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autobiographical memory
4th Jun 2011Posted in: Blog 0
autobiographical memory
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As i look through pictures of my wedding, i notice that a smile naturally comes to my face. it does'nt matter if the pictures are ugly, or if we look like brutal approximations of our true selves. Those brutal approximations are our true selves when we're not looking. Still, i notice my facial muscles contracting to a smile and i wonder: what is it about these pictures that moves me so? How is it possible to see these faces and have a spontaneous, unwilled reaction of joy? There is a pound of neurology to explain why, but for this post, i a more interested in the aesthetic of the experience. I am more about the beauty than about the logic behind it. Sometimes i just want to let myself get carried away in the experience and send the knowledge about the experience straight to hell. I know the difference between feeling and knowing about feeling. They look the same at first but they are worlds apart. I do know that there is a part of my brain that goes haywire when i see familiar faces. Faces that nurtured me, hurt me, grew me up, changed me, loved me. Those faces make some neurons in my temporal lobes act up and i get a swath of neurotransmitters spread out across my hypocampus, and Pow!: the feelings come back to me. There is a sensory tag on those memories such that if i touch my own hand like it was touched in the memory, i can have greater access to the details in the episodic details of the experience. I like going through this process because it keeps the family part of my brain healthy and reminds me of who i am. 

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