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Various people contacted me independently with their thoughts about my book blurb: the myth of the master molecule. Thanks to all of you. For people wanting to know more I thought I could share this text, which I presented at a philosophy conference last year.
Title:  Are Conservative thought and Genetic Determinism the same thing?    
The idea goes along with the religious dimension and presents an (I believe) novel analysis of conservative thought and why it has the characteristics that it does.
Best wishes
Jonathan


> On Sep 9, 2020, at 9:25 AM, Jonathan Latham <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 
> Hi Michael
> You are right it is an interesting case but it is also true that Constantine used Christianity to try to rescue it. 
> Jonathan
> 
>> On Sep 9, 2020, at 9:10 AM, Michael Harris <[log in to unmask] <mailto:[log in to unmask]>> wrote:
>> 
>> 
>> 
>>> On Sep 8, 2020, at 18:02, Jonathan Latham <[log in to unmask] <mailto:[log in to unmask]>> wrote:
>>> 
>>> Hi Kavita
>>> The arguments in the book will challenge quite a lot of people. 
>>> 
>>> Re the "sweeping” generalization. Sweeping of course is very damaging when done badly but of course very valuable when correct. Usually its not correct of course but I believe I can make the case very well.
>>> 
>>> To elaborate a little:
>>> Essentially the argument is that ancient cultures had policies of divide and rule that were also egalitarian. They were based on moieties and dualistic thinking and quite similar to the buddhist and yogic/vedantic wisdom traditions (see e.g. the book by alphonse ortiz https://books.google.com/books?id=il2I7qOM9cMC&printsec=frontcover&dq=Alfonso+Ortiz&cd=1#v=onepage&q&f=false <https://books.google.com/books?id=il2I7qOM9cMC&printsec=frontcover&dq=Alfonso+Ortiz&cd=1#v=onepage&q&f=false>). The abrahamic religions were a vehicle for doing away with those flexible and egalitarian systems of divisions (which existed to perpetuate political and economic fairness) and replacing them with a division system based on genetics and inherited status (especially hereditary Kingship/nobility/serfdom/etc). Thus the abrahamic religions were indeed loyal servants of imperialism and it is no accident they co-emerged with empires.
>> 
>> This explains why the pagan Romans, for instance, never quite managed to put together an empire.
>> 
>> 
>>> 
>>> Yours
>>> Jonathan 
>>> 
>>>> On Sep 8, 2020, at 5:30 PM, Kavita Philip <[log in to unmask] <mailto:[log in to unmask]>> wrote:
>>>> 
>>>> Jonathan, with regrets for my brevity and bluntness (I don’t know you, but I’m sure you’re well-meaning) -  it’s a well-known dog-whistle for the authoritarian right wing in India. 
>>>> 
>>>> eg. "Abrahamic monotheisms – which believe only they have the right God and his Word must rule all corners of the world -– are nothing but imperialisms masquerading as universalisms. <https://swarajyamag.com/politics/hindutva-as-hinduisms-survival-guide-an-antidote-to-abrahamic-imperialism>"
>>>> 
>>>> Perhaps you don’t really care about Indian nationalist arguments; that’s understandable, given that this list is largely American. I would submit that it’s still dangerously wrong (both in a pedantic academic sense and in an ethical sense) to characterize the complex social histories of religion and the cultures of Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Islam, and other “Abrahamic” faiths with this rather sweeping indictment.
>>>> Regards,
>>>> Kavita
>>>> 
>>>>> On Sep 8, 2020, at 2:21 PM, Jonathan Latham <[log in to unmask] <mailto:[log in to unmask]>> wrote:
>>>>> 
>>>>> Hi Kavita
>>>>> 
>>>>> Glad you read the blurb!
>>>>> Leaving aside nonsensensical, why dangerous?
>>>>> Thank you
>>>>> Jonathan
>>>>> 
>>>>>> On Sep 8, 2020, at 4:38 PM, Kavita Philip <[log in to unmask] <mailto:[log in to unmask]>> wrote:
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> With all due respect, this seems like a nonsensical (and dangerous) claim:
>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> On Sep 8, 2020, at 5:22 AM, Jonathan Latham <[log in to unmask] <mailto:[log in to unmask]>> wrote:
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> dismantling of ancient cultures …  The final proposition of the book is that propagating the myth was the chief aim of Zoroastrianism and all the Abrahamic religions. 
>>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> Jonathan Latham, PhD
>>>>> Executive Director
>>>>> The Bioscience Resource Project, 
>>>>> Ithaca, NY 14850 USA
>>>>> 
>>>>> Websites:
>>>>> www.independentsciencenews.org <http://www.independentsciencenews.org/>
>>>>> www.poisonpapers.org <http://www.poisonpapers.org/>
>>>>> www.bioscienceresource.org <http://www.bioscienceresource.org/>
>>>>> 
>>>>> Tel: 1-607-319-0279
>>>>> Skype: jonathanlatham2
>>>>> Twitter and Facebook: @Biosrp 
>>>>> Please sign on to our mailing list: https://www.independentsciencenews.org/subscribe/ <https://www.independentsciencenews.org/subscribe/> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> Notice: Please forgive any delays and slow news. I am writing a book about genetics and genetic determinism.
>>>>> 
>>>>> It is provisionally titled: The Myth of The Master Molecule: DNA and the Social Order
>>>>> 
