An Ecofeminist Peer Review - To
- since accomodated
Stephanie Rixecker, Resource Management, Lincoln University
As promised, I have enclosed my comments on your article, "Sowing the Spores of Immortality." As I mentioned to you on e-mail, I was intrigued by your inter-disciplinary use of information, and I continue to be intrigued by it. The combination of spiritual connections and environmental politics highlighted towards the end of your paper is particularly compelling. Indeed, I encourage you to engage this even more, providing further depth in your discussion.
Since you asked me to review the paper from an "ecofeminist" perspective', that is what I did. I should note, however, that a variety of ecofeminist viewpoints pervade the literature. ]f I had to be placed on a spectrum, or in a tapestry of ideas and views, I'd be located with the "postmodernists" who argue that fluid identities e st, and that biological arguments do not provide sufficient understanding for us to "essentialize" male and female activities and behaviours. At the same time, however, I also argue that biology plays a part-, it would be silly to deny our reality as mammals, no matter how much current social constructions suggest we are separate from nature. Thus, I float between the social constructionist and biological determinist positions; I live in the grey! My comments below come from this perspective, and I added some questions to stimulate debate. Ultimately, your perspective and arguments are yours; please do not regard my comments as dictates or anything in that vein. Please feel free to ask questions about my comments, too. I do not have the definitive ecofeminist line, so be sure to gather comments across the ecofeminist spectrum.
I am especially intrigued by your understanding of genetics, quantum mechanics, and chaos theory. I have dabbled in thesc areas, but the technical detail is beyond my expertise. nevertheless, I think much is to be learned by bringing together ideas about spirituality, environmental politics, chaos theory, and ecofeminist concerns. The issue I find especially compelling at the moment is genetic engineering, and I laud your attempts to tie this into your work. I encourage you to keep doing so. The debate is predominantly held in the sciences, and this forum takes on different ethics and issues than the various sociocultural fora do. I would love to discuss this further in future, if you're interested. Best of luck with your continued work.
Gillian Turner, Hunter Genetics: Researcher of the X-Chromosome
Thank you for sending a copy of the meme in practical terms. I agree with what You are putting over. Although vour frontal lobe activity is much more advanced than mine it is fun to float into those thoughts, though far removed from day to day reality and I assume most of this is written tongue in cheek. [It is but with an acute sense of the need to save biodiversity]
Sue Arnold, Australians for Animals.. and a woman who believes that the spirit of feminine energy is here on earth, calling all to her ways.
I want to say I think your cry is one of the most beautiful powerful insightful loving creeds I have ever read. I'm going to print it off and read in depth. Thankyou for the genius and inspiration.
What can I say ... your ideas are, unquestionably, profound and innovative. I have throughly enjoyed both sections of Genotype 5.0 and have, with your permission, sent it on to various friends to read. Have also informed them of your website so that they can also peruse through the wealth of materials you have provided for your readers.
One of my friends had a question regarding your idea that females were superior to males, and needless to say he [ yes it had to be a male - chuckles ] has questioned this fact...sooooo. I directed him to read again your writings.... maybe, just maybe he will be convinced, but I sincerely doubt it.
The change from matriarchal to patriarchal rule is not understood by many, for it is commmonly believed that women never had a hand in the development of societies... This is, of course due to lack of reading and researching on the part of those who adhere to this erroneous idea, however, your writings will hopefully spark enough interest and curiosity so that those who doubt will research the annals of history and find that matriarchal rule WAS and still is found in this planet.
It would be nice if we, as humans could "love our enemy" however, we are our own worst enemy and thus cause out own self hatred... maybe sometime in the not too distant future "the wolf also shall dwell with the lamb"....but as for now, I don't see this as a distinct possibility.
I love your idea of the Jerusalem Epiphany!!! How wonderful it would be if this spirit caught on in the hearts and minds of men and women of similar kindrd spirit!!!! Lets hope that your efforts are crowned with fruitful results!!! Please let me know how I can help in the spreading of this idea.
Love and regards, Loren
Had ye believed
ye would have believed me; for he wrote of me.
