Looking at Gad Saad’s Book (2020) “The Parasitic Mind” (Part 1 of 17)

0001 Professor Gad Saad is an expert in applying evolutionary psychology to contemporary consumer behavior.  He publishes a book, titled, The Parasitic Mind: How Infectious Ideas Are Killing Common Sense.  The cover of the book is adorned with a graphic.  A hand holds one end of a thread that goes on to become a line drawing of the human neocortex.  Is the thread going into the head?  Or, is the thread (of common sense) coming out of the head?

I suppose I have to read the book to find out.

0002 Saad gets into the push-pull operation in chapter four, titled, “Anti-Science, Anti-Reason and Illiberal Movements”.  He lists four contemporary academic beings… er… parasites: postmodernism, social constructivism, radical feminism and transgender activism.  Each movement… er… parasite is founded on a demonstrable falsehood.  Each desires to be free from reality.

For these comments, I use gender as an example.

0003 In order to diagram these statements, I consult A Primer on the Category-Based Nested Form and A Primer on Sensible and Social Construction.  These primers, by Razie Mah, are available at smashwords and other e-book venues.  They are not long.  They are very informative.

0004 A parasite feeds off a host.

The host goes with the content-level.  The parasite places content in an alternate situation.

0005 I begin with the host.  The host takes the actuality of men and women2a, which emerges from a biological distinction (which, in turn is an actuality in another nested form)1a in the normal context of an orthodox view3a.  The term, biological distinction1a, is short for the potential of sexual dimorphism, as expressed in humans1a.  Roughly, “ortho” means “right” and “dox” means “doctrine”.

Figure 01

0006 Obviously, this content-level is scientifically, reasonably and liberally situated by cognitive psychology and its companion discipline, evolutionary psychology.  Evolutionary psychologists explain the findings of cognitive psychologists in terms of natural selection and genetics: adaptations and phenotypes.

0007 The social constuctivist approach runs opposition to cognitive (and evolutionary) psychology.  The social constructivist claims to situate the orthodox view, with the possibility that biological distinctions are irrelevant.  Instead, only the human will is relevant.  Gender is a personal choice.  Gender is an act of the will.

The resulting situation-level nested form looks like this.

Figure 02

Looking at Gad Saad’s Book (2020) “The Parasitic Mind” (Part 2 of 17)

0008 Now, people talk about men and women all the time.  They act within a traditional framework3a where ideas about men and women2a emerge from (and situate) the potential of sexual dimorphism, as expressed in humans1a.  Explicit ideas2a can be articulated in speech-alone talk.  Conversations may be recorded for scientific inquiry.  Implicit ideas2aproduce expressive phenomena, such as blushing or averting one’s gaze, that can be observed and measured using instrumentation (surveillance cameras).

Consequently, cognitive psychology3b virtually situates the same content-level nested form as social construction3b.

Figure 03

0009 The difference is obvious.  Social constructionism does not observe and measure1b attitudes and behaviors associated with the orthodox view3a.  Rather, social construction3b virtually situates othodox views3a with a situation-level potential1b, the human will1b, which is an explicit abstraction concerning human nature.

Saad calls the forced choice between the scientific potential of observations and measurements1b and the constructionist potential of the human will1b“intellectual terrorism”.

Well, terrorists hold people and things hostage.  What do social constructionists hold hostage?

Ah, it must be observations and measurements1b.

Is that what makes these postmodern movements anti-science?

0010 But, there is more.

The content-level is also virtually situated by traditional formulations about the nature of the content-level.  In the West, these forms come from churches, for the most part.  They are very old, but still remain within our current Lebenswelt.

Figure 04

0011 The normal context of traditional doctrines3b brings the actuality of marriage and the family2b into relation with the potential of male-female pair bonding1b.

Isn’t that reasonable?

The relational logic of marriage is portrayed in A Primer on the Family, by Razie Mah, available at smashwords and other e-book venues.

Nature appears to express its own will.  There is a natural intention1b (male-female pair bonding) that virtually situates a biological distinction1a.  Plus, that natural intention1b appears at the very start of the foundational text for Christian civilization.  Remember Adam and Eve?

0012 What is another thing that social constructionists hold hostage?

Ah, it must be male-female pair bonding.

