We are a web of microwave, molecular and ionic intercommunications forming and controlling the unified behavior of each of our hundred trillion cells. In addition to manifesting and maintaining our body, this layered web of intercommunications becomes the fabric for our conscious mind.
The conscious mind is only aware of the cellular web of intercommunications by remote - through instrumentation and experimentation. Prior to the 1930s nobody on the planet knew, or even imagined, they were created and maintained by a communication network of trillions of little animals. We discovered we were made of cells in 1870s but it took sixty years to realize the cells were actually little individual animals that could exist by themselves if kept in the right conditions. Even today, few people understand the implications of this.
If the web of intercommunications between the cells fail, the human, and its conscious mind, instantly collapses and dies.
If we habituate the cellular intercommunication network to a behavior pattern (through drugs, or training) the sub-conscious mind weaves all sorts of images so the conscious mind will continue to provide its "fix."
Like a baby addicted to its mother's heroin habit, our cellular intercommunication network does not know or understand anything beyond its desire. A baby born with a heroin habit doesn't understand needles or poppies or laws. It simply does anything and everything it can to get someone to satisfy the aching desire.
Changing behavior at this level is difficult because the cause of the habit stems from another, higher level of intercommunications, the conscious mind. When we are awake, the conscious mind directs the movements of the body and, in dialogue with the sub-conscious, the thoughts flowing through the body's intercommunication network.
The conscious mind is a product of the cellular intercommunication web interacting with the larger intercommunication web existing between the individuals in a society. The larger web is constructed in the same way as the cellular web. There are many similarities and some key differences between the two.
Each individual cell intercommunicates with the entire community of cells and the physical surroundings to make up a multicellular being - such as a human.
Each individual human intercommunicates with others in its community of humans to make up a society.
Communications are tactile, chemical, microwave and may be digital or analog.
Communications are tactile, chemical, visual, audible and may be digital or analog.
The larger web of intercommunications, the individual multicellular creature, directs the movements and actions of the cells within it to manifest its body, including arms, legs, feet, eyes, ears, and the bones, muscles, digestive, nervous and circulatory system.
The larger web of intercommunications, the one existing between members of a society, directs the movements and actions of the people within it to manifest the body of society - including the style and position of homes, buildings, roads, vehicles, farms, domesticated animals and plants and so on.
If the web of communications breaks down the multicellular creature collapses and dies
If the web of communications breaks down, the society collapses and dies.
The human conscious mind, imaged within the cellular sub-conscious mind, is a very special and powerful entity: a special evolutionary development for increasing the ability of single beings to do things no individual could possibly do by themselves. In fact, the word conscious derives from the Latin stem meaning to Know Together and this is a perfect description of it.
The cells making up our bodies are no different than the cells making up the bodies of all the other animals on our planet. If you examine an amebocyte from our lymph system and one from a sponge, the two appear and react pretty much the same. Both would be hard to distinguish, physically, from a free ranging ameba from a drop of pond water. The difference between our cells and those of other creatures is that our cells have traveled a different evolutionary path of learning and have accumulated memories telling them how to behave so the society of cells construct and maintain and move the amazing community of structures (liver, kidneys, lungs, heart, intestines, teeth, bones, hair, skin, muscles etc.) that are, together, a human body.
What makes a human body different from a sponge are the recorded memories of how to behave in certain, very definite ways and at specific times. This is exactly the difference between human societies.
Whereas the behavior patterns of cells are stored in molecular structures called genes, the learned behavior patterns of human society are stored in memes.
Memes are memories encapsulated in human language systems, and take the form (today) of written words and all other signals which, when reviewed by a human, will cause that human to modify its behavior in a specific way.
A written idea is a meme.
A national flag is a meme.
A legend is a meme.
A work of art - a photograph or a painting - is a meme.
The behavior induced in the human depends on the role that human plays in society's web of intercommunications. But the behavior of all humans is strictly controlled and regulated by society's web of intercommunications.
The cellular intercommunication web manifests both the cells and the entire human (including its mind) simultaneously. But the cells, who actually create the web by their constant, individual intercommunications, live and die by the billions in the span of a few months. The total manifestation of the human body and its memories, however, continue to live through many generations of cells.
The society intercommunication web manifests the behavior of the individual humans (where they are spatially and what they are doing at any given time) and the entire physical structure of society simultaneously. But the people, who actually create the web by their constant, individual intercommunications, live and die by the billions in the span of a single century. The total manifestation of a society and its recorded ideas, however, continues to exist through many generations of humans.
If a human body is invaded by a foreign concept, such as the pneumonia bacteria, the immune system works as a team to identify and destroy the bacteria, thus preserving the peaceful harmony of the intercommunication web. We are guarded against invasion. If society is invaded by a foreign idea (the world is a sphere spinning under a star) there are legal and cultural systems that work to preserve the existing structure of society (The Inquisition).
Unlike the rigid cellular intercommunication web, society can absorb and use foreign ideas, sometimes modifying them to help the society achieve new behavioral abilities. Evolution takes tens of thousands of years to achieve a slight change in the cellular web of intercommunication but a single new technological development, a single new idea, can metamorphose the structure of society in a very short time.
But each new concept is contained within and controlled by the existing web of intercommunication, whether it is a genetic mutation or a new invention. And the webs of intercommunication have intricate control systems in place to maintain things the way they are. Once the control systems have acted, changing behavior is very difficult or - perhaps - impossible.
Cells have controller genes that switch other genetic memories on and off. The first few generations of cells that divide from the original fertilized egg can become any cell in the human body. But once development progresses beyond certain very defined stages certain cells can only become an eye cell or a brain cell or a skin cell and they can never be anything else.
Little babies can grow up to be almost anything in society. They know, by genetic memory, how to grow up and how to laugh, cry, make a face indicating fear or surprise, run and walk. When we are babies we smile when we are happy and the smile is pure, done correctly, at just the time when the baby feels good.
Society's web of intercommunications interacts with the baby as it grows, turning on or off behavior potentials. As each potential is molded, so the child grows until it becomes locked into certain thought modes. At each stage the ability of the child to play a different role in society changes until it has a personality and place within the control network of words, social signals, body language, laws, codes, classes, and so on.
Society's control networks are generally invisible to individual humans in much the same way the cellular control systems are invisible to individual humans. We can detect them by experimentation, using sophisticated tools of behavioral science, and some individuals can percieve the networks directly, but most of us are completely unaware of anything but our own conscious existence and the feelings of what we could or could not do: should or should not do: must or must not do.
The control systems of society, like the control systems of our body, have evolved by the long-term interaction of humans with their environment. Neither system was thoughtfully designed.
In fact, we dread the idea of designer human control systems. Scientists who have ventured into the field of society control systems - especially the field of how these could be manipulated - are met with outrage, not honor. Like genetic engineering, social engineering has such profound implications most of us are scared to death of it.