Memory - Good or Bad?

Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Matajis,
Please accept my humble pranams. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva.

Most of us in general forget what had happened few days ago in life. But it sounds interesting to note people who are blessed with too much memory power. I came across an interesting post about a person who has the ability to remember past details of her current life in vivid detail. Whenever she hears a date, memories from that date in previous years flood her mind like a running movie.The phenomenon, she laments, is "nonstop, uncontrollable and totally exhausting." "Most have called it a gift, but I call it a burden," she wrote. "I run my entire life through my head every day and it drives me crazy!!!" I was initially thinking that people who have good memory power are very lucky. But after reading the article realized that too much memory is also not good.

People ask the question "Why can we not remember our past life?" Why Krishna does not give us the memory of our past? It is a burden that He does not want us to shoulder. Just recollecting incidents in this life is so painful for her. Can we just imagine how confusing it would have been, if at all we are blessed with memories of our past lives as well?

In Bhagavad Gita 15.15 Lord Krishna very nicely says,

saravasya caaham hrdi sannivishto
mattah smrtir jnaanam apohanam ca
vedais ca sarvair aham eva vedyo
vedaanta krd veda vid eva caaham

I am seated in everyone's heart, and from Me come remembrance, knowledge and forgetfulness. By all the Vedas I am to be known. Indeed, I am the compiler of vedaanta, and I am the knower of the Vedas.

In the above instance, since memories about mundane life were flooding her mind, the person was finding it totally exhausting and crazy. On the other hand, devotees of Lord yearn to simply remember about the Lord, His form, glories and pastimes. Such memories of the Lord are always enlivening and refreshing to our mind and soul. May we pray to the magnanimous Lord to bless us with ability to always remember Him and to make us forget all thoughts which are detrimental to our progress in devotional service.


Thank you very much,
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev,
Prasanna Rao