The brain is always changing. (Yes, one more thing to add to the list of things that is always changing - and to which religion and faith should proudly add its name.)
The brain is growing, shrinking, and reacting to what you’re feeding it. This is one of the reasons that people are a tad worried about technology. It changes our brain and when many individuals’ brains change, society’s collective brain changes.
That is a bit worrying, if I’m honest.
But, this is not always bad. Before the printing press, people generally had a better ability to memorize. They had to. When humans didn’t have to memorize, humans could start putting brain power into other arenas. So less memorization but more technological advances.
I wanted to give my sermons without notes. Not memorize per se, but just get up there and be present. In the same way, a good actor can actually start to act when they don’t have to memorize their lines anymore, I think a good speaker can speak when they don’t have to look at notes and when those notes have embedded in their consciousness.
It was really hard at first. I gave myself little notes and cues and cheats.
Years later, after giving up notes entirely, it’s amazing how easy it now is to memorize messages. And I don’t say that proudly, I say it amazed at how well my brain has evolved. My brain has actually changed and is now better at certain tasks.
Yes, the brain can fade fast.
But, it can also do what you want it to do fast.
There was a pretty large study done on eight Buddhist monks who had spent an average of 34,000 hours in mental training or meditation that found their brains were even more plastic, or more capable of change and resiliency.
Meditation also helps.