Memories……

1 04 2013

Memory is a funny thing. What one person remembers can be quite different from another person. Some of it is perspective, some of it might be personal views on the important aspects of an event. Apparently what language you speak and hence what words you have at your disposal also affects what you understand and remember about events. Presumably NLP works differently in different languages.

Most people seem to have their first memories around 4 or 5, although if you try to remember your earliest memory it is difficult to separate what you remember from what you have been told and photographs you have seen. My mother in particular seems to have taken advantage of this and denies events that I specifically remember in an attempt I allege is a rewriting of history. Her brother, meanwhile, used to allege that he could remember being born. Clearly we are a family for whom the truth has been a malleable concept.

But while our memories are already somewhat fallible tools, imagine if, like Star Trek, you had a holo-deck, and could create completely fictional events. You could people your events with real colleagues, friends and acquaintances. And while to you, they would seem to be real experiential memories, the other people would have absolutely no knowledge of the events you created.

PS Stumbleupon just showed me a Wikipedia page on parataxic distortion which expands on this concept.

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5 responses

1 04 2013
Christa

I have memories from when I was a toddler, mostly images and some experiences that were put into context later. Basically I saw photos in my baby album and I could remember them being taken and the experiences around those memories. I used to have dreams about things that had happened and they made no sense until I saw the photos and then the jumble cleared. So for me I think memories started from about age 2, but didn’t become easily accessible or organised into what we recognise as memories until I was about a year older.

1 04 2013
Mudmap

I see photos and think I remember them being taken…..but in actual fact I can’t remember much more than the photo set-up itself and perhaps a story I have been told about it, so I think they are manufactured memories for me.

2 04 2013
empty chair (@Janet741)

I clearly remember first episode of Dr Who when 3 and being bathed by mum. Still love it. Dr Who that is. Baths r fun too. Remember my sister being born, at home, around the same time. I thought she was black which was cool as so was my best friend, also called Janet.

2 04 2013
empty chair (@Janet741)

I clearly remember first episode of Dr Who when 3 and being bathed by mum. Still love it. Dr Who that is. Baths r fun too. Remember my sister being born, at home, around the same time. I thought she was black which was cool as so was my best friend, also called Janet.

2 04 2013
empty chair (@Janet741)

I barely remember anything from childhood except school. Many of my clients can recall scenes word for word but I have only snapshot images, which is wild because otherwise I have eidetic memory, something my ex, Psychiatrist, and I had in common.

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