When was the last time you thought about something that happened in the past? What connection do you have with your memories? I became fascinated with the way I perceive mine. We consider time to be linear, because memories are sequential. Correct? This is an educated interpretation but it doesn’t have to be the only one. Would be lovely to hear your thoughts on the below.
We divide time into past, present and future but how many times did we relive a memory with the same intensity as if it’s just happened or it’s happening all over again? A memory can erase from existence any moment that is happening right now. A memory can spontaneously propel us through time and space. This morning I had a croissant that triggered a ride all the way to Stockholm 2014, in Julia’s kitchen, having a breakfast that felt real all over again.
Are memories as important as the present time? Do they still exist somewhere just as I exist in the now, today? Are they less real just because they belong to a different timeline? Could you imagine completely forgetting your memories? How would you feel if all of a sudden you forgot how much you loved or how hard you laughed with your friends or how difficult it was when someone in your family died? How would it feel if you were to look at a pile of photos from your life but have no feelings connected to them? Do you see your memories as being dead or alive?
If you could go back in time and alter an important life event, would you step into a past version of yourself and relive the same scenario over and over again until it comes out right? When you picture the future are you perhaps projecting past memories in a parallel time frame where the story ends in a different way, or takes a whole new shape?
Is is possible that we relive the same story plot, subconsciously trying to adjust it again and again with other means, in other places, with different people? We learn by comparison, ponder things in a new light and start from scratch. Under this perspective, we are not writing the story but simply uncovering its meaning.
What I am thinking is that life is a constant trial and error in the hopes of understanding or improving past versions of ourselves. There is an original timeline for each experience/feeling that defines who I am today, and all the things I lived are just alternative plays of the same subject. I constantly travel back and forth, not to live in the past, but to mend the meaning of my story. To solve the puzzle of my own identity.
Related reading: Recursion by Blake Crouch. Warmly recommended.