Memory: Flawed or Fool-Proof

The advantage of a bad memory is that one enjoys several times the same good things for the very first time.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

Remember those happy moments when we did things we loved and the appreciation we received helping us to recollect those events embedded in our minds or the miserable times we wish to forget that leave a sour taste in our mouths? It is all due to one important thing- one that separates us from other mammals of different kinds and makes us evidently humane- memory, that is, being capable of recalling something or anything.

Memories shape who and what we are. They create internal biographies- the stories we tell ourselves about the things we’ve done in our lives, the people we’ve connected and touched in our lives and vice-versa. Memories are essential as well as crucial to the living definition of us human beings.

So, what makes memory reliable? We proceed with our daily lives without embracing the various fundamentals of the memory neuroscience. Furthermore, we use memory inadvertently; not realizing that it’s another wonderful thing created  the human body is capable of. As portrayed here, nothing would give you greater delight in someone remembering you, as being forgotten is worse than death. Each beautiful minute you cherish with someone or each equally shared unpleasant experience you have, and the nostalgic moments you reminisce about everything would not be feasible without memory.  

But as with every good thing, there is always a downside. Memory is susceptible to being manipulated when left to one’s own devices. Memory reconsolidation (making memory stronger by effective and continuous use) is complicated to achieve. After all, it’s the human tendency to forget things. The distress of misplacing a new book in the library and the process of retrieving it, when required, seems borderline impossible. Likewise, information misplaced due to not being attentive or not understanding is deeply rooted and lost in our head and difficult to regain.

Memory is versatile and accessible, or redundant: depending on the user. There are limitations to memory, but they do not diminish memory’s effectiveness-the only exception being time. People who age, or in unfortunate conditions  lose track of time and lose their memory, that is, amnesia. As such, memory remains enigmatic in studying the extent of its breadth and depth to scientists all over the world to this day.

Vivid memories are truly a godsend, as it is the power of memory, which in turn, gives rise to the power of imagination-good or bad, false or true, light or darkness…flawed or fool-proof.

By David Raju 12 H

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