The Sanctity of Memory
Updated: Sep 11
Come to think of it, our sense of self comes from our memories of valuable things that have happened in our past—events, achievements, people, and so forth. If it weren't for our memory, we would not have any sense of self, not until we are updated once again about who we are.
Because the future is uncertain, it's possible to assume that every day we have a chance of losing our memory, and thus our own conscious identity.
The fact that we have not lost our memory all the days and years we've been alive does not guarantee that tomorrow will not be the day where our memory is at least damaged to an extent by a physical accident, or by anything that can damage it. Let's not be biased the stability of our lives.
This is why any kind of history is imperative to the identity of the entity that had it. Without history, there will be no identity, and with no identity, there will be no purpose or a grip of reality in relation to said entity. It's more than just being able to repeat the same mistakes over and over; it's the unfortunate state of not knowing who we are and what the heck are we doing in this place, in this time, and what are we supposed to do the following day or days.
Do you have any passwords that you remember by heart, or, more generally, anything that you remember that is not written anywhere, something that you need to remember in order to get things done? Should you lose your memory by whatever unfortunate accident, that imperative information is gone for good. Hence why everything that is important is to be written or recorded in any other way in a form that can be accessed. That is because paper, or any other recording device such as a virtual document, has ironically a far better memorizing capability than most people; a memorization that can last for centuries.
The past is arguably the most important time between the present and the future. Anything that is done with thought is done by past knowledge and/or experience. Profession, education, relationships—all are futile without a certain grip of the past. If you do not rely on the past using your memory alone, you basically risk forgetting important things, as memory by itself is uncertain and can be damaged with ease by some unfortunate accident. An accident (or even more than one) can occur everyday, anytime, especially if you go out of your home a lot, as the outside world is far more uncertain than the safety of your own home.
Obviously, memory can also be seen as a double-edged sword—when you remember things you do not wish to remember, like a very uncomfortable, very negative, and/or triggering experience. Fortunately, there are better ways to distract oneself from the scars of the past instead of seeking harmful ways to erase one's memory.
That, however, comes with the following issue: should there ever be a technology capable of erasing memories, like the recycler of a computer, or the fictional neuralyzer should that technology be used, or rather banned? If, let's say, an evil, futuristic organization is to be able to get their hands on that technology and use it to remove from mankind any memory that is important to keep in order to prevent themselves from doing the same mistakes over and over again (for example, the Holocaust, certain massacres, and so forth), should that technology be banned to begin with?
What is definitely certain is the fact that without remembering the past, we will not be competent enough in our various roles in the present moment, and thus the future will be as less good as it could have been. Hence why, when it comes to comparing between the three time sentences, the past triumphs above all in its functionality, to allow beneficial events, and to prevent the more unfortunate ones from happening.
Record anything you believe to be important, whether to yourself or to others, as backing anything up is far safer than relying on memory alone. The best way to record is by paper, as paper cannot be hacked or be virtually found by an attacking force from the other side of the globe. Should you save something on your computer, make sure you have any other backup, should it ever be damaged beyond repair.
Having a site, like this one, is such an example for a back up. Clouding services are another. Do your research if your memories matter to you. Don't just post something on social media platforms and expect them to everlast. They can always be taken down by moderation.
Be a guest writer to Philosocom, for instance, and your content can be stored here for generations to come. That is how much I value memory and preservation. Why? Beause anything can contribute to anyone. Which means that any human is capable to be useful to a degree. That includes yourselves as well.