251 comments on “The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge)

  1. nonadesign says:

    This is one of the amazing texts I have ever read. Please let me know when your workshop is online. Cheers

    • Absolutely amazingly put and this
      is soo linked to what I was trying to convey today that I am very Grateful you liked my previous post. You helped me to know I am heading in the right direction, and that I just need to remove the fear to take a chance!! Thank you !!!

    • Eva Finn says:

      Memory is truly my enemy sometimes. Glad to know I’m not the only one. Thanks for your comments on my blog, wisebefore25, btw – really appreciate the positive feedback!

    • William Lee says:

      I follow the concept and agree. ‘We are our thoughts’ is a concept from Buddha, who also encouraged the clearing of ones’ mind. I feel most of us are nothing but children. We worry of little things, little things when faced become meaningless and unworthy of even a moment of sorrow. We lack self. Our concept of self is so weak that it is invaded in the manner you posted above.

    • Very Interesting read Ido!!!

    • mariposa333 says:

      Thank you for liking my blog! Sorry for delay in responding. Had to divert the negativity so I could genuinely respond. Yes, living in the present is key. It can be hard though. I find it easier to let go of my ego. But when there are deadlines to meet, it seems challenging not to plan ahead. Even though we do not know if we will see that distant future.

  2. Reblogged this on The Flood Behind and commented:
    You still live in the past, where the memories slay you.

    No pretty feelings can last; that’s just how the Soul moves you.

    There’s more to this world than I can ever say. If you take my hand I’ll show you along the way.

  3. leelotchka44 says:

    Extraordinary important to know – and so terribly easy to forget

  4. Delft says:

    So true. So much of reality is a story we tell ourselves…

  5. leelotchka44 says:

    Ido – I have a comment – or a question – many people with post-traumatic stress-syndrome has like a photographic frozen image of stuff that has “burnt” its image in the memory – mostly connected to gross violence and insanity. Are you saying that we shall always doubt these memories? As a therapist, I may use years of patient presence to help the patient feel safe enough to allow these memories come up, so we can question them or just be with them.
    Please enlighten me :-)
    Leelah

    • Ido Lanuel says:

      Hi Leelah,

      Those memories that we hold in our heads, they are not real. We cannot point them with our fingers, we cannot touch them, we can’t be sure at all that they have ever existed at all. Our memory is not such a good tool to rely on, saying the least. If I would ask myself “what was I doing at 30th of last month?”, I wouldn’t find any trace in my memory for an answer. Every dispute that ever took place started when 2 people disagreed about something that “happened”. That’s the case, because each and every one of them “remembers” that this thing happened in a differnet way. None of them is a liar. They both honestly “rememeber”. But both rememeber a different story. None of the stories are real.

      Memory is a kind of a thought. Therefore, it is subjective, temporary, unstable, and most important of all – just doesn’t exist outside of our heads. It is a big, big liar. A very good one though.
      :-)

      LOVE

      • leelotchka44 says:

        I am talking about images in the mind – frozen in the second where we left ourselves. No dispute is made about these memories. I experience – both with myself and my patients – that when these memories/images are taken out – or better, allowed to surface, from the memorybank, healing occurs: now stuff is seen and responded to, like old hidden secrets let out in the light and being disposed of – because we discover all the things we have told ourselves because of the trauma, and mostly none of it is true. That’s where we agree :-) – our perception/memory may be true, but the stories about it are not

      • Good post! I agree with everything you said, but there is one important thing: we need to remember so we can “learn” from the experience. If we do not learn from the experience and just erase it from our memory it will re-occur in a different form over and over again until we “deal” with whatever the situation is. That is why yes it is futile to re-examine everything in our minds and create a fear but it is immensely important we become aware of the whys and wherefores in order to move forward.

    • Dear Leelah, I thought that I might try to give you some insight into the question you asked. If I may. It’s interesting me that you said “burnt its image in the memory” If you and Ido will allow me I would like to give you a link to something I wrote that might be of use to you in your practice of medicine. http://doowansnewsandevents.wordpress.com/2012/07/17/holographic-universe-and-our-brains/
      I believe that your brains and memories function as explained in this blog. I Hope that this helps you in your practice and your patients in their lives. Best wishes to you and your patients.

  6. guitanaeima says:

    :)

  7. Raunak says:

    love the phrase “all your worries are memories that you have projected onto the future”! I went through a mild version of what you have described this morning itself! Luckily I witnessed what a fool I was being and snapped out of it.

    I would like to add though that all worries maybe memories but not all memories lead to worries. Without memory there would be no knowledge and without knowledge there would be no virtue. Memory can also be perceived as a tool for survival, an outcome of our evolutionary instincts. The trouble arises when we start using this tool to inflict suffering upon ourselves.

  8. stuff I said says:

    This is very interesting! Also thank you for stopping by my blog. I wish you well on your life journey.

  9. Pam says:

    “All your worries are memories that you have projected into the future”— Gah, yes! That self-sabotaging tendency to dwell on the past and worry about the future. And in the process, missing out on the present.

  10. mindfuldiary says:

    True words! Great post. Memory is of no use at all. We are triecked to believe it is so valuable. Thanks for sharing this one. :-)

  11. So true!!! Reblogging!! :)

  12. tchistorygal says:

    Been there! Ouch! What a great reminder. I agree with one of your readers about the importance of memory. It’s not all bad, but we do tend to misuse it!

  13. BT says:

    Am so glad there are more of us who are finding these truths. Its been my salvation to know that I make my thoughts and I can make good ones…all the time

  14. Omg this is so true! Thanks for sharing this!

  15. Ann Louise says:

    There’s a lot to this. Gives me more to think about :) Thanks. I do know that when I stay in the present things are a heck of a lot better!

  16. pastorsvoice says:

    man read it and my memory is gone don’t smoke weed it will make you loose your mind! cool blog peace

  17. Hobbles says:

    I tell my kids when they do that that they are “feeding their monsters”. When people do something that hurts you, it’s like it births a little monster inside you. The more you think about it, talk about it, think about revenge, etc. the bigger the monster gets until it consumes your every thought. It destroys you. The original problem is no longer the main problem. The monster is. Actually, I’ll probably write a bedtime story about it on my blog…

  18. Angelia Sims says:

    Pointing to self. The memory is a crazy place sometimes. ;-)

  19. recoded1 says:

    Not only does your memory impact your future actions but it can control your present actions as well….especially when acting out of emotion and not having time to process thoughts and feelings. When a person replays scenarios both negative and positive it gets bigger in value and can cause a false reality. The mind is so powerful. Great post

  20. rayawambui says:

    Reblogged this on rayawambui and commented:
    This is so true. Let go, of the things you can’t control, so your hands can be free to manage what’s in front of you, and is real.

  21. Beautiful and so true xD We’re all prone to live in our heads a little too much & I’m always getting stuck in the hypothetical.

    Just made me think of a lovely poem I studied at school about the distortion of memory- Cold Knap Lake by Gillian Clarke- very pretty.

  22. Reblogged this on Life With The Top Down and commented:
    Love this, maybe you will to.

  23. [...] Lanuel’s ‘to be self aware’ online workshop is thought provoking, he practices what he [...]