(An Anonymous Peer Referee for Journal of Consciousness Studies)
I would have to be insane not to include this review because of the issues it raises, to which I will respond. By ironic coindicence the Editor is an agnostic defrocked Anglican priest:
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
Referee's Report (sent 21st August 1997):
The abstract announces that this paper is both a 'spiritual transmission' and a 'scientific work, open to peer review and criticism'. The first aspect is promoted in terms similar to those often used in the chain letters that were so common at one time. This was not a happy choice of phraseology; indeed it invites dismissal. The remarks that follow therefore relate more to the second aspect:-
Dr. King begins with a discussion of the sociobiology of sexual reproduction, especially in relation to human beings. There are some interesting insights here, particularly concerning the possible role of the X chromosome, but much of the argument depends on anthropomorphisms (such as the contrast between'honest eggs' and 'sneaky sperms') or loose analogies of a type that one might expect to find in a work of popular science journalism. Later on in the paper, the loose analogies rather take over and become ever more inclusive. The end result is a melange of notions, some taken from the sociobiological literature, others from mainstream Christianity and yet others from Apocalyptic literature, feminist writings and ideas about the Great Goddess. It is not entirely clear how these notions lead Dr. King to the conclusion that he himself is such a lynchpin when it comes to saving the world.
While one should not entirely dismiss the possibility that an avatar of the type described in this paper may one day appear (and, if so, why should it not be now in the person of Dr. King?), a far more parsimonious hypothesis is that King has become a prophet/guru of the type discussed by Anthony Storr in his book Feet of Clay (HarperCollins pbk. 1997). Storr points out that such figures often cannot be regarded as mentally ill. However, I believe that this paper contains evidence of symptoms, particularly flight of ideas and grandiosity, suggestive of the presence of what psychiatrists term 'mania' (which is a treatable condition whose prognosis is generally good).
I have read some of Dr. King's other writings with great admiration and understand that the present paper is an expression of a very intense experience which he feels to be deeply significant. Sadly, from a peer reviewer's point of view, it is also irrational and of no scientific value even though one must admire the beneficence and concem for femininity which informs so much of it. Isaac Newton too, to give one example among a good many comparable ones, had a psychotic episode which did not in the least detract from his great achievements. One very much hopes that Dr. King will soon be back to his normal self and able to resume producing scientifically important work.
Comment in Rebuttal: Finding the Purpose of it All
To call this work "irrational and of no scientific value" is to cast a dark shadow of prejudice and scientific intolerance over the whole area of Jungian archetype, and synchronicity and befuddle any hope of resolving the hard problem [of the subjective aspect of consciousness]. I would say it is academic suicide, because there will be no resolution of the hard problem without addressing these issues. Why is there one rule for Carl Jung and a different reductionistic one for Chris King? The allegations do body damage to ever finding a resolution of the widening gulf between science, which lacks any ethical content, and religion which lacks any objectivity. To call a person insane because they are intellectually and physically brave enough to set out a visionary agenda for biodiversity conservation in fulfilment of religious prophecy is absolutely the lowest form of intellectual bullying imaginable. The most cliched and unimaginative cheap shot. The actions taken by the referee constitute abuse of anonymity. The allegations do body damage to ever finding a resolution of the widening gulf between science, which lacks any ethical content, and religion which lacks any objectivity.
The paper is designed to provide a minimalist archetypal description of the human existential condition from a contrasting two-fold perspective, the one a Darwinist feminist socio-biological account and the other a Jungian stream-of-consciousness interpretation of the patriarchal religious tradition. In this the prophetic impulse is a manifestation of synchronicity, converging on a specific model of the hard problem of consciousness research, involving the transactional interpretation of quantum mechanics. This paper is a valuable contribution to the discussion of the hard problem and an invaluable contribution to biodiversity conservation.
The form of the paper is specifically designed as a meme - a culturally reproductive entity which contains a specific concept about gender and the the germ-line which is intended to address the problem of biodiversity genocide and the real possibility of a major extinction crisis next century. I also designed this to set a new tradition bridging science and religion - presenting visionary religious ideas for peer scrutiny to apply the critical principle to an area which remains plagued by affirmative doctrine, fundamentalism and religious edicts uttered on the grounds of divine infallibility. I believe this is a pivotally important tradition to set and one which should have been supported with sensitivty and appreciation and not blind derision and frank prejudice by the academic establishment, because the world still contains a massive population of religious fundamentalists whose numbers are if anything growing. This work is not simply commenting on religious tradition, it is a transformative agenda. It is essential for academia to support my initiative to have such ground-breaking work publically exposed to fair peer review.
