Both an expression of reality, and strategy for influencing the flow of reality.
- Within human groups, the “belief” aspect of strategy helps to direct the course of relational patterns within and between groups. Belief is in turn a component of the human group strategy of “culture”.
“Belief” is group strategy, AND OR selfish strategy, since it can justify both adherence and non adherence to rules of relationship.
“Belief” can be thought of as a strategy utilized by mind to direct that aspect of physical reality consisting of the body associated with mind, in it’s interactions with the rest of reality.
As stated, “strategies” such as belief, operate as a zone of “flexibility” between a form of idealized “permanent selfness” within reality (the DNA expressed self), and a surrounding reality of constant change.
This is a characteristic which they share with all strategies such as the expression by DNA of the physical body.
Belief strategies between the members of a group motivate various forms of co-operative and non cooperative interaction.
Similarly, “belief” strategies which motivate the relatedness between “groups” can also cooperate or come into divisive conflict with each other to the extent that the actions of one group represent beneficial or adverse environmental fluctuation from the point of view of another.
Since “beliefs” regarding what is true tend to direct relatedness with reality and are a major source of experienced flows of resource and benefit, they then become a source of perceived safety within the fluctuations of reality.
Any form of belief, no matter how “primitive” it may appear, can be considered highly “successful” since it is a link in the chain of successful relatedness between the aspects of reality who believe it and the very beginnings of the evolutionary process.
Because of this, attempts will be made to preserve it as an aspect of reality. It is not so much the belief which is being defended, but the perceived benefit or safety it provides.
Part of this involves the development of defensive strategies associated with group strategy such as nationalism or dogma, and this is part of the problem of disconnection between systems of thought addressed at the beginning of this article.
As with all strategies of interaction with environmental fluctuation, group strategies such as “belief” need not have any particular qualities other than that they must interact successfully with the surrounding environmental fluctuation, but:
Any successful belief, which is successful due to any form of relative “sophistication”, simultaneously represents relatively sophisticated environmental fluctuation from the point of view of other occurrences of belief, altering the requirements for successful response.
Therefor although an aspect of the belief strategy is to preserve the system, and the flows of resource and benefit it facilitates, it nonetheless is subject to evolution and change like everything else, since it is not a separate entity but part of reality.
In other words “belief” as an example of group strategy operates according to the generalized adaptive strategy also – another rendition of this absurd situation, in this case where a group tries to preserve and promote it’s thought system as an aspect of reality (and thereby maintain the flows of resource and benefit which it enables), but only by changing it via constant and indivisible relatedness with other occurrences of thought.
And all the while being nothing other than an expression of the thought which flows through reality.
As a category of adaptive response, belief clearly has and continues to evolve.
Dogma may represent the effort to make absolute boundaries between thought real in order to preserve the flows of resource and benefit which they actually or potentially facilitate, but the realities of the relatedness by which reality operates ultimately makes this impossible on a permanent basis.
Changes to the “belief” component of group strategy can represent poor strategy to those currently benefitting from the flow of resource and benefit which they mediate and justify, or good strategy to those who might benefit from the change.
However a comparison between the “quality of life” of “elite” members of ancient systems of interaction facilitated by the rules of older belief strategy, and that of “lower class” members of current systems of relationship bear out the fact that allowing belief to evolve results in great benefit to all.
As stated, “Self” ish behavior can shift benefit flows from one subset of reality to another, but all benefit is ultimately only created through the relating characteristic by which reality operates:
The very “consensual” action-reaction relationship between all aspects of reality allows them to be informationally arranged to interact in a manner which is “greater than the sum of parts”.
This is the only thing which allows anything to be “directed” at all, and cooperation is merely an extension of this (although divisive behavior in spite of appearances also operates through relationship).
Benefit accrues to aspects of reality which express strategies of self – environment relatedness which align with the relatedness by which the reality of which they are an aspect, operates.
“Self” ish behavior within group strategy is therefor similar to that within the sexual selection strategy – for the most part, it occupies a niche, parasitizing upon the true adaptive driver of the evolution of group strategy – relatedness.
Truth like everything else the informational content of reality achieves is the result of the activity of reality functioning in a manner which is “greater than the sum of it’s parts”.
The very act of considering “truth” only from the perspective of one tradition of thought is therefor likely to include defensive aspects which actually make it part of the problem of false belief rather than the solution, since in itself this represents the maintenance of a form of illusory “self”.
Fitness in an ultimate sense must surely entail a recognition on the part of any given aspect of information that it’s true identity is an expression of the wider informational content of reality, which has only reached the level of functionality that it has via related interaction with itself and the rest of reality. Higher levels of successful adaptive functioning can only be reached via a continuation of this process.
2013 Peter Sillifant