Continuing a discussion in the comments. We needed a name for this idea anyway, so here it is.
Simplified cult edenism:
Smart person who agrees = thal
Smart person who disagrees = melon
Dumb person who disagrees = cro magnon
Here’s my counter-conspiracy theory:
The reason I brought up Edenism is that many of its believers seem to be driven to a large extent by extraverted factors (namely, a desire to belong).
So, recipe for Edenism:
•Find target audience of unhappy people
•Strengthen ingroup/outgroup boundaries, develop and enforce social rules to guide herd
Comment on: Disambiguating norms for behavior
I agree that external motivations are important, except that I argue that many of its believers do belong. That is the important distinction because it is what the theory predicts, whereas not-belonging would force a contradiction. Roughly speaking, there is equally strong anecdotal evidence in favor of both interpretations.
In favor: We (speaking primarily of the neanderthal-leaning members) have common psychological traits for certain: namely unusually high IQs, red pill ideology, and many of the symptoms of Asperger’s syndrome (most importantly introversion and openness to experience). This would be enough for a sense of community to develop, particularly if it is encouraged explicitly.
There are notable exceptions from the typical Asperger’s suite of traits: we tend to be tall, athletic, and have good eyesight (no corrective eyewear). I attribute these exceptions to the cultural focus on Asperger’s in Jews, which raises genetic confounds from race mixing (Semitic with white) and inbreeding. The same myopia and clumsiness can be observed in those few blacks who can be found with Asperger’s (exclusively in the American middle class, in my experience).
Against: The community is fractious and the sense of belonging waxes and wanes.
The fractiousness can be explained within the theory: we are, on the average, not a socially well-adjusted bunch. Maladjustment causes loneliness and loneliness causes maladjustment. Some are better than others. On top of that, we are introverts and therefore disinclined to form large groups or coalitions—it’s the basic European problem where we’re more likely to clash with neighbors, and only an overwhelming external threat can convince us otherwise.
I believe the sense of belonging problem has two primary causes: 1) Despite our similarities, there are also many differences (low social coherence, in your terms), and 2) there is only so much genuine community you can experience through text.
1) I get along very well with Koanic because, as I’ve noted in the forum, we have an extraordinary number of things in common: evangelical Christian upbringing in mid-America, plus strong Asperger’s, plus *still* Christian (that is, not the slutty Churchians who give it up easy in college), plus edenism and red pill and Vox Day, plus psychology obsession, etc. Most of the other forum members are not Christians, many are not Americans, etc.
2) There is only so much community you can get through text on a computer screen. It is definitely a rush to discover people you can communicate with and have interesting conversations with. But really, the human desire for community comes from the need to breed, to work together in building a strong tribe, and to have a social safety net. Mental stimulation and encouragement only go so far when you can’t find a job because you don’t have any normie friends.
So once again, I’ll wrap up by saying that it boils down to whether the theory is true or not. If the theory is true, then it explains the cult-like properties. If it’s not true, then the cult-like properties are most easily explained by cult-like causes. It’s like Christianity that way: either it’s true or it’s a cult that got out of hand.
I’ll discuss the theories and science in sweeping terms in a couple more posts (unless I get distracted, fingers crossed).