"Every bride has her special day...
...much like every dog."
If you're going to tell a lie,
tell a big one,
then people are more likely to believe you.(1)
Memetic Index (uncategorized)
Macrometic theory has it that one receives a memetic reward (2) through one's enactment of memes and the emission of memes by others in response to said enactment (3). Furthermore, the effect is multiplied by the number of people responding (19). We have previously discussed memetic fountains and memetic nexuses (4), and these are where the individual regularly produces memes (5). There is still much to discuss as to the nature of nexuses, e.g., how they come into being (6), but there is also a kind of temporary ex lege memetic nexus in the form of "ceremony."
How does "ceremony" function in terms of macromemetics? What we rever to, macromemetically, might include things like wedding ceremonies, inagurations, appointments, baptisms, court findings and sentences, licensure, opening of legislative sessions, voting on and approving of laws, circumcisions (7), coronations, executions, etc. Effectively any action of the state or the church, and a number of other things.
When a wedding ceremony is held, the families of the couple to be wed put on a party, and a ceremony. The event follows a number of relatively narrow guidelines, and the participants all act, or enact memes, according to narrow guidelines as well. This is clearly a memetic transaction, i.e., the couple (and their families) enact a set of memes, and a large number of people immediately reply by enacting a large number of memes (12), providing a potentially huge memetic reward for all concerned (20).
In this sense, by doing things "perfectly right" (13), and spending "enough money," one can literally buy as large a memetic reward as one can afford. Granted, the illustrious guests must actually show up, but then the reward is guaranteed, the couple are granted high status, get the rush of a large memetic reward from society at large and their friends and peers in particular, and the participants all get an enormous reward as well (14).
Dress the Part
I've often wondered if the President of the United States could simply wander out, unshaven, in a T-shirt (21), and address the press. It occurs to me that this is probably impossible. There is current talk of degrading or undermining the Office of the President, and a T-shirt might have this very effect. There is perhaps a clear macromemetic characterization of why the President, or any official, even a King, must look the part. They are enacting certain memes which inspire memetic resonance (10) in a memetic cohort (8). Absent these memes, e.g., the suit and tie, the emblem and flags behind them, the crown, the scepter, the black robes and gavel (11), and so forth, there is no resonance in the cohort.
Macromemetics suggests that it is probably not enough that one be "elected," "appointed," "elevated," "created," "hired," etc. to a post. It is not nothing, but often a great deal of it is the enactment of the expected ceremonies.
Conclusion and Summary
Ceremonies are significant macromemetic phenomena, and this is perhaps the very reason they exist at all. The trappings of office may be indispensible for this reason (15). A President or King acting "informally" or "wrongly" in public (17) may fail to resonate with the memetic fabric (16), and ultimately diminish the power of the office, the strength of the memetic nexus of the office.
On the other hand, the existence of ceremonies which may be enacted on an ad hoc basis, so to speak, e.g., weddings, funerals, corporate/academic appointments, police complaints, elections, court decisions, hirings/firings/sackings, etc. put the enactor in a position of being able to make themself [sic] an ad hoc memetic nexus, i.e., that others are effectively "forced" (18) to respond in a specific way, provided that the ceremony is enacted "correctly."
This is probably why ceremonies exist at all. But how do they form? Are they spontaneously generated? To what extent may ceremonies be "created" by individuals and organizations? What is required to do so, and what is extraneous? What keeps them "stable" over long periods of time? How much is it possible to change them? What mechanisms keep them from changing? These and perhaps a host of other questions remain to be explored.
(1) Citation needed.
(2) a.k.a., "memetic orgasm"
(3) in response to others imitating what one does, or in responding with appropriate memes (actions) in response to what one does, including acknowledging that one has correctly imitated a given behaviour, i.e., correctly reproduced a given meme.
(4) set uncategorized index, et al, for examples, pending citations herein.
(5) in the case of the nexus, these are consumed and re-emitted, and the nexus gets a reward, while the fountain gets no direct reward from those that re-emitted their memes. A nexus is a fountain (meme source), but a fountain is not necessarily a nexus. A nexus has a "built-in audience."
(6) aside from those created by edict, e.g., the President of the United States, a King, or a head of a family, etc. "Natural Nexuses" or "naturally-occuring nexuses" exist, certainly, but it's unclear how they come to exist, what factors keep them going, and how they might be destroyed or dismantled.
(7) in the Jewish tradition. It's not immediately clear what it might mean in the "hospital/medicalized" American version, though this might also be applicable and perhaps very interesting.
(8) see elsewhere -- the group of people present with the memetic inventory (9) to respond to the memes enacted by the "official"
(9) the collection of memes in a group of people or single individual, i.e., memes that they are able to respond to and/or enact.
(10) resonating with a received meme means that one has a set of memes to enact in response. If there are no memes to enact in response, or actionable memes are not transmitted (same thing), then the cohort does nothing, are not spurred to action, or to cease an action.
(11) and wigs for both judges and barristers in Britain and elsewhere in the Commonweath. Ridiculous, but perhaps absolutely necessary. "Plea-bargaining" and discussion "in chambers" avoid the heaviness of officialdom, which is doubtless a macromemetic heaviness, which it seems would contribute to their appeal. Likewise, a reporter or other invited in to see the President or King in an informal setting, is well aware of this special treatment for the very fact of the informality.
(12) One can perhaps see how misbehaving at a wedding, or a funeral, is especially bad.
(13) Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue, three month's salary for the diamond engagement ring, and so forth.
(14) Getting snubbed at a wedding or not getting invited is especially painful, given this macromemetic factor
(15) There are those who say that the Trump Administration is transforming the Office of the President, by changing the form of how it is used, and even weakening it
(16) the collection of the minds of the people making up the memetic cohort, in this case the citizens of the country in question and their cultural knowledge (memetic inventory).
(17) or even in private, should this become known in the wrong way
(18) it would be better to say "pre-programmed" or "memetically pre-disposed" to resonate memetically to the ceremony
(19) the power of live performances as opposed to pre-recorded ones.
(20) especially for the couple, who are effectively an ad hoc nexus.
(21) or the equivalent female dishabille