• Agent Smith
    6.2k
    According to Greek myth, there are two rivers in the underworld - Mnemosyne (remember) & Lemosyne (forget) - and dead souls could choose which to drink from. Those who drank from the former wouldn't forget (their previous lives) but would have to forgo reincarnation and if one drinks from the latter, past lives would be forgotten but one would reincarnate.

    Memory is a huge deal, it's a key component of learning and can make the difference between life and death - that's how mission critial it is. In order to help/enhance recall/memorization, scholars have developed multiple techniques known as mnemonics.

    Some things though are, as they say, best forgotten (re damnatio memoriae). I'm fairly certain that many would like to delete some rather painful and, on the whole, undesirable moments in one's life, but for some reason this feature isn't available in human memory systems. Wouldn't it be mind-blowingly awesome if we could, contra the mainstream view, fashion lemonics, methods of forgetting (instead of remembering). There seems to be a subconscious mechanism that makes some files inaccessible albeit such is involuntary (re repressed memories). The easiest way to screw up your memory is to be inattentive and mayhaps this be a good place to start our adventure, oui sirs/madams?
  • Jack Cummins
    4.2k

    One strange experience which I had in relation to forgotten memories occurred a few years ago. I was lying on my bed and accidentally bumped my head against the wall. In doing so, I got some memories from early childhood which I had completely forgotten come into my mind. I am reasonably sure that they are genuine memories because it was a series of memories, which made sense. It has made me wonder about the nature of layers of memory in brain storage in its connection with spectrum between consciousness and unconsciousness, with the brain being the hardware for the processes of it.
  • Agent Smith
    6.2k


    You're quite a unique figure in the history of The Philosophy Forum, monsieur! I am not, just the average Joe with down-to-earth ordinary experiences here.

    Anyway, brain trauma has been documented to unlock not just memories but even astounding, oddly mathematical, skills. I'm sure google will be of bigger help than me. Some kind of rewiring of our neurons must take place when for instance someone stomps on your noggin! :snicker: Can someone please hit me over the head with a baseball bat? Sounds like a plotline for a Hollywood blockbuster!

    You need Lady Luck's blessings though - brain trauma is correlated with dementia (punch drunk).
  • jgill
    2.3k
    Lemonics improves with age. Amazing, something that gets better the older you are! :cool:
  • Agent Smith
    6.2k
    Lemonics improves with age. Amazing, something that gets better the older you are! :cool:jgill

    :lol: Senile dementia, I'd like some of that! Thank you!
  • 180 Proof
    9.3k
    Wouldn't it be mind-blowingly awesome if we could, contra the mainstream view, fashion lemonics, methods of forgetting (instead of remembering).Agent Smith
    Not really. Dementia and Alzheimer's are commonplace among the elderly. Also, amnesia (retrograde or anterograde) due to acute brain injury. And there are commercial, pedagogical and intellectual modes of "forgetting" (re: agnotology ... vide Herman & Chomsky, vide Adorno, vide Orwell, et al) which are features, not bugs, of corporate mass communications in – social media of – the (neo)liberal republics of e.g. East Asia, North America & Western Europe.
  • Agent Smith
    6.2k
    I'm only surprised that there are encyclopedia entries on mnemonics but not on "lemonics".

    Memory research has been going on since Hermann Ebbinghaus (google) but the emphasis has been on remembering rather than forgetting, a poor memory being treated as a disability. I was hoping to do the same thing for forgetfullness as some have managed to do for LGBTQ.
  • Winner568
    9
    Doc from "Back to the Future" could forget his life, and eventually reincarnate hoping to remember exactly how he invented the quantum flux capacitor. Or he could remember how to survive the terrorists that he bought materials from to build it! & all of the adventures in-between those four causalities.
  • 180 Proof
    9.3k
    I'm only surprised that there are encyclopedia entries on mnemonics but not on "lemonics".Agent Smith
    :roll:

    The practical antithesis to "memory-tricks" (enhanced functioning) is lacking memory-tricks (unenhanced functioning) and not "amnesia-tricks" (enhanced dysfunctioning).
  • Agent Smith
    6.2k
    The practical antithesis to "memory-tricks" (enhanced functioning) is lacking memory-tricks (unenhanced functioning) and not "amnesia-tricks" (enhanced dysfunctioning).180 Proof

