO AT LEAST ACT
SOMEHOW, AND THAT MIGHT REQUIRE
THE INVENTIONS OF MEMES WHICH
MIGHT MEAN CRAZY PROCEDURES LIKE
THROWING HUMANS TO APPEASE A
GOD.
WHY?
IT'S THE MOST VALUABLE THING
YOU'VE GOT.
NOW MEMES CAN WORK AGAINST YOU.
THINK ABOUT IT.
IF YOU THROW ALL YOUR VIRGINS
INTO A VOLCANO AND YOU HAVE NO
FERTILE WOMEN LEFT, YOU
ESSENTIALLY TAKE YOURSELF OUT OF
EXISTENCE, BECAUSE THAT'S IT.
NOW I'D LIKE TO CONSIDER...
THAT'S THE SHOCK HYPOTHESIS.
I'D LIKE TO NOW CONSIDER THE
FLIP SIDE OF THAT, THE AWE
HYPOTHESIS.

The screen changes. It reads "Causality (continued). Awe Hypothesis: Endorphins are also present in other activities but common in those which are enjoyable e.g. experiences of good fortune, gratitude, etc. Beauty, good fortune, etc., was somehow intended to be that way."

Christopher diCarlo says ENDORPHINS, WHETHER YOU REALISE
IT OR NOT... IF THERE ARE ANY
JOGGERS IN THE AUDIENCE TONIGHT,
AND ANYBODY KNOWS A JOGGER.
IF, FOR ANY REASON, THE JOGGER
CAN NO LONGER JOG, THEY BECOME
LIKE A CAGED ANIMAL, OR THEY
CAN.
AND IT'S BECAUSEHEY CAN'T GET
THEIR FIX, ESSENTIALLY.
WHEN YOU JOG, AND YOU GET TO A
CERTAIN LEVEL, ENDORPH...
YOU KNOW WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT,
SIR?
THE ENDORPHINS FIRE, IT BECOMES
A TYPE OF HIGH.
THE SAME THING CAN OCCUR IF YOU
WORK OUT IN A GYM, IF YOU ARE
ADEPT AT A PARTICULAR SPORT, IF
YOU'RE INTERESTED IN ART OR YOU
PLAY MUSIC OR ANY OF THOSE
THINGS, HERE'S A COMMON ONE,
SEX.
ENDORPHINS FIRE AN AWFUL LOT
DURING SEX.
SO I IMAGINE QUITE A FEW OF YOU
UNDERSTAND WHAT...
WHY THESE THINGS ARE SO
ADDICTIVE.
THEY ARE OPIATES, NATURALLY
OCCURRING IN THE BRAIN, AND
THEY'RE THERE FOR A PARTICULAR
PURPOSE.
AND THEY CAN BE ARTIFICIALLY
INDUCED.
THE CANADIAN STRESS INSTITUTE
NOW HAS THE TECHNOLOGY THAT CAN
GET HUMAN BODIES TO EXPERIENCE
THESE TYPES OF FEELINGS WHILE A
STRESSFUL EVENT IS OCCURRING, TO
TRY TO GET THE BODY TO
UNDERSTAND AND REACT TO THE
STRESS BEFORE IT CAN BECOME MORE
STRESSFUL.
SO IT'S A FORM OF STRESS
MANAGEMENT THROUGH AN ARTIFICIAL
MANAGEMENT SYSTEM THAT INDUCES
ENDORPHIN ACTIVITY.
NOW, I BELIEVE THAT ONCE OUR
ANCESTORS CONSCIOUSLY REALISED
THEIR BELIEFS AND ACTIONS COULD
BRING ABOUT PRACTICAL AND
MEMETIC VALUE, CAUSAL
EXPLANATIONS FOR PHYSICAL
EVENTS, SITUATIONS AND SO FORTH
WHICH BROUGHT ABOUT POSITIVE
VALUE LED TO CONSCIOUS
APPRECIATION AND GRATITUDE.
I AM FASCINATED WITH THE
EMERGENCE, THE EVOLUTIONARY
EMERGENCE OF THE IDEA OF
GRATITUDE.
TO ACTUALLY BE GRATEFUL, I THINK
IS A FASCINATING CONCEPT IN
TERMS OF THE EVOLUTION OF OUR
ANCESTORS.
