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Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Why is it that I can remember the prologue to The Knight's Tale from Chaucer's Canterbury Tales that I learned a million years ago in high school, and I go from one room to another to get something and forget what I was after? I am sure there is a fancy medical term and explanation for it. Usually you can condense it into an acronym
There are all kinds of memories, short term, long term, good, bad, but my favourite is selective memory. That can be very handy at times. I learned that one a loooooong time ago when I was a kid. "Bobby! Did you remember to wash your hands?" "Sorry, I forgot."
They say we only use a fraction of our brain. Can you imagine the possibilities? If we had full utilization of our brains, one of two things would happen. We would either completely destroy ourselves or we would be so advanced it would boggle our under utilized minds.
I know one thing that would advance civilization without expanding our current mind power. But before I tell you what it is, I have to talk about adolescents. When we were young, much of our learning was done by trial and error. We would ask our parents if we could do something, they would say no, and we would do it, anyway, and suffer the consequences. Parents usually knew what they were talking about, because they had already experienced adolescence and were passing on their wisdom to their offspring. But almost always, the new generation has to learn from experience just like the previous generations. Here is my point, can you imagine how much more advanced our civilization would be if every new generation would listen to the advice of their parents, teachers, etc. and not make wrong choices that slows down their development? It would most certainly make growing up less exciting.