I would like to begin by saying I am not not a neuroscientist. This being said, everything thing I have read about memory talks about how fragile it is.
Did you know that every time you recall a memory, it becomes less accurate? It is like making a copy of a copy in an analog format. To preserve the integrity of a memory, it is probably best to not recall it. I would give a source for this concept, but due to my fragile memory (seriously), I cannot recall where I learned it.
Also, we know that the brain takes a lot of shortcuts when processing sensory data. For example, only foveal vision is in focus and this only accounts for about 2% of the visual field. However, we are not commonly aware of how much of our visual field is out of focus, because the brain creates the illusion of things being in focus.
If you use your peripheral vision to look at an object and it will be out-of-focus. For a more involved test: foveal/peripheral vision angle test This means that what is stored in memory is not accurate. A common demonstration of this inaccuracy is the eyewitness testimony accuracy experiment part 1 and part 2
So how do we account for all of the detail recalled in a hypnotic trance? Imagination. This is how people can “recall” past lives. In trance, our imaginations will add any details needed to complete an image, even creating events that never happened. This is why recovered memories have a statute of limitations in court.
Hypnosis is not reliable for establishing facts. It is best used as a psychotherapeutic tool for changing limiting beliefs.
Elizabeth Loftis’ TED Talk
©2017 Stephen L. Martin