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Are we born with past memories and some knowledge about the world around us or is it all learned after birth?

do we possess some knowledge about the world around us innately or is it all learned through experience? instinctual behaviour shown by most of the animals gives evidence about their past knowledge. also some concepts like collective unconscious by Carl Jung try to explain innate knowledge. what is your viewpoint? also are there any concrete researches throwing light on this topic?


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    Mar 14 2012: Hi Girish,
    There is quite a bit of research "throwing light on this topic". Here is an interesting TED talk addressing this issue.

    The child in the womb is so connected with the mother and the mother's environment, I cannot help but believe that the child is influenced way before birth. As I recall, Annie Murphy suggests that the child is already preparing, before birth, to enter the circumstances s/he will encounter after birth. I believe in the "collective unconscious" as Carl Jung called it. I believe there is an abundance of information available to us when/if we are open to the possibilities. I also believe in reincarnation, and depending on how aware we are of past lives, it may provide even more information.
    • Mar 15 2012: Thanks Colleen.
      the link was helpful. although it focussed more on pregnancy, it provided good info. I came to know about your life experiences through some of your other posts. That was inspiring. I'll be interested in knowing, if you had any insightful experiences about the unconscious knowledge within yourself, during your recovery from brain damage.
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        Mar 18 2012: Hi Girish,
        The life experience, for me, is an exploration, so yes, I've had many experiences from which I have learned:>)

        The near death incident was one of the biggest learning experiences, and although there was brain damage, it seemed to have opened many channels of the brain/mind and created more interconnections.

        While clinically unconscious in ICU, connected to life support systems, I was aware of a much bigger picture than I knew on a human level. I was aware of everything that was happening around me, aware of people's thoughts and feelings, and also aware of a much larger scene beyond the obvious.

        I feel that our brain is very much like a computer in that there are different programs operating at different times, or at the same time, allowing us to access different information. When I was unconscious, the program that allows me to speak and connect on a human level was shut down. Other programs were still running even though the body was close to death clinically.

        I had a review of my lives, and that was my first awareness that I may have had other lives. Reincarnation was not part of my belief system prior to the incident. The information I was aware of seemed to connect many things for me. For example, in this life, I have been very interested in body/mind healing, and that seems to be a thread that runs through many past lives. I had the opportunity to put information into practice with the head/brain injury. First, I was not expected to live, then I was told that I would never function "normally" again because of the damage to the brain.
        Although there are some symtoms that persist at times, I function at an emotionally, and physically high level most of the time. I knew that I would function at some level beyond the prognosis...I had that information when I regained consciousness. Some might say it was wishful thinking? Some may say I was not being realistic? I knew:>)

        We all have the ability to get more information when we open more channels.
        • Mar 18 2012: you surely had a great experience. I've seen that people who had near death experiences understand life in a different manner. i guess your high emotional state may be causing due to hyperactive limbic system. the other part of the brain which controls the limbic system activities may be damaged to certain extent. anyways great to see you recovering. thanks for sharing your experience. LIVE STRONG:-)
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          Mar 19 2012: Colleen,
          Last week I saw a report about a new medical initiative here that was set up to help people with emotional problems after being nursed in a ICU.
          Most people change and are confused because of their experiences that they can't explain to themselves or family.
          Also family are involved because they are confused either if confronted with a changed personality. It seems to be a problem for many. To deal with this after effect some support can help to be informed and adapt to the new situation.

          Reincarnation to me isn't the right word. As time isn't in fact real we live all lives now even though they appear to be centuries apart. We even can connect with future life's that are in progress. We connect telepathic through time as we connect through space. Any distance belongs to matter that to our soul doesn't matter.
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        Mar 18 2012: LOL!!!
        So Girish, you think my "high emotional state may be causing due to hyperactive limbic system" OK....whatever!!!

        No, it is not the part of the brain which controls the limbic system activities that is most damaged.
        I did some pretty extensive research based on medical model tests that were administered. It seems rather odd that you would try to diagnose...but....whatever!!!