THINK ABOUT IT, TO BE GRATEFUL
TO SOMEONE FOR DOING SOMETHING
FOR YOU, BUT WHAT HAPPENS IN
THOSE CASES WHERE NO PARTICULAR
MEMBER OF THE GROUP BROUT
ABOUT YOUR PARTICULAR GOOD
FORTUNE.
I WAS TRAVELLING IN ARIZONA WITH
MY FAMILY IN THE YEAR 2000, AND
WE'RE DRIVING ALONG THE HIGHWAY
AND WE'RE HEADING NORTH FROM
PHOENIX.
AND WE PULLED INTO THE OUTSKIRTS
OF SEDONA.
AND IF ANY OF YOU HAVE EVER BEEN
TO SEDONA ARIZONA, IT IS JAW
DROPPING BEAUTIFUL.
AND WE GOT OUT OF THE CAR AND WE
WALKED AROUND ONE OF THESE HUGE
BUTTES, THAT YOU KNOW, GOES UP,
AND YOU FIND IN THE CANYONS AND
YOU SEE IN THOSE PICTURES AND
WHATNOT.
NOW THERE'S THESE THERMAL
FUNNELS THAT CIRCULATE AROUND
AND WHATNOT, AND AS I WAS
EXPERIENCING THIS, I THOUGHT I
CAN UNDERSTAND WHY NATIVE
AMERICANS THOUGHT THIS TO BE A
HOLY PLACE.
YOU KNOW, I CAN CERTAINLY
APPRECIATE THAT.
IT JUST SEEMED TO BE INCREDIBLY
BEAUTIFUL, AND I WAS VERY
GRATEFUL FOR THAT EXPERIENCE,
BUT I HAD NO PLACE TO PUT MY
GRATITUDE, BUT I COULD
UNDERSTAND WHY PEOPLE WOULD JUST
WANT TO SAY THANK YOU FOR
WHATEVER HAS GIVEN ME THIS
EXPERIENCE RIGHT NOW.
SO THE AWE HYPOTHESIS AND THE
ENDORPHIN RUSH YOU GET FROM GOOD
FORTUNE, FROM BEAUTY, FROM
AESTHETIC EXPERIENCES, CAN ALSO
BE USED TO FILL IN THOSE GAPS.
YOU EMOTIONALLY HAVE NO PLACE TO
PUT YOUR GRATITUDE, SO YOU SAY,
WE'RE BLESSED, WE HAVE GOOD
FORTUNE, AND YOU CAN USE AN
OBJECT FOR YOUR GRATITUDE AS
ANOTHER INDIVIDUAL...
INVISIBLE FORCE AT A DISTANCE,
SO TO SPEAK.
SO IT WORKS IN TERMS OF SHOCK
AND AWE, THIS ENDORPHIN
ACTIVITY.
SO GOOD FORTUNE, THEN, WHICH
BRINGS ABOUT POSITIVE VALUE TO
THE INDIVIDUAL OR GROUP CAN
BRING ABOUT AN EMOTIONAL NEED
FOR GRATITUDE.
IN MORE PROFOUND CASES, ONE CAN
EASILY IMAGINE SITUATIONS IN
WHICH OUR ANCESTORS BEGAN TO
CONSCIOUSLY ACKNOWLEDGE SUCH
FORTUNE AESTHETICALLY, AND SUCH
EXPERIENCES WOULD EVENTUALLY
HAVE GIVEN WAY TO VARIOUS FORMS
OF SYMBOLIC REPRESENTATION, LIKE
CAVE PAINTINGS, LIKE STATUES,
RITUALISED BURIALS, PRAYERS,
SPECIFIC ACTIVITIES, ETC.
AND OVER TIME, THE GAP FILLING
GOD CONCEPTS BECAME REPRESENTED
IN EVER INCREASING AESTHETIC
WAYS.
IF YOU'VE EVER SEEN SOME OF THE
CHURCHES THAT HAVE BEEN BUILT IN
HONOUR OF GOD, THE MOST AMAZING
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGNS AND
CONSTRUCTIONS YOU CAN CONCEIVE.
WHY?
IT'S THE HOUSE OF GOD, NO
FOOLING AROUND HERE, THIS BETTER
BE BIG AND THIS BETTER BE
IMPRESSIVE.
WHY?
HE'S WATCHING, YOU KNOW?
DO A GOOD JOB, MATE.
