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MEMORY SKILLS: Making Your Head Strong

By :- Md. Nasir Khan,

Mind power in us gives us the brain energy and simultaneously it can prostrate us. We are now towards the third Millennium, the Millennium of the Mind, and in Second Millennium through the 21st Century, the century of the Brain. In between the ‘Brain’ Century and the ‘Mind’ Millennium the ultimate needs of every learner is to make our head strong. The more you mentally relaxed the better you can make your head strong. One simple activity to relax our mind is SMILE! Smiling fosters relaxation. With greater relaxation comes greater ability to recall. What comes on your way, be in classroom, society, family or in privacy, all confronts your working memory, then it comes to your short-term memory and finally it either goes to long-term memory or it goes off permanently. Important information needs to be retained yet it doesn’t happen to most of us. Your memory, in many ways, is who you are. Think of a situation where you met one of your close friends whose name you had forgotten and he called you by your name? Think of the embarrassment you would face that may reflect in your face.
In order to improve our Memory, we need to improve our Mind Power. Daydreaming in one important aspects that help you master the Mind Power. This power needs to be controlled; and to keep it in control you need to unleash the tension so that you can relax communicate with your internal channels, the subconscious mind. The fact is that your subconscious mind is much more receptive to suggestion when you are relaxed. Yoga, meditation, prayer, music, guided imagery, juggling, dog walk, deep breathing, relaxation, etc are few of the many effective techniques that allow you to totally relax your muscles, accelerate and communicate with your subconscious mind. (Unleashing the mental-stress can be had in our brain training session). In most cases you try to use the conscious mind; the sub-conscious mind makes you unleashed the stressed brain thereby helps you mentally peace and physically recharged.
Recalling information can be termed under three heads: Recall during learning, after learning and after a period of learning. During learning you can unlock information and such information stays active in your working memory. The working memory allows you to learn and retain those information later. It is active and has its limitations and has no defined duration. After learning you retain information in your head/ mind for a limited duration. Most adults can store between 5 and 9 items in their short-term memory. This idea was put forward by Miller (1956) and he called it the magic number 7. He thought that short term memory could hold 7 (plus or minus 2 items) because it only had a certain number of “slots” in which items could be stored. The challenges with all learners are the recall after a period of learning. Long term memory is responsible for three operations: Encoding: which is the ability to convert information into a knowledge structure. Storage: which is the ability to accumulate chunks of information. Retrieval: which is the ability to recall things you already know.