  24. questrix says:

    Thank you for stopping by my blog so I came and found this. I just deleted a planned blog I had entitled “What I should have said was…” regarding an incident a week ago for which I was still harboring anger. I needed to hear this. Again, thank you. Right place, right time – Sychronicity, one of my most cherished concepts.

  25. mauruschka says:

    Reblogged this on In My Right Mind and commented:
    It is very true

  26. random8042 says:

    Reminds me of the quote “The past is a fiction designed to account for th discrepancy between my current physical sensations and my state of mind.”
    Douglas Adams

  27. Shotgun Jane says:

    Awesome piece! First I’d like to say thank you for liking my post, but this post was downright lovely! it’s funny because it’s a concept that for a while I pondered on but never really stopped to fully dwell on it and understand. So to come across this was sheer coincidence, but I found it to be quite wonderful. Thanks!

  28. This is true. Interesting post!

  29. robinhood63 says:

    Very interesting blog. Thanks for stopping by and liking my blog. It looks like I have some good reading ahead of me.

  30. So true, and so difficult not to count my memories as facts. Nice post!

  31. Great reminder for me following a conversation that I had with my sister yesterday! Need to reframe it in my mind and let it go………

  32. shewritesherenow says:

    Very powerful, and true. It’s recalling and recalling that often steals hope and leaves a bitter trail.

  33. Thanks for this post. It reminds me of something a very smart person once shared with me, “Don’t have conversations with people who are not present”.

  34. difined says:

    Happens to me a lot, except not really me being mad at someone. It goes on and on, and on, as if I was trying to perfect a sketch and turn it into a masterpiece…. memory tend to play those tricks on us, and makes us remember things that perhaps do not even matter anymore, but we hold on to them still due to what we remember.

  35. ristinek says:

    This is great. It is exactly what I need right now. It’s funny how the universe sends me exactly what I need at the perfect time. Also, thank you for liking my post. I wrote another one that might interest you. :)

  36. mesheala says:

    Reblogged this on onceajunkieneverforget and commented:
    Wow—thought provoking stuff. And sadly I can relate—-funny how we take the lie—and allow itself to keep manifesting itself until it destroys all beauty in the present! Great blog!

  37. mesheala says:

    Reblogged as well—-hoping I can move past the lie destroying the present and projecting even further into the future. It has already stolen 8 years of my life.

  38. This really spoke to me. Thank you!

    Did you know apparently every time you recall a memory, it is genuinely rewritten and the original obliterated? So memories do change in exactly the way you describe. They can also be deliberately modified to reduce the fear response – I can’t remember where I originally heard this, but here’s an article covering something similar:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2009/dec/09/memories-rewritten-anxiety-disorders

    I have some childhood memories that are so precious I try not to relive them often, as I don’t want to degrade them too much. Like a precious vinyl collection! It’s a powerful realisation that your memories are not a crystal-clear record of the past, but a shifting part of your organic brain.

    • Just to add I’ve managed to find the term for this rewriting – it’s “memory consolidation”. There’s a huge article on Wikipedia if you’re interested in reading about “long-term potentiation” and “dietary flavinoids”.

  39. It’s so funny. I think our society encourages these monsters. I really connected with the part about how we do this to prevent it from happening again. In our society we call it “proactive” and “taking responsibility” but sometimes it’s just as simple as shit happens. Playing the blame game (even the self-blame game) doesn’t work. It’s exhausting. Thanks!

  40. Reblogged this on Broken Brain – Brilliant Mind and commented:
    Great thoughts. Good to consider.

  41. Great perspective. You got me thinking. Of course we need to remember things we learned but as for situations I am not sure about the value and that is what I am going to think about. There is a reason we need to remember not to trust and untrustworthy person. Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice…. I like the general thought though. I suppose that shows the value of forgiveness as well. I must explore this.

  42. Reblogged this on Best Of Everything and commented:
    So, here is my first share and this time, a blogger named Ido is writing about the way our memories work (and designed a beautiful image to support the text)
    What do you think about what it?
    And, do you also have something you think I should share here? Tell me about it!
    Cheers,

  43. Slayer Muser says:

    I’m all over this.

    The first three sentences describe “L’esprit d’escalier” (literally, “the wit of the staircase”). It is used to describe the predicament of thinking of the right comeback too late. French encyclopedist and philosopher Denis Diderot coined it in his ‘Paradoxe sur le comédien’. Having been left speechless during a conversation, he explains: “l’homme sensible, comme moi, tout entier à ce qu’on lui objecte, perd la tête et ne se retrouve qu’au bas de l’escalier” (“… a sensitive man, such as myself, overwhelmed by the argument levelled against him, becomes confused and can only think clearly again [when he reaches] the bottom of the stairs”).

    A bloody annoying wit to possess! Prepare yourself for arguments so that you can say the “right” thing exactly when it’s needed!

    But seriously, past and future are illusory. We must not allow our minds’ concerns for either past or present hijack the present, which is where we only ever exist.

  44. brenda says:

    I often have to remind myself that the conclusions that follow the the creative use of defense mechanism is not one where the other lives . . . Also when I hear others define and criticize their experience of “me”, I often reply, “I don’t know the person to whom you are speaking. Does she stand next to me or is she a shadow that only you can experience?” We all are storied selfs; thus, we live in a world of illusions.

  45. Reblogged this on the secret keeper and commented:
    JUST FOUND THIS. JUST READ IT AND IT WILL REALLY MAKE YOU THINK DEEPER THOUGHTS AND HAVE A DEEPER SENSE OF FEELING ABOUT THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS AND MEMORIES. IT IS JUST SOMETHING TO PONDER. TAKE WHAT YOU WILL. J.K. the secret keeper

  46. omezzz says:

    I found this very eye-opening. Thanks for the post :)

  47. Dale Degagne says:

    That was exactly what I needed to hear today. Thank you.
    http://www.thepiggybankassassins.wordpress.com

  48. agjorgenson says:

    Most interesting! Thanks for stopping by stillvoicing.

  49. [...] (Reblogged from http://idolanuel.com/2012/07/26/memory-taken-from-2baware-self-awareness-workshop-online-in-6-days/) [...]

  50. tywood12 says:

    Reblogged this on My New Life and commented:
    A must read about our memories.

  51. Kozo Hattori says:

    Reblogged this on everyday gurus and commented:
    This is a great reminder from “To Be Aware.” The past is gone; the future isn’t here yet; we’ve only got the present; and anything is possible in the present if we stop worrying about the past and future.

  52. Stumbled across your blog and found this to be quite interesting & true. It’s amazing how the mind plays tricks on us. Really glad I came across this…something I needed to read!

  53. Braeden says:

    I am sorry, but your philosophy is flawed. Many times have I remembered something which was consistent to a memory of someone else. That’s either because we both shared the same experience, or it was just a weird coincidence. Why is it that I can remember where I placed an object in the past and find it. Am I not seeing in the present time (which you claim is the only thing that exists) evidence that my memory was true?

