Which is more important– the actual experience, or the memory that remains of the experience after it is over?
Interesting question. You can’t have the memory if you don’t have the experience. But does that make the memory more important? I don’t know. Then again, if you had a great experience but couldn’t remember it, would that be enough? And memory is such a fickle beast, everyone at the same event recalls something totally different from one another after, as if they had attended different events. It’s a complicated question. I don’t know that I can choose.
Often when I’m having an important experience, I am totally aware that what’s happening is significant and I’ll acknowledge that, turn everything else off in my brain, clear my mind, and just totally be in the moment and enjoy every breath spent there. This is something new in the last couple of years or so and it seems to occur with more frequency the older I grow. I don’t know if this is because I was less able to recognise important life experience’s when I was younger, or what. But I totally recognise them now and I’m completely able to shut everything else down and live in the present moment.
It might seem then that the experience would be the most important to me, but I’m not so sure, because the memories from these experiences where I’ve been totally and completely present without another thought in my head . . . these are the most spectacular and powerful memories I’ve ever had, and I cherish them. I take them out and let them wash over me when I’m feeling a little down and need a pick me up. I visit them and hold them close like old friends. I can’t imagine not having any memory of these important times. But I also can’t imagine that the memory would be enough if I hadn’t offered myself up so openly and freely to the experience to begin with.
Ah, it’s kind of like the chicken and the egg, you can’t have one without the other . . . if I absolutely had to choose though, I would have to say the experience is more important to me. And I’m having these wonderful experiences more often it seems, maybe because I’m more open to them, maybe because I always had them but didn’t recognise them, I don’t know. But I think without the memory of the last experience I would just go on to create even more new experiences, and that would make for a very interesting life indeed.
Mood: trying to get psyched to do some pilates or yoga or something, stretch out my too tight back
Drinking: not much
Listening To: The Beatles, Let it Be
Hair: tucked behind one ear