Here comes a radical idea about the “psychic memory”:
In an invented dialogue between Socrates and his student Meno Greek philosopher Plato suggests that the soul is immortal, and repeatedly incarnated; knowledge is actually in the soul from eternity, but each time the soul is incaranated its knowledge is forgotten in the shock of birth. What one perceives to be learning, then, is actually the recovery of what one has forgotten.
There is a lot more about “Anamnesis”, which was a complex concept with tradition and different point of views in ancient times. In neoplatonism the idea of psychic memory was used to demonstrate the celestial and immaterial origins of the soul, and to explain how memories of the world-soul could be recalled by eyeryday human beings. As such, psychic recollection was intrinsically connected to the Platonic conception of the soul itself. Since the contents of individual “material” or physical memories were trivial, only the universal recollection of Forms, or divine objects, drew one closer to the immortal sense of being.
“Anamnesis” is the closest that human minds can come to experiencing the freedom of the soul prior to its being encumbered by matter. The process of incarnation is described in Neoplatonism as a shock that causes the soul to forget its experiences and often its divine origins as well (Source: Wikipedia).
That’s a real wild one, isn’t it?
The concept employs a radical idea of the “Otherworld” and leaves us in the middle of The Forest Dark, since it would mean we would have not the slightest idea what’s really going on.
Of course, this concept is pretty much a question of belief. However it crossed my mind when sometime a movie, a story, a landscape or even some events feel strangely familiar. Is there a hidden meaning behind our experiences and haven’t we sometimes a feeling like “I’am remember this thing” or ” I have seen this before”?
As an example you find the idea of incarnation in box-office success “Avatar” with main character Jake Sully’s mind becoming transferred into a body of the natives of Pandora, the Na’vi. The obvious distinction is that Sully never looses his memory, however the whole premise appeared to have reached viewers on a deep level of consciousness. Also the “Matrix” movie had a deep impact on viewers. In the “Matrix” Keanu Reeves’ ordinary world isn’t much more as merely a facade.
You might object that these are very simplifying and literal examples. Agreed, but there is sometimes much more in the movies as meets the eye. Star Wars reached mythical qualities.
Back to ordinary reality it is important to understand another principle connected with the ancient concept: an object might represent more as just the representation of itself. Landscapes could represent some more, maybe kind of an idea or something like a principle. Sometimes we get that feeling for example if we look at an extraordinary mountain, that this is not just a mass of stones but there is more about it even we can’t lay our finger on it what exactly it is.
Sometimes we recognize a place we have never been before. Sometimes in a certain state of mind images are crossing the mind, where we do not know where they come from and sometimes a picture on a bookcase we come across coincidentially can have a very strong effect. It may strike us like a memory but it isn’t anything we have seen before. Legendary psychologist C.G. Jung had a patient who dreamed of a face he never saw before. The same face appeared on a drawing from the 17th century. The patient had never seen that drawing. There are strange similarities in people’s faces from different times sometimes.
When writing THE FOREST DARK script sometimes images played an important part in development. Maybe the images are not just part of some imagination but represent a real existing place somewhere.