The epilogue to this paper contains a very carefully drafted section outlining my role as agent to transform the religious paradigm into a biologically meaningful relationship with nature, through consummating the apocalypses of natural renewal in these traditions. I took a great deal of care over the double position I set out in this document which is pure biological pragmatism, requiring no belief for the sceptic, but is the fulfilment of the religious paradigm in the Biblical perspective.
I did this in full cognisance that the Judaic messianic tradition was one of pragmatic social justice and "long term future goodness" - precisely the core needs of the biodiversity renewal we all know is necessary for a long-term sustainable society, but likewise aware of the knee-jerk hubris which awaits any such proposal from the Christian and humanist traditions. There is absolutely nothing offensive in my aganda and it is completely within the social tradition which saw Bar Cochba adopt the same role as a freedom fighter. I am fighting for a biodiversity renewal which could avoid a mass extinction lasting 50 million years. The stakes are high and if I succeed in any way, my claim is honest and fully appropriate and could rescue your world for your offspring.
Anyone who is prepared to step into my shoes runs serious risk of personal harm, just as women are stoned and mutilated in many parts of the world and Salman Rushdie and Taslima Nasrin are under fatwah. I am your chance to make some good out of a bad situation scientifically in terms of our clouded human future and religiously by setting a new paradigm of intellectual enquiry and natural ethics. My work likewise challenges the unbridgeable gulf between the reductionistic brain and the subjective mind still yawning in the "hard problem" - a problem you yet have no solution to. I am setting out an agenda which is both excellent sociobiology, necessary bioconservation, unfolds the religious tradition and, since I am a quantum-chaos researcher, is likely to lead to an irreversible confounding of all affirmative fundamentalism.
The poetic irony of Isaac Newton's 'psychosis':
Isaac Newtons 'psychosis' turns out to be a famous prophecy. As quoted from "The End of Times" Damian Thompson 1996 p 94: "But the attempt to synchronise natural and sacred history which led a number of intellectuals including Isaac Newton to speculate about a Second Coming in 2000 - remained a largely private affair." - So had the referee believed what Isaac - the founder of modern mathematical science - wrote, he would have believed ... !
John 5:46 "For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me; for he wrote of me."
What better 'Moses' than the scientific paradigm-maker Newton?
Newton believed the 70 weeks of Daniel 9:24-6 referred to both the first and second coming, the 7 to the second and the 62 to the first. This is clearly confirmed by 26 which says "and after three score and two weeks shall the messiah be cut off" and then predicts the fall of the temple and the destruction. The first 62 weeks of years is deemed to be the 434 years from the building of the second temple until the Crucifixion. Chapter 24 clearly lays out the complete restoration of iniquity to bring in everlasting righteousness - it IS the renewal. Three centuries ago he saw and wrote about the rebirth of Israel at a time when such a thought was preposterous. By faith, he foresaw a "friendly kingdom" someday again issuing the "commandment to restore and build Jerusalem." Newton says the two numbers separately speak of both the First and Second Coming, both being counted from the "going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem." Isaac Newton prophesied that the return would occur 49 years after 1947-8 in 1996-7. Finally another week is declared and half-way through i.e. around 2000 and end is made to sacrifice and abomination.
Quotation: Title quotation for "The Purpose of it All" - Stanley Jaki.
"Jesus incorporates all the good tendencies in man. He is the embodiment of all the resistances to evil throught the ages. ... and indeed may start subliminal agencies that will issue in a regenerate life, bring in a new sense of duty, a new passion of service and give man self-reverence, self-knowledge and self-control" ... If Christ represents the kind of mental sanity which is a psychological miracle, then the pressing force of logic becomes even more overwhelming in the alternative as CS Lewis put forth "A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said wouldn't be a great moral teacher. He'd either be a lunatic, or the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was or is the son of god: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon; or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God. But don't let us come with any patronising nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He hasn't left that open to us. He didn't intend to." It is by leading up to this gripping alternative, whether Christ was a lunatic or God himself, that CS Lewis asked: "And now, what is the purpose of it all"?
Lets get pragmatic. The "purpose of it all" is world peace, the restoration of the feminine, and saving 40% of genetic diversity before it's too late - the apocalypse of 3000 million years!!! That IS the messianic redemption.