Revision Formula
The five times repetition formula of Tony Buzan is the solution to store your information in the long term memory and makes creative learning. This is the secret to reviewing information five times to make it stick. The first review should be an hour or so after you’ve first read or learnt something, for example, when you get home. The second, the day after (so take another look the next day after school). The third should be about a week later, the fourth one month later and the fifth and final time six months later. Then it’s yours, FOREVER!  The formula is STM­­­­—> LTM = 5R, from short term memory to long term memory requires five repetitions/ reviews/ recalls.  You can review most efficiently by drawing a Mind Map of your information; this will saves time and the examination blues, information overloads! Without effective revision you forgot 80% of new stuff you’ve learned in day. Isn’t it SCARY?
Memory Senses
We have five sensory organs eye, ear, nose, tongue, and skin. The specialized cells and tissues within these organs receive raw stimuli and translate them into signals the nervous system can use. Nerves relay the signals to the brain directly, which interprets them as sight (vision), sound (hearing), smell (olfaction), taste (gestation) and touch (tactile perception). These are the five memory senses we have. Can you believe it? You only have one option, BELIEVE IT! Eyes that you use observe information plays the major role of the memory senses. It contributes to 40%, ears contributes 25%, skin 15%, nose 10% and tongue 10%; altogether it makes 100%.
The logic behind memorising is simply the activation of the memory senses. The better you activate it during learning the more you can memorise it. Our memory senses are very much attracted to colours and pictures and indeed your brain thinks and remembers in pictures and colours. Say for instance, I said to you, ‘Your School’, what would pop into your head? Would it be a computer printout of the word, written in a line across the page, or would you get a picture in your mind of your school, the classrooms, the windows, and the corridor? Do you see what I mean? It was the picture of your school in colour that came into your mind first and not the words written on a piece of paper. So if you want to remember your school, summer camps, adventure trips, textbook, exams materials or anything else, the best way to do is to draw a picture of it, Mind Map it.
Most Important Graph in the World
May be you are watching a movie, listening to lectures in the classroom or you are reading a novel. How do you remember them? The most you remember would be the first part and the last part. This we call it primacy and recency effect. To create more and more primacy and recency effect, you need to take regular breaks. A learning period of between 20 and 50 minutes produces the best relationship between understanding and recall. How could you remember those important information given in between primacy and recency? You can learn more when things are associated or linked in some, by using, rhyme, repetition or something that connects with our senses. The brain will remember something better if it stands out from the context, particularly a BIG, loud, multisensory image. This is known as Von Restorff effect. There is one very important effect we would need to discuss; the Understanding and Misunderstanding Effect. This is a tricky one so brace yourself. Have you ever had a conversation where you know you said something, yet the other party knows you said something else? Everyone has, and normally it is not because one of you is just being awkward. It is because of this effect. Every individual creates different associations to different words and this can lead to different memories of the same situation. Again the Effect of Meaning plays a great role to remember what you are trying to memorise. Meaning and insight become part of the memory and learning process as your brain takes in bits of information and pieces them together to create a holistic picture. Try to connect it with real life examples and stories. And finally the interests! Interest is like a sleeping GIANT! ­­­­­­­­­­­When it is awakened, it is as if a massive turbine has been switched on in your brain and all Learning, Thinking, Memory and Creativity improve in one immediate, giant leap. It raises the entire curve; the more interested you are in a subject, the more you will make associations and remember more. This recall curve is well explained by Tony Buzan in his book the Most Important Graph in the World.
Sleep: This is the time the brain software is updated. It erases the less important parts of memories and simultaneously strengthens areas that you need or want to remember. During sleep your brain also rehearses some of the tougher parts of whatever you’re trying to learn, going over and over neural patterns to deepen and strengthen them. Lack of sleep means you’re operating with a brain that’s got little metabolic toxins floating around in it. Poisons that make it so you can’t think very clearly. In fact, getting too little sleep doesn’t just make you do worse on memory, too little sleep, over too long of a time, can also be associated with all sorts of nasty conditions, including headaches, depression, heart disease, diabetes, and just plain dying earlier. It would be an all time wise step if you could follow the sleep duration recommendations provided by Nation Sleep Foundation. www.sleepfoundation.org / www.sleep.org

Narakasur for GPC screening

From a Correspondent
Guwahati June 20,

On the occasion of Ambubachi festival at Mother Goddess Kamakhya temple atop Nilachal hill in the city, an old Assamese classic Narakasur will be screened at Guwahati Press Club (GPC)

tomorrow (21 June) starting from 3.30 pm.
Narakasur, a legendary demon, is considered as the founding ruler of Bhauma dynasty of Pragjyotishapur (ancient Assam). Asur Naraka wanted to marry Ma Kamakhya and finally he was killed by Lord Vishnu with the aid of the goddess. King Bhagadatta of epic Mahabharata fame succeeded his father.
Produced by Bhaskar Chitrakala co-operative limited of Nalbari in 1961, the b&w feature film was directed by Nip Barua. Based on a story of Atul Hazarika, the movie has screenplay by  Amalendu Bagchi,  music by Brajen Barua and cinematography by Nalin Dowerah. The casts include
Phani Sharma, Eva Achao, Dharani Choudhury, Jnanada Kakati, Beena Das etc.