    The experience described in the post (I don’t know who originally wrote it) is not evidence to show the unreliability of the memory, it is merely a description of the perversion of it. In the experience the truth was remembered, but it was changed to the liking of the person remembering it. I know someone who has the tendency to remember things in a way that is convenient to him, but not true. Basically, if you lie to yourself enough, you’ll start to believe it.

    There are people who lose their memory due to Alzheimer’s Disease. My great grandmother had Alzheimer’s disease, and it aided her in no way.

    I don’t touch a hot pan because I can remember what happens if I do. I my mouth waters when I smell bacon because I can remember how much I love the taste of bacon. I don’t fire a gun at someone because I’ve been told that it would kill them. If memory is such a big liar, why can I rely on the memories of others for my own safety.

    Memory drives everything we do. It is a necessity to life. We use our past to shape our future.

    Time is like a line. I am a point on the line. The place on the line where I am is the present. The parts of the line behind me is the past, where I have been. The parts of the line in front of me are the future, where I am headed. Just because I cannot touch either of them does not mean they do not exist. The past and future are there, even if you can’t touch them.

    • Ido Lanuel says:

      “I am sorry, your philisophy is flawed”, “The past and the future are there, even if you can’t touch them” –

      1. Don’t be sorry, it is not “mine” in any way.
      2. “Flawed” is an interpetation of reality, born when a neuron is automatically fired inside your brain when it sees something that doesn’t suit it current belief system. You have no control over it, just as you have no control over each and every one of your other internal organs.
      3. Looking at these 2 above sentences 2gether, Are you sure that I am the philisopher?
      4. “I know someone who has the tendency to remember things in a way that is convenient to him, but not true.” – Altogether, this is a funny sentence isn’t it? I mean, what is the difference between your memory and his? What makes him wrong and you right? What makes something “true” anyway? Is it an objective truth or just your truth?
      5. In the present moment, do you have ANY memory that is wrong? Any thought that is wrong? No, you can’t find even one. That is funny, as you have 70,000 different thoughts moving inside your head daily, All based on memories. So if they are all true, that makes you the smartest man / woman in the world? Holy shit.
      6. If you are interested in reading some scientific researches about the brain and how it works, which are not “my” philosophy, you can start with “The brain that changes itself” which is a great book. Hope you enjoy it.

      Peace.

      • Braeden says:

        Here Ido, how about a test?

        Read and memorize this sentence and then scroll down: “Joseph did not turn left.”

        As you repeat the sentence to yourself, imagine a picture of the sentence on the spot of the page where you saw it. Now scroll back up and look at it. Did it say what you expected? Did it look like you remembered? Please tell me how this works, if nobody’s memories really happened.

        What about people with Alzheimer’s Disease? If none of our memories happened, and we can’t trust them, why is it that the loss of memory causes so much harm? As I said before, my great grandmother had Alzheimer’s (she has passed away) so I know what someone with Alzheimer’s acts like, but I’m not sure how well acquainted with Alzheimer’s patients you are, so allow me to describe them: They wander around aimlessly, looking for people that aren’t there and going places thinking that they are doing things that they aren’t actually doing. They can’t even bathe themselves or remember to go to the bathroom. Do we not rely on memories? Are they not reliable?

      • Braeden says:

        (This one should work better.)

        Here Ido, how about a test?

        Read and memorize this sentence and then scroll down: “Joseph did not turn left.”
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
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        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
        *
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        *
        As you repeat the sentence to yourself, imagine a picture of the sentence on the spot of the page where you saw it. Now scroll back up and look at it. Did it say what you expected? Did it look like you remembered? Please tell me how this works, if nobody’s memories really happened.

        What about people with Alzheimer’s Disease? If none of our memories happened, and we can’t trust them, why is it that the loss of memory causes so much harm? As I said before, my great grandmother had Alzheimer’s (she has passed away) so I know what someone with Alzheimer’s acts like, but I’m not sure how well acquainted with Alzheimer’s patients you are, so allow me to describe them: They wander around aimlessly, looking for people that aren’t there and going places thinking that they are doing things that they aren’t actually doing. They can’t even bathe themselves or remember to go to the bathroom. Do we not rely on memories? Are they not reliable?

      • Ido Lanuel says:

        Hi Braeden,

        You’ve totally missed the point.
        Ofcourse that the brain registers events.
        The question is whether or not this registration process is reliable, and the answer is no.
        Just some examples:
        Looking at your exercise as mentioned and scrolling immediately back up, it is clear that I will find the specific sentence exactly where I’ve left him.
        But what will happened if in one month you will ask me what was that sentence? Is it possible that in my mind the sentence will become “Ido turned right”, instead of “Joseph did not turn left”? Ofcourse, it is also possible that I won’t even remember this discussion, and won’t have any idea what you are talking about. So how reliable is my memory as a tool? It is not. Now let’s take it a few steps further.

        Do you remember what did you do in the 30th of last month? Probably not. But if the current date was the 1st, you would probably “remember”. So, when (and how) was that memory lost? Was there a specific milisecond when it was all lost, or did it slowly fade away, got blurred and unclear as sooo many “facts” (neural ties in the brain) got mixed up with others, and all the information got 2b very unclear and confusing? The second option is the right one. A reliable tool? No.
        Now let’s take it a few more steps further.

        Do you think that initially, your brain registers objective facts, or subjective ones? Do you experience an objective reality or a subjective one? I’m not sure where you are from, but let’s assume that you are from the US. There is an election now, and you really love Obama. You agree with everything that he says. Now you are watching television with a republican friend and Romney is speaking. You hate Romney views and you start getting mad. You experience Romney as a total asshole. You want to change the channel. But your friend, he really loves this speach and it makes him very happy. Do you experience the same reality? No. It is totally different – both your thoughts,emotions, feelings and desires (the whole direct experience of the present moment) are totally different from each other. So initially, long before your brain start registering ANYTHING, you are not experiencing an objective truth, but a subjective one. Now add this initial, not so reliable registration to all your beliefs, tensions, thoughts, memories, feelings and basically a whole life time neural ties in your brain that collide with it and that immediately change it without you knowing about it at all (makes it more and more blurry with every second that passes by), and get your memory.

        You want more? Here it is.
        How many times in one’s life he finds himself fighting with someone else, arguing about “what have happened”? Even in the small things, like if your husband/wife said that he/she will take the trash out or not. Well, that happens quite a lot, we usually don’t even notice it. Now, think about all the people since the beginning of history, and try to guess how many times this ritual had happened. It is not only about the trash ofcourse, it is also about whole religions or people who fight for lands since the beginning of time, as every side REMEMBERS that he was here before. All 2gether (the whole range between the trash argue and killing millions of people in war over this memory), it is quite a lot of disagreements over memory. So what is going on? How come that everyone in the world find themselves fighting for memory so often, if it is a reliable tool? How come that soooo often, people find themselves in 2 different sides of this memory, absoloutly SURE that “I am right and he is wrong”.
        Do you remember you saying this sentence – “I know someone who has the tendency to remember things in a way that is convenient to him, but not true.” – exactly, your memory also works like that.

        Look, it is not your or anyone else’s fault. This is how brain works. He always tells stories and they always sound right. Always. Always. Always sound right. So you can keep believing in this system, or open your eyes to see that your brain is a conditioned machine that always produces stories, without you have anything to do against it.