From Jane King: Just read the "scientific" review in your peer reviews and your response. Wow! "Dr. King" you are so mad! How glad I am you "blasted" back. What garbage! HOW can they be so mindless? People are so afraid that their personal little playpen in which they are allowed to feel "special" will be opened up to new ideas, and worst of all, new people who might not know or see how "special" they really are. You are the most sane, least ego-maniacal scientist of all. And you are loved by all the people who want this scientific mania that has brought us so much destruction to correct itself with Jungian-type insights into the larger picture. My pal who is a botanist wishes humans would just die out and let something superior develop. But you are willing to to promote love, honesty, joy...human consciousness doing its best. Scientists believe there is no answer; you are trying to craft one. I'm on your side!
From Loren Arenas: Greetings ... my friend!
I have just had the distinct "pleasure" [add the prefix dis...:)] of reading the comments of the gentleman who calls himself the anonymous peer reviewer. What nonsense is written by those who erroneously perceive themselves as the pinnacle of erudition! The gentleman in question demonstrates that some people have the ability of writing meaningless verbiage, which is his right, and a right that is defensible, since it is his opinion. What the gentleman forgets is that others also have a right to their opinions which are equally defensible by the same rule that protects his verbiage. How sad it is to see a man cast public aspersions on another man and not have the courage to include his name. Anonymity does give him the protection of his name, but it demonstrates a great lack of courage, sensitivity and humanity on his part. That he may not agree with you is within the range of his personal choices and opinions, that he casts a shadow over your mental accumen is extremely unprofessional, for a man who resorts to slinging mud on those he does not agree with, ultimately becomes the mud he slings.
With perfect love and perfect trust, Loren
Conversation with Sue Blackmore, authoress on lucid dreaming, near death states and memes as in "Dying to Live" and other works.
Dear Chris, I am sorry to say that you write to much for my poor little brain. The memes most likely to make it in to my head are ones that come in small packages. Good luck with the work though and best wishes.
Dear Sue, Your 'tiny brain' is a betrayal of feminine Wisdom! What sanctuary is this? Where do you stand on the gender hypothesis of ecocrisis? Living diversity is at stake, so is world peace and the respect of the feminine. We may be free as individuals but society is collectively adrift. What will the ecofeminist radical ecologists have to say? A meme is a meme is a meme!
Dear Chris, I think I stand right here in this moment. I do not believe in individual freedom - along with individual consciousness and decision making it is a myth that causes a lot of trouble. Yes, the ecocrisis beckons but should we wipe ourselves out, and a lot of other species with us, something else will evolve afterwards. That's OK. Of course there would be a lot less personal suffering if it could be averted and population curbed now but I don't hold out much hope.
best wishes, Sue Blackmore.
I am truly amazed. Jesus 'marvelled'.
Abide. I'll see what can be done for you.
And don't cast lots on my garments!
My left hand is fiendish at throwing tails!
From Karen (Wandsqueen),
Greetings intrepid boy-god. Muab' Dib' is just another version of Herakles/Hercules, the Son of the Goddess who annual sacrifice appeases the All Devouring Mother. A curious avatar. Tell me, when you read the Cards do you identify with the Prince or the King?
Who's your Jungian ecofeminist? Do I know her? (Doubtful, since I consider myself more of an adrogynous iconoclast). Be careful with this Shekina business. Remember the final moments of Indiana Jones and the Lost Ark.
First off, I enjoyed your paper and found it both interesting and provocative. I understand it is a "work in progress" and will try not to be too picyune, however God is in the details, so here goes:
Chapter 1: Original Sin...
First of all, cell death, not sex, is the origin of mortality. Cloning is not living forever, because clones aren't a continuation of the "self"-- in any conscious, and therefore relevent, meaning of the term -- they are merely the continuation of 100% rather than 50% of the genetic material. If you conceive of the individual as a system of dynamic equilibrium between information and environment (or, crudely put "nature" and "nurture") then even a 100% recap of genetic material is only half a replication. Our genes will never exist "in the same combination again" because the cloned "daughter" would not exist within the matrix of the same environment as her parent.
I think your point about "Egg and sperm have become yin and yang, as wave and particle are to physics," is trying to get at something important, but I think your quick example is a confusion of logical type.