    On point señor, but wouldn't it be great to have a system for forgetting; we're most grateful for the junk files deletion feature on our computers, oui?
  • Agent Smith
    6.2k
    Doc from "Back to the Future" could forget his life, and eventually reincarnate hoping to remember exactly how he invented the quantum flux capacitor. Or he could remember how to survive the terrorists that he bought materials from to build it! & all of the adventures in-between those four causalities.Winner568

    Danke for the input. I wish we knew how Doc Brown could deliberately forget i.e. delete memory files.
  • alan1000
    91
    I think there should be more lemonics in cookery programs. Speaking for myself, I love the flavour
  • Agent Smith
    6.2k
    @180 Proof

    Recall you divided the mind into 3 parts:

    1. Metacognition
    2. Cognition
    3. Subcognition

    Bravo!

    Assuming all these 3 aspects of the mind have something to do with memory, I would like to query "is there a (very good) reason why we forget?" In other words, is a photographic/eidetic memory a curse?
  • 180 Proof
    9.3k
    1. Metacognition
    2. Cognition
    3. Subcognition

    I would like to query "is there a (very good) reason why we forget?"
    Agent Smith
    IIRC, the gist is that the human brain has a vast though finite number of possible synaptic connections which are "pruned" by lack of use through development and then reused to make new connections overctime – learning (plasticity) requires degrees of forgetting (weakening or eliminating old connections). Much of this "pruning" happens, neuroscientists surmise, while we sleep. The rhyme or reason of it is (still?) much debated; however, I'm partial to both neural darwinism and it's (synthetic) analogue connectionism as models of (autonomic?) memory formation / functioning / elimination (re: "subcognition"). IME, "remembering & forgetting" is a scientific problem, Smith, and no longer a fruitful topic of philosophical inquiry (except where philosophers of science are fussing over the (intractable?) fuzziness of concepts employed by neuroscientists).
  • Agent Smith
    6.2k


    Wow! A question: Is there anything in your life that you don't want to remember or wish you could forget (but can't)? There's no need to breach your confidentiality protocol though. Up to you how to answer the query.

    Plus, do you have an argument, weak/strong doesn't matter, why forgetfullness is a weakness and not a strength?

    Oh, before I forget ( :grin: ), I wanna thank you for your post - very informative!
  • 180 Proof
    9.3k
    Oh, before I forget ( :grin: ), I wanna thank you for your post - very informative!Agent Smith
    :cool:

    Plus, do you have an argument, weak/strong doesn't matter, why forgetfullness is a weakness and not a strength?
    Same reason that dementia, Alzheimer's and amnesia are weaknesses: "forgetfulness" (not ordinary, functional forgetting as I point out in my last post) debilitates agency.

    Is there anything in your life that you don't want to remember or wish you could forget (but can't)?
    There's nothing, not even the worst, I want to forget – traumas are lessons from which (I hope) I'm still learning, so "no".
  • Agent Smith
    6.2k
    It's true that Alzheimer's is treated as a debilitating illness and so is amnesia. I was simply wondering if DC/Marvel comics could create a superhero whose superpower is, well, an awful memory; something tells me it will be a huge success. Picture Lemo-man, unable to recall a vital piece of info Thanos/Darkseid needs to destroy the universe! :snicker:
  • 180 Proof
    9.3k
    :nerd: As I mentioned previously, here's a dramatization of anterograde amnesia ...
  • Agent Smith
    6.2k


    Most interesting. — Ms. Marple
  • baker
    4.8k
    but wouldn't it be great to have a system for forgettingAgent Smith

    The problem isn't the remembering of painful or embarrassing past events; the problem is not knowing how to think about them wisely, what and how to learn from them.

    Forgetting such events wouldn't necessarily help; but it could lead to again acting in ways that brought on those events. So that even if one were to forget the old painful or embarrassing events, if one wouldn't change one's ways, one would just recreate the conditions for those events again, provided it's in one's power to do so. For example, if you do stupid things when drunk, the solution isn't to forget those stupid things; it's to stop drinking.

    As for the events over which one doesn't have control: Some studies suggest that catastrophic events like earthquakes, tsunamis, global economic crises are actually easier to cope with than the more ordinary hardships people tend to face (and over which one has much more control).
  • Agent Smith
    6.2k
    Wonderful! Abso-fucking-lutely hits the nail on the head. While painful memories are included under forgettable moments, I'm mainly concerned about, in a manner of speaking, junk files - they do consume valuable real estate, oui monsieur?
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