Yesterday I emailed Kate about some thoughts I’d had about memory, a few things that had happened, and a discussion that I’d had with Kurt.  I thought maybe it could be a blog entry.  Kate said:

“I think that’s a totally amazing blog entry and you could post it as it, like as an email conversation between the two of us.”

Okay, cool!  So now it’s a blog entry.  I’ll give a bit of back story where necessary.

*  *  *

Hey, I read Jamie/Elisa’s CE post Milk of Amnesia and it was really timely because I’ve been thinking about memory a lot.  Like I’m thinking that memory is not what it looks like and our brains aren’t necessarily meat computers that we use to file data.  Otherwise we would never forget things if they were hard-wired in there.  I have a story about it.

I was trying to figure out for a long time how I could have “remembered” that that Degrassi actor had died, if it’s something that I didn’t know previously and it might not have even happened yet.  But it felt exactly like a memory.  That hadn’t really made sense and didn’t really become clearer over time.  Except when viewed from the perspective that time isn’t linear — but then that just means that I’m remembering something that I didn’t know, rather than remembering a future event.  Which also isn’t really how memory is supposed to work.

[Edit:  I’ve had several death premonitions over the years and I don’t think I’ve written about that here before.  It should probably be the subject of another entry.  The short version of the story I’m referencing is this:  I was watching (the old) Degrassi series back in 2007 and began wondering, “where are they now?”.  At that point I “remembered” that Wheels had died — except I couldn’t remember when or how it had happened, only how I’d felt when I’d heard the news.  So I checked Wiki, and found that he was apparently not dead — which was weird, because I really didn’t know why I’d thought that.  Then in 2012 it was all over the news that this actor had died in 2007 but no one knew until that year, including his family.]

Then there was that dream I had where I visited that temple in the past, but it felt like the present.  I don’t know if that “should have” felt like a memory or not though.  If I was really there, maybe it just was the present in that context, if you know what I mean.

[Edit:  This was a dream that I’d mentioned to Kate where I’m pretty sure I actually went time traveling.  I was standing outside a small round stone building with woman that I knew at the time but can’t identify.  We were waiting to have our feet washed in this temple.  We’re up on a hill, everything is really green.  As this woman and I are talking I’m looking at the wall beside me.  She asks what I’m thinking, noticing I’d drifted off and I ask her when the temple was built.  She pauses then tells me, “500 BC”.  Another pause.  “I know, it’s in really good shape, isn’t it?”, then changes the subject.  It had caught my attention because the masonry wasn’t modern, yet there was no soot or weathering.  Because I’m an art history student there would be follow up questions for her had she not changed the subject.  I wasn’t really meant to know that we were time traveling; we were there for the blessing.  I didn’t figure it out until I woke up.]

Anyway I had another weird memory experience at the COFFEESHOP! yesterday.  I was going to relay it to you at the time but in order to tell the story I needed some photos, and a bit of a back story, and I needed to verify some details for myself so I figured I’d just tell you later.  Also anyone overhearing it would just think I sounded crazy, so there’s that.

[Edit:  It’s the COFFEESHOP!! because one day we went there to do some business planning and there was a girl at the table beside us with a laptop, the cord of which was strung across the doorway at the top of a rickety wooden staircase.  She was on Skype talking to her friend without a headset, apparently getting bad internet connectivity, and shouting into her computer’s built-in microphone, “I’M IN A COFFEE SHOP!  A COFFEE SHOP!!  WHAT??  We rolled our eyes and left.  Now it’s a running joke.]

What happened was I had this moment when we ordered our coffees at the counter and I saw our barista, where I was like (in my head) “Omg!! He looks like one of the guys from Pearl Jam!”  Like, “Holy shit, did I step into a time warp?”

— In case you’re not familiar, Pearl Jam look like this:

pearl-jam1 pearl_jam

Long hair, long cargo shorts, black tshirt, several necklaces, beret, etc.  They wore long johns all the time under their cargo shorts, like leggings.  It’s a specific sort of brand of 90s grunge.  In my mind this guy looks exactly like this.

More back story:  Pearl Jam are an early 90s band from Seattle, contemporaries of Nirvana.  (Although they’re actually still around).

Anyway.  Now Kurt overhears this and is like, “Which one (does he look like)??  Jeff Amett??”

I try to remember what that guy looks like.  Then I see him:


“…Hmm.  No, the other one”.

“Stone Gossard?”

I search my mind, then see him:


“Totally!!  Except he’s wearing the other guy’s clothes.  He’s like a mix of the two”.

Kurt laughs, “The Green River guys“.  There’s some mock resentment there.

I’m like, “Oh yeahhhh…”, suddenly remembering that before Pearl Jam were big that they were in Green River, and they were label mates with Nirvana, and the label spent way more money promoting that other band, and that it drove Kurt nuts.  I remembered reading that in Come as You Are.

Now I’m thinking, “I can’t believe I actually remember this!  I haven’t seen the liner notes of a Pearl Jam album in years — how the fuck do I know who’s in Pearl Jam??”

Kurt’s like, “You don’t remember.  I remember, and I’m telling you”.

I’m like, “…Oh.  Well yeah, but I mean I remember what they look like…”

He’s like, “I sent you that, too”.

Well, shit. :p
Somehow that all happened in a few minutes while we were ordering.  And although I felt sure about these details when I thought I had remembered this stuff, now I wasn’t sure I had the names right or matched the names to the right faces correctly.  I was losing confidence suddenly so I had to check it out when I got home.