If I understand you right, you are trying to say something important about the complementarity (in a quantum mechanical sort of way) of human gamates; however, though they are complementarily in balance they are neither
1) other-defining and delimiting inverses (as yin and yang are), nor
2) dual manifestations of the same thing that are usually co-existant but on the event horizen other-cancelling (as are wave and particle).
If egg and sperm where wave and particle, then the act of love would be the annialation of one (as the photon must become only one when it passes through the measuring device), not a good plan for the human species. Be careful with opposites which are differently opposite.
If you wish to borrow from quantum physics to think about egg and sperm, how about the complementarity of where and when (i.e., location and velocity) which is present in the uncertainty principle, as in: egg is where and sperm is when, to the degree that you know exactly where (in space) the egg is you can't know exactly when (in time) the sperm is, and vice versa. Or perhaps the egg is when and the sperm is where, what do you think?
Chapter 2: The Mozart Paradox...
Dawkins business about the "sneaky" sperm and the "honest" egg is very anthropocentric (as well as ridiculously anthropomorphic). If you see life as a race to pass your genes on the most number of times, then the man--who sows his mitochondria-less and nutrition-less sperms--wins over the woman who has the fewer eggs, and all that gestational time; but, that is a very limited p.o.v.
In that case, why not be like the fish? Mother and father fish both deposit their gamates in a hollow depression in the stream and swim on. If anyone is left egg-sitting, it could equally be the male, flashing his colours etc. to keep predators from eating the fertilized eggs, whilst mother fish is off at the spa.
Obviously that option was not chosen by mammals, for some reason, or for no reason. If you're going to have uterine gestation and live births, then it makes sense for the gender who is carrying the fetus to be the gender with the larger, heavier, less often and less easily spawned gamate.
Women are the cargo carriers, men are the B-52s, co-dependant in dynamic equilibrium, not exploiter and exploitee.
The interesting question is why is She, rather than He, the carrier? Here are some interesting tangents which spin off from that question.
1) Although there should be a 50-50 probability of gender at
conception, in fact more boys are conceived
2) More boys either don't make it to birth, or die within the first year
3) Women live longer
4) In a hunting, gathering society you would only need one man to hunt for, and impregnate, several (or even many) women (c.f., lions, wolves, etc.)
5) When women die in childbirth (which until quite recently was often, and perhaps even more often than their surviving it) both the genetic material of the mother and the father is lost.
Putting all this together we get two schemas:
1) from the p.o.v. of the "selfish gene" you want the gender who will not die in childbirth, but who has a statistically greater chance of not surviving at all, to be the one with the more mobile, spread-out, reproductive delivery system (sperm ejaculation).
2) from the human cultural (species) p.o.v., you want the basic group to be a few reproductively able males, many more females, and all surviving youth.
Chapter 3: The Unbearable Lightness of L'Oreal
I don't know if you've read The Descent of Woman by Elaine Morgan (1972), although also prey to sociobiology, she came at it from a feminist point of view, so that darker lips and nipples were looked at from a perspective of what survival value they might have for reproduction (of the woman's genes), rather than the p.o.v. of increasing women's sexual attractiveness for men.
Think about your basic hunter/gather group. The amount of time spent in courtship/copulation versus the amount of time feeding the group and caring for the young is miniscule (as any mother of a toddler). Consider loss of oestrus and permanent sexual display/availabilty from the p.o.v. of what's in it for a full-time, at home mother (not for a once in a while, drop by lover/husband/father).
Morgan suggests women grew long, thick hair for their toddlers to cling to (especially as they shed their ape-ish body hair) and pendulous breasts with visually discernable nipples to make "nursing on the run" easier, not to be attractive to their boyfriends.
Chapter 4: Humpty Dumpty's fall...
I'm not quite sure I follow this business of why (only) males are prodigies, despite going back to Ch. 2 with the diploid and haploid, pure and "confused" copies (all of which sounded very Malthusean, if not "master race" begetting). The female doesn't get a mish-mash of mother and father's X chromosomes, she gets specific, discrete bits of code (e.g., "his" brown hair, or "her" blond hair, not striped, or tinted high-lights). If there're prodigy "genes" she's as likely to inherit them as her brother. Nevertheless, its true that civilization (literally, the development of cities) is probably to blame for the end of the polygynous hunter-gather clan and all the trouble since.
