Customer Reviews for

Virus of the Mind: The New Science of the Meme

Average Rating 3.5
( 41 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 9 review with 3 star rating   See All Ratings
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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2002

    ambitious but flawed

    On the positive side, there is a lot of entertaining material here. As long as you realize that the author has not thought very deeply on many of the topics he discusses, you can sit back and enjoy his stream of consciousness. On the negative side, I have the following complaints: 1. the overall emphasis of this book is skewed by the title. The author states that he is trying to push the human "danger button" by describing memes as a threat in order to increase sales of his book. In fact, the replication of memes throughout human societies has spread great benefits as well as ills. To place marketing above accuracy in this manner does a great disservice to memetics. 2. the author believes that by becoming aware of memes, we can "rise above them" and program ourselves in any way that we choose. Unfortunately, the criteria we use to decide that a particular reprogrammed mind is "better" than the original are often memes, so we cannot so easily escape their influence. 3. the important concept of the "meme complex" or "memeplex" is not described, except in the very weak form of some memes tagging along with others. 4. the author naively uses the "consciousness" concept to distinguish humans from "lower" animals, apparently unaware that "consciousness" is a meme that is currently justifying the suffering of billions of animals in factory farming facilities. 5. this book completely misses the boat regarding religion. The author lists a great many reasons why he believes that religious meme complexes have successfully spread throughout the world. He neglects to mention the foremost reason: they alleviate personal suffering by superimposing an imaginary "better" universe on top of the "real" universe delivered by our senses. 6. Finally, this book is written in a breezy, arrogant tone of voice that is out of place in a book on philosophy.

    10 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 6, 2013

    Lacking

    I read this book after Wayne Dyer recommended it on one of his PBS specials, and I LOVE Wayne Dyer. I actually found 3/4s of the book interesting and insightful. (The first 191 pages). What I looked most forward to finding out was how to disinfect and reprogram my mind, which was barely touched on in the last TEN (10) pages of the book. I was mightily disappointed that Richard Brodie led me down a path and taught me how to recognize my many mind viruses, but then left me hanging. All he really said about disinfecting was "Clear your mind." I was truly hoping for some detailed instruction here, but there was nothing useful at all. (Shaking my head in bafflement and sorrow).

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 21, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Interesting but Hard to Finish

    This book fascinated me when I read the cover and its "danger" meme, when it sounded the alarm about mind viruses infecting the institutions of our society. After I began reading it, I got to the point in the middle when I kept looking to see how many pages I had left. Still, the value of this book lies in its new idea, the idea that we are programmed through memes that have come to us through evolution, and through our interactions with our culture. It will perhaps make you look at all our cultural values and beliefs a little differently.

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    Posted March 2, 2010

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    Posted January 25, 2011

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    Posted December 2, 2009

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