0013 The possibility of male-female pair bonding1b underlies marriage and family2b in the normal context of tradition3b.  Plus, male-female pair bonding1b emerges from (and situates) the entire contenta level.  Male-female pair bonding1baccounts for the entire contenta level.  It is perfectly reasonable that human bodies are adaptations into the niche of male-female pair bonding

This is what makes postmodern movements anti-reason.


Looking at Gad Saad’s Book (2020) “The Parasitic Mind” (Part 3 of 17)

0014 So far, in looking at chapter four of Saad’s book and using gender as the example, I re-articulate some of the author’s claims using the category-based nested form.

Postmodern illiberal movements situate orthodox views about men and women2a with the concept that gender is a personal choice2b.

Figure 05

0015 Plus, postmodern illiberal movements3b exclude both traditional formulations3b and the disciplinary language of cognitive psychology3b.

On what theoretical grounds do they exclude?

0016 Well, if they have no theoretical grounds, then they would be intellectual terrorists.

But, if they do, then what would put the normal context of social construction3b into perspective3c?

Well, the perspective must be a postmodern illumination3c, because the situation-level normal context3b displaces both science and reason.  The situation tells me that gender is a personal choice2b.  An third-level actuality2c must put that personal choice2b into perspective.  If the world2c is “naively innocent”, then that perspective empowers the situation-level actuality2b.  If the world2c is “treacherously corrupt”, then that perspective explains why the situation-level actuality2b may never be realized (without the assistance of a benevolent being with sovereign power).

0017 Here is a picture of the dark side of the postmodern illumination3c.

Figure 06

0018 The slogan of “toxic masculinity”2c enters the picture as emerging from (and situating) the potential that contextualizes the situation level1c.  Men are oppressors.  Women are oppessed.  And, that is all there is to it.  The actuality2c emanating from the potential of ‘the patriarchy’1c is an illumination of darkness3c, in the Manichaean sense of the term, “darkness”.

Of course, this perspective is counter-intutitive in the sense that is incomplete.  The problem?  The other half of the illumination goes unspoken.  An illumination3c of light, as opposed to darkness, remains unspoken.

0019 Here is a picture of the naively innocent side of the postmodern illumination3c.

Figure 07

0020 Naive and innocent sovereign acts and decrees have the potential1c of mitigating the dominating and inflexible patriarchy1c.   Of course, this requires sovereign power1c.

0021 What happens when ‘sovereign acts and decrees’1c counters ‘the patriarchy’1c?

Men are humbled2c and women are liberated2c in the normal context of the light-filled normal context of postmodern illumination3c.


Looking at Gad Saad’s Book (2020) “The Parasitic Mind” (Part 4 of 17)

0022 In order to appreciate the three-level interscope derived in the last blog, I consider the virtual nested form in the realm of possibility.  This turns the column in firstness, consisting of elements 1a, 1b and 1c into a category-based nested form.

0023 Here is a picture.

Figure 08

0024 Postmodern gender studies only proclaims the dark illumination3c.  The light illuminations3c, where liberation2coccurs, cannot be articulated, because humiliation2c and liberation2c emerge from (and situate) sovereign acts and decrees1c.  What does the postmodern (il)liberal gain from bringing politics and policies into the picture?

So, the proclamation of the dark illumination3c fills the airwaves.

0023 In the normal context of the patriarchy1cthe relevance of the humans will1b virtually emerges from (and situates) the irrelevance of biological distinctions1a, including the potential of sexual dimorphism in humans1a.

Consequently, men choose to gender themselves as males based on human will1b, rather than the potentials of scientific observations and measurements1b and the reasonable (natural law) conclusion that men and women are adapted to pair-bonding1b. The human will1b does not virtually emerge from a biological distinction1a.  Rather, the human will1b decides how to situate biological distinctions1a, where biological distinctions1a correspond to the potential inherent in male and female phenotypes1a.

0024 In short, the situation-level potential of the relevance of the human will1b veils the relevance of observations and measurements1b (in cognitive science3b) and the relevance of pair-bonding1b (from traditional moral and religious fomulations3b).

What happens next?

According to the normal context of social construction3b, if neither science3b nor religion3b are relevant, then content-level of orthodox views3a should no longer serve as subject matter.  The content-level is eclipsed.

