push! PUSH!...no!....pull?

i was sitting down in the toilet today, when i suddenly realised...
...i have no idea how to open my door without kinaesthetically doing it.

and of course, i can't just leave this entry with just that, now can i?
so let's talk about memories.
both short and long term memory helps us to progress extensively to live life on a daily basis.
remembering how to eat, remembering who to trust, remembering how to open the toilet door.

without it, we know not how to function.
or do we?
i mean, what about our instincts?
being the inherent disposition in ourselves towards particular behaviours, these fixed action patterns are imprinted in us when we first start to develop it in a sensitive period during one of our generations.

this is what i've been trying to figure out now, while watching Dollhouse.
i really don't like explaining what the show is about, but really, in the end, it's about humans who have signed a contract to be brainwashed and hiring them out to REALLYREALLYREALLY rich guys to be programmed into ANYTHING they want and having them believe they have been living these programmed lives for years.

The scientists and the whole corporation plays with character memories, but through instincts, the main character has been able to break out of these programs and unlock her prior memories of being another character.

so are we living off memories, or are we living off instincts?
if we weren't living off memories of names, games, functions etc and we lived off our instincts, would we be a happy living organism?

and what instincts do we have? when you fall in love with someone, is that instinct?



KelvinL said...


Interesting question! Are our behaviours guided by memories or instinct...

In a sense, instinct IS a memory. Its implicit memory in that we do things reflexively from past experience. You will "instinctively" pull your hand away from a hot object once you touch it, or you will "instinctively" feel fear when you see a giant spider. These reflexive actions are short cuts and cause behaviours without activating the conscious brain when given the right trigger.

Explicit memories are what we use when we need higher reasoning and need to make conscious decisions. They certainly influence any behaviour that we ponder about: What time should we eat lunch? Where should I look for my keys? Explicit memories are built on top of implicit memories, and certainly couldn't exist without them. Many simpler creatures probably function on implicit memories alone, without any real conscious explicit memory.

My conclusion is that they both influence behaviour depending on the situation. Many people underestimate the power of the situation when it comes to human behaviour. i.e Milgram's obedience studies.

In dollhouse, it seems like they can wipe most explicit memories (or at least bury them), but portions of implicit memory still remain.

Oh no. Sorry I hell psyched out then, myyyy baaaaad.

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