However to blame male resource mismanagement since the time of Nabu on "the exploitation strategy of males who can always afford to sacrifice one opportunity for many others," is too again confuse levels of logical type. Human (group) Culture is not the same as individual biology, just like quarks and photons don't obey the same rules as billiard balls and planets.
How about this idea: When people settled down and could store food, the annual king no longer was willing to be sacrificed (The White Goddess, Graves, The Ruin of Kasch, Calasso). He was willing to sacrifice his son, in effect trading in some sperm for another year of life. That was the beginning of the trouble.
Ch. 5: The Meme and I...
Middle-class, first-world feminism aside, there are plenty of destructive women out there yelling for blood. A woman in Bosnia, Ireland, Congo or Palestine, is just as likely as a man to committ a self-serving, future-threatening act. Feminists (of either gender) who lose sight of economic realities become just as mired in their one small facet as any other minority group.
This is the first episode of our Indiana Jones adventure. I hope it is going to be realer and more bizarre than the Raiders of the Lost Ark could ever pretend to be!
You are both one of the two most discerning reviewers I have had and also by far the most quantum-chaotically unpredictable. I like all your comments and the whole situation is strange enough that I will give you a reply in like kind to see what your total reaction is.
While I don't fancy myself as Melkarth, I am facilitating a femininst peace requital Sakina (tranquillity) - for the Epiphany 2000 in Jerusalem. Ironically it's my millennial birthday party - a feminine Wisdom conference, a world empowerment calling down the Shekhinah and a cultural music festival. This process is I hope going to be stranger than science fiction, yet as real as biodiversity unfolding. It is the wheat of which Dune and 2001 are the chaff. Chaotic visionary sociobiology in action.
You are such a good quantum-chaos witch that you could be a real bene Adamah 'Gesserit' in the best possible sense on this helter-skelter ride, especially since you so kindly acknowledge - "there are plenty of destructive women out there yelling for blood". (Actually it's the men I fear.)
I want you to take everything I say with a grain of salt. In the Magdalen tradition, the salt returns to establish peace - Sakina. The idea is that I am the Dionysus of the abyss raising the tsunami of the White Goddess - predicted in Graves last chapter - "Return of the Goddess".
The paradox is this: If you don't believe it - it's true! By taking what I say with a grain of salt - 'that which is concealed is revealed' - in irresistable osmosis of the Feminine. The grain of salt is the nucleus for the tsunami of the White Goddess - the Magdalen Renewal - unbearable moisture of being - the re-waeve of the immortal evolutionary Garment. The Ichthys came back from the depths as a grain of salt - the mustard seed of the Tree!
Mark 9:50 "Salt is good:... Have salt in
and have peace one with another".
The blue Dune spice is of course Maria the Sabine's magic mushroom, which is the monthly fruit of the Tree of Life, whose leaves are for the healing of the nations. In taking back this peculiar 'bitter fruit' of molecular quantum-chaos to Sakina the ecoystemic chaos of biodiversity shall be unfolded.
Now quantum-sorceress, where does the screen play of the Dionysian passion drama go from here? Surely it is as large as life itself? A screenplay to end an epoch. The pope has his Jubilee at Christmas. This is the beginning of the twelve nights of foxfire of the Millennium. Sakina is the ovum. Yes the Shekhinah is dangerous - Graves mare's nest is simply a nightmare!
I wrote the 'spores' as a minimalist 'archetype'. They have evolved very substantially by genotype 5.1. They are now more gender dispassionate - a 'love story' fulfilling the prophetic skeleton of the biblical stream of consciousness with the sociobiological 'Eden'. It is a short 'allegory', not intended to be 100% literal fact. However ... to hone the debate I will respond to your discerning comments.
Everything you say is quite correct about cloning (although some identical twins have a psychic angst). It is VERY very pertinent to the current debate on genetic technology, for as you will see in my gene tech page, genetic engineers are already describing cloning as the Tree of Life.
I also agree about wave-particle complementarity being significantly different from the molecular sperm and egg, but there are twists of poetic irony which have to be considered ... how come the men all reach to heaven - even to "heavens gate" - even to Islamic martyrdom - while the women are both accused of representing accursed nature and gravitate to the embodied nature goddess? This mind/body complementarity is a little like the 'where' and 'when' in a different way. The women seek transformation, the men the eternal. The women seek emodiment the men disembodiment. So the particle-sperm-time and the wave-egg-space does ring a bell? There is more to be 'unearthed' here.
