Imagine being able to select and erase all the memories that have a habit of haunting you in the times you least expected it to. Oh, what power! And what a neat life it will be – without memories of a loved one’s death, the feels of a recent break-up, the sight of a flying cockroach that can chill your bones.
But it is one thing to wash that man, and that cockroach right outta your hair, and another to erase them from your mind.
Thanks to science, nothing is impossible, not even this. Go ahead, drag and drop your memories to the recycle bin.
The human mind is a complex subject and the human memory is a fascinating aspect of it.
According to the producer and the director of Memory Hackers, a show that records the mystery of the human memory,
“Memory is an inherently interesting thing. You think you know what it is, but when you think about it, you realize that you don’t.”
Did you notice how at times when you try hard AF to recall something but you just cannot and at a later time, you end up recalling it when your mind is not even pondering on it. It is almost like the memory has a mind of its own (Pardon my flowchart).
We might think of the human memory as a data storing device but it is not as simple as we think.
Researchers have discovered that memory is changeable and something as simple as the act of recalling something alters it.
Findings of the Nobel Prize-winning neuroscientist Eric Kandel of Columbia University suggests that on the creation of a memory, new synaptic connections grow between neurons in the brain.
Each time you try to recall a memory, it needs to undergo the process of re-saving, like in the computer system, and in the process, the whole connection gets reworked.
Remember how they imagined a scientific procedure in the Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind that could obliterate whole fields of memory which would allow Clementine to forget that she ever met Joel, let alone storing any memory of falling in love with him?
It also reminds us of the neo-Paris in Remember Me which allows 99% of the population to upload and share their memories on the net, as well as remove unhappy or unpleasant memories selectively.
Every time you prayed for a device to flash on your memory and manipulate it, there you go, your prayers have been answered.
According to this NYPost article, Dutch psychology professor Merel Kindt has devised a way to erase the emotional anxiety associated with bad memories without erasing the memories themselves. In her path-breaking discovery, she experimented with arachnophobes who were drugged with propanol after being exposed to a spider and later observed that the subjects handled the creatures without fear.
The process eliminated the memory of fear associated with spiders and not the knowledge of it (The writer is already making a list of all the memories she needs to erase).
You can watch the video here:
Quoting Alexander Pope,