        This is not philosophy braeden, this is brain science – Memory is not a reliable tool, in any shape or form.

        Thank you.

      • Ido Lanuel says:

        Also, see Slayer Muser comment right beneath our discussion

    • Great Post and insight full feedback! Thank You!

      “Perception is reality and reality changes every day, it is learning, respect and shear determination that makes perception go your way!” At one point, it was not what you know, but who you know that allow you to succeed. Today, it is what you do with the people that you know that creates opportunity.

      I see both sides being real. However, for me I hear my Mothers words getting harsher as she ages. For myself, I hear my words growing less patient with my wife and 3 teens. My oldest just got his drivers license and had his first date. The fun begins!

      I bit off subject but I pray that I find they correct word to allow my children the self-esteem that I lack to allow them to not have that ugly side come out allowing them abundant opportunity in life.

      John

  54. Bethany says:

    Great post! Thank you! A friend of mine refers to a similar condition as the great expanding mind. Anything that the mind focuses on is amplified and expanded. I suppose this could be good or bad depending what is holding your focus.

  55. Slayer Muser says:

    Braedon, perhaps you have taken the subject of memories as presented in the text in the photo too literally.

    Of course our memories are important as part of our education database. We need them in order not to repeat mistakes. They are fundamental to human learning and growth. But I think the point of the piece is to elucidate the unhealthiness of obsessing about the past. There is a big difference between, on the one hand, over-thinking the past with painful memories and over-worrying about the future and, on the other hand, using the past (i.e. having healthy and educative memories) and being optimistic about the future. The former cripples the present, while the latter permits presence and consequently maximises calmness, opportunity, potential and achievement.

    I enjoyed your take on the subject, but I don’t think that Alzheimer’s can be used analogously to discredit the message behind the text and the photograph. Jesus told the Leper to get up and walk, which he did. But you are saying, “What if the leper had a broken leg?” Two very different things. Diseased minds (please forgive the expression) have no comparison with undiseased minds.

    The point of the piece, to me, is this: we have a choice between sado-masochist thinking and life-enhancing thinking. It is not easy, but it is there.

    • Braeden says:

      So basically you and Ido are trying to tell me that people forget things and that I shouldn’t obsess about the past? I don’t need any brain science to figure that out.

      Also, I think “diseased minds” do have comparison with undiseased minds, because, at one time, they were fully functional minds, and now that they aren’t functional (because they lost their ability to remember well), they don’t survive at all (without help from others, of course). I’m using an example of minds that once could remember but now can’t to emphasize the importance of the memory.

      Several years ago, a puppy owned by a friend of mine died of canine parvovirus. To honor the dog, the owner scratched his name, Max, into a tree. I could go find that tree right now and observe “Max” written into the tree (as long as it hasn’t faded. I know it might fade, because the cuts were not very deep). I’m also sure my brothers and my mother would account to the same story. I have several people with the same story, and evidence to support it, what more do you want until that memory is “reliable”?

      • Slayer Muser says:

        No. People remember things, too many things, “thanks” to their memories (I use “remember” in the loosest sense of the word). But generally they remember them wrong. Their inability to record facts perfectly couples with their emotion to create thousands of stories in the mind that are very different from what really happened at the time.

        Let’s put it another way. The text and photo are not about memories. Memories are a metaphor of a theory of existentialism. The theory is that, through our minds’ present calmness, we only ever live in the present. Therefore, having unhealthy memories and being too concerned with the past basically means you are dead (i.e. not living in the present, which is where you can only be).

        The memory can be reliable, no doubt. We wouldn’t function as humans without it. But mosty it is a deceiving part of our hardware that can make us unhappy. As said before, it can be re-wired to enhance happiness.

  56. Slayer Muser says:

    * Sorry, “being too concerned with the FUTURE…” (I made the same mistake in my first post. I meant to write: “We must not allow our minds’ concerns for either past or FUTURE hijack the present, which is where we only ever exist.”)

    RECAP: the brain/mind (call it what you want) plays tricks on our consciousness/divine spirit (call it what you want) with false stories about the past and unnecessary imaginings about the future. Both can paralyse the present.

    We rest our case.

    • Braeden says:

      If you want to know more about what I think about memory, view my latest post at http:/braedensconfabulations.wordpress.com/

  57. Jas Baku says:

    So true! Stunning graphic as well.

  58. Ink Pastries says:

    How strange: this has been the topic of my poems this morning at my other google blog and I saw you liked a WordPress blog I put up, came here and read this. Wow!

  59. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  60. Malcolm Miller says:

    At 83, I have too much to hold in my memory, so I have simply trashed a great deal of stuff of no impoortance today. This means I live in and enjoy the present, without the anguish suggested in your amazing photo.

  61. weejars says:

    This is a battle I fight (inside my head) daily. This text is thought provoking and motivating. I hope I can keep this in mind and recapture my lost ‘joie de vivre’.

  62. orisianova says:

    I really enjoyed this. thanks!

  63. Very thought-provoking piece, thank you for sharing. The sweet graphic was the cherry on top! No doubt I’ll be thinking about this all day.

  64. gravitasbaby says:

    It’s a profound reminder. Thank you for that.

  65. Interesting and so true in so many ways…thanks for sharing and making me think a bit differently about things…

  66. Reblogged this on LOVE. WITHOUT YOU and commented:
    Memories are necklaces to the past–some golden, some feeble like sandcastles. Right, Ido?

  67. natew45 says:

    I find my memory’s flash throu my mind at a anazeing pace all the time I see my memory’s allot of the time people and memory’s places get mixed up and flash visuiely throu my mind I have found that my work painting helps me control these memory’s theay are all based in illusion most of the time I hold conversations with people I know and beings I get drawn into this over and over but when I unleash in my art it elevates the flashes but I have to obsessively work every day thanks for the post

  68. Hello Again Ido, Again, Thank You! I just wanted to comment about the brain images that are placed in our brains, when we suffer trauma. I believe as I have written that are memories are stored in our brains like a hologram is stored on holographic film. Cutting the holographic film into smaller and smaller pieces doesn’t help because the Whole Image is still stored on each smaller piece. However, you can replace the old Image with a new Image to your liking, not and easy process but it’s possible, thus allowing the trauma Image to be replace with a different less traumatic experience. Holographic Film can store multiple Images on the same piece of Film. What’s interesting to me is that mundane experiences are not stored as once believed. So it appears to me that there must be some kind of energy or angle of recall light source that reflects this traumatic event image in the brain film like a laser reflects the image from the holographic film. Changing that energy or angle of the(Light Source “Recall”) just might be an effective way of changing those traumatic Images, to reflect an other image. What do you feel? Thanks Again for your like and staying in touch.

    • Tovah says:

      I like this idea! I had a very traumatic experience many many years ago. I was helped very much by ‘Guided Imagery’ by my therapist. Now, instead of the traumatic scene, that had been with me for so many years, I have a better revised version in my mind (memory) that is more sensitive and empowering. Also my own experience has shown me that every ‘event’ is remembered according to my emotions or feelings, at the time. I also know that feelings are not facts. I can feel totally different about a feeling tomorrow than I felt today, even though the circumstances have not changed. Thank you everyone this has been a very interesting discussion.

