memory is defined as how we continually recreate images from the past in our mind and alter the original imprint according to each recreation
memory and the mind : recreating a new version of the past in the present
to make memory of: the personified action of retaining in the mind; to commemorate; to preserve a record or memorial of; to recollect; to keep alive the remembrance of; to be mindful of; the faculty of recalling to mind.
Electrocution is burning at the stake with all the modern improvements.
We don't interact with the past, we interact with a reconstruction we make up from a triggered response and we call that our memory.
Our memory isn't the past, it's an image. The past is a feeling or thought which we construct and organise with our mind in the present .. and we believe that image corresponds in some way to something that happened before.
We construct a memory of something and interpret it as having happened before -- but we always do that *now* and never interact with the past, only with the image we interpret as past, that interaction always occurring *now*.
Truth is not in the past, nor in the images of the past
We continually interact with our environment, including other people. The whole body is a sensory organ that operates on many different frequencies at the same time.
Sooner or later, the feeling you had, now has you.
When we sense something, a series of messages move through the body. These can be chemical, electrical .. or even subtle radiations. They can be direct sense inputs .. or .. the senses can trigger a pattern that has been recorded somewhere - even in the DNA. Eventually (between 10 and 100milliseconds later) these sensory responses get to the brain.
What the thinking brain (which we like to call mind) does with this information is that it goes back to the body and compares this new signal to everything that it has ever experienced and, 500milliseconds later, creates a composite image which it then puts into a box and labels.
the present is who we are, and what is ..
the present never moves into or becomes the past.
There is no point of contact between memory and the present.
If mind likes to think about this for a bit longer (another 250 milliseconds), it creates a new set of data which it feeds back into its data bank to add to what is already there .. so that, the next time we get a similar reaction, mind and body process all of the reconstructions and past interpretations.
memory and truth
If I want to know what's really true, I have to look at what is happening now, what I'm organizing now as an image.
Rather than looking to the image to give me what is true, I can look to how I'm organizing the image, interpreting the image - in other words, know the truth of myself, now, as I am and not in an image I construct to give me something to interact with.
I don't get to know truth unless I'm willing and ready to give up what is fiction, what is construction. By truth I mean "nowness", only nowness can't be put into a concept like "now."
memory and learning
events which shaped my past have indeed shaped my present
Learning involves construing the past in terms of a present and future, and operating based on the assumptions derived from the past, which is knowledge, which is memory, thought, and feeling-reaction.
Mind can't know anything, until and unless it has passed. We must be able to have a construction with which to interact after the fact.
Based on what we believe to be so, and given our structure and history, we give the best response now that we're capable to give. And, we only know how we responded once that moment is past.
We are all products of our own each individual awareness and we can only act, react, do, not do,etc. as our prevailing awareness dictates. In other words, we cannot have "done better" because we can only do the best we can at the time given what our prevailing awareness is at that moment.
The difficulty is that we think we know when our memory/thought/feeling system is able to form an image. One could call this knowledge formation.
So we think we are knowing when knowledge is formed. We don't realize that knowing is when knowledge isn't formed, can't be formed, for there is no reference point from which to form it.
There are no degrees to this knowing because now is boundless and has no divisions. In the dream, there is the sense of contact, of something happening, of an impact occurring.
in awakening, there is no separation, hence nothing which has an impact on something else. Movingfrom knowledge-based-knowing to no-knowledge knowing has been likened to dying, being reborn, or being awake.
The difference lies in the fact that knowledge-based knowing (memory) depends on having things existing outside that have an impact on something with an inside --
pure knowing (gnosis) has no outside, therefore nothing inside, therefore utterly different (no-mind) knowing ..