What Are Memories For?
Memories are rapid transit connections to uniquely significant moments in your life.
They are neither ‘good’ nor ‘bad’ – but each hold a powerful clue to the quality of your
life right now.
Memories open doors to the very big ‘who am I?’ question. Memories, like dreams, point
us toward inner values, personal wounds yet unhealed, recollected relationships. They
offer the juice of conscious development and intentional growth. But you have to know
how to work with them.
Memories, whether of fashion, cars, intense experiences or global events, drive us into
present awareness in a way that mere thinking cannot. They offer images, and images
are the stuff of imagination and imagination is the basic material of consciousness.
Memories awaken us to a dimension of living – our living – that perhaps has lain dormant
for decades. They call us to ‘listen up!’
As an example of this profound possibility I recently surfed “Back in the Day” looking at
pictures of cars – collector’s stuff. And I started thinking about my older brother Wes and
his ’41 bright yellow Plymouth convertible. I was in the 6th grade, he was my hero.
But not only my hero, he was a role model of masculinity for me. He was strong, brave,
loving and, well, sort of ‘out there.’ Reflecting on his strong presence for me at that time
got me thinking how often I’ve used his memory to help me through a difficult situation
when I felt lost or fearful. He of course wouldn’t know this.
I called him late one afternoon and told him how much I loved him and what he meant
to me. That call changed us both for we are now ‘mature’ men and aging itself offers
The connection, new, fresh and vital moved us both toward a kind of healthy
dependence that we didn’t know we needed.
Thanks Greg for taking me back to the present.
Stephen W. Frueh PhD
‘Leading from the inside out’