One can experience the abstractionist side of the mind with a great, albeit bogus, sense of understanding, as in ordinary dreams, and paradoxically think of the very same experience as nonsensical in the waking state. I bring this up, because, a shocking insight came to me while I was thinking about ways to improve memory. I imagined a scenario where I was being mnemonically tested. In my imagination, I was in a room and a person would come in wearing something that would have to be remembered later. A second person would enter the room and again I would have to remember the details of what they were wearing. In addition, their names and the order in which they appeared would have to be memorised, too.
After pondering about a possible way to remember all of it, I arrived at the conclusion that making the process fun would be key. The solution I came up with was to convert the memory of what was experienced into an interesting or catchy story where the people’s names would be followed by nicknames matching their attire. Example: Thomas Blue-bow (blue bow/tie); Miss Amy Wine-blouse (red blouse); Peter Wrangler (black jeans); and so forth. The story would develop with the flow of characters idiosyncratically coming and going. This resolute concept was devised in my head in a few seconds, but, what hadn’t been apparent at first, was that its details had not been mentally conceived in the eloquent version that I have presented here.
Insofar as mental processing went, I had not consciously thought of any specific names of people nor any type of clothing whatsoever. Strangely, what accompanied my eloquent conception, as coherent as my recollection can make it, was this: “Trikka-trendy-para-shooter.” How odd is that? “Trikka” is not even a name but who knows what kind of schema it linguistically represents, in my mind, and what it may beget. “Trendy” is not a piece of clothing, although, it may in this case be akin to the adjective largely associated with fashion in its holistic power.
The process of generating such thought was so natural to the point of making perfect sense in my daydreaming mode, as opposed to the mystification that the mnemonic perspective later conveyed. At the time of conception, a moment totally free from its revisory wake, I knew its translation to be exactly what I have stated here as an example of the solution to improve memory. How can this be?
The revisory wake revealed the vaguely linguistic conception less meaningful, as though lost in translation. Gradually, however, the detective in me began to come up with clues or ideas for why Trikka, why Trendy, Para and Shooter. Trikka could convey the idea of “trick” and tricks can provide solutions. Trendy, from “trend”, can relate to clothing or it could mean exactly that - a trend - as in “get used to applying this trick/method” in order to improve memory. Para-shooter has a possible translation “parachuting” out of the trouble of forgetting. I started to get the impression that the strange thoughts Trikka-trendy-para-shooter were archetypal (in that instance) and conveyed the whole idea that I had in mind.
These archetypal thoughts seem to belong to a highly entropic type of processing with diminished consciousness where abstract ideas manifest and can mean a wide array of things, but, eventually, they become more orderly, anthropologically narrowed, reduced in the simplicity of the waking state.
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