I HAD got it exactly right though, the names and the faces.  Except Jeff Amett’s name is actually Jeff Ament.  But it sounds exactly the same and I probably would have made the same mistake if I’d heard it spoken aloud.

Then I thought that if I had been exposed to this information in the past, isn’t it just remembering?  Or triggering a memory?

I don’t know.  I forget common nouns sometimes.  I forget my own phone number when I’m under pressure.

Also, I’ve definitely noticed fluctuations in my memory in the past, where there have been times when I just seem to be brilliant because I’ve been able to pull information in *really* fast so I become really quick-witted and creative.  It has everything to do with the way I’m processing information and how quick and/or far-reaching my memory feels.  Other times even though I know I’m just as smart it takes a lot longer to remember things or to explain things to other people.

So I really had to process all this and ask, “What is memory?”  It took me a few hours to sort through this.

I already sort of understood that you can draw information in from the “thought cloud”, or Acashic records, or whatever you want to call it.  And I’ve heard that there are actual neurons in our hearts and guts so it’s probably literally true that our bodies store memories, thoughts, experiences, etc.  What Kurt told me is that memory is the “emotional recognition of the truth”.

I’m like, “Really??”

He’s like, “Well, why do you think you’ve never been able to learn anything that you doesn’t make sense to you, or that you don’t believe, or you think is bullshit?  Your system won’t process it, it thinks it’s garbage”.

Hmm.  That’s true.  Plus it makes sense then how I “remembered” that the Degrassi guy was dead — I recognized it emotionally because it was true.  That feeling is memory.  Or maybe it accompanies memory.

Then I was shown myself meeting a prospective business partner for the first time, closing up, and going, “That guy’s a tool”.  That’s the emotional recognition of bullshit.

So then I was thinking, “Well, but I can memorize things.  Like if I have to.  But it doesn’t stick, so what happens?”

And I’m kind of shown that I can draw things in from this thought cloud and carry them in my own energetic field for quick access.  Like if I needed them for a test or something.  But if it doesn’t resonate then it doesn’t stay attached to me.  It’s not something I plan to use.  Short term memory is more an act of will then a function of emotion.

So, that was interesting.

Also I clued in a bit later on that maybe Kurt had come to the grocery store and was all, “Look!  Canned sausages!!”


because I just don’t know why I would have noticed them otherwise.  Then you noticed them too.  That’s a vintage can of Prairie Boy Sausages.  So that “Hey you should decorate with this!” vibe may not have been coming from me.


maple leaf vienna sausage

[Edit:  Kate found me absentmindedly looking at a display of little cans of sausages and meats.  She just looked at me and said, “…Really?”  (I don’t actually eat red meat.)  I was like, “…Huh?  No, I don’t want to eat this.  It’s just interesting”.  She’s like, “That’s what I mean.  You have this look like you want to take them home, not eat them, line them up on your art shelf, and look at them”.  (I don’t know what that look looks like.  But her concern is well grounded since I did make a lot of meat-related art projects last year.)]

Kate responded:

It’s funny about the canned meat, because Kurt popped into my head in that moment too and I didn’t acknowledge it out loud.

[Edit:  Kate said she’d randomly started thinking about writing on walls.  I didn’t clarify if she was thinking about writing on walls herself or not.  (“No writing on walls unless it is to measure height of Frances!!”)

It’s a good thing you sent the pics to me because I have no idea who pearl jam is / was and I wouldn’t have appreciated how cool and significant this exchange was if you’d told me about it at the time.  It would’ve been totally anticlimactic for you.  All of that is new information to me.

The thing about memory: when I’m talking with a spirit person (as opposed to an animal or other consciousness) very often they’ll trigger my own memories to expand on or make their point clear.  Sometimes it’s obvious when they trigger these memories intentionally, because I’ll hear, “It’s like when you … (shows the memory).”

But other times the energy of their message is what triggers a memory, because it’s like my brain / experience is responding to their communication by mirroring the closest experience I have available from my own life.  This is where building a language system of symbols comes in handy.  I think that’s why John Edward or Teresa Caputo will say something like, “I see a rose which is my symbol for love, but I see thorns which is the symbol for the person having difficulty expressing love in life.”  They learn to use associated memories and symbols as a means to build the telepathic language.

I also think this is why I often get names *close* but not exactly.  Like Judy becomes Julie.   The first letter of the name is almost always correct, and I think this is why psychics like Sylvia Browne would only stick with initials of names and wouldn’t even try to get the whole name at all.

I’d count a lot more “hits” if I only ever offered the first initial of a person instead of trying to get the whole name.  That is only right maybe half the time, but if I didn’t even try, we’d never get those amazing moments when the correct name comes right out of the air.  I love those moments.   I think that in order for me to get a name correctly, two things need to happen: 1. I’ve heard the name before so there’s a memory to trigger / reinforce the message and 2. Each individual spirit brings their own power and expertise to communication.  Some are clearer than others, or some sessions are easier / full of verifiable information.

I get what you mean about “remembering” information that is true, but you hadn’t actually heard.  This happened to me all the time in grade school when they’d try to teach us things like “animals don’t use tools”.  I knew they did.  At the time, I don’t think I’d actually witnessed an animal using a tool, but I was *certain* they did.   That same lesson taught that animals didn’t recognize themselves in a mirror.  Some of them don’t, but I knew some of them definitely did.  It just depended upon how much an individual depended upon their eyes, and their ability to process the information in a reflection.  Remember that children have to be taught that the thing in a mirror is them.

I think of memory as another “sense” ie another way to interpret your reality.

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