Time Based Techniques & BBC Research
The BBC recently made an article about the possibilities of virtual time travel for people to diminish emotion off old past memories. Although they call it virtual, all memories are virtual in essence. at the very least the emotional aspect and meaning of the memory was added subjectively after the event so those parts we know for sure are ‘created’.
How does this work with time and memories?
Events happen second by second and occur in the present tense. Every memory is unique in as much as it’s a possibility each time it’s visited – unless you put subjective meaning onto it. There is so much information in a single moment that our objective brain can’t possibly handle that much, so it has to delete, distort and generalise it to make sense of the world. But in essence, that’s making it up!
In other words our memory of things are created and re-created. Therefore, every time you and I visit a a memory, we change it. And that’s not just because we are re-creating it time and time again – we are also not the same day by day.
So tomorrow, when you bring back a memory from yesterday, YOU are not the same and do not have the same chemical balance in your body and mind – and may be even wiser, an interesting backdrop to view the memories from.
In the BBC article, they were setting up conditions to allow people to experience memories as if they were real again, yet inside a virtual world. Most interesting, the researchers say, was the emotional impact virtual time travel had on the participants.
“The more the participants felt the illusion, the greater the sense of their own morality,” explained co-author Mel Slater of the ICREA (Catalan Research Institute) and University College London.
The BBC article ends like this:
“While it remains impossible to un-do something that has already occurred, results of this study suggest that… virtual reality techniques can be usefully harnessed to promote greater acceptance of one’s own mistakes in the past, as well as better decision-making in the future.”
We’ve been using ‘time travel therapy’ (we call it Time Based Techniques) for over 18 years now with amazing results. Karl Pribram who was an expert on memory and neurological concepts, concluded that our memories are holographic in nature and need many aspects to thrive, not being located in one area as was once thought.
You can have a look at his work here (‘can be heavy’ warning).
When we are using Time Based Techniques with clients, we are not just accessing old past memories, we are literally changing them, changing perceptions and therefore changing lives.