SO IN TERMS OF BEAUTY AND GOOD
FORTUNE, IT SEEMS AS THOUGH THIS
WAS SOMEHOW INTENDED TO BE THAT
WAY.

The screen changes. It shows pictures of canyons, lakes, mountains, and crags.

Christopher diCarlo says SO I'VE INCLUDED JUST A FEW
PICTURES OF LANDSCAPES AND
WHATNOT, WHERE YOU WOULD IMAGINE
OUR ANCESTORS COMING ACROSS
THESE THINGS AND SAYING, HOLY
COW, WHAT IS THAT?
AND HAVING THIS KIND OF RUSH,
THIS ENDORPHIN RUSH FROM THESE
AESTHETIC EXPERIENCES.
THIS IS ACTUALLY ICELAND.
I WAS THERE A FEW YEARS AGO.
THAT'S SEDONA ARIZONA, ACTUALLY.

The screen changes. It reads "Morality. Do’s and Don’t’s. Personalizing the association of power of creation slash destruction with S-R Value. Rituals become deeply entrenched memes: Family and Religious Memes die hardest. Mmes Can Kill You! Attempts to maintain memetic equilibria can actually defy biological equilibria.

Christopher diCarlo says SO WHAT WE HAVE NOW, WE CAN GO
ON AND WE CAN TALK BRIEFLY ABOUT
MORALITY.
AND ESSENTIALLY WHAT MORALITY
IS, IS REALLY A LIST OF DO's AND
DON'T's,
HOW MORALITY TIEIN WITH
RELIGION AND THE EMERGENCY OF A
GOD IS THAT IF OUR ANCESTORS
WERE INVENTING FORCES AT A
DISTANCE THAT CAUSE NATURE TO
ACT A CERTAIN WAY, IT IS
CERTAINLY NOT DIFFICULT TO
CONSIDER THE EXTRAPOLATION OF
RULES AND RITUALS THAT ARE
FAVOURABLE AND DISFAVOURABLE TO
THAT PARTICULAR FORCE AT A
DISTANCE.
AND SO YOU GET A LIST OF DO's
AND DON'T's.
NOW PRIOR TO ANY INVENTION OF GODS
OR DEITIES OR DEMONS OR
WHATEVER, DON'T FORGET, THERE
ALREADY WOULD HAVE BEEN IN
EXISTENCE A MORALITY, VERY
SIMPLY, A PECKING ORDER.
IT IS NOT DIFFICULT TO CONCEIVE
OF THE POSSIBILITY OF MALES
HAVING ALPHA MALES AND ALPHA
FEMALES, SIMILAR TO WHAT WE SEE
IN CERTAIN PRIMATES COLONIES AND
WHATNOT.
SO THE MORALITY COULD
HAVE ALREADY BEEN
IN PLACE IN A FAIRLY CRUDE FORM.
RELIGION, AND THE INVENTION OF
GODS AND DEITIES AND WHATNOT,
WOULD HAVE JUST GIVEN GREATER
FOCUS TO THE DOs AND DON'T's OF
A PARTICULAR GROUP.
ONE CAN PERSONALISE THE
ASSOCIATION POWER OF CREATION OR
DESTRUCTION WITH SURVIVAL AND
REPRODUCTIVE VALUE.
THERE ARE GOOD GODS, VENGEFUL
GODS, DEMONS, DEITIES OF ALL
SORTS AND TYPES WHICH ARE
ATTRIBUTED VERY SPECIFIC POWERS.
RITUALS THEN, CAN BECOME
DEEPLY ENTRENCHED MEMES
ONE THING I CANNOT EMPHASISE
MORE STRONGLY IN TONIGHT'S TALK
ARE THAT FAMILY AND RELIGIOUS
MEMES DIE HARDEST.
MEANING WHAT?
MEANING, IF YOU'VE BEEN RAISED
IN A FAMILY THAT HAS CERTAIN
RITUALS ABOUT DOING THINGS A
CERTAIN WAY, IT'S SOMETIMES VERY
DIFFICULT TO GO AGAINST THE
FAMILY'S WISHES, SO TO SPEAK.
AND IF THE FAMILY IS SOMEWHAT
RELIGIOUS, IT CAN BE EVEN MORE
DIFFICULT.
WHY?
BECAUSE THEY ARE YOUR KIN,
THEY'RE YOUR DNA, AND YOU HAVE A
RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR FAMILY
LIKE YOU HAVE WITH NO OTHER
PEOPLE.