0025 Here is a picture.

Figure 09

0026 What does this imply?

Discussions about men and women2a, one of the favorite topics in bars and coffeeshops near college campuses, are no longer pertinent.

There is a new content-level in town.


Looking at Gad Saad’s Book (2020) “The Parasitic Mind” (Part 5 of 17)

0027 Chapter Five is titled, “Campus Lunacy: The Rise of the Social Justice Warrior”.

I continue with gender as the exemplar concern.  In the perspective-level of the previous diagram, being oppressed2c is a feminine trait2c.  On the situation level, the normal context of social construction3b brings the actuality of gender as a personal choice2b into relation with the potential of human will1b.  The human will1b is so relevant, that it makes biological distinctions1a irrelevant.

Once biological distinctions1a are irrelevant, then all orthodox views3a of men and women2a no longer matter.  Orthodox views3a concerning the biological distinctions1a between men and women2a have been around a long time.  The first great epic of the Greek language, The Iliad, revolves around that distinction.  Paris kidnaps Helen and brings her to Troy and triggers the Trojan War.  The unique masterpiece of the Jewish and Christian tradition starts in the Garden of Eden with the distinction between man and woman.

0028 Social construction replaces any need for the so-called “Western canon”.

Indeed, social construction offers an alternate content level, allowing me to depict the following speculative diagram, based on the title of chapter five.

Figure 10

0029 Yes, once feminism triumps, the situation level shifts to the content level.  A new “humanities”2a must be constructed3a in order to aesthetically represent the potential of the relevance of the human will1a (over biological distinctions1a) and to politically portray gender as a personal choice2a.

There goes the Iliad and the Bible.  Fare thee well, Western civilization.

0030 Of course, the alternative literature of the nouvelle academics must be situated by the patriarchy1b, as the potential from which arises the unspeakable horrors of well… those throwbacks who still are talking about the biological differences between men and women.

Call them “scientists”.  Call them “humanists”.  Call them “religious”.  They are overruled by the critique of dark illumination3b.  Ssocial construction3a, not orthodox views3a, should define the content level.

0031 Remember the so-called College of Arts and Sciences?

Let us now advocate for a new coalition of social inquiries.

May we call it the College of Social Constuction?

0032 Take a closer look at the above figure.

Several postmodern themes intertwine.

0033 On the content level, radical individualism predominates.  For other brands of social construction, replace “gender” with “the issue du jour”.

0034 On the situation level, Marxism stands out.  The “patriarchy” is the “system”.  The “system” is a term that substitutes for “capitalism”, along with its attendant division between the “bourgeois” and the “proletariat”.  The “system” injects a fantastic fluidity into the Marxist tradition.  A phantasmic dyad2b of dark illumination3b always manifests as oppressor and oppressed.  Another term for dark illumination3b is “critical theory”3b.

0035 On the perspective level, American big government (il)liberalism blossoms.  Who provides the protection1c and the privileged status for the oppressed2c?  It is the federal government.  Another term for protection1c is “safe space”.  Another term for light illumination3c is “social justice”3c.  The lawyer who sues for the causes of the ones privileged to be called, “oppressed”, is a “social-justice warrior”.


Looking at Gad Saad’s Book (2020) “The Parasitic Mind” (Part 6 of 17)

0036 Chapter six is titled, “Departures from Reason: Ostrich Parasitic Syndrome”.

Can social construction3a adequately replace the orthodox views3a that incoming university students already hold when they enter their dormitories?

The answer is “yes”, since orthodox views3a are outlawed from the start.

Colleges say to their incoming classes, “Scrap any right doctrines that you think you have.  We are here to inform you of what you should think.”

Thus, postmodern college education begins with de-indoctrination.

They continue, “Do not concern yourselves with what your parents, grandparents, and other relatives have told you about the world.  Do not recall what any inquisitorial throwback has instructed you about religion.  These are the discourses of the master1b.  Your human will1a is the only relevant parameter in the social construction3a of your personal choices2a.”

0037 What does this imply?

Academics in the College of Social Construction do not want to hear what the students already think, because their orthodox views3a are already irrelevant.

To me, this introduces what Saad labels as “the Ostrich Parasitic Syndrome”.

