Many feel that memetics is too abstract to assist deconversion. Here's an outline for a ritual designed to integrate it with three other ideas for a more tangible social emotional impact.

Give me you feedback, please.

MemeOut Outline: Directions for ritual actions in color

 

Intro

We're gathered here to remember how we've been infected by Dominator religious mind viruses  and to celebrate our escape.

 

(1) Let us be grateful to Richard Dawkins for opening our eyes to memes.

Hold up The Selfish Gene

Passing the book around

Dominator Culture Religious Mind Viruses infect human hosts. They evolved to exploit exploiting our misperceptions, our longings, our pain and loss to drive their reproduction.

 

(2) Let us be grateful to Riane Eisler for opening our hands from fists.

Hold up The Chalice & The Blade

Passing the book around

Cultural Transformation Theory shows how violent  Dominator hierarchies justify adults abusing children, men abusing women, and a few powerful men abusing all others.

 

(3) Let us be grateful to Eric Berne for opening our minds to the Victim/Rescuer/Persecutor mind games built into Religious Dominator Memeplexes.

Hold up Games People Play

Passing the book around

 

People seduced by these mind games settle for self worth based on invidious comparison instead of authentic self worth, "I'm OK, You're Not OK" instead of "I'm OK, You're OK". In Group/Out Group self righteousness passes for self affirmation.

 

Reality's rich tapestry is twisted to reduce every action into one of these:

 

Victims who feel moral superiority to their persecutors.

Hold up a bitter food

Bitter food represents the self pity stamps victims save up.

Taste and pass around the bitter food

The bitter taste hides lies of omission, responsibility for provocation.

 

Hold up a "hot" food

Spicy food represents the anger stamps victims save up.

Taste and pass around the "hot" food

The heat makes blaming and shaming easier, anger and rage help us to demonize outsiders.

 

Rescuers who feel moral superiority to victims and persecutors.

 

Persecutors who feel moral superiority to those they persecute by the trick of "cashing in" self pity and anger stamps. They get a guilt free pass for cruelty and destruction, because the demonized "deserve it".

 

Religious Dominator Memeplexes infecting competing groups perpetrate cycles of mutual hatred and destruction in symbiosis with each other, dividing and conquering the host species.

 

(4) Let us be grateful to Chris Hedges...

Hold up War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning

...for opening our hearts to the terrifying human depravity of war, the secret dungeon in Dominator Culture's foundation.

Passing the book around

 

Affirmation  (to music)

 

Cast off!!  Religious Dominator Memeplex lies of omission. Cast away motion

Cast off!!  their impossible promises. Cast away motion

Cast off!! their imaginary fears. Cast away motion

Cast off!! primitive (pause) Cast away motion

 past-obsessed (pause) Cast away motion

 magical (pause) Cast away motion

 thinking which impairs us. (hitting forehead)

Impairs us from comprehending today's complex real world.

Embrace all humans!!  Holding hands around the circle

Our small fragile Earth will either become a wasteland

wasteland (echoing)

for us all to perish,

or (raise arms together) it will be sustainable for people all races and ethnicities.

Views: 312

Replies to This Discussion

A few reasons I don't use a play format:

  • the audience is passive
  • the audience has no opportunity to critique the content in advance
  • my purpose is education rather than entertainment.


I'm not supporting everything de Botton says. I don't even know everything he says. I agree with the main ideas in his TED lecture Atheism 2.0, that should also incorporate our human need for connection, ritual and transcendence. His restaurant idea seems silly and technologically naive to me.

I read your outline and I noticed the circle that you form. It reminds me of Wiccan and Pagan rituals in which you create a circle; as in a Wiccan Coven when you join hands. I think that idea is quite nice. Were you thinking about that Coven circle when you made your ritual?

The circle is from my group process training. Chairs lined up facing the leader places him or her in a relative position of power. It's hierarchical. It makes other members relatively invisible and robs them of their voice, in that everybody has to twist around uncomfortably to listen to one of them. Facing one another in a circle is a physical representation of egalitarian relationship. People's gaze is naturally directed toward the whole group instead of being monopolized by the leader, so they pay attention to one another. A circle invisibly facilitates egalitarian interaction.

Thank you Ruth .. I learned something about group process training and forming circles. Appreciate it.

"It reminds me of Wiccan and Pagan rituals…" ~ Steph S.

Yup, ...and Christian "prayer circles". I'm not denying that they can be effective...

"It makes other members relatively invisible and robs them of their voice, in that everybody has to twist around uncomfortably to listen to one of them. Facing one another in a circle is a physical representation of egalitarian relationship." ~  Ruth

How do they now, not have to "twist around uncomfortably", it's still a circle, albeit one that may or may not have lost focus.

"A circle invisibly facilitates egalitarian interaction."

"Invisibly"? …I would suggest that the only way to discern whether or not it does anything positive is entirely dependent on the group itself. Group coherence isn't always a "good thing" either. 

 

"group process training"

Yes, I'm quite familiar with "group dynamics" as well as "group facilitation", and also "social engineering" and "consensus models".

My wife, as part of her job, had to take a course in "group dynamics", we've had occasion to debate the effectiveness of the use of such strategies in facilitating online communities (something I've had extensive prior experience in, especially in how to make them thrive, and why they sometimes implode).

Because of my experience, she would often ask for my advice on certain things, as she has been asked by admins at several sites to moderate forums (one general topic and two skeptic/reason groups).

More often than not, she would argue against certain suggestions from the standpoint of her training, and take her strategies from there. 

…She now understands my advice, "group dynamics" training is not a panacea for all groups, especially online ones. The results can be disastrous.

(and I've not ever uttered an "I told you so", …just to preempt any implication that I have, or even would).

How online groups function differently than real world groups is an interesting topic. However, even if your expertise in online groups is outstanding, in the case of critiquing a real world ritual it would not apply.

How do they now, not have to "twist around uncomfortably", it's still a circle, albeit one that may or may not have lost focus.

I was comparing rows of seats facing a leader in front to members seated in a circle with the leader among them. If you're in the second row of a meeting hall or lecture hall or church pews and someone in the back wants to address the group, everyone forward of the speaker has to twist around uncomfortably to properly attend to the speaker. If everyone is in a circle, it's much easier to just turn your head to properly attend to a speaker anywhere in the circle. The leader has no positional advantage for group attention.

         "A circle invisibly facilitates egalitarian interaction."

"Invisibly"? …I would suggest that the only way to discern whether or not it does anything positive is entirely dependent on the group itself. Group coherence isn't always a "good thing" either. 

"Invisibly", here, is metaphorical. I was trying to say that people are not usually consciously aware of the way setting structure influences their attention and behavior. For example, the leader standing on an elevated platform with a lectern between him and the audience sends a message of hierarchical power and authority. Seating in a circle influences "audience" attention and perception of leader power, but most people don't notice how they are being manipulated to feel small or helped to feel empowered by the way chairs are arranged.

...the only way to discern whether or not it does anything positive is entirely dependent on the group itself.

I disagree, but then I assume that egalitarian relations are positive in a group, for most purposes, compared to hierarchical relations. That's my value. You may not share it.

Group coherence isn't always a good thing? If the group's purpose is worthy, how is it's coherence anything but good? The only circumstances I can imagine in which group coherence is dysfunctional is when rebellion and breaking up of the group is morally correct. This isn't because group cohesion, per se, is a bad thing but because that group doesn't deserve to continue. But then your rebellious sub-group needs cohesion to be effective.

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