WHY?
BECAUSE OF YOUR DNA.
SO WHEN YOU GO AGAINST THE MEMES
OF A FAMILY, THINK ABOUT WHAT
THE REACTION CAN BE FROM THAT.
SO IT CAN BE VERY DIFFICULT FOR
PEOPLE TO YOU KNOW, GO AGAINST
FAMILY MEMES.
I CONSTANTLY HAVE STUDENTS TELL
ME, "YOU KNOW, PROFESSOR
diCARLO, I WENT HOME FOR
THANKSGIVING, AND I TALKED A BIT
ABOUT WHAT YOU SAID IN CLASS,
AND THIS AND THAT, AND WHATNOT."
AND I SAID, "YOUR PARENTS
WEREN'T THRILLED, WERE THEY?"
"NO, THEY WONDER WHAT YOU'RE
TEACHING ME HERE AT THIS
UNIVERSITY."
AND I SAID, WELL, YOU KNOW,
THAT'S PART OF A LIBERAL
EDUCATION, AND THAT'S JUST A WAY
OF LOOKING AT THE WORLD IN A
DIFFERENT LIGHT, AND THAT'S TO
BE EXPECTED.
SO YOU CAN CONSIDER IT'S GOING
TO BE HAPPENING MORE AND MORE,
IF YOU CONTINUE TO BROADEN YOUR
VIEWS AND CONSIDER OTHER IDEAS
AND WHATNOT.
SO AS RELIGIOUS VIEWS BECAME
MORE DEFINED AND THEY GAINED
GREATER SOCIAL IDENTITY AND
IMPORTANCE, THEY WOULD HAVE
TAKEN ON MORE ANTHROPOMORPHIC
QUALITIES, SHAPING UNSEEN FORCES
INTO VENGEFUL GODS AND CARING
GODS AND DEMONS AND WHATNOT,
DEPENDING ON WHAT WAS HAPPENING
IN OUR ANCESTORS' ENVIRONMENT,
AND THE MANNER IN WHICH MEMETIC
TRANSFER WAS CARRIED OUT.
GODS HAVE BECOME THOSE ENTITIES
WHICH OFTEN DICTATE HOW SOCIAL
GROUPS SHOULD BEHAVE.
SUCH GROUPS MAY THEN HUNT,
FORAGE, MARRY, REAR CHILDREN,
RAISE AND SLAUGHTER ANIMALS,
TREAT OTHERS, ETC. ACCORDING TO
SPECIFIC RELIGIOUS MEMES WHICH
DICTATE APPROPRIATE ACTION AND
BEHAVIOUR.
AND DON'T FORGET, RITUALS OFTEN
SIGNIFY THE MUNDANE FROM THE
IMPORTANT.
AND THERE IS NOTHING MORE
IMPORTANT THAN RELIGIOUS MEMES.
WHY?
BECAUSE THEY COVER THE MOST
FUNDAMENTAL BASES THAT ANY HUMAN
COULD EXPECT TO COVER, RIGHT?
EXTRAPOLATIONS FROM UNEXPLAINED
OBSERVATIONS WITH THE
APPROPRIATE ANTHROPOMORPHIC
QUALITIES CAN THEN CREATE FAIRLY
LAVISH RITUALS SURROUNDING
SPECIFIC PROCEDURES.
IF ANY OF YOU HAVE BEEN TO A
HIGH MASS, A HIGH CATHOLIC MASS,
YOU'LL NOTICE IT'S LONG AND IT'S
VERY INVOLVED.
AND IF YOU'RE NOT FAMILIAR WITH
CATHOLICISM AT ALL, YOU'LL BE
ASKING A MILLION QUESTIONS,
RIGHT?
WHY IS THE PRIEST NOW DOING
THAT?
WHY IS HE DOING THAT?
WELL WHAT'S THIS, WHAT'S THAT?
AND IT'S A VERY INVOLVED AND
VERY DETAILED RITUAL.
VIOLATION OF SUCH RITUALS THEN
ACTS AS A TRIGGERING MECHANISM
INDICATING A DEVIATION FROM
MEMETIC EQUILIBRIA.
THERE IS A GREAT MEMETIC
EQUILIBRIA THAT OCCURRED TO THE
CATHOLIC CHURCH NOT TOO LONG
AGO, AND IT WAS CALLED
VATICAN II.
