There is now increasing evidence that our memories may not only be far better than we ever thought but may in fact be perfect. Consider the following arguments for this case
The Memory Capabilities
There is now increasing evidence that our memories may not only be far better than we ever thought but may in fact be perfect. Consider the following arguments for this case:
Surprise Random Call
Practically everyone has had the experience of turning a corner and suddenly recalling people or events from previous times in his life. This often happens when people revisit their first school. A single smell, touch, sight or sound can bring back a flood of experiences thought to be forgotten. This ability of any given sense to reproduce perfect memory images indicates that if there were more correct 'trigger situations' much more would and could be recollected. We know from such experiences that the brain has retained the information.
Many people have vivid dreams of acquaintances, friends, family and lovers of whom they have not thought for as many as twenty to forty years. In their dreams, however, the images are perfectly clear, all colours and details being exactly as they were in real life. This confirms that somewhere in the brain there is a vast store of perfect images and associations that does not change with time and that, with the right trigger, can be recalled. In this Memory Improvement Techniques you will learn about Catching Your Dreams.
Professor Penfield Experiment
Professor Wilder Penfield of Canada came across his discovery of the capacity of human memory by mistake. He was stimulating individual brain cells with tiny electrodes for the purpose of locating areas of the brain that were the cause of patients' epilepsy. To his amazement he found that when he stimulated certain individual brain cells, his patients were suddenly recalling experiences from their past. The patients emphasised that it was not simple memory, but that they actually were reliving the entire experience, including smells, noises, colours, movement, tastes.These experiences ranged from a few hours before the experimental session to as much as forty years earlier.
Penfield suggested that hidden within each brain cell or cluster of brain cells lies a perfect store of every event of our past and that if we could find the right stimulus we could replay the entire film.
Near Death Type Experiment
Many people have looked up at the surface ripples of a swimming pool from the bottom, knowing that they were going to drown within the next two minutes; or seen the rapidly disappearing ledge of the mountain from which they have just fallen; or felt the oncoming grid of the 10-ton lorry bearing down on them at 60 miles per hour. A common theme runs through the accounts that survivors of such traumas tell. In such moments of 'final consideration' the brain slows all things down to a standstill, expanding a fraction of a second into a lifetime, and reviews the total experience of the individual.
When pressed to admit that what they had really experienced were a few highlights, the individuals concerned insisted that what they had experienced was their entire life, including all things they had completely forgotten until that instant of time. 'My whole life flashed before me' has almost become a cliche that goes with the near-death experience. Such a commonality of experience again argues for a storage capacity of the brain that we have only just begun to tap.
The 1000 Photographs
In recent experiments people were shown 1000 photographs, one after the other, at a pace of about one photograph per second. The psychologists then mixed 100 photographs with the original 1000, and asked the people to select those they had not seen the first time through. Everyone, regardless of how he described his normal memory, was able to identify almost every photograph he had seen - as well as each one that he had not seen previously. They were not necessarily able to remember the order in which the photographs had been presented, but they could definitely remember the image - an example that confirms the common human experience of being better able to remember a face than the name attached to it. This particular problem is easily dealt with by applying the Memory Techniques.
The Russian 'S'
In the early part of this century a young Russian journalist attended an editorial meeting, and it was noted to the consternation of others that he was not taking notes. When pressed to explain, he became confused; to everyone's amazement, it became apparent that he really did not understand why anyone should ever take notes. The explanation that he gave for not taking notes himself was that he could remember what the editor was saying, so what was the point? Upon being challenged, 'S' reproduced the entire speech, word for word, sentence for sentence, and inflection for inflection.
For the next thirty years he was to be tested and examined by Alexander Luria, Russia's leading psychologist and expert on memory. Luria confirmed that ' S ' was in no way abnormal but that his memory was indeed perfect. Luria also stated that at a very young age 'S' had 'stumbled upon' the basic mnemonic principles and that they had become part of his natural functioning.
Professor Rosenweigh Experiment
Professor Mark Rosensweig, a Californian psychologist and neurophysiologist, spent years studying the individual brain cell and its capacity for storage. As early as 1974 he stated that if we fed in ten new items of information every second for an entire lifetime to any normal human brain that brain would be considerably less than half full. He emphasised that memory problems have nothing to do with the capacity of the brain but rather with the self-management of that apparently limitless capacity.
The Potential Pattern Making Ability Of Your Brain
Professor Pyotr Anokhin, the famous Pavlov's brightest student, spent his last years investigating the potential pattern-making capabilities of the human brain. His findings were important for memory researchers. It seems that memory is recorded in separate
little patterns, or electromagnetic circuits, that are formed by the brain's interconnecting cells.
Anokhin already knew that the brain contained a million million (1,000,000,000,000) brain cells but that even this gigantic number was going to be small in comparison with the number of patterns that those brain cells could make among themselves. Working with advanced electron microscopes and computers, he came up with a staggering number. Anokhin calculated that the number of patterns, or 'degrees of freedom', throughout the brain is, to use his own words, 'so great that writing it would take a line of figures, in normal manuscript characters, more than ten and a half million kilometres in length. With such a number of possibilities, the brain is a keyboard on which hundreds of millions of different melodies can be played.' Your memory is the music.
The Photographic Memory
Photographic, or eidetic, memory is a specific phenomenon in which people can remember, usually for a very short time, perfectly and exactly anything they have seen. This memory usually fades, but it can be so accurate as to enable somebody, after seeing a picture of 1000 randomly sprayed dots on a white sheet, to reproduce them perfectly. This suggests that in addition to the deep, long-term storage capacity, we also have a shorter-term and immediate photographic ability. It is argued that children often have this ability as a natural part of their mental functioning and that we train it away by forcing them to concentrate too much on logic and language and too little on imagination and their other range of mental skills.