Postmodern academics do not want to encounter the world outside their safe space3c.  They do not want to hear orthodox views3a because such views are already excluded from academic discourse founded on the normal context of social construction3a.

0038 This is a syndrome, because we do not know the underlying causes, other than disdain for fools who cannot wrap their rigid minds around the normal context of social construction3a.

0039 Here is slower way to depict what postmodern academics do not want to see and what happens when they hide content that they do not want to see.

They do not want to see the content-level for the following two-level interscope.

Figure 11

In particular, orthodox views3a, which are typically situated (and also refined) by humanities3b and the sciences3b, deserve contempt and ridicule.  Such ridicule is biting. Such contempt has be vicious.  After all, what is to stop the humanities3band the sciences3b from excluding social constuction3b?

Do different rules apply to the humanities3b and the sciences3b as opposed to the social constructions3b?

That is a very good question.

0039 According to Saad, postmodern academics is parasitic. They are feeding off a host.

Who is the host?

Presumably, the host is the one providing students with orthodox views3a.  Who is the host?   Is the host, the student’s parents, extended family, local community, church and so on? 

Why would they send their sons and daughters to a college where social construction3a institutionally excludes their own orthodox views3a, which they taught to their children?

0040 Plus, why does Saad add the adjective, “ostrich”.

Well, an ostrich does not like danger.  So, the ostrich has been rumored to place its head in a burrow in order to not see an unwanted danger.   Of course, this does not make any sense in terms of evolutionary adaptations.  The ostrich has huge legs.  What are they for if not running away from danger?

So, this term, “ostrich”, serves as a metaphor for a creature who will bury its head in order not to see something that it knows that it is not supposed to see.

0041 That creature belongs to the College of Social Construction.

So, what is the thing that the College of Social Construction knows that it is not supposed to see?

Well, the answer to that question already appears.

Plus, the answer will appear again.


Looking at Gad Saad’s Book (2020) “The Parasitic Mind” (Part 7 of 17)

0042 Professor Saad is an evolutionary psychologist.  I am sure that he can discuss, at length, the avoidance of information that is apparently detrimental to one’s adaptive fitness.

But, he cannot say what the ostrich is trying not to see.

That requires a new type of understanding.  That understanding comes from the nascent Department of Triadic Relations.  “Nascent” means on the verge of coming into being.  Esse_ce meets essence.  Triadic relations locates where evolutionary psychology can meet political philosophy.

0043 Consider the following development of an organizational objective for the institution of the nouvelle academy.

0044 What the ostrich is trying not to see, already mentioned, arises from the fact that social construction originates as a situation-level nested form.

Figure 12

0045 In the first step, the situation level settles in (invasively occupies?) the content-level for the new academy.

Figure 13

0046 This move rules out science, reason and liberalism, while, at the same time, declaring these styles of inquiry irrelevant.

Why is liberalism ruled out?

Liberalism may be defined as “the correct doctrine of ‘live and let live'”.  Say that I want to destroy my enemies.  There are other issues involved besides my own human will1a.  Liberals consider those issues as relevant.  They are not.

Instead, in the situational normal context of critical theory3bthe articulation of oppressor and oppressed2a arises from the potential of a system that threatens the relevance of the human will1b.  Liberals call this system1b “other issues involved besides my own human will”.

0047 The light illumination3c (of social justice3c) then puts the dark illumination3b (of critical theory3b) into perspective.

Figure 14

This interscope has appeared before.

0048 Consider the virtual nested form in the category of firstness.

Figure 15

0049  The system1b virtually situates human will1a.  The system1b cannot be visualized without the critical powers of dark illumination3b.  The system1b corresponds to Yaltaboath1b, the ever-demanding god of world creation, as noted in Comments on Peter Burfeind’s Book (2014) Gnostic America.

Consequently, one goal of the nouvelle academy is the articulation of the system1b that virtually sitates (and to some, dictates) whether the human will is relevant or not1a.  Systems1b that do not acknowledge the primacy of the human will1a, produce dyadic social actualities of oppressors and oppressed2b.  The only redemption1c from systems1b can celebrate the relevance of human will1a.  A safe space1c is necessary.