>>>>> The contention of the book is that the key organising principle of Western thought is the seemingly innocuous and seemingly simple idea that our personal qualities are biologically inherited. That is, our character derives from our ancestors rather than being an always-adapting product of our own experiences, decisions, and education. The book makes the case, first, that genetic determinism is a scientific fallacy. Organisms are self-organised systems and therefore are not genetically determined. Second, the explanation for the myth, which originated in Mesopotamia before 6,000 years ago, is its utility. Genetic determinism rationalises political systems based on genetic privilege. The result was the dismantling of ancient cultures based on inclusiveness and egalitarianiism and their transformation into rigid structures of authoritarian domination based on separation and division: into families, classes, races, nations, sexes (i.e. patriarchy), and species. The final proposition of the book is that propagating the myth was the chief aim of Zoroastrianism and all the Abrahamic religions. Since the 1850s, this role has been appropriated by science. By recognizing how the founding myth of Western civilization is being re-told in the language of science we can start to dismantle and replace it with a more humane and scientific understanding of the world.
>>>>> 
>>>> 
>>> 
>>> Jonathan Latham, PhD
>>> Executive Director
>>> The Bioscience Resource Project, 
>>> Ithaca, NY 14850 USA
>>> 
>>> Websites:
>>> www.independentsciencenews.org <http://www.independentsciencenews.org/>
>>> www.poisonpapers.org <http://www.poisonpapers.org/>
>>> www.bioscienceresource.org <http://www.bioscienceresource.org/>
>>> 
>>> Tel: 1-607-319-0279
>>> Skype: jonathanlatham2
>>> Twitter and Facebook: @Biosrp 
>>> Please sign on to our mailing list: https://www.independentsciencenews.org/subscribe/ <https://www.independentsciencenews.org/subscribe/> 
>>> 
>>> Notice: Please forgive any delays and slow news. I am writing a book about genetics and genetic determinism.
>>> 
>>> It is provisionally titled: The Myth of The Master Molecule: DNA and the Social Order
>>> 
>>> The contention of the book is that the key organising principle of Western thought is the seemingly innocuous and seemingly simple idea that our personal qualities are biologically inherited. That is, our character derives from our ancestors rather than being an always-adapting product of our own experiences, decisions, and education. The book makes the case, first, that genetic determinism is a scientific fallacy. Organisms are self-organised systems and therefore are not genetically determined. Second, the explanation for the myth, which originated in Mesopotamia before 6,000 years ago, is its utility. Genetic determinism rationalises political systems based on genetic privilege. The result was the dismantling of ancient cultures based on inclusiveness and egalitarianiism and their transformation into rigid structures of authoritarian domination based on separation and division: into families, classes, races, nations, sexes (i.e. patriarchy), and species. The final proposition of the book is that propagating the myth was the chief aim of Zoroastrianism and all the Abrahamic religions. Since the 1850s, this role has been appropriated by science. By recognizing how the founding myth of Western civilization is being re-told in the language of science we can start to dismantle and replace it with a more humane and scientific understanding of the world.
>>> 
>>> 
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>>>  
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>>>  
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>> 
> 
> Jonathan Latham, PhD
> Executive Director
> The Bioscience Resource Project, 
> Ithaca, NY 14850 USA
> 
> Websites:
> www.independentsciencenews.org <http://www.independentsciencenews.org/>
> www.poisonpapers.org
> www.bioscienceresource.org <http://www.bioscienceresource.org/>
> 
> Tel: 1-607-319-0279
> Skype: jonathanlatham2
> Twitter and Facebook: @Biosrp 
> Please sign on to our mailing list: https://www.independentsciencenews.org/subscribe/ <https://www.independentsciencenews.org/subscribe/> 
> 
> Notice: Please forgive any delays and slow news. I am writing a book about genetics and genetic determinism.
> 
> It is provisionally titled: The Myth of The Master Molecule: DNA and the Social Order
> 
> The contention of the book is that the key organising principle of Western thought is the seemingly innocuous and seemingly simple idea that our personal qualities are biologically inherited. That is, our character derives from our ancestors rather than being an always-adapting product of our own experiences, decisions, and education. The book makes the case, first, that genetic determinism is a scientific fallacy. Organisms are self-organised systems and therefore are not genetically determined. Second, the explanation for the myth, which originated in Mesopotamia before 6,000 years ago, is its utility. Genetic determinism rationalises political systems based on genetic privilege. The result was the dismantling of ancient cultures based on inclusiveness and egalitarianiism and their transformation into rigid structures of authoritarian domination based on separation and division: into families, classes, races, nations, sexes (i.e. patriarchy), and species. The final proposition of the book is that propagating the myth was the chief aim of Zoroastrianism and all the Abrahamic religions. Since the 1850s, this role has been appropriated by science. By recognizing how the founding myth of Western civilization is being re-told in the language of science we can start to dismantle and replace it with a more humane and scientific understanding of the world.
> 