AND A LOT OF PEOPLE LEFT THE
CATHOLIC FAITH BECAUSE OF THAT,
BECAUSE THEY CONSIDERED IT SO
DISRUPTIVE.
OTHERS JOINED ACTUALLY BECAUSE
OF IT.
BUT IT DID PUT A RIPPLE THROUGH
THAT PARTICULAR RELIGION.
ANOTHER THING WE NEED TO
CONSIDER IS THAT MEMES CAN KILL
YOU
LIKE CHUCKING VIRGINS INTO
VOLCANOS, RIGHT?
SELF SACRIFICE, VOWS OF
CHASTITY.
I MEAN, IF YOU THINK OF THAT,
IT'S ESSENTIALLY, IT'S GOT VERY
LOW S-R VALUE, RIGHT?
IT MIGHT HAVE S VALUE, IT HAS NO
R VALUE, RIGHT, UNLESS YOU
BREACH YOUR VOW, THEN IT CAN
HAVE R VALUE.
IN TERMS OF MORTALITY AND
UNDERSTANDING THAT WE ARE GOING
TO DIE, WHICH WOULD HAVE BEEN, A
VERY, LIKE I SAID, A CRUCIAL
TURNING POINT IN OUR ANCESTORS'
HISTORY, WE HAVE TO CONSIDER
WHAT'S CALLED ANALOGICAL
REASONING.

The screen changes. It reads "Mortality. Analogical Reasoning: Our ancestors would have been capable of making the causal connection between the state of death and the lack of individual S-R Value (I.e. death equals 0 S-R Value). Caveman Angst: With analogical reasoning, ancestors capable of realizing that what fate befalls their kin will eventually befall them."

Christopher diCarlo says YOU'RE NOT SURVIVING, AND I
DON'T THINK ANYONE WANTS TO
REPRODUCE WITH YOU.
UNLESS YOU'RE INTO NECROPHILIA,
I SUPPOSE, BUT I DON'T KNOW.
BUT THAT'S JUST A PET PROJECT,
WE CAN TALK ABOUT THAT LATER.
ONCE A GROUP MEMBER DIED, AND
OUR ANCESTORS POSSESSED THE
COGNITIVE ABILITY TO ACKNOWLEDGE
THEIR OWN IGNORANCE, RELATIVE TO
THEIR CONCEPTUAL SCHEMAS, THEY
WOULD HAVE BEEN ABLE TO OBSERVE
THAT THE DEAD INDIVIDUAL DIFFERS
FROM THEM IN DISTINCT WAYS.
THIS IS THE HUMAN COMPARATIVE
BRAIN.
WE'RE ALWAYS, CONSTANTLY MAKING
COMPARISONS.
SO IN OTHER WORDS, HE'S NOT LIKE
US ANY MORE.
HE'S NOT MOVING, HE SMELLS BAD,
HE'S CHANGING, HE'S DECAYING,
HE'S ROTTING, HE'S FULL OF
MAGGOTS, SOMETHING IS WRONG OR
BAD HERE.
WHERE BADNESS REFERS TO THE
DISRUPTION IN BIOMETRIC
EQUILIBRIA, RIGHT, THAT'S HOW
IT'S MEASURED.
TO HAVE MADE THIS DISTINCTION
BETWEEN LIFE AND DEATH, AND
RELATE IT BACK ONTO THEMSELVES
THROUGH THIS KIND OF CONSCIOUS
FEEDBACK LOOP, THROUGH
CONSCIOUSNESS AND LANGUAGE,
WOULD HAVE BEEN A VERY POWERFUL
COMPARATIVE TOOL, WHICH WOULD
HAVE CLEARLY IDENTIFIED OUR
ANCESTORS WITH A CAUSAL
RELATIONSHIP ABOUT THEMSELVES.
THE THEORY OF MINE, WOULD THEN
HAVE TRANSFERRED BACK ONTO THEM
THAT INDIVIDUALS WHO DIED ARE
NOT COMING BACK, AND THAT WHEN
THEY DIE, THEY ARE GOING TO
EXPERIENCE, HAVE THE SAME
EXPERIENCE AS THOSE PEOPLE.
AND THIS, I REFER TO AS CAVEMAN
ANGST.
OH, WHY ME?
WHY DO I HAVE TO DIE?
UH, WHY ME?
I DON'T KNOW, I DON'T KNOW.