Dawkins is the dork of ultra-Darwinism ... I am using him on purpose to be outrageous. - to balance the spiritual against the reductionistic. If I can quote Dawkins, we have a reductionistic-visionary paradox. I gave him fair warning that the game is up. Rather than anthropocentric - I would turn it around - humanity is conjugo-centric - we are the sperm-egg paradox manifest!
But lets go a little further here ... those fish you talk about play a lot of games of leaving it up to the father precisely because the females have that game option. With reptilian and then mammalian sexuality it is all big egg stuff ... going into nine months gravis. This is not as you know for 'no reason', but to provide a very high degree of reproductive security.
Once we go down this path, we do inherit the evolutionary consequences sociobiologically ... the female strategy is no longer like the cut and run mother fish who can leave the father holding the babies. We have been going this way for 250 million years and more intensely as mammal has become primate. It leaves it's imprint in our genetic makeup.
I have stresed throughout the spores that sexual paradox, not exploitation, is the game which grew the brain, so we agree here. Yes there is a basic complementation between the male spread out sperm survival strategy and all those gathering females and it doesn't have to be based on exploitation of one gender over the other - dynamic paradox is the key all the way. The trick is for the females to avoid male domination being the selective factor - the Asherah strategy.
I agree about your dark nipples story too, but only to a certain extent. I will have to include The Descent of Woman in the references. There is an amusing irony here. You haven't explained what the concealed oestrus does for the toddlers. Sex is a 'minority of the time' but a 'majority of the airwaves' and the 'mindwaves'. The critical 'selective' factor in sexual reproduction is neither infant survival nor adult survival, but partner selection. That's the plug-hole and not in spite of our run-away brains either but to explode them.
I agree completely that it is facile to talk of male selection when it is female sexual evolution driving the equation, but that is also the paradox of the XY arrangement. It is powerful and simple in that devastating kind of Occam's way. It doesn't deny the women intellectual power in society at all - far worse it makes every man a Melcarth. I have re-emphasized this.
Now dear Wandsqueen - females (et tu) are prodigies, but male brains are non-mosaic X, females are mosaic X - quite independently of the autosome alleles - you have to at least SAY you follow it! Female prodigies need the mosiac to be very compatible - a rarer event. That's why Germaine Greer caused an outcry when a transexual man got accepted at the all-female Oxford college because they couldn't find a female physicist who was 'eligible enough'. Maybe you should apply?
Now you have hit the nail on the head about individuality versus social trends. I have been very careful to point out that individually we have freedom to transcend our sociobiology, because the adaptability of the nervous system is reaching the quantum limit, yet as whole societies, particularly when we don't recognise the sociobiology, we commit mindless gender-based rape of the planet. There is no contradiction. Free-will and accountability for our actions - sociobiology is social, not individual.
love and regards, Chris - the father fish of the ovum
Be that as it may, I've spent some time bopping around in genotype 6.2 and have some things to say about it.
Chris! You are a mathematician. You of all people shouldn't be guilty of the sin of confusing logical types! The domain of a set is NOT a member of the set! This is the great weakness of sociobiology as a paradigm. Germ cells are not "sneaky" nor "honest" any more than one could say:
"Chris's Machiavellian sinuses caused him to sneeze at dust while he vacuumed so that he would take an antihistime. "Ah," said his neural synapses as the drug kicked in, "love that amphetamine rush!".."Twas nothing," gloated the left sinus cavity, while the right side (being less language oriented) merely blushed."
A more correct (i.e., closer approximation to 'just the facts, Ma'am') representation is that certain things happen FOR NO REASON (Darwin's mechanism of change is NOT TELEOLOGICAL), but then, since some of these things that happened for no reason create mechanisms (structures) which are at the time better suited to the existing niche environment the creature inhabits they are selectively passed along to future generations. Be cognizant as to where the RANDOMNESS resides! (you of all people should "get" this!) Reread Stephen Jay Gould! Forget Dawkins!