That safe space1c is nothing less than the promise of the new academy1c.  The ostrich hides the original content layer.  The parasite demands a safe space1c.  The syndrome promises an academy that will deliver a safe space1c that will contextualize the system1b (the patriarchy1b, in the case of feminism) in order to elevate the relevance of the human will1a


Looking at Gad Saad’s Book (2020) “The Parasitic Mind” (Part 8 of 17)

0050 Okay, the ostrich, the parasite and the syndrome of the postmodern academy1c wants to illuminate the darkness of the system1b.

But, doesn’t it take one to know one?

Oops, that is a saying straight out of the now-suppessed handbook of orthodox views1a.

That brings me back to what the ostrich does not want to see.

Or, should I say, “What does the ostrich not want everyone else not to see.”?

Professor Saad strives to describe what the ostrich does not want everyone else to see

0051 What does the ostrich not want everyone else to see?

I suspect that this evolutionary scientist sees the following virtual nested form in the category of secondess.

Figure 16

0052 While the items in the realm of potential are topics for discussion in the new academy, the elements in the realm of actuality can be observed and measured on postmodern college campuses throughout Western civilization.  The normal context of a privileged status for those who are oppressed2c virtually brings the dyadic actuality that some identify as oppressed and some are identified as oppressor2b into relation with the potential of persons engaging in a personal choices2a.

0053 Does this mesh with Saad’s label, “ostrich parasitic syndrome”?

0054 In terms of gender, one’s personal choice2a reveals the relevance of one’s human will1a in the normal context of social construction3a.  Personal choice2a is a syndrome that transcends (even as it bans) the most obvious symptoms of biological sexual dimorphism in humans1a (that is, men and women2a).

Syndromes are clusters of symptoms.  Orthodox views3a label syndromes1a as products, not of human will1a, but ofcertain underlying material or instrumental causes1a.  In the frame of science, these causes are biological.  In the frame of philosophy, these causes are discussed in terms of natural laws.  Natural laws correlate syndromes with underlying causalities.

So, fixation on personal choice2a is a syndrome, from the orthodox points of view of science and philosophy, which are not to be regarded in the College of Social Construction.

0055 In terms of gender, males are identified as oppressors2b and females are identified as oppressed2b.  A critical theory3b assists identification2b on the basis of the potential of a system1b.  For gender, the system1b is labeled, “the patriarchy”1b.

0056 What is a parasite?

A parasite feeds off its host.

If I look at oppressor and oppressed, I can ask the question, “Who is the parasite and who is the host.”

Obviously, the oppressor feeds off the oppressed.

0057 But, the actual relation is the opposite.

I ask, “If the parasite can choose to be a parasite and the host cannot choose its fate, then how does choice2a align with the actualities2b of critical theory3b?”

Well, the female may voluntarily associate to the label of “oppressed”2b and the male has no choice but to accept the label of “oppressor”2b.  Voluntary association with the oppressed2b virtually situates the content-level actuality of personal choice2a.  Rejection of the label of “oppressor”2b directly situates the resisting involuntary with complicity with the system1b theorized by critique3b.

This implies that the so-called “oppressor”2b is the host and the self-identifying “oppressed”2b is the parasite.

0058 Let me say that again.

Contrary to the obvious conclusion, the self-identifying “oppressed”2b are parasitic upon their involuntarily identified “oppressors”2b.

The question now becomes, “What substance does the parasite draw from its host?”

0059 One answer is apparent in the normal context2c for the virtual nested form in the realm of actuality.

The oppressed2b draws priveleged status2c from the oppressor2b

Of course, this answer cannot be admitted.

Hence, the metaphor of “ostrich” applies.


Looking at Gad Saad’s Book (2020) “The Parasitic Mind” (Part 9 of 17)

0060 I now enter disciplinary territory that Professor Saad cannot go, because it currently stands outside his academic turf of evolutionary psychology.

Why is the turf of evolutionary psychology so limited?

Remember evolutionary psychology arises as a biological discipline, attempting to account for models proposed by cognitive psychology in terms of natural selection, adaptation and niche.

0061 However, what if the ultimate (not proximate) human niche is the potential of traidic relations, as proposed in Razie Mah’s masterwork, The Human Niche (available at smashwords and other e-book venues)?  