  69. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  70. Sas says:

    I always try and live in the present, but sometimes life gets a bit crazy and I forget. That’s when I need a little reminder, and that’s exactly what this text was for me today. Thank you :)

  71. LayonieJae says:

    Wow wow and wow this is SO true!!!

  72. danlancaster says:

    As a 3rd year Psychology University student I found this a very interesting read! :)

  73. It is absurd. This sad, sad situation seems to occur in relationships. Time passes and ittle things annoy us and so we look for new battles to fight.

    I love the lyrics from Elton John and Bernie Taupin’s Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word.

    What have I got to do to make you love me
    What have I got to do to make you care
    What do I do when lightning strikes me
    And I wake to find that you’re not there

    What do I do to make you want me
    What have I gotta do to be heard
    What do I say when it’s all over
    Sorry seems to be the hardest word

    Chorus:

    It’s sad, it’s so sad
    It’s a sad, sad situation
    And it’s getting more and more absurd
    It’s sad, so sad
    Why can’t we talk it over
    Always seems to me
    That sorry seems to be the hardest word

  74. eparkperry says:

    This is nothing short of amazing. I have often considered this as I have replayed the memory of a painful conversation. The conversation occurred long ago, when I was an adolescent. Lately, I’ve been questioning the validity of what I remember about the moment. Through my work at understanding awareness, I’ve decided that the best thing to do in order to heal from this specific past event is to focus only on the way I feel about it RIGHT NOW. This has been a very helpful tool to aid in healing. Thank you for visiting my blog…it has led me to yours!

  75. “Of Mind and Dragons” – future theme or meme? Would be interesting and funny too…Loved this post…high resonance too….Had to reblog.

  76. Too True – thanks for sharing :)

  77. Thanks for this. In the 14th century, an anonymous mystic in England wrote “The Cloud of Unknowing,” Part of his/her model was a “cloud of forgetting,” a place to push down and lose the kinds of negative thoughts you are describing here. So you stand in a good tradition on this!

  78. T Hollis says:

    Ouch! That hurt…because it’s too true!
    Thanks for stopping by my Post today!

  79. janethilton says:

    Just totally amazing. Thank you!

  80. Nemo says:

    You have aptly pointed out what really matters – this day, this moment. God bless you for your vision and spirit to share it with the world… :-)

  81. Very true. Especially for the hyper sensitive types like me!

  82. lucia1224 says:

    Wonderfully said! Very much in line with Byron Katie’s teachings, which resonate so much for me…

  83. I never thought of it this way, but my god, it’s so true. The light bulb just clicked when I read it. It’s like instead of “you live what you learn”, it is actually, “you live what you remember”. Now the question is, “How do I stop my memory from creating such fear within me?” Because seriously, I think it almost paralyzes me some days. Thanks for visiting my blog!! :)

  84. Thank you for visiting itsmindbloggleing. I am coming from a very different angle towards our memories. When I was sexually abused when I was four years old my mind couldn’t accept it and buried the memory. My mind actually invented a whole new “me” to live through the abuse. My conscious self never really knew what happened until I “remembered” it when I was fifty years old. My healing from fear and shame from the abuse only came when I remembered it.

  85. cjbball4 says:

    This is sooo true. Thank you for writing this. This is amazing. Now I can move on with life. This helped so much. Thank you.

  86. What an amazing piece! I have spent years regretting the memories I have lost due to treatments for depression. I live with such grief that I can’t remember my wedding or the birth of my two children. But reading your post reminds me of what I’ve been working on embracing for a long time. The only thing that really matters is the present. Tolle’s book, The Power of Now, has become one of the most influential books in my life and now I will add your passage to my collection of material that stresses the present. Blessings to you.

  87. laupkt333 says:

    Amazing statements. I came across something like this, called Law of Attraction. Our thoughts give out some vibes that makes our body, our being recognize it either as positive or negative. I think this was also mentioned somewhere in the Bible “As you think, so you are”..or something to that effect…

  88. “Memory is a disaster.” Nice line! Nice idea to ruminate about. You might be interested in this piece on memory (not by me): http://zeteojournal.com/2012/10/09/memory-stories-2/

    With best wishes, as one waits for the concession speech, Wm. Eaton, montaigbakhtinian.com

  89. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  90. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  91. Rebekah says:

    Reblogged this on RebekahOlofin and commented:
    I read this fantastic post and I thought why not share with everyone.

  92. Anita Mac says:

    So true….I do it all the time! The thoughts and memories just go round and round! At least, I can try to fill my mind with new adventures, positive experiences and new memories – love remembering the feeling of the sun as it warms on my face as I walk on the beach, or the spray of water as I paddle in the lake close to home….

  93. toilelala says:

    Profound post. The message of the Behaviour of the Memory should appear when people turn on the television and at the beginning of movies at the theatre. It would yield a more peaceful planet.

    Thank you for visiting.

  94. Dean Keith says:

    This describes my state of mind ever since a big conflict I had, which I won, but I still found myself battling the same battles over and over in my mind. I now see it as a continuing pattern that does not provide relief and does not even accurately reflect the situation anymore. Thanks for sharing this.

  95. A really provocative thought, I enjoyed the insights. thanks.

  96. recoveringme says:

    I hate moths! Irrational and from my child hood past and rewritten by my mind millions of times. Now I’m an adult and living in the future, I’m released from a fear that is not in the Now. What a release and yes memory does play weird tricks on us.

  97. Bala says:

    Memory is the fuel for the mind to become “something”. Cutting the past. Understanding of what memory is will certainly put things back to the present moment. We need to educate ourselves and others around of these knowledge to foster peace and freedom.

  98. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  99. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  100. wranglersrear says:

    Hey Ido, I see you’ve read my blog, so you know what I’m about. I thought this was incredible. Of course, seeing something titled Memory is a Disaster would get my attention. Keep on keeping on and thanks for the inspiration !!

  101. naykdpoet says:

    The lesson learned from your great piece reminded me of something I wrote sometime ago and just thought to share it with you…thanks for your inspiring webblog..

    Final Destination

    Life’s measure comes by its gains
    Time unquestioned, until little remains
    Twilight years fueled by memory’s stain
    Why in formative years was this not explained?

    Retrospection may yield desired reward
    Though too, it may stab as were it a sword
    Life’s complexities lesson an unwritten accord
    Its obscure values defined only while moving forward

    The question arises as to the purpose of this exhortation
    It is directed to those young in years, to give contemplation
    That through it they may gain better focus to orientation
    Long before arriving to their life’s ultimate and final destination.

    naykdpoet 2009

  102. Thanks for stopping by my blog and liking my post, Fruits of Labor. I am so glad your visit led me to your blog. Enjoyed browsing through and will visit again. We all need constant reminders to focus on the bright side of our lives and try to overlook the negativity that holds us back from enjoying the present. Thanks for sharing the article.

