‘We must learn how to unlearn,in order to move forward’

Today I watched a lecture of one of my favourite astrophysicists. At some point he said this quote ‘We must learn how to unlearn , in order to move forward’. (I agree it sounds like a Lacan or Zen quote).It is a two hours lecture I cant get much into details. Though this quote made me kinda curious.

He explained in this lecture that our brain makes a database of actions thoughts and behaviors. We make this database mostly up to the age of 16. That doesn’t mean that what we do/learn after doesn’t matter. With this database our mind judges everything we experience, do and feel. Then it decides if it is ‘good’ or ‘bad’.

We can add extra information in this database in our brain. It is relative easy if the information is not going against some preexisting information in the database.

The hard part is, when we want to add information which is against some preexisting information. Then it very hard to actually unlearn something from the database.

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