Let's do another Thought Experiment. I am skipping around in the book to find interesting ones. So this is only the second that I've done. If you have any that you'd like to share, please do so! Just email me.
If you could spend one year in perfect happiness but afterward would remember nothing of the experience, would you do so? If not, why not?
Which is more important, actual experiences or the memories that remain after those experiences are over?
So here's my first answer. I would say no, I wouldn't want to be blissfully happy for a year if I couldn't remember afterward. Because then I will have lost a year of my life.
But, if while I was blissfully happy other people would be around me and remember that time, then that's different. Because then I'm sure the goodness that would come of me being so happy would manifest in their lives in a myriad of ways and that would be totally worth it. Maybe I'd be so happy I'd invent something wonderful or come up with a world changing idea! If that were the case, then yes, I'd definitely do it!
So I guess it would just mean my life is basically a year shorter. But if there were positive benefits for others or the world in general then most definitely, yes! :)
I think actual experiences are important, but how you remember them is too. Memories are extremely malleable and changeable, so after things happen, the memory becomes all that is left. Except of course, the results of the actual experiences are also a huge factor, which is what I was saying, it's the only thing that would make it worth my while.
What about you? Would you do it? Why or why not?
From The Book of Questions by Gregory Stock, Ph.D.