  103. Thank you Ido for visiting hisglorysm and liking some of my posts! I appreciate how well you describe that very human war within that happens to us all. If you get a chance, check out James 4 in the Bible as it well describes.that “war” from God’s perspective. I trust you will find it very interesting! ( :

  104. Iamrcc says:

    Thank you for the like of my posts Weekly Photo Challenge:Geometry and “Willis Tower Through the Trees”.

  105. rsouleret says:

    I absolutely love this. I’m stealing it!!

  106. rsouleret says:

    I love this. Can I use it in my next blog?!

  107. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  108. M.G. Piety says:

    Well, yes and no. Memory CAN work that way, but it doesn’t have to. I carry many wonderful memories about with me all the time. Memories of kindnesses other people have shown me, memories of occasions when things turned out as they should (as opposed to how they so often turn out), memories of beautiful and edifying experiences. Sometimes the memory works as you say, but that is actually pathological. I think people usually remember more of the good they have experienced than the bad. I like to think of that phenomenon as the benevolence of memory.

  109. Yes indeed. I believe it is what is called Thinking Fast and Slow in lay psychology parlance. Please do read the book of this same name by Kahnman (who is a Nobel Prize winner for Economics in 2004). He explains this “fallacy of memory” if I may call it that, as coming from the intuitive aspect of our brain which he calls System 1 (which is usually wrong / a fallacy) . Rational thinking happens with the help of System 2 of the brain he says – when we deliberately try to compute. Fascinating book on how human beings think. Am sure you will enjoy reading and learning from it, looking at your interest in this area.

  110. Harvey says:

    Interesting but a little too ‘Zen’ for me!

  111. Reblogged this on Reflections on Life Thus Far and commented:
    Great points. Yes, the print is small :(

  112. Thanks for the like of my posts. Interesting reading the comments on this post, you have certainly struck a chord that resonates with many. I am impressed with that.

  113. Thank you for stopping by my little blog, Sir. Good luck with your pursuits here. A very worthy work!

  114. Great post!
    I was actually just talking to some people about this kind of thing. The power the mind has on us is bewildering.

    Keep it up!

  115. coville123 says:

    This is so true if you hang on to your past especially things that make you mad it will eat at you,learned a long time ago to let things go.Wish my husband could do the same! Thanks for sharing.

  116. That story is about FORGETTING. There is, however, and the HARD CORE OF THE MEMORY, with some things that you NEVER FORGET.

  117. markhilsden says:

    Thank you I Ido for visiting my Blog “Lancaster early works”.

    The article “The disastrous behaviour of memory” is so accurate and true for me. The subconscious memory does record these traumatic events and the mind plays with them and magnifies the hurt to such a degree that eventually you lose the spark of life that children have when they start the journey of life.

    I had a similar situation similar to yours where I met a person that influenced me, taught me how to resolve and confront those demons and as a result have have now developed my true beingness as a creative that spreads the beauty and pleasure of life among many.

    Ido you really are very special person that is an extraordinary being and it sounds like you are on a wonderful journey through an inner world that so many are too frightened to face – from a fellow explorer of life – isn’t it exciting!

  118. Laia says:

    What a great article, and why is it so hard to be in the moment? Thanks for reminding me of the importance of it!

  119. kathrynword says:

    Thanks for stopping by and liking my post! I feel humbled in the prescence of such a big thinker! I love this idea of false memory. I believe that the re numeration feeds “the monster” and just like positive energy attracts like energy so does negative. I feel like we are so desperate to belong to something bigger than our selves to make the intangible tangible that we easily engage in negativity but with an open heart and clear mind we could be so much better! Thanks again and have a great day!

  120. ct1stclass says:

    I love this. I reported it on my blog because it just rang so true to me. Accepting this concept would be like a key to a whole new freedom in life.

  121. pjb1943 says:

    Thanks for your visit to my site and the “like” for Ashley. She’s so special !

  122. peak10 says:

    Wow, that is perfectly said!! Thanks for the reminder, I needed that.

  123. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  124. gay40something says:

    Very thought provoking and oh so true!

  125. emmalmoore says:

    There are times I’m shaking my head trying to press stop on that recorder that is on replay of a memory of an offense. I saw myself throughout your post. Thanks for visiting Life’s Little Surprises. Blessings.

  126. Dania says:

    Wow, nicely written. Reminded me of how much the memory distorts things…

  127. Richard William Posner says:

    Reality is so much more subjective than most people realise.

    I have come to the conclusion that the present does not and cannot exist here.

    It can never be achieved or experienced here.

    Until it comes it is only the future. The instant it arrives, it is the past.

    We exist in limbo between past and future, clinging to or fleeing from the one and longing for or fearing the other. The dark/light, yin/yang, good/bad are inescapable while we are here.

    We must understand that we are eternal. The energy that is Life exists outside time and space, which are only the necessary perceptions of a very limited awareness available to us at this stage, which is, of course, temporary.

    If this physical/temporal phase is allowed to run its full natural course, the energy that is Life will be released from the limbo between past and future into an ocean of consciousness where it is always now.

    These thoughts are my own. My only teacher has been Life.

  128. Amazing!. Yes, memory is inconsistent as with any human system. We are in a constant evolving motion. An inconsistent system eventually gets outdated and it needs to be changed/upgraded for a new one, a better one. Forcing to stay in an outdated system leads to negative outcomes, like the outdated money system that leads to fear. Yes, we must enjoy our present time and change for a better human beings.

    Saludos from Mexico.

  129. Courage and fortitude. Live in the now! Writing gives insight.

  130. Mom says:

    Ido, I keep coming back to this post and rereading it. Your writing has a winding truth in it that I find fascinating. Im hoping that after crazy month (NaNo) you will concider doing a guest post for me for Odd Little Fling.

  131. Interesting hypothesis. I have been blessed with an excellent memory, tied to a level of honesty that prevents me from polishing or poisoning events of the past. That way, I can learn from past experiences, both positive and negative. While you say that both past and future are non-existent, both either have existed or will exist at some point, therefore neither can be totally disregarded. Lessons learned is how I refer to the past, and if you can’t learn from your past, then you deserve the unaltered future that you are doomed to experience. I much prefer the old axiom, “Forewarned is forearmed.” You can not only make your future better, but you can offer this wisdom to your friends and family for their benefit. If they choose to ignore it, then at least you tried. That’s all anyone can do. I try to keep from becoming a lemming.

  132. What matters is non-existent.
    After we came out of the church, we stood talking for some time together of Bishop Berkeley’s ingenious sophistry to prove the nonexistence of matter, and that every thing in the universe is merely ideal. I observed, that though we are satisfied his doctrine is not true, it is impossible to refute it. I never shall forget the alacrity with which Johnson answered, striking his foot with mighty force against a large stone, till he rebounded from it — “I refute it thus.”
    Boswell’s Life of Johnson

  133. Mlle B says:

    You’re so right! :) Thanks!

  134. Nice. Reminds me of Husserel’s misty horizons (phenomenology). Thanks for sharing.

  135. applecrosslifeattheedge says:

    Living in a small community you “think” you know everyone but you are right in that we build up pictures in our minds of these people and more often than not they are inaccurate and usually unlovely images to justify our own “status” in our communities. If they are doing this as well no wonder we end up with friction. I suppose those who are aware have to break this cycle somehow.

