By in Health & Fitness

A Theory (Speculation) of Memory "Levels"

I've noticed something peculiar about my memory. For quite some time, I've not been able to come up with names of people I knew and loved in the past. Well, perhaps it is because I'm trying harder, or perhaps it's because of changes in my memory, but I've recently been able to dredge up a fair number. What's my take on why the change? Well, I have a kind of speculative theory that it is because memory occurs in layers, like the layers of an onion.

Our memory is vibrantly sharp for current events when we're young. But as we grown older, I'm wondering if our short-term memories don't fade some and we drift back in time. Not so much all at once, but in stages. Perhaps the neurons have layers of memories, a kind of time-oriented mechanism built within them. If we develop dementia, as time presses on, we approach our earliest memories, eventually reaching a stage (if we live long enough) where we forget pretty nearly everything.

What do you think?

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MegL wrote on September 6, 2021, 5:43 AM

My sister in law is in the early stages of dementia. He current memory is practically non-existent, though she has a little, where the subject is of great interest to her. Her memory of events in early life is crystal clear and is corroborated by her brother, my husband who does not, thankfully have dementia. You may well be right. Memories build on earlier memories, like layers and it's the top layers that get stripped first?

VinceSummers wrote on September 6, 2021, 8:35 AM

That's kind of what I was thinking. I have a bit of a different perspective from most people. You see, I believe people were designed to live forever on earth. Think of all the memories that would encompass. Yet the brain would have to contain them all. As many neurons as humans have, how could that be achieved? I don't know. Certainly the Bible offers no explanation. Perhaps some sort of layering mechanism, relative to time. Just pure speculation, but sometimes even a speculation can be correct.

MegL wrote on September 7, 2021, 2:01 PM

I read a book, many years ago, that suggested that part of our memory was cosmic - they were suggesting that we were accessing memories that belonged to everyone, including ourselves.

lookatdesktop wrote on October 12, 2021, 8:08 PM

Interesting speculation, Vincent. :)