A New Perspective: Is Our Reality What We Think It Is?

A New Perspective: Is Our Reality What We Think It Is?

A theory called the Mandela Effect brings a new perspective to the way we humans perceive our current reality.
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Have you ever experienced a situation where the memories that you’ve “always had” turned out to be inaccurate according to everyone else around you? Would you spell “Berenstain Bears” or “Berenstein Bears”? These questions come to us through a phenomenon that is called confabulation – also known as the Mandela Effect. Confabulation is said to be a “memory disturbance” that happens through the misinterpretation of one’s memories. Now, I know what you might be thinking; “How can I misinterpret my own memories?” Interestingly enough, the Mandela Effect is more prominent in our everyday lives than meets the eye.

Many of us spent our childhood reading the “Berenstain Bears.” But, as we look back on it now, there seems to be a disconnect between reality and what people actually remember. Everyone seems to remember their name spelled as “Berenstein Bears” with “-ein” instead of “-ain.” I never thought much about this, personally, since I had always thought that the name ended in “-ein” but it turns out that it was never spelled that way. I am not the only person to think that, either. In fact, there is a lot of buzz on the internet about this because lots of people seem to remember it the same way.

Coincidentally, the “Berenstain Bears” is not the only major confabulated memory that is widely questioned. Nelson Mandela, whom this theory is coined after, is also one. Nelson Mandela is a former President of South Africa, and he passed away in December of 2013. However, there is much controversy over people recounting that they remember him dying in the 1980s in prison. How could such an iconic member of society be misinterpreted to have died 30 years before he actually did? Now, it is possible that people are just ignorant and did not pay much attention, but this is a large sum of people who are saying the same thing – is it coincidence, or is there something more? That’s for you to decide.

There are two prevailing “theories” that try to explain the Mandela Effect. First, there is the theory that humans are “sliding” between different parallel universes. Each universe we slide between is only slightly different, and situations like Mandela or the Bears are the small differentiations between each reality. If you believe in the multiverse theory then this might be incredibly believable for you. The multiverse theory says that there are an infinite amount of possible universes and they make up every single possibility of space, matter, energy, and time. Within the multiverse theory, each universe for every different possibility is called a parallel universe, which is why the Mandela Effect and the Multiverse Theory might be connected.

The second theory behind the Mandela Effect is that humans are in a holodeck that is experiencing “glitches.” Holodecks are from the “Star Trek” universe, and they are virtual reality facilities that can put the user into any place or situation that are familiar to them. This theory is a bit more far-fetched than the “sliding” theory, but it is still a common way that people explain the Mandela Effect. This theory has two parts to it as well, saying that we have either been to different holodecks and are remembering the differences from those realities, or we are currently in one right now and it has some glitches that we are finding out. These concepts are some of the most popular thoughts on the Mandela Effect, but there are countless ideologies on how it can be explained.

The leading psychological thought on the Mandela Effect is that memories are not always pure, and sometimes your brain would rather build things out of nothing than recreate what exactly happened. Your memories are created and affected by your biases, creativity, environment, etc. There are too many factors that could distort how your brain is interpreting these things, and it’s highly unlikely that there will ever be a concrete explanation for this. However, I think it is fun to consider that reality might have another aspect that is more than meets the eye. Are there more dimensions? Are we in a holodeck? Think about this and consider situations in your own life where this might have taken place. Maybe you’ll notice that you, too, have experience the Mandela Effect – or you’ll come to your own conclusion and decide that you don’t believe these things are true.

Cover Image Credit: Jeremy Nealis

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10 Things I Threw Out AFTER Freshman Year Of College

Guess half the stuff on your packing list doesn't really matter
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I spent the entire summer before my freshman year of college so WORRIED.

I also spent most of my money that summer on miscellaneous dorm stuff. I packed the car when the time finally came to move in, and spent the drive up excited and confused about what the heck was actually going on.

Freshman year came and went, and as I get ready to go back to school in just a few short weeks (!!), I'm starting to realize there's just a whole bunch of crap I just don't need.

After freshman year, I threw out:

1. Half my wardrobe.

I don't really know what I was thinking of owning 13 sweaters and 25 T-shirts in the first place. I wear the same five T-shirts until I magically find a new one that I probably got for free, and I put on jeans maybe four times. One pair is enough.

2. Half my makeup.

Following in the theme of #1, if I put on makeup, it's the same eyeliner-mascara combination as always. Sometimes I spice it up and add lipstick or eyeshadow.

3. My vacuum.

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One, I basically never did it. Two, if I REALLY needed to vacuum, dorms rent out cleaning supplies.

4. Most of my photos from high school.

I didn't throw them ALL away, but most of them won't be making a return to college. Things change, people change, your friends change. And that's okay.

5. Excess school supplies.

Binders are heavy and I am lazy. I surprisingly didn't lose that many pens, so I don't need the fifty pack anymore. I could probably do without the crayons.

6. Cups/Plates/Bowls/Silverware.

Again, I am lazy. I cannot be bothered to wash dishes that often. I'll stick to water bottles and maybe one coffee cup. Paper plates/bowls can always be bought, and plastic silverware can always be stolen from different places on campus.

7. Books.

I love to read, but I really don't understand why I thought I'd have the time to actually do it. I think I read one book all year, and that's just a maybe.

8. A sewing kit.

I don't even know how to sew.

9. Excessive decorations.

It's nice to make your space feel a little more cozy, but not every inch of the wall needs to be covered.

10. Throw pillows.

At night, these cute little pillows just got tossed to the floor, and they'd sit there for days if I didn't make my bed.

Cover Image Credit: Tumblr

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What It's Like Being An Introverted Leader

Different people lead differently.

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When you think of the qualities a leader or someone in a leadership position should have, being out-going is often mentioned. However, I don't think that always has to be the case. I've been a part of many different leadership opportunities and programs, yet I'm still the same socially awkward hermit I've always been. Being out-going and extroverted doesn't qualify someone to be a good leader, just like being shy and introverted makes you a bad one, it's about your skills.

When I went to a leadership program at a summer camp, I often heard that I didn't talk very much or I was too quiet and shy for a summer camp entertaining kids, I should have been more talkative. I'd also get a few counselors coming up to be that when they were in the same program I was in, they were also the same things I was and not to worry about it. Even now, I'm still quite and relatively shy person, but that doesn't discredit my ability to be a good leader, or anyone else's.

In my high school ASB (Associated Student Body) class, we took a fun personality test to find out what kind of leaders we were; someone who likes to be in charge, be in the spotlight, more organized, or stay in the background. I got someone who likes to be in the spotlight, which was a surprise to me too, but thinking about it, it makes sense. I'm not overly out-going, but given the right motivation, I don't mind going up to people and striking up a conversation.

I can also say that at some point I have possessed all four of these personalities or traits over the course of my different leadership roles. The reason I'm even bringing this personality test up is that it definitely shows that there are different types of leaders out there, and not all of them have to be extraverted. I tried to find the one I took but couldn't find the exact one, but if you're interested there are a ton of different ones out there.

Over time, I've learned and worked on many valuable skills, like conflict resolution, time management, actually listening to what others have to say, and more. I keep myself up to date with my surroundings and what's going on in the world, and I still meet and hang out with people, when I have time. People grow and learn on their own pace, we should let them without overly critiquing them.

In the end, whether someone is out-going or not shouldn't determine the ability they have to be a good leader, sure in some cases it's better to more extraverted, but it's not a make or break trait. So long as they have their mind in the right place and know how to handle different tasks and situations, it doesn't matter.

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