  136. Cheri L. says:

    Just wanted to say, thanks for stopping by the Brass Rag.

  137. celinaweigel says:

    Ido…do you know any of your lady friends who would read my latest post about natural make-up? I’d like to get some organic ppl involved too. :)

  138. cswoman says:

    Good word…thanks for stopping by my blog.

  139. be4gen says:

    Thanks for right of knowledge and informtaion

  140. Indira says:

    Interesting post. Simply saying that past and future don’t exists is not a solution. I was born (past) and die tomorrow ( future) how can you forget that. Yes, worrying over them is not good.
    Face a situation with full concentration, think over its positive and negative outcomes and act accordingly. Until your mind is convinced it will not let go of any situation. ( Its my opinion and experience)

  141. jackcurtis says:

    Well, philosophers have had trouble with objective reality from way back but that’s what they are paid for, right? On the other hand, engineers tend to do a bit better, so we fly in their aircraft. ..

  142. anewday54 says:

    Great Post. Thanks for liking my blog!

  143. [...] for visiting us and, as usual, decided to poke around his site a bit first. In doing so, I found this post about memory, or rather about the idea that we don’t have any “real” memories, that [...]

  144. Tovah says:

    Brilliant! You really are spot on Ido…..BTW my 3 Sabra’s born to two very English parents would be sooo envious of your written English.

  145. Jas Baku says:

    Reblogged this on Cosmic Loti and commented:
    Our mind creates the world we live in.
    “We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think.” Buddha

  146. Lets play with a little scifi. Imagine that in the near future we could build an interface (lets call it iSDLife) to store all of our lifelong memories as TeraBytes in a SDCard. Imagine to be able to access all your memories without loosing details. What would be the outcome for the human race?.

  147. brendayoder says:

    First, thanks for visiting my site and reading several posts! This truth is powerful. I have the privilege to teach students in a school the power of positive self talk and how we have control over what we let our mind. Young adolescents are vulnerable to cognitive distortions. Thanks for these words.

  148. Great post. Being in the moment and losing your family of origin issues and defects of character can bring serenity. Thanks for your post.

  149. Great post. Being in the moment and not letting the past dictate the present is a great goal. Letting go of family of origin issues and defects of character can give us the priceless gift of serenity. Thanks for the post

  150. [...] Graphic via Ido Lanuel, Top quotes by Buddha, via @IdoLanuel, and @Geshe_Kelsang, both on Twitter Flower graphic and [...]

  151. sweetj2 says:

    Thanks for liking my blog, sweetjsloajourney. Mind and memory are fascinating. I’ve definitely noticed my mind changing facts to fit in with my belief system. And I am so amused that in dreams, when I notice, for example, that I’m driving a car I don’t own and I ask where I got the car from, my dream mind will make up a story to answer the question! I suspect our minds do that in waking life as well. Great blog!

  152. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click HERE to enlarge). [...]

  153. So bloody true. Every human being should read this every day to put things into perspective. Much thanks for liking my Thanksgiving post.

  154. I find your post quite interesting because I know so many people like this. I am very much the opposite to a degree that often bothers me. Instead of my mind growing anger, it dissolves it, sometimes much too soon. Situations blend from my black and white into a colorless grey.

  155. A post of great insight. Such a great way to begin my Sunday” Thank-you Ido, and thanks for dropping by my blog.

  156. Brett says:

    A sobering truth. Thanks for sharing!

  157. ltownsdin says:

    So true! Also, I really like the tag on your main page: It’s all about disbelieving your thoughts.

  158. Iamrcc says:

    Thank you for visiting again and the like of so many of my posts. I really appreciate it.

  159. mmadonna1 says:

    I appreciate your stopping by my blog. This post has merit however fear can be a positive motivator. No longer do I live in my past though, which is a good thing. Occasionally, I’ll go back for a pleasant visit!

  160. mariannegv says:

    This is very true but the hard thing to do is to not act as to prevent the reoccurrence of the episodes that marked you in such a way because we become what we are because of our experiences through life, and it is natural to avoid experiences that were or are unpleasant to us. People use to have different points of view of the same episode. So what is the best way to avoid this disastrous behavior of the memory? Talking to the other person about the event? This is something that we don´t usually do, instead, we have this internal argument with ourselves, and I think that is the problem. By the way, thanks for stopping by my blog “Exploring the world: photography, travel, art”
    Kind greetings,
    Marianne

  161. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  162. It’s funny, I just did this. Someone said something I didn’t like and I had rewritten in my brain so many times an “I’m right” response, I couldn’t remember what I was responding to. Part of this emotional reaction, and resulting “memory” is I think we take things too personally. We forget what someone is saying may have more to do with them than us. Also, I just attended a funeral for a young, dear friend that died suddenly. I and others remembered wonderful things about her we hadn’t thought of for years, or even expressed before. I really valued that. So memories indeed play a role. Perhaps we need to pretend we’re dying tomorrow, and then craft these responses to people. Most of what they said probably wouldn’t matter!

  163. kartikasays says:

    This is a provocative piece because it nails the fact that our minds contain these memories, these stories, that are in many ways fictions. The events are filtered through our nervous systems and are memories involve all the feelings and layers of interpretations we put on them. The mind is a trickster that distorts the truth of what simply is – Have you read any of A Course in Miracles? I feel like I am constantly being jacked around by my own mind and the memories that run it.

  164. deadmousediaries says:

    Wow. Just wow. Mitchell Kyd

  165. aquacompass7 says:

    Thank you for visiting my blog. If your smiling face is seen, I also become a smiling face.

  166. jackcurtis says:

    I suppose our mental processing exists for survival value and on average, over time, provides the best correlation with reality from that standpoint, or at least, that is the history. Current work using brain scanning and ECG’s and such is fascinating to follow. And seems likely to be mischievous…

  167. All too familiar, I’m afraid. Loved the “morph graphic.” Nothing like sabotaging oneself via devil-speak. Very thoughtful insight about the innocence of children. They haven’t yet learned to keep score, or engage in the hopeless task of trying to rewrite the past. Innocence shines brightly because it is so fleeting.

  168. Tienny says:

    Weird. Sometimes memory fails us, sometimes memory saves us.
    Thank you for liking my works “Greetings 2012-2013″.

  169. janrssor says:

    Reblogged this on Janr Ssor and commented:
    Sometimes an idea is too important not to share, this is one of them!

  170. judyinalaska says:

    This really touched me, thanks. I can see so many others appreciate it too and that makes me feel better about the state of humanity. Again, thanks.

  171. nell says:

    Your post is exactly what I needed to read at this time in my life. In fact I wish I had read it a long time ago. You are a great writer. Thank you also for liking my post.

  172. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  173. layanglicana says:

    Reblogged this on Ratiocinativa and commented:
    This piece by Idolanuel.com is a very good companion to the other two pieces on memory: are we sure that what we remember is not distorted?

  174. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  175. I remember what was said years ago as I fall asleep and realize what I should have said at that moment in reply – ten years too late. Then another time I remember again and think of an even wittier response. I am clever but much too slow.

