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Malcolm Ocean and Michael Smith (#3)

EToC and cultural evolution
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Transcript

No transcript...

and Michael Smith riff off the Snake Cult of Consciousness. Michael has been super helpful in reading over EToC versions 2 and 3 before I sent those out (keep an eye out for v3). Malcolm has been thinking about cultural evolution for about a decade. We understand some rules of how culture changes and how individuals relate to the collective; how can we encourage human flourishing? Most relevant to this blog is how he works the Snake Cult into his own framework in The superegos have gone crazy. You can also find his snake-related discussions on X.

ChatGPT’s summary of the conversation:

  1. Backgrounds and Interests:

    • Andrew Cutler introduces himself and his interest in the snake cult, linking it to creation stories worldwide.

    • Malcolm Ocean delves into collective intelligence and cultural evolution, exploring how culture evolves and how it could ideally develop.

    • Michael Smith, with a background in mathematics education, focuses on individual perspectives, rationality, and the ecosystem of ideas and culture.

  2. The Snake Cult Theory:

    • Andrew presents his theory, suggesting that snake venom played a critical role in the evolution of human consciousness and culture.

    • He proposes that rituals involving snake venom facilitated the emergence of recursive self-awareness and cultural evolution.

  3. Evolution of Language and Consciousness:

    • The conversation touches on the evolution of language, recursion, and the development of self-awareness.

    • They discuss the possibility that the first recursive thought was "I," leading to a new way of perceiving and interacting with the world.

  4. Cultural and Memetic Evolution:

    • Michael and Malcolm explore the evolution of memes and how ideas and culture evolve similarly to biological processes.

    • They discuss the concept of "Gnosis," focusing on individual shifts that contribute to a collective understanding and culture.

  5. Historical Perspectives and Rituals:

    • The participants discuss various historical rituals and their significance in shaping human consciousness and culture.

    • They delve into the role of women in these processes and the diffusion of male initiation rituals globally.

  6. Modern Implications and Reflections:

    • The discussion veers towards the implications of these theories for modern society and personal development.

    • They ponder over the relevance of these ancient rituals and beliefs in contemporary contexts and their impact on human evolution.

Conclusion: This episode provided a deep dive into the complexities of human consciousness, the role of rituals, and the interplay between biology and culture. The guests brought unique perspectives, blending historical, psychological, and evolutionary insights to unravel the mysteries of human evolution and the development of self-awareness.

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Andrew Cutler
Malcolm Ocean
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