No wonder people think I’m different.

What is your first memory? How old are you? For reasons explained below, most people have no memory prior to age three. My first memory is of around 18 months. I remember being pushed in a stroller through a park, the trees lining the path, the sun, feeling safe and happy to be outside, hearing peacocks call out and being startled. What was that noise?!

“Research has puzzled over the lack of recall most people have for their first three years of life and the fact that functional memory with some recall doesn’t begin until age three to four. This is because the amygdala, which is the module primarily involved in memory of these first three years, is fully engaged in registering our survival strategies. The hippocampus, involved in long-term memory subject to later recall, undergoes its major growth after the first three years. Thus very few of us can actually recall our survival training; we simply act it out, particularly when dealing with our own offspring.” (The Biology of Transcendence, Joseph Chilton Pearce)

Is it possible that this is why I am so keenly aware of enculturation strategies? Is it possible this is why I want to teach critical thinking? The call of the peacock set the tone for my life: wild curiosity and joy coupled with bewilderment.

4 thoughts on “No wonder people think I’m different.

  1. I agree that it is possible to remember when you were 3 years old, even 18 mos old. I can vaguely remember when I was a toddler, looks like the older I get this period of my life seems to disappear. I don’t remember the survival part of it at all, just remember being taken places with my parents in a car and sometimes in a stroller. I guess I can safely say that I am and was simply just acting it out.

    1. robinridley

      Ah, parents. Aren’t they grand?! What are you acting out? Are you taking on someone else’s version of herself? What’s your strongest earliest memory? Sounds like “moving” strikes your cord. Do you dance?

  2. I clearly remember being at a car lot (brightly colored plastic triangle flags on strings) and my mom putting me in the seat of what would become our new Comet car. I remember trying to figure out the seatbelt buckle. I was really happy for some reason. My parents insist I can’t possibly remember it because I was less than 2 years old. Does Chilton Pearce study empaths, psychics or intuitives? I wonder how much having additional input channels of information has an effect?

    1. robinridley

      We are all empaths, psychics, and intuitives. Play engenders opening of channels. That’s what I think Pearce would say.

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