  176. Jeffrey Howe says:

    I believe something similar, though possibly not quite as damaging, can happen with good memories. If we color our view of past events with too rosy a hue, if we build up too much sense of “the good old days,” we can seek out similar experiences to the exclusion of truly novel ones and limit our growth.

  177. [...] The disastrous behaviour of the memory (Click the photo to enlarge). [...]

  178. writecrites says:

    So very true. My ex boss used to do something like this. One day I said, “I’m glad we’re working together.” She must have mulled it over all night, twisted it around, because the next day she came in angry, breathing dragon fire, telling me, “We don’t work together. I’m the boss. You work for me.” I’m sure I’m guilty, too, although I consciously try hard not to do this.

  179. I remember hearing the true story of a woman who was talking to a counselor about her long-standing hurt over how her aunt didn’t love her and had never been there for her. The counselor asked her to bring a photo album of her childhood and tell him about it, so she did. She went through the photos of event after event of her life–parties, school plays, sports events, etc.–and pointed out that her parents were there, her uncle was there, her siblings were there, but her aunt had never been there for her.

    “Who took the photos?” asked the counselor. And suddenly the woman realized her aunt had ALWAYS been there for her, but because she was the one behind the camera, she never appeared in the photos, and in the woman’s mind those memories changed into her firmly believing that her aunt had never been there.

  180. I have had 75% of my memory taken out by a bacterial infection in 2004, and I wasted a good two years trying to remember what I couldn’t retrieve. Once I was able to acknowledge that the only thing that really matters is this moment right now I was able to heal. I’m grateful that I don’t remember a lot of my baggage because I think it makes me a better person today. I think memories serve us best when they can be positive and inspirational or motivating otherwise I’d just toss it Life weighs us down enough we don’t need that extra luggage if it’s gonna cost us a microgram of happiness.

  181. spoonbeams says:

    So real to me. I just wonder how the “people” at wordpress knew to choose this from all your posts to send to me. I’m not a follower — so little time, so little control — but I do enjoy coming back and browsing, and smiling at your smile. Thanks for keeping in touch.

  182. This post was so on target: our memory of things is enhanced as we replay it in our heads. But turning that replay into a positive reenactment is the key. I think I can speak for most people when I say nobody wants to be plagued by negative memories for the rest of our lives. This provides an on-target explanation for so many things in my life. Thank you for sharing! I love reading things about the mind/memory and I look forward to more posts!

  183. There is a difference between ‘what actually happened’ and ‘what we made that happening mean’ – human beings are meaning making machines, just the same way a toaster is a toast making machine – we ascribe meaning to everything that occurs to us and with time create a deep meaning to the same type of thing before that thing has meaning for us.

    Say there was a person in your past, always wore the collar of their polo shirt up, and they were a loud person, always with an opinion and never listened or considered the opinions of others.

    One day you meet a completely new person, you know nothing of them, and through the time you spent with them they were quiet, calm and welcomed your views BUT they wear their collar up.

    Would you remember them as that or as ‘a person who wore their collar up’ and thus they were loud, opinionated and inconsiderate?

    Most likely the latter, because in the moment of meeting them what was there was exactly that and that was what was present for you throughout the time you spent with that person – that listening made it very hard for you to experience them as who they really are.

    The past walks in front of us, provides us with meaning already written and places that on objects and people who are not that – or if they are deserve to be newly discovered as that.

    Being able to be ‘here’, right now and nowhere else is a skill, a learned thing and something I have trained in, as has my wife and children – in fact my wife now trains others in that skill (and others) – it’s a muscle to be keep strong, disuse weakens it and we are called to be weakened as it’s the easy path – being human is to look for the easy path

    Ido, not sure where you came upon this for yourself but thanks for your words and for bringing this forward for me again

    cheers

    Campbell

    • I like itakephotoofclouds’ handle. Eye witness accounts must be relied upon, else we would never be able to convict criminals for their crimes. At least for me, the original observation that started this thread only happens occasionally, and I always in the back of my mind know that it is being colored by my feelings. But that’s me, I’m pretty well a literal person who is emotional of course, but who can then step back from those emotions and look at things in a more clear-headed way. I think your emotions control you only to the degree that you let them. In other words, don’t blame the vagaries of your mind for your behavior, own it!

  184. janethilton says:

    Very powerful words…..and very true! Thank you! You have touched on something I must keep forefront in my mind…….

  185. Excellent, excellent, excellent. I’ve found for myself that I am a master of misinterpretation. It’s best if I can process with the person and ask them what they mean, or meant, AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, before the poodles in my brain take the smallest tidbit and start running, chewing, and fabricating the biggest mass of bullshit you have ever seen….from nothing.

  186. Idio, I believe that there are both truth and untruths in these statements. About talking to and arguing with others in our imaginations, I agree that this is a mistake that compounds any problems.
    Cordially,
    Maria
    Thank you for visiting my blog – I do notice this and am grateful!

  187. uugina says:

    Reblogged this on The Reluctant Lightworker and commented:
    I’ve been doing a lot of work with Reiki lately letting go of past thoughts and fears. The distant symbol is a wondrous thing. I can’t tell you how liberating it feels to understand the past and its lessons without clinging to it.

  188. Ido Lanuel says:

    I’m trying to recruit people to change their lives for the good. Funny enough, I even succeed.
    In the light of that cause, do you find automatically pressing a button in an unreal world, in order to expose tens of thousands of people to the relevant material that will make them become happier and improve themselves for themselves, an immoral or a moral act?

    I will b.t.w, keep doing so forever.

    Peace :-)

  189. Aline says:

    Memories are things we create, then manipulate and massage to serve our purposes. I don’t know how eyewitness testimony can ever be relied upon after more than a day has passed since the event. But I have a few searing memories that I still believe in. I don’t let them govern me though. They just exist.

  190. colorik says:

    You are in excellent company. I can quote John Milton: The mind is its own place and in itself it can make a Heaven of Hell and a Hell of Heaven. Indeed, out thoughts rule our feelings and therefore our lives. It also relates to a post i wrote some time ago: http://chewingtheglass.wordpress.com/2012/07/23/principles-2-choices/
    Thanks for dropping by and keep up the good work!

  191. Nadyess says:

    Great post and very interesting replies. Thanks for sharing! I see this regularly happening around me. People thinking and talking over and over again about a particular occurrence and every time changing their stories, without even noticing this.Try to change their mind and put them on the positive line thinking, or I better saying try to bring them back to reality… this can be quite tiresome sometimes. I think by taking action at the moment the occurrence happened prevent us from creating thoughts that brings us from our path. We learn from the past to subsequently move on instead of trying to make changes in the past which is an impossible thing to do and instead of getting lost in our minds.

  192. I think it was Rita Mae Brown who said, “One of the keys to happiness is a bad memory.” And this explains why my dog continues to love me even though I always refuse to share my lunch with him.

  193. qualitee says:

    Thanks for stopping by my blog.

    I totally agree with you about our memories, especially when it comes to disagreements. I believe we add our own thoughts to what we believe another person said and go over it again and again until it is something totally different.

    Really interesting read thanks for reading my blog.

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