Okay. Point two. Forget the individual gene. Go for systems analysis. Go for complexity and the Boys (we'll get to that bit--why there are no girls there-- in a bit) of Santa Fe. Interesting article in NYTimes (is there an Auckland edition?) about the work of Dr. Brian Goodwin and the "theoretical biologists" who are challanging the "genocentric" view of biology. The most interesting things mentioned in the article (which I have yet to follow up with further research, so if you get to it first buzz me.) are "that genes are not autonomous agents but ... work as assemblies..." They discuss the "knock-out" experiments (knock-out a gene without any discernable effect on the phenotypic level due to redundancy or rechannelling). It's the logic of The Quark and the Jaguar applied to biology.
Point 3. The bit about men and heaven, and women and nature that you mention in your response to my last set of comments. How about heaven = linear goal (i.e., a destination) vs. "nature" = cycle ? I found it interesting that you postulated "particle-sperm-time" and "wave-egg-space" when I would assign "place value (the value of places, e.g., territoriality) to males, and "time (and timelessness)" to women!
Point 4. Interesting about you being taken "with a grain of salt" when you think about salt being a catalyst. What are you trying to precipitate out? Perhaps what I am trying to talk to you about is your need to re-calibrate the level (logical type) of your analysis. A little Yang-Mills gauge theory thrown into the mix.
Point 5. Back to the he / she thing. This business about the haploid vs. diploid X (or Xs); and the mosiac, etc., etc. Of course I understand what you're saying, I just can't quite articulate why I think it doesn't make sense. Here's the best I can do:
Something about confusing mechanism with (apparent) outcomes. How would a mosiac arrangement of genetic attributes per se determine the occurance of "genius"? By what mechanism? What kind of "knock out" experiments support this claim?
Re-read "Shakespeare's Sister" (Virginia Woolf). The Xs are nothing, just a tiny piece of the complex (in the math sense of the word) interaction of genetic code, bio-chemical manifestation, cultural and intra-psychic facilitators vs. barriers, etc.
Okay, I'm a genius, you're a genius, we're all geniuses, get over it.
I realize that all this bit about sperms'n'eggs is just the prologue for your whole wymmyn's religion thing, so I'll try to get to that part of version 6, since that's what you really want to talk about, but if you consistantly allow yourself to slip levels in this way you'll get yourself in trouble there too!
Pay attention to what is a metaphor for what. Perhaps we're all simply avatars in someone else's dream?
You have teased me back now! I missed the last bus to eternity by seeing it all in a psychedelic vision of becoming, one moonlit night on our wind-swept peninsula on the Hauraki gulf. Evolving immortality is my accursed share!
I agree that sperms are not 'sneaky' in the mental sense. But did you read about the female killer genes? The sneaky sperm was a survival reaction! I love both Richard D and Stephen J. My taste for evolution is insatiable and ecclectic. Darwin is certainly not teleological, but the human brain is converging to the quantum physical limit.
There is this major question - what about the singular aspects - the quirks of fate which become watersheds of history? What about vincristine and all the idiosyncratic evolutionary molecules? - This is Stephen Jay Gould talk too. What about who won Waterloo? What about the Soviet coup and fall? There isn't enough room in the universe for all the possibilities, so only some happen. Many real world events never approach the law of averages the probability interpretation implies. The correspondence principle never gets fully realized. We are also walking manifestations of quantum non-locality.
We don't have to arrive at the millennium from final causes, we can just get there by precognitive Jungian synchronous vision. It just happens because we are alive and conscious - part of the idiosyncratic nature of quantum non-locality, not some Newtonian apocalypse of revealed order.
My heart IS in Santa Fe. I spent a summer at the institute. I have very good friends up at Taos. In fact I always go back there to take a peyote ceremony with the Native American Church, just to marvel at the tradition. The last time, Tellus Goodmorning was 93 had had a broken hip and had only one eye but he was up all night shaking his rattle!
Men from heaven sucks truly. I am here to foreclose on this. Play it to the denoument - gender reunion. The last laugh of the cryptic Adam.
Did you read the insert article about the autosomes from Scientific American? The X chromosomes are tame by comparison!
Wandsqueen, do you want to help make this crazy transformation happen, not for Newtonian nor Johanine teleology, but for quantum chaos? The whole thing is in a state of quantum indeterminacy. It is our free-will which is going to bring the greening of eschatology into the interferiometer - a single photon which went through both slits and came out as the living apocalypse of immortal diversity.
I'm not riding on a moonbeam, just the singular coming home to roost.
Throw the sticks - they will fly out the window!
love to you, "El Nino" of the Sakina ocean.