It was suggested that we always talk of atheist things and maybe should talk about other things. OK. I'm doing my first post of this and we can see where it goes.

   On Easter I was working outside and ended up talking to my neigbors who were outside working on a car. Peg, the owner of the car, started reminiscing about my parents, when they lived at the place I have now, when we were all teens together years ago, going back into the 1970's with many things, even getting into a man she used to date who ended up later married into my family down in Texas. She was so right on everything here into every detail except one. Then it happened.

   She recalled how my mother was her teacher in high school. This went on with detail, and she was so sorry that my mother got cancer and died. It all made a good story with one exception.

   My mother never taught school anywhere in any fashion ever! I kept quiet about it though, and just listened and talked. I let Peg have her belief. So what I am asking here is this. Are people in general like this and their minds work this way, or is this sort of how a theist would think? Does this sort of thing happen to all of us?

   I'm open for comments and opinions and you can leave your story also.

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It would be funny if she realized her mistake later on that evening, and ends up thinking you are the one with the sad mental deterioration for not correcting her.

I never thought of it that way. Maybe I didn't say anything coz she did take a lot of drugs way back then.

I'm not an expert, but what I've read memories are very fluid and can mix together forming what we think was one experience but actually a combination of experiences.  I saw this with my grandmother and my parents as they got older.  I never corrected them It was their memories right or wrong.  My wife and I have shared 44 years of experiences and it's always funny when we disagree on "who, what, where and when" one of the experiences happened.

I can identify with that. This is why I see:

* Old people on social security who think Obama will soon be wanting them to "sign up" for healthcare at about $400 plus per month.

* People in general who think Obama is "trying to take our guns."

* My step-father who thinks I chose "Obamacare" for myself at age 67.

* My parents thinking I "made up" a younger child in a family that we all knew well many years ago simply because they did not remember the boy who was the last child.

* My parents wanting to believe that I "made up" a TV show that was "live" and I watched it locally when we could not have recieved it locally because of the distance involved. Perhaps they had never heard of "reruns" given out to other stations?

* An "agreement" that my parents had with me, but I never agreed to anything.

This list could go on and on, and all it does is get more strange and funny!

This happens with all people, theist or not. I had a very short conversation with someone on facebook the other day. The person mentioned that I was a pretty good basketball player in high school.

Huh?...I sucked. I gave up basketball after my freshman year to concentrate on swimming.

I thought it best to quickly correct the misremembering, before he went too far down that road. He must've been embarassed because he shut down the conversation at that point. Oh well, I was nice about it, just factual. I didn't say anything to embarass him but he obviously was.

I goof up in this area regularly. My wife drills me occasionally, exasperated as to how I can remember details of every episode of Star Trek TNG but can't remember what we're doing next Tuesday. Well, somewhat guilty of the former but definitely guilty of the latter. I guess I'm not all that smart, remembering what interests me. I could do better and my mental filing system needs some help.

My wife got angry once because I mentioned that a wind chime we had outside was bought by my late mother. Very quickly I was told that my wife was the one to have bought it, not mom.

Memory is a weird thing.  Mostly we forget.  But sometimes we remember things that were not there.  That's why eye witnesses are not reliable in trials.

Much of what happened to be before I was, say, 40 is like a book I read.  I know the events, but I don't recall them as experiences that I really had.  I haven't forgotten them, I just don't feel connected to them.

Some things I do feel connected to.  Especially remembering reading books, or doing certain physical things.  It's the interpersonal that I get fuzzy on.

False memory syndromes have caused a lot of grief.

I would like to edit some memories.  But I don't get that option.

This was a fun read and I can chime in my agreement with the idea that my wife remembers things "better" than I do. I have a vivid memory of playing with my brother one morning, missing the school bus because we weren't watching, and having to ask the neighbor to give us a ride to school. I mentioned this at Easter Dinner on Sunday and both my brother and my mother had no memory of this. Since I am sure it happened, I can only assume that it didn't mean as much to them at the time as it did to me. I was the one that had to get us out of the jamb so maybe it was more significant to me. Perspective causes me to remember?

I remembered a rich relative that both my brother and mother say we don't have.  Odds are they are correct, because my mother is a good genealogist.  But, in my daydreams I keep hoping I'm right and he surprises us with a good amount in his will.

I also remember my dad saying he didn't like mushrooms, but he later denied it.  He is probably correct also.

Those are the only two things I remember clearly that are most likely wrong.  Most of the time, my memory proves to be correct.  If I'm hazy about something, I make it clear that I'm hazy, but even then, I'm often proven right.

That being said, there are a lot of things that I just do not remember.  Especially things that happened many years ago.  

Overall, I think I do better than most people at not conjuring-up false memories.

I love sitting around the fire and telling stories, and several people have said that I have a particular knack for it.  I always try to be truthful, but really have little confidence in how accurate my memories are.  Just the other day someone called me out on the dating I gave for an incident, making a convincing argument that for technical reasons it couldn't have happened until at least ten years later.  They're no doubt right, though the time & setting seemed very clear to me when I related it.

I think that I have memories from very early childhood, but those may be images derived from stories told by others, or they may even be things that I want to believe happened, and so have convinced myself that they really did.  This is all complicated and in a way enhanced by my full engagement in the socio-chemical happenings of the 1960s, and resultant blurring of perceived reality.

Truth is very important to me.  Since I've lasted beyond the ability to pass on my genes directly, I see my primary purpose as passing on truthful memes.  But I make no particular claim of veracity.  I hope that those youngsters (the 50-somethings and younger) will take my tales with a healthy dollop of skepticism, and am delighted when they catch me in an inaccuracy because it helps me calibrate my reality gauge.

}}}}

Your hope to pass on truthful memes touches a cord in me.  Thank you.  In would also add, memes of a certain type of vaues, such as humanism, respect for thoughtfulness, respect for cultures beyond one's own.

Some memories are weird. When I was 5 years old a man came by our place so very facinated about his new insurance policy. All I heard him say was "the policy this, and the policy that." You would think that policy could do anything. I was a young boy needing a nap, and I was also facinated with monkeys. I took my nap and I dreamed. I woke up crying because the policy was a monkey and the monkey bit me!

This is a true story. I can't remember everything but that one really stuck with me.

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