Meme

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(basic idea of a meme, term coinage, examples, religion as memeplexes.)
 
(Memes for religion and faith)
 
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A '''meme''' is a unit of cultural information that is passed on by imitation. The term was coined by the biologist [[Richard Dawkins]] in his 1976 book ''The Selfish Gene''. It is a replicator that is in some respects analogous to the gene, thus the name.  
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{{wiktionary|meme}}
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A '''meme''' is a basic unit of cultural information that is passed on by imitation. The term was coined by the biologist [[Richard Dawkins]] in his 1976 book, ''[[The Selfish Gene]]''. It is a replicator that is in some respects analogous to the biological unit called the [[gene]], thus the similar-sounding name.
  
Memes, similar to genes, attempt to get themselves replicated. They do this by getting their human hosts to pass them on to other people, or to a medium such as the internet.  
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Like genes, memes attempt to get themselves replicated. They do this by getting their human hosts to pass them on to other people, or to a transmission medium such as the internet. (Note that it is common to speak of memes and genes as if they act with intent, but of course this is merely a linguistic convenience.)
  
 
== Examples of memes ==
 
== Examples of memes ==
  
One example of a meme is a catchy song, because people are likely to listen to it and hum the tune, as well as telling their friends about the song, the radio play, etc. Another good example might be a funny joke or slogan, that people are likely to pass on and imitate.  
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One example of a meme is a catchy song: people are likely to remember it long after they hear it, humming the tune to themselves, for example, and telling their friends about it. They might place links to an online version of the song on a blog or other website. As the song becomes more popular, radio play may increase, enabling the song to more quickly permeate the culture.
  
== The Memes For Religion and Faith ==
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Another good example might be a funny joke or slogan that people are likely to imitate and pass on to others.
  
Some memeticists have described religion as a complex set of memes that are complementary, otherwise known as a memeplex(religion is not the only possible memeplex; there may be one for, say, political beliefs). Religion is a highly successful memeplex as many people believe in religious ideas and spread them. The idea of "[[faith]]" is a particularly good meme, because it prevents questioning of other memes within the memeplex.
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== Memes for religion and faith ==
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Some memeticists (studiers of memes) have described [[religion]] as a complex set of memes that are complementary, otherwise known as a ''memeplex''. (Other memeplexes might include, for example, political beliefs or ideologies.)
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Religion is a highly successful memeplex, as many people believe in religious ideas and spread them. The idea of [[faith]] is a particularly effective meme, because it prevents questioning of other memes within the memeplex.  
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Two other memeplexes are [[Atheism]] and the [[Scientific method]].  They tend strongly to reinforce each other as there is no scientific evidence for [[God]].
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==External link==
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*[http://www.cscs.umich.edu/~crshalizi/Dawkins/viruses-of-the-mind.html ''Viruses of the Mind'' by Richard Dawkins] — an essay on religions as viral memes
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[[Category:Psychology]]

Latest revision as of 11:40, 22 June 2008

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For more information, see the Wikipedia article:
Wiktionary-logo-en.png
For more information, see the Wiktionary article:

A meme is a basic unit of cultural information that is passed on by imitation. The term was coined by the biologist Richard Dawkins in his 1976 book, The Selfish Gene. It is a replicator that is in some respects analogous to the biological unit called the gene, thus the similar-sounding name.

Like genes, memes attempt to get themselves replicated. They do this by getting their human hosts to pass them on to other people, or to a transmission medium such as the internet. (Note that it is common to speak of memes and genes as if they act with intent, but of course this is merely a linguistic convenience.)

Examples of memes

One example of a meme is a catchy song: people are likely to remember it long after they hear it, humming the tune to themselves, for example, and telling their friends about it. They might place links to an online version of the song on a blog or other website. As the song becomes more popular, radio play may increase, enabling the song to more quickly permeate the culture.

Another good example might be a funny joke or slogan that people are likely to imitate and pass on to others.

Memes for religion and faith

Some memeticists (studiers of memes) have described religion as a complex set of memes that are complementary, otherwise known as a memeplex. (Other memeplexes might include, for example, political beliefs or ideologies.)

Religion is a highly successful memeplex, as many people believe in religious ideas and spread them. The idea of faith is a particularly effective meme, because it prevents questioning of other memes within the memeplex.

Two other memeplexes are Atheism and the Scientific method. They tend strongly to reinforce each other as there is no scientific evidence for God.

External link

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