[전주대 신문 제909호 14면, 발행일: 2021년 4월 14일(수)]
Methuselah syndrome is a psychological concept that wraps past memories with only beautiful things, erases bad memories, and leaves only good memories.
The name of Methuselah Syndrome derived from the name of Methuselah, Noah’s grandfather, a character in the Old Testament.
Methuselah is a symbol of long-live because he lived for 969 years.
As he got older, when he looked back over his past, he only remembered good things, and he wanted to go back to his good past history.
Everyone prefers to go back to the good past memories, especially when life gets harder.
This nostalgia is called regression, which is a psychological defense mechanism denying a reality and hoping to go back to the past.
Therefore, Methuselah syndrome may bias somone’s past memories in a distorted way, helping to escape a reality facing him or her.
Methuselah syndrome can be found in many modern people.
The reason is that it reflects a psychological state of modern people, who long for the laid-back past and advocate a relaxed life in a cutthroat and competitive modern society.
Even if it is a syndrome, it is not necessary to see it only as a negative perspective.
For example, when you look back on your unfulfilled first love, don’t you think of more good memories than bad ones?
If more bad memories come across to your mind when you think of your first love, a popular concept of“people’s first love”would not have become a good modifier, and literature, movies, and dramas related to first love would not have been loved.
Of course, every past cannot be always beautiful.
While there is a beautiful and happy memory, there will also be a terrible and unfortunate past on the other side.
Everyone has bad memories, but I do not think that it is necessary to remember the past as it is.
I think one of the reasons why Methuselah syndrome appears is that our life somtimes goes too harsh.
When my current life is too painful and unhappy, and even if my past is also unhappy?
It makes me more painful. It will be a problem if someone’s memory is distorted too much, but erasing pain in the past experience and making happy memories more would be helpful to live today.
For example, erasing the painful memory coming from your poverty, and just coming up with a happy memory you and your friends took pictures in front of cherry blossoms makes you happier.
If you are facing some difficulties now, I want you to think that ‘my past was always beautiful.’
reporter Pyo Su-yeon(firstname.lastname@example.org)
translated by reporter Kim Hyun-ha(email@example.com)
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