This is mainly a personal rant, and not attempting to answering the question in a constructive manner. Sounds like you don't know how to use a Mac because I can use shortcuts from the keyboard to cut and paste and I can do a lot more with file path VIA terminal than you can do with Windows. Maybe spend some time and learn how to use a Mac instead of walking into it negatively because your answer passes as an uneducated one.
Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (the association bonus does not count).
Not the answer you're looking for.
Does the label of memory necessitate a 1: If not 1: More importantly, if we can talk about a memory being in error, or even completely fabricated i.
In one post I criticized the notion of implicit memory. In there I argued that what we call implicit memory is simply a way to describe the behavior of an organism based off its neurophysiological structure in the present, by connecting that behavior to changes in neurophysiology that occurred during past interactions.
What do I mean by this? We know that the act of experiencing does not always correspond to the total reality of the events going on around us. For instance, just as a few examples, we know that your prior knowledge, your current emotional state, and where your attention is directed at any given moment will all greatly influence the nature of your experience, and thus, even the initial memory you form may be a grossly distorted representation of what was actually occurring around you.
This here is already a slightly problematic point to consider, since we have to acknowledge that even from the very beginning, our memories are susceptible to all sorts of distorting effects based on cognitive processes unrelated to the truth of the circumstances in the world outside of ourselves. So already, memory is not about events, but about experiences.
The notion that memories are not accurate representations of the past is not new. This is precisely the problem. Compare this to the imaginative process. Imagination also needs to be constructed in the moment from fragments of other thing stored in the brain.
If I imagine myself winning the lotto or winning an Oscar or sky diving, somewhere in my brain needs to be stored representations of what a lotto is, what the Oscars are, what an Oscar statue looks like, what planes look like, what parachutes look like, what skydivers look like, etc…Imagination is certainly a creative process, but it is only made possible by constructing an imaginative experience from stored fragments of memory that it can be built up from, in something that seems to me very much akin to memory process discussed above.
Moving on though, we also know that memories are not stable constructs. Our brains are always undergoing synaptic change. As our neurons fire, neuronal connections are created, strengthened, pruned, etc…Memories are thought to the be the result of a set of neuronal connections made in the hippocampus, the memory trace I discussed above.
Recalling an event is thus, at least in part, reactivating this set of neurons. The phenomenon that describes the change in our memories due to this reactivation and the process that subsequently occurs is known as reconsolidation. What this means is that all sorts of things at the moment of recollection can influence aspects of the memory you are recalling.
Similar to the actual memory formation process, the influence of your prior knowledge, your current emotional state, other things you are thinking about, and where your attention is directed can all play a role in changing the memory you are recalling. And this process is going to happen every time you remember something. In a way, the more you remember something, the less likely that memory is going to remain accurate; you are constructing a new entity every time you remember.
If memory is constructed from traces, and yet, because of the fact of synaptic change, even these very traces are constantly undergoing change, then it seems that some time down the line the only thing that connects your current recollective experience to the actual original experience, is a causal chain connecting the current memory trace to the original memory trace.
We also know that often times we create false memories by activating certain concepts or categories related to the intended objects of memory. For instance, if I give you a list of words to memorize that include words like candy, sugar, honey, chocolate, etc…many people will later confidently remember reading the word sweet, though it never appeared in the list.
In recent decades there has been a string of patients, who either under hypnosis or questioning by their therapists have retrieved long repressed memories of sexual abuse, witnessing satanic rituals, or alien abduction. Many of these memories came under fire when it was realized that certain psychiatrists tended to have an inordinate amount of patients with the same type of repressed memory.
Elizabeth Loftus has been successful in inserting various false memories into subjects. Whether through vivid imagining or simply through repetition, we tend to be unable to distinguish between real memories and imaginings. I mentioned above how memory is necessary for imagination, and how imagination can be said to draw from the memory area. But remembering draws from the memory area too, in what way are these processes different? Well, at first glance, memory the act of remembering is supposed to be about things that happened in the past, and imagination about things that have never occurred.
It seems to me that the function is the same in both cases. No thought occurring in the present can have any effect on the past; necessarily, it can only have an effect on the future.
And the effect of these processes is to aid in action selection. Memory and learning have a survival advantage inherent in them; otherwise the capabilities would have never evolved. Thinking about stuff in the past allows us to learn and apply the knowledge from past experiences to better act in the future. Imagining counterfactual situations allows us to think about possible events and outcomes and incorporate that knowledge into future action.
What we call memory and what we call imagination are intimately tied in allowing organisms to better act in their environments. I am not quite taking the extreme position I seem to be.
What I am arguing though is that these mental states that we call remembering are not cases of you accessing some sort of stored experience out of your memory vault. You are constructing an entirely new experience in something akin to the imaginative process, and while what you construct this experience out of will have some sort of causal connection to synaptic changes made at the time of the original experience, and while there are ways to ensure that this imaginative construction is more justifiably in correspondence with the original event, that original event is gone forever; all that exists is your imagining in the moment.
If you enjoyed this post, you might enjoy these books! He spends what little free time he has these days thinking, and arguing, about consciousness, free will, morality, and whatever else comes up over tea. When he's not doing these things you might find him outside running, or holed up inside designing websites.
If you enjoyed this article, please consider sharing it! Recent Posts.