SO THE IDEA OF IMMORTALITY, THAT A
PERSON IS NOT REALLY GONE, MAY
FLY IN THE FACE OF REASON, BUT
IT IS ONE THAT WOULD HAVE
PROVID A MEMETIC BUFFER WHICH
WOULD HAVE EASED THE PRIMAL
ANGST OF THE REALISATION OF
ONE'S MORTALITY.
THE HEREAFTER, THEN, IS A
MEMETIC LIE WHICH FILLS A VERY
BIG AND EMOTIONALLY TROUBLING
GAP.
FROM THE
MOMENT OUR ANCESTORS FIRST
REALISED THEIR MORTALITY, WE
HAVE BEEN IN DENIAL OF IT.

The screen changes. It reads "Mortality (continued). Hence, the need for Memetic Buffers in relation to human emotions and the endorphin feedback loop. Gods, deities, demons, etc. fulfilled an extremely important job in the EEA. They satisfied curiosity, mental disquiet, and gratitude of our ancestors. Whether conducive to biological equilibria or not, they may well serve memetic needs which can run count to biological equilibria."

Christopher diCarlo says THAT WHICH CAN BE MOST APPEALING
AND HAVE AESTHETIC QUALITIES
RELATIVE TO A VALUE SYSTEM OF
THE PEOPLE AT THE TIME, WOULD
HAVE HAD CONSIDERABLE POWER AND
INFLUENCE OVER PEOPLE, TO THE
POINT OF BECOMING RITUALISED IN
A MANNER THAT PROVIDES MEMETIC
COMFORT IN THIS KIND OF SYSTEMIC
FEEDBACK LOOP.
HENCE THE EVENTUAL RITUALISED
BURIALS WE SEE ABOUT 30,000
YEARS AGO.
IT IS AN ENDORPHIN RUSH THAT
FEEDS BACK AND PROVIDES WHAT A
PARTICULAR GROUP CONSIDERS TO BE
IMPORTANT OR VALUABLE.
THE STRESS OF FEAR THE FEELING
OF DREAD IS OVERCOME BY GAP
FILLING MEMES OF MYTHOLOGIES OF
THE HEREAFTER.
THE MYTHOLOGIES CAN THEN BECOME
HIGHLY RITUALISED.
THROUGH PECKING ORDERS, SOME
RITUALS CAN BE VALUED BECAUSE OF
THEIR HIGH MEMETIC SURVIVAL
VALUE.
"WE'VE ALWAYS DONE IT THIS WAY.
IT SEEMS TO HAVE WORKED THIS
WAY.
WE'RE GOING TO ALWAYS DO IT THIS
WAY, THERE'S NO NEED TO CHANGE."
"WELL I THINK WE SHOULD DO IT
THIS WAY."
"KILL HIM, GET RID OF HIM."
"WHY?"
"BECAUSE HE'S GOING AGAINST THE
WAY WE DO THINGS."
THINK ABOUT IT.
AN EQUILIBRIUM IS THE THING THAT
GIVES US A SENSE OF,
EVERYTHING'S OKAY, WE’VE GOT
THINGS TAKEN CARE OF.
THAT GETS DISRUPTED, WHEHER
IT'S THROUGH AN EXTERNAL
EXPERIENCE OF A NATURAL EVENT,
OR ONE WITHIN YOUR GROUP CAN
APPEAR TO BE EXTREMELY
THREATENING, AND YOU DON'T
NECESSARILY WANT TO DO THAT.
I DON'T KNOW HOW MANY OF YOU
ARE...
HAVE FRIENDS OR RELATIVES OR
YOURSELVES, MAYBE, VERY MUCH
OPPOSED TO CHANGE.
BUT SOMETIMES PEOPLE, AHH, I
DON'T WANT TO DO THAT.
WHY?
BECAUSE THEY'RE USED TO DOING
THINGS A CERTAIN WAY.
"WELL WHAT IF WE ADD JUST A
LITTLE BIT OF ICINESS."
"NO, I DON'T WANT THAT."
"WHY?"
"I DON'T LIKE IT."
"HOW DO YOU KNOW?"
"I KNOW."
"HAVE YOU TRIED IT?"
"NO."
"WELL WHY DON'T WE JUST ADD A
LITTLE--."
"NO."