        My guess is that the information I presented does not fit into your belief system, so you are trying to explain it with the information you have at this time....that's ok:>)

        I DO "live strong" Girish....and clear:>)
        • Mar 19 2012: Yes... I know I have very limited knowledge regarding brain activities. I wish I had taken the Biology lessons seriously in school. :) I always found it difficult to remember all those terms... Anyways I hope I'll learn all these things better in future...
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        Mar 19 2012: Girish,
        If you have "limited knowledge regarding brain activities", it is not appropriate to try to diagnose anyone, especially on a public forum. I am glad to give you information which you asked for, and I am less willing to share if I believe you are going to mis-represent any information I give you. You may learn more by listening to what people are telling you, rather than speculating.
        • Mar 20 2012: Sorry... but I wasnt trying to diagnose as such, I just made a random guess to apply my available knowledge. I was sure that you would correct me as you must be knowing the reasons for high emotional states. I just wanted to continue the topic further to gather some more info. Also If I dont try to apply my available knowledge, how will I come to know about my ignorance. I like to learn from my own mistakes. :)
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        Mar 19 2012: Yes Frans, I'm aware of all kinds of support for people coming out of ICU, and I gratefully accepted that support after my head/brain injury 22 years ago. I also had, and continue to have a GREAT, very extensive support system with family and friends.

        To the best of my knowledge, I have not had a personality change. My reference to symtoms above,(Although there are some symtoms that persist at times), are in regards to an oversensitivity to light and sound at times...balance issues, headachs, dizzyness at times. Thanks for your concern.

        It's ok if you don't think reincarnation is the "right word". I agree that time is a human construct, and does not exist in the spirit/energy form.
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        Mar 20 2012: Girish,
        You actually, very effectively demonstrated how we (humans) prevent ourselves from getting more information. You applied your "available knowledge". The knowledge you have at this time is probably accurate, and I've found, with my life exploration, that there is usually MORE knowledge. It's common for people to get "stuck" with the knowledge s/he has at any given time, and therefor, is not open to knew or different information.

        There are a multitude of "channels" by which we can gather information, and many of them have been mentioned on this thread...universal knowledge, collective consciousness, information passed on with DNA/evolution, instinct, intuition. If we get "stuck" with one thought, idea, opinion or belief, then we are using only part of our "recieving" system. Like a computer for example. If we always run the same program, we get and use the same information. When we explore more programs, open the "search engine" to more possibilities, we get more information.

        You ask in your introduction, do we get information "through experience", "Instinctual behaviour", "collective unconscious"?. In my perception, all of the methods you have mentioned, and more. Some folks use ONLY one or two methods of collecting information, thereby limiting themselves. The human body/mind is evolving all the time, and through science, we are recognizing more about how it works.

        For example, 22 years ago, when I sustained the brain damage, medical professionals believed that because certain parts of the brain were damaged, I would lose certain functions. They now know that different parts of the brain reprogram, and create new pathways/connections for information.
        Somehow, I knew that 22 years ago. Although they were telling me I would not function, I knew that I would. In the back of my mind (such as it was) I was thinking..."I learned these functions before, and I will learn them again at a level higher than anticipated"....and I did:>)
        • Mar 21 2012: agreed... very well said. We often get stuck to single way of obtaining knowledge as this way has worked for many times in the past. We need to be more open at times. Also It's great to know how you have overcome the damage to relearn different functions. I am evidencing similar things in case of my father, who is recovering from a mild paralysis attack. Although In his case doctors are hopeful of recovery as the attack was mild enough and the damage wasnt big. He had to work hard and sometimes it was a painful experience for him to relearn the functions which he used to perform normally before. Thanks for sharing your experience.
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        Mar 21 2012: Hi Girish,
        I wouldn't say that I have "overcome the damage". The damage is there, and will be for the rest of my life. I accepted that, and moved on. It's simply my perception of how I live my life. I do not "overcome" anything. I accept and move on to learn something new.

        I only mention this because I think/feel it is an important part of getting new information. When we are trying to "overcome" something, there may be a struggle to "fix" it, or make it go away, or resistance to the reality. When we accept our circumstances, at any given moment with the intent to be open to new and different information, sometimes the task is not so painful. After the injury, I accepted the fact that I was not functioning as I was previously, and I faced the challenge with acceptance, which allowed me to move faster through the process of gaining new information.

        It's important to be patient with ourselves throughout the process, understand and accept that we are in a different place physically and emotionally, which may be uncomfortable at times. I truly believe that acceptance is a big part of moving forward to create those new connections. Bodily systems are meant to flow, and when we resist or struggle, it actually blocks the systems from working as they "know" how to work.

        I'm sending loving, healing energy to you and your father....best to you both Girish:>)
        • Mar 22 2012: Thank you very very much... I wish you the same. Learned a lot from your experience...

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