Jonathan Latham, PhD
Executive Director
The Bioscience Resource Project, 
Ithaca, NY 14850 USA

Websites:
www.independentsciencenews.org
www.poisonpapers.org
www.bioscienceresource.org

Tel: 1-607-319-0279
Skype: jonathanlatham2
Twitter and Facebook: @Biosrp 
Please sign on to our mailing list: https://www.independentsciencenews.org/subscribe/ 

Notice: Please forgive any delays and slow news. I am writing a book about genetics and genetic determinism.

It is provisionally titled: The Myth of The Master Molecule: DNA and the Social Order

The contention of the book is that the key organising principle of Western thought is the seemingly innocuous and seemingly simple idea that our personal qualities are biologically inherited. That is, our character derives from our ancestors rather than being an always-adapting product of our own experiences, decisions, and education. The book makes the case, first, that genetic determinism is a scientific fallacy. Organisms are self-organised systems and therefore are not genetically determined. Second, the explanation for the myth, which originated in Mesopotamia before 6,000 years ago, is its utility. Genetic determinism rationalises political systems based on genetic privilege. The result was the dismantling of ancient cultures based on inclusiveness and egalitarianiism and their transformation into rigid structures of authoritarian domination based on separation and division: into families, classes, races, nations, sexes (i.e. patriarchy), and species. The final proposition of the book is that propagating the myth was the chief aim of Zoroastrianism and all the Abrahamic religions. Since the 1850s, this role has been appropriated by science. By recognizing how the founding myth of Western civilization is being re-told in the language of science we can start to dismantle and replace it with a more humane and scientific understanding of the world.