PEOPLE WILL FIGHT THAT BECAUSE
THEY DON'T WANT TO DISRUPT THAT
PART OF THEIR LIFE, THAT
EQUILIBRIUM, THAT BALANCE.
SO THIS FEAR OF DREAD...
IS BASICALLY THERE'S A GAP
FILLING PROCEDURE WHICH SAYS,
"IT'S OKAY, DON'T WORRY ABOUT
IT.
IT MAY LOOK BAD NOW, BUT IT'S
NOT THAT BAD, REALLY."
"WHY?"
"BECAUSE YOU LIVE AGAIN."
"REALLY?"
"YES."
"WELL THAT'S NOT BAD."
"NO, IT'S NOT BAD AT ALL."
THE MYTHOLOGIES CAN THEN BECOME,
LIKE I SAID, HIGHLY RITUALISED.
AND WHAT THIS DOES IS IT
RESTORES SOME FORM OF EMOTIONAL
STASIS OR EQUILIBRIUM TO THE
GROUP.
CORTISOL LEVELS REDUCE,
ENDORPHINS FIRE, THE STRESS IS
RELIEVED AND THE EQUILIBRIUM IS
MAINTAINED.
IT IS AN ENDORPHIN INDUCED
DECEPTION, HOWEVER, DEVOUTLY TO
BE WISHED.
IF IT GOES UNCHALLENGED AND
GAINS FAVOUR WITHIN THE GROUP,
IT MAY BECOME FIRMLY ENTRENCHED
OVER TIME, AND THEN, OF COURSE,
TIME OR DURATION CAN BECOME AN
EPISTEMIC FACTOR, WHICH MANY
"TRUE BELIEVERS" HOLD TO BE A
CRITERION OF TRUTH.
CONSIDER JUDAISM AND
CHRISTIANITY, ETC.
ANTIQUITY, HOWEVER, DOES NOT
GUARANTEE TRUTH.
JUST BECAUSE WELL THAT'S THE WAY
WE'VE BEEN DOING IT FOR
THOUSANDS OF YEARS.
WELL THAT'S NOT A GOOD CRITERION
FOR TRUTH.
YOU COULD HAVE BEEN WRONG FOR
THOUSANDS OF YEARS, AND JUST NOT
REALISED IT, RIGHT?
FEW TODAY PRACTISE RELIGIONS
BELIEVING IN ROMAN, EGYPTIAN OR
GREEK OR NORSE GODS, BECAUSE
THEY WERE STEEPED IN ANTIQUITY.
WHY SHOULDN'T WE JUST USE THAT
CRITERION AS A JUSTIFICATION.
WELL, WE DON'T, WE MAKE UP OTHER
CRITERIA AND WE INVENT OTHER
TYPES OF MEMES.
AWARENESS OF ONE'S OWN EVENTUAL
DEMISE, THEN, IS A CONSIDERABLE
DISRUPTION TO ONE'S MEMETIC
EQUILIBRIUM, ESPECIALLY AFTER
THE COGNITIVE CAPACITY FOR
CONSCIOUS REFLECTIVE IGNORANCE
IS DEVELOPED AND LANGUAGE IS
AVAILABLE TO ARTICULATE, TO
ONESELF AND OTHERS, THE NEED FOR
SOME PRETTY LARGE GAP FILLING.
IN RESPONSE, MEMES BECOME
DEVELOPED, AS ENDORPHIN INDUCED
GAP FILLERS IN ORDER TO MAINTAIN
BIO-MEMETIC EQUILIBRIUM.
IN CONCLUSION, WE CAN SEE THAT
EMOTIONAL RESPONSES TO NATURAL
EVENTS WOULD HAVE PRODUCED
EXTREMELY VARIED VIEWS REGARDING
CAUSALITY, MORALITY AND
MORTALITY IN THE EEA, AND
CONTINUE TO DO SO TODAY.
BUT THE S-R VALUE IS PERCEIVED
TO BE THE SAME UNIVERSALLY, DUE
TO THE SIMILARITIES OF BRAIN
STRUCTURES AND THE ENDORPHIN
PAYLOAD.
THE SAME REASONS ARE THERE FOR
WHY PEOPLE INVENT DIFFERENT
CULTURAL WAYS OF DOING THINGS.
IT'S THAT SAME TYPE OF ENDORPHIN
PAYLOAD.
RELIGION SATISFIES A HUMAN NEED
FOR MEMETIC EQUILIBRIUM.