Then, the discipline of evolutionary psychology expands, because triadic relations participate in so many human adaptations.  Models proposed by cognitive psychology describe only a small fraction of human behaviors in our current Lebenswelt.  Imagine the wealth of material, since the start of writing, waiting to be diagrammed in terms of triadic relations.  These diagrams would be subject matter for an expanded discipline of evolutionary psychology.  And, that is just the start.

For example, in Comments on Robert Berwick and Noam Chomsky’s Book (2016) Why Only Us?, Razie Mah proposes that the three-level interscope may serve as a way to describe langue (that is, what goes on in our minds when we talk).

Consequently, a completed three-level interscope is intellectually satisfying.  Once a three level interscope is complete, no element stands empty.

0062 But, there is more than one meaning to the term, “empty”.

Saad’s designation of the nouvelle academy as “ostrich parasitic syndrome” implies three types of emptiness.  Each word associates to a type of emptiness.

0063 The first emptiness comes from the actuality2a that a personal choice must be made.  A human will1a is not relevant unless it is decisive.  Is that the case?  According to orthodox views3a, human will has to work with what nature and God provides1a.  Males are men2a.  Females are women2a.  The will of God1a stands in the emptiness of the actuality2a of social construction3a.

0064 The second emptiness comes from the fact that the oppressor2b is the host and the oppressed2b is the parasite, in the virtual normal context of a privileged status for the oppressed2c.  This emptiness is filled by the obvious meaning of the terms, “oppressor” and “oppressed”.  The parasite expresses an inversion of meaning.

0065 The third emptiness comes from the perspective level, where the normal context social justice3c brings the actuality of privileged status for the oppressed2c into relation with the potential of protection (that is, a safe space)1c.  Saad uses the metaphor of the ostrich, a large-bodied but small-brained bird that refuses to see what it does not want to see.

The College of Social Construction is in denial.

What is it denying?

Look past what it is asserting.


Looking at Gad Saad’s Book (2020) “The Parasitic Mind” (Part 10 of 17)

0066 The new academy denies that there is a world outside the three-level interscope that empowers them.

0067 Consider the virtual nested form in the realm of normal contexts.

Figure 17

0068 The normal context of social justice2c virtually brings the actuality of critical theory3b into relation with the potential of social construction3a.

To me, this virtual nested form describes the institution3aC of the College of Social Construction.

Likewise, the virtual nested form in the realm of actuality portrays the organizational objectives2aC of the new academy.

Finally, the virtual nested form in the realm of possibility depicts the righteousness1aC of the nouvelle academy.

0069 The College of Social Construction is an institution.

What are institutions?

Here is a picture of the contenta-level of the societyC tier, appearing in the chapter on presence in Razie Mah’s masterwork, How To Define The Word “Religion” (available at smashwords and other e-book venues).

Figure 18

0070 Saad does not know this figure.  His expertise does not include “institutions”. So, he cannot articulate the social nature of the new academy.

0071 At first, the inquirer may think that each of the virtual nested forms already discussed might overlap with the three elements of the figure.  In a sense, each does.  The virtual nested form in the category of thirdness may be placed over institution3aC.  The virtual nested form in the category of secondness may cover the organizational objectives2aC.  The virtual nested form in the category of firstness may be set on top of the potential of ‘righteousness’1aC.

0072 On second thought, the entire three-level interscope of the new academy could enter the slot for the organizational objective2aC.

Recall, Saad’s term, “parasite”, corresponds to the situation-level actuality2b of the interscope.  Here, the parasitic self-identifying “oppressed”2b draws substance from its host, involuntarily labeled as “oppressor”2b.  I now can imagine what that substance is.  It is righteousness1aC.

0073 So, here is my guess as to the resulting nested form.

In the normal context of the new academy3aC, the actuality of the entire three-level interscope of social justice, critical theory and social contruction2aC emerges from (and situates) the potential of a righteousness that simultaneously draws upon and rejects orthodox views, like the righteousness of an ostrich not facing what it does not want to see, like the righteousness of parasite feeding off of its host1aC, and the righteousness of just being better than orthodox scientists and philosophers1aC.

Here is the institution of the College of Social Construction.

Figure 19

0074 Uh oh.  If the potential is a righteousness that is drawn from orthodox views, like a parasite feeding off of its host1aC, then why do I write the potential of ‘signaling the virtues the human will… er… of the self-identifying oppressed… er… I mean to say, the virtues of the new world order’1aC?