Analysis Of Memory Erasing Pills Philosophy Essay
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Published: Mon, 5 Dec 2016
In many occasions people tend to experience traumatizing events that leave bad memories in their minds for a long period of time. These bad memories are very problematic to many people and it makes such victims seek all ways of making sure that they forget such memories. Examples of bad experiences that could lead to bad memories include accidents like the car accidents or plane crashes, bomb blasts, rape, domestic violence among many others. Some people experience psychological disorders as a result of these bad memories. Post traumatic stress disorder is a major psychological problem that most of the victims who have been exposed to bad memories in the past undergo in their lives. To deal with such kind of memories has become a big problem to so many victims but thanks to the scientist whose research has yielded positive results in coming up with a drug whose function is to erase bad memories.
This astonishing form of treatment in a way could assist victims who have hurtful past memories but there are questions that have not been answered regarding the drug. In an ethical perspective, the pill seems to pull down the degree of morals because people will find it hard to learn from their past mistakes if at all the problem was caused by a personal mistake. In the film “Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind” for instance, a couple is trying to erase the memories about each other when their relationship turns sour. However, in the process of forgetting about each other, they begin to discover what they should have done before they separated. Infact experts from UK have found out that the pill has raised disturbing questions of ethical nature on what makes us human (Grau 100). The same experts have issued a caution that the pill could have damaging psychological consequences making those who use the drug fail to learn from their past mistakes.
Despite being rewarding in some circumstances, it is important that we reflect on the after effects of the pills on individuals, society and also our sense of humanity before eradicating any form of bad memories that we have experienced in our lives. There is a claim by researchers from Holland that they have used drugs (beta-blockers) that are used in treating patients with heart disease to erase bad memories. The Dutch researchers came up with a fearful memory in a number of participants by connecting a mild electric shock with pictures of spiders and the result was that those who were provided with the pill (beta-blocker) before memory reactivation after a period of twenty four hours were less disturbed when they saw the spider images compared to the ones who were not given the medication (Watternberg 76). Previous research on animals also indicated that beta-blockers had some effects on how the brain makes and remakes bad memories. The drug interferes with the stressful memory and stops the brain from renewing it.
Theoretically, the pill could remove bad memories from someone’s mind as well as assists the victim overcome phobias, eating disorders, sexual hung ups and obsessions. Traditionally, therapists tried to teach some individuals with such disorders tactics to come up with new associations and stop bad memories but the problem is that memories remained and people frequently relapsed (Watternberg 79).
It may take several years before physicians prescribe drugs for patients with post traumatic stress disorder. Scientists suggest that extra tests are needed so that the pill’s memory erasing properties are confirmed. Secondly, the same scientists suggest that a strategy needs to be in place so that the effects of the pills are known.
According to the British experts, the drug raises some hard questions. It is obviously up to the individual whether or not he wishes to risk the possible outcomes including mental discontinuity of erasing bad memories. An interesting feature is that there is a possibility of victims, say for rape to deciding to erase bad memories with their ability of providing evidence against their assailants (Ebert 131).
In the same way, witnesses to crimes and criminals may, under the excuse of erasing bad memories render themselves unable to provide adequate evidence. Erasing of positive memories is just but another disadvantage that victims will have to experience when using such pills. Vital information could be lost in the name of erasing bad memories and perhaps criminals could use the pill to wipe away any form of evidence that is likely to assist in investigation procedures.
On the other hand if scientists perfect the technology of erasing bad memories, there will be a huge potential fir the post traumatic stress victims. It could also lead to avoidance of addictive urges. Regardless of many moral or ethical considerations the ultimate choice will be upon the individual. People should be allowed to use these memory erasing pills only if the person using the drugs do not cause any harm to other parties or people near him. Some memory modification pills may alter what an individual believes to be true about himself. However, the same problems are not so worrying on the basis that little bit of misremembered false information like believing in having a good holiday so as to relax do not affect anyone else (Sikov 50).
Some people think that memory erasing pills do not work because memory itself is a very complicated phenomenon, with various parts of the brain associated with the storage of a single memory. Because memory is a network of neurons, admitting that removing just one negative memory might damage a vital memory unintentionally. Also, much of our understanding about our world and ourselves comes through prediction on our memories and erasing them could quickly change our personal narratives.
Bad memories assist us in remembering horrors and gives us the energy to face them with some form of tactic incase we encounter them in future. This is morally sound and it serves as a lesson to victims and those who have not yet experienced such situations. It is better to have a terrible burden on our conscience because it helps in restraining our future conduct. It is seems easy to pop a pill and go on in a guilty way hoping, skipping and jumping.
