Scientists have found that sleep helps consolidate memories, fixing them in the brain so we can retrieve them later
In a recent article published by PhysOrg we hear that scientists have found that sleep helps consolidate memories, fixing them in the brain so we can retrieve them later. New research shows that “sleep also seems to reorganize memories, picking out the emotional details and reconfiguring the memories to help you produce new and creative ideas”, according to the authors of an article in Current Directions in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
“Sleep is making memories stronger, says Jessica D. Payne of the University of Notre Dame, who co-wrote the review with Elizabeth A. Kensinger of Boston College. It also seems to be doing something which I think is so much more interesting, and that is reorganizing and restructuring memories.”
The term “reconfiguring memories” made me shudder. For a meditator it is intense enough to see those ghosts from the past rearing their not always pretty heads. But then to have them reorganized and restructured? Is this wishful thinking on the scientists’ part or actually happening? This might give the mind even more ideas of grandeur and power to drag one into a make-believe past or future!
I was eager to know what Osho has to say on the subject and here goes:
“As you become more and more a meditator, your psychological memory will start disappearing, but the factual memory will become very clear, because now your energy is not divided. The psychological memory was creating a kind of darkness around the fact. You were not detached; you were not a faraway observer. You were too much attached to it – for or against does not matter.
“As you become more and more a witness of your mind, a disidentification arises with the mind and all its contents. Your memory will become very clear, crystal clear, because now there is no fog of your emotions and reactions around it….
“…Your brain contains all the memories, psychological memories of your past lives. But the more you meditate, the more you go on erasing all psychological memories. Begin first from this life, then slowly, slowly your meditation gets deeper and the past life’s memories are also removed, erased. And a man with no psychological memory at all is the man we call enlightened. I am trying to give you different dimensions of enlightenment.”
Osho, The Invitation, Ch 16, Q 2
So don’t worry if your psychological memory goes, it is a great sign!