You can close your eyes to reality, but not to your memories.
In a very full life I have known some people with very bad memories, they just can’t or won’t remember anything much. I’ve been told by a close friend that it’s possible to completely forget years and years of your early childhood. And, I’ve known people with false memories, manufactured memories, and memories that were implanted into their subconscious mind. Thoughts and memories are just chemical changes and electrical impulses and charges inside your brain ~ memories are easily altered.
A memory of the past which is either non-existent, false, manufactured, or implanted is often the result of alcohol abuse, the abuse of prescription drugs, or using any street drugs at all, especially marijuana. Booze and drugs tend to destroy the memory vitamins B1 and B12, and the negative effects on memory can go on for years after the heavy drinking or drug taking has stopped. Booze, in particular, robs the body of B vitamins. Lack of B1 and B12 has other very bad effects; slowness, confusion, fatigue, irritability, apathy, poor sleep, insomnia, and shortness of breath.
But then, all memories are untrue, because we see the past through the prism of the present ~ all of our present-day character defects and positive character traits change how we remember the past.
Our experiences of pleasure, ecstasy, pain, suffering, and loss extend far beyond our personal recollections. When we tell others of our memories, then they will react, remember, and retell our memories back to us. And when we tell others of our past we cannot ever tell the whole truth.
Sometimes we are afraid to admit our past, and sometimes we are ashamed to tell the whole truth. Also, we can never fully remember the truth of our past. Our incomplete and inaccurate memories of the past go on to tint our picture of the present, and our expectations of the future. Sometimes what we think we remember is an event that’s actually happening right now, or we expect to happen in the future, or will happen in the future. A memory of the past may be nothing of the sort ~ especially if you use alcohol or drugs. Smoking doesn’t help much with remembering things either.
Some say they can’t remember names, or faces. And, that they’re always forgetting where they left their car keys. All I know is that I’m cursed with an eidetic memory.
drinking and smoking are no good for your memory and brain health
Being There. Do you know how that feels?
Do you know what it’s like to conjure a memory.
When I cast my mind into the past it no longer feels like a remembered event to me. It is as though I am watching myself act out the memory, as though I am being taken back there by a Guardian Angel, or a concerned Goddess, or a malevolent Ghost. Perhaps it would make more sense if I said it was like Doctor Who travelling back in time and secretly watching an earlier version of himself during some critical event.
Imagine George Bailey being shown the possible shape of Bedford Falls when it was renamed Pottersville, an invisible observer to a possible future built on a different past. That what it’s like for me now when I remember my own past.
There memories are not what it was like, they are the shape of what it was really like.
When I cast my mind back just a couple of years I see a very horrible version of my life back then. Not how it was on the surface, but how it really was, deep inside and with the interconnectedness of all things.
My memories of myself, in my apartment, (the garret), from a couple of years ago. It’s gloomy, the garret isn’t white and bright, it’s dark and dingy like a mediaeval dungeon. The walls are grey stone dripping with moisture, there are rats on the floor, one small, barred, window high up in the wall. Light is from the guttering stub of a candle. I am at a small table, writing. And, I am old, wizened, hunched-over, dark and defeated, an evil version of myself. That is not what it was like. That picture is what it was really like.
My memories of the past have become vivid metaphors where the truth is revealed.
Spooky, weird, disturbing. Insightful, valuable, true. These strange visions of the past are teaching me how to learn, how understand the interconnectedness of all things.
Respectable scientists using optogenetics have shown that memories reside in specific brain cells. A while ago I suffered a fractred skull and intracranial bleeding, so perhaps my memory cells were damaged, and I have ‘relearned’ my own past.
Whatever this strange gift is, I am glad of it, for now I see the true past for exactly what it was. And, much of it was bad.