Donna Lamar contributing through email thinks that it is impossible to erase bad memories using the memory erasing pill because according to the recent brain research shows that when someone is traumatized especially repeated exposure to trauma, permanent neuron paths are literally created. After a long period of research with people who overcame trauma (Transcenders), she found out that the same victims healed from trauma and gained a lot of wisdom. The wisdom that they got helped them for the rest of their lives and they barely encountered traumatic situations. This was so because of the experience they got from the past events (Sikov 36)
Eye-movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a form of therapeutic treatment that most of the victims believe to work instead of using pills to erase a bad memory. EMDR lessens the traumatic effects of the past memories regarding bad encounters. In this case there is no pill involved but rather side to side or bilateral stimulation like tapping back and forth between the two sides of the body. Walking for instance is a bilateral process. It may sound hockey but a few clinicians have used them for quite a good number of years. EMDR can eliminate or lessen cases of live-interrupting memories. Some students who have studied neurons think that it is absolutely wrong to influence or tamper with the brain especially when one considers how complex it is (Thomas 45).
Some victims of child sexual abuse consider the pill as of help. Susie Adams who was defiled by her father when she was seventeen years old thinks that the pill will assist her forget such past sad experiences. She goes ahead and says that it hard for her to forget the scenes she experienced because nowadays the message about child abuse it currently every where especially in the media. She says that she wants the pill to enable her forget about such horrible moments. She says that the abuse was so bad to an extent that one of his brothers committed suicide while the sister was heavily diagnosed with a Fibromyalgia and depression. The doctor also diagnosed her with the same condition as that of her sister. One of his brothers is also highly manic. Adams says that the condition has affected every part of her life starting right from her children, husband and the rest of immediate family members. She points out that no form of therapy or prayer has managed to take away her painful memories (Sewell 55).
If people were trained like children it could have been easy to implement the process in our conscious minds. This could be achieved by focusing on good things and avoiding the thoughts related to anything bad. The point here is that there are more lessons to learn from bad memories than good things. Such situations expose us on how to become a better person in future. Also, by focusing on the good and sometimes leaving bad things behind, we can easily improve the number of times we take part in bad memories. It is not a must that it should be in pill form because it becomes a common behavior. Pills might make people to continuously rely on them without caring about the emotions that people have under ordinary circumstances. In normal conditions, people tend to be so emotional and passionate but when one uses the pill to control his feelings, then they are likely to loose that very feeling that we all need to have.
By not having any form of emotion, people are not able to handle themselves in a desired way. Like in the case of characters in the film “eternal sunshine of a spotless mind” the victims want to erase the memories simply because they were hurt on a romantic perspective. This therefore means that the victims will be having no emotions because they will have been erased. This does not help the victims in anyway because their most sensitive part of the mind in terms of emotions had been highly tampered with. The experiences might have been so painful for the victims but there was so many ways to overcome such situations than just taking in a pill whose effects could not prevent the trauma from occurring again in future (Allende 89).
The victim should have considered a number of factors before plunging into a decision that was likely to make her regret in future. Regrets are likely to affect the same person who used the pill. This comes in when that individual finds out that he is vulnerable to the conditions that made him take the pill and that he must avoid such situations at all cost. If it becomes unfortunate that the drug becomes so expensive, then it might lead to financial problems to such individuals. The financial crisis comes in because people will not stop the events that cause bad memories and it will be like a case of treating the symptoms rather than the disease itself. The only way this problem can be done away with is to embrace ways that are social oriented like the use of EMDR which have been proved to work (Lewman 79).
Also such pills can make those who are using them be senseless and see life in another dimension. Such individuals may associate positive things with negative ones. This will automatically give a bad reflection of things that need to be embraced by such people. It is very important for people to learn how to overcome bad memories without using any pill or drug because it will make them sensible and also human.
By trying to erase bad memories, Clementine swallowed the pill to forget about issues that made her relationship with his fiancé failed. This was morally wronged because she approached the issue in one perspective and forgotten that the process of erasing bad memories could cost her more harm than good. Some of the losses that she was likely to experience include loss of any vital information that she had. If only the pill could select the type of information to delete in the mind then it could have been better and good. The problem is that the pill wipes away all the information and leaves the brain blank (Allende 88).
If Clementine had any substantial evidence to sue her boy friend in the court of law because of the situations she was experiencing, then it was unfortunate for her because there will be no other evidence to prove wrong her lover in the court of law. The loss that Clementine encounters will be more than the gain that she gets from the memory erasure. I think it was not a wise think for Clementine to erase her memories because there is no guarantee that she will avoid in future such conditions. If the pill could prevent the occurrence of bad moments in life, then the advantages could automatically outweigh the disadvantages. The sad news is that the pill will only enable an individual to forget past memories which were bad and do not stop future bad moments that could result in bad memories from happening (Lewman 67).
In my perspective I think memory erasing pill does not work unless major strategies are undertaken by researchers to make sure that the pill is highly efficient and also effective. What I mean by being highly efficient and effective is that it should be able to select those bad memories and leave good memories and also prevent someone from being exposed to occasions or situations that could bring about bad memories. The reason why natural methods of healing are best is because the issue of morals is preserved and people who have experienced such cases are left as victims who have learned through experience. As the saying goes “experience is the best teacher” it is very important to avoid taking the pill as a method of forgetting bad memories. EMDR for instance is the best therapy that victims of such conditions need to undergo instead of taking dangerous drugs that are likely to cause harm to the brain or the mental state of an individual. It is useless if someone erases bad memories of the past and then all of a sudden same bad memories come back again because there was no preventive mechanism to guard the person against such bad instances.
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