Tuesday, May 6, 2008

The importance of forgetting

Read a lovely article in the National Geographic [Nov 2007] on "Memory - How we remember and how we forget" . Contemplating over a very insightful statement from the same. That, our memory is shaped by not what we remember, but what we forget. It is important to be able to forget, so that we archive only those details that are relevant to us. People with astonishingly good memories, cannot prioritize. They cannot heal as well. It is said Time is the best healer, but, while for most people, the memories of the sad incidents dim with time and the pain lessens, for people with remarkable memories, this isn't so. They find themselves remembering all details of the incident - and, even the pain they felt at that time. Most people remember that that incident caused them pain but might not be able to recall and relive the exact extent of pain. This helps to heal. Over the years, the mind glosses over things, stores it's own version of the incident than the actual occurrences themselves. This is important to the moving on process.

Another article in the Times also spoke about how our body is adapted to withstand emotional shocks such as breakups. While we are deeply in Love with a person, we imagine that it would be disastrous if the relation went sour and that we would be devastated at the thought of not having the person in our lives. But, the human body is wonderfully resilient. During a breakup, various defense mechanisms kick in and, subconsciously, we prepare ourselves for overcoming it. The Mind, instead of thinking tender thoughts about that person, now focuses on their draw backs. His / Her little habits which would slightly annoy you earlier start assuming prime importance and generate irritation against that person in your mind. You start wondering about why it is much better that you are without them than with them, and, in a while believe in this fact. So, your sub-conscious aids in the conscious efforts that you would be making to get over your heart break!!

Nice ideas to ponder over :)

1 comment:

nissim said...

The Great Sweeney Todd says:
"Never forgive, never forget".
I agree.