IT BRINGS BALANCE TO AN
ANCESTRAL NEED TO SATISFY SOME
VERY FUNDAMENTAL QUESTIONS
RELATED TO CAUSALITY, MORALITY
AND MORTALITY.
WHO, OR WHAT AM I?
WHY AM I HERE?
HOW SHOULD I BEHAVE?
WHAT CAN OR DO I KNOW?
AND, WHAT IS TO COME OF ME?
THESE ARE EXTREMELY IMPORTANT
QUESTIONS TO MOST CONSCIOUS
HUMANS.
IF YOU ANSWER THESE, THAT CAN
PROVIDE AN ENORMOUS AMOUNT OF
RELIEF.
RELIEF FROM STRESS AND FEAR OF
NOT KNOWING, AND A GREAT DEAL OF
SECURITY.
YOU'VE GOT YOUR BASES COVERED.
YOU GET UP IN THE MORNING, THERE'S
SOMEONE TO WATCH OVER ME.
IT'S THIS INVISIBLE THING, THIS
SPIRIT, THIS GOD TYPE THING.
"HOW SHOULD I BEHAVE?"
"WHAT DO THE SCRIPTURES SAY?"
"THAT'S A GOOD POINT.
"SHOULD I SHAG MY SECRETARY?"
"I DON'T KNOW, WHAT DO
SCRIPTURES SAY HERE?
NO, NO, I SHOULDN'T DO THAT."
"CHEAT ON MY TAXES?"
"NO, NO..."
"COVET MY NEIGHBOUR'S WIFE?"
"NO, NO."
"WELL SHE LOOKS GOOD."
"DOESN'T MATTER."
"WHAT DOES IT SAY IN
SCRIPTURES?"
"NO."
A LOT OF YOUR BASES ARE COVERED
WITH RELIGION.
THAT IS WHY I THINK IT HAS SUCH
A GREAT APPEAL TO SO MANY
PEOPLE.
YOU DON'T NECESSARILY HAVE TO
THINK IN A VERY REFLECTIVE
MANNER, BECAUSE YOU'VE GOT THE
ANSWERS.
WHAT IS THE BOOK OF ANSWERS?
I HAVE NO IDEA.
IF THERE IS SUCH A BOOK, I HAVE
NO KNOWLEDGE OF IT, WHATSOEVER.
BUT MANY RELIGIOUS MINDED PEOPLE
MAINTAIN THAT IT IS THEIR BOOK
OF SCRIPTURE, THAT ALL THEY NEED
CAN BE FOUND WITHIN THAT BOOK.
TO MANY, THESE ARE VERY
IMPORTANT QUESTIONS TO ANSWER
AND PROVIDE GREAT HOPE, GREAT
RELIEF, GREAT HAPPINESS.
IN SHORT, THEY PROVIDE MEMETIC
EQUILIBRIUM.
HUMAN CONSCIOUSNESS AND LANGUAGE
HAVE EVOLVED TO THE POINT AT
WHICH SUPPOSED ANSWERS TO THESE
QUESTIONS HAVE GREATER
IMPORTANCE THAN ALL OTHERS.
AND I BELIEVE THIS IS SO BECAUSE
THE HUMAN EMOTIONAL NEED FOR
EPISTEMIC SECURITY AND THE
MAINTENANCE OF MEMETIC
EQUILIBRIUM.
THIS IS A QUOTATION FROM RICHARD
LEAKY.
HE SAYS, "THIS IS ONE OF THE
PARADOXES OF HOMO SAPIENS.
WE EXPERIENCE THE UNITY AND
DIVERSITY OF A MIND SHAPED BY
EONS OF LIFE AS HUNTER
GATHERERS.
WE EXPERIENCE ITS UNITY AND
COMMON POSSESSION OF AN
AWARENESS OF SELF, AND A SENSE
OF AWE AT THE MIRACLE OF LIFE,
AND WE EXPERIENCE ITS DIVERSITY
IN THE DIFFERENT CULTURES
EXPRESSED IN LANGUAGE, CUSTOMS,
AND RELIGIONS THAT WE CREATE AND
THAT CREATE US.
WE SHOULD REJOICE AT SO WONDROUS
A PRODUCT OF EVOLUTION."
REJOICE, INDEED.
WHAT AN ENDORPHIN RUSH.
THANK YOU.

Watch: Christopher di Carlo on The Evolution of Religion