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Manipur Maoist urges for unity and strengthening mission journalism, patriotic regional forces

IT News
Imphal, June 18,
Manipur Maoist in a statement on the condition of Manipur said all questions of the people regarding the revolutionary movement must be answered.  The statement said that the government is terrorizing the people in the name of NSA and fake encounters and the rebels are also doing things which are against the people. The price of one kilo of rice has shot up to fifty rupees. At such a time, instead of keeping mum those who call themselves communist should stop those who are stealing the rice and distribute it those who need it. If Dr Nara leads such a movement and go to prison for it, people will definitely garland him. Saying that one is a communist, one is concerned about the people, is reading Marxist literature will not result into anything. One has to show that one is a communist through their activities, only then people will accept the person as a leader. On the other hand, the editors of news papers are now the panelists of the discussion programs in the electronic media. They discuss on important matters giving the public knowledge about those matter but they still carry advertisement of the government without even considering the parties which are giving these advertisements, without even thinking that the ruling party is good or bad. The more advertisement they get the more money they earn for their newspapers. In this context, we can think about why people are taking 200-300 rupees and participating in the election. The gap between theory and practice has affected this society badly. If one is little educated, one does not want to activism, in order to be called a think tank many are doing Phd and publishing books. Intellectual activism is not just going as chief guest in programs but working with the revolutionaries and standing with them shoulder to the shoulder in the revolutionary movement.
Maoist Communist Party Manipur is not disheartened in any away since the urge for change among the poor and toiling masses of Manipur is ever increasing. People have lost faith in all the national parties. Now people do not trust that India will give us a good future. This is a good objective condition for the revolutionary movement. At the point, we need to develop mission journalism, patriotic regional forces, progressive intellectual activism, and democratic social activism and collectively work together. Maoists are trying to develop the regional forces, in this context. North East Development Party (NEIDP)’s ideology is based eclecticism and they are gathering whoever they could find to strengthen their organization. Given this, Maoists will not include this party in the unity based on regionalism till they change their organizational practice. Manipur People’s Party which is the one of the oldest political parties in Manipur and the problem ailing them was the financial irregularities. There is no confusion regarding PRJA. So, there is nothing much to talk about them.
Maoists are keeping a close eye on the matter however the party will take definitive action towards people who swindle party funds. Furthermore, the remaining regional parties are centrist and given that they are not building their organizations, they are not yet part of this unity. Maoists are doing whatever they can to help the armed parties however it has not interfered in their internal affairs. If they create problems for the people, Maoists will withdraw all the help, the statement stated.  The statement urges the people for their support in the building tactical unity with other forces.

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Twin effects of Political and Financial Crisis

By - Dr. Sougaijam Priyokumar Meitei

On the present issue of Manipur, following the removal of key portfolios from two cabinets, people are frequently asking whether it is merely a family matter, temporary hiccup or a temporary suicide? The two ministers have been charged in an order stating that a huge amounts were withdrawn while model code of conducts were in force. Counter charges were also come out through media. Now, the question is, in this serious dilemma, how the financial crisis incurring an overdraft of 274 crores is related to intra-ruling-parties revolts. As an immediate effect, RBI has banned the state from all kinds of transaction since the state has crossed the limits of ways and means advancement. This is not a temporary hiccup because it may affect in disbursing the state employees payment regularly. Meanwhile, it may be recalled that state is not yet able to implement seventh pay scale, in spite of that, owing to the current financial condition, state employees are now in a very critical point.
Financial problem is now coupled with political shakes. Tensions are now on raise among state cabinet holders. On a report released from the government officials, it is considered as merely differences in opinion, almost about to settle in few days and there is no resolution of changing leader. However, people are not yet clear and asking a series of questions - why charges and counter charges in high level platforms, was there not any preventive mechanism for this chronic illness of overdraft, was that actually happened the withdrawal of huge amounts during model code of conducts, whether the three member committee led by Principal Secy. V Vumlunmang will be able to find out the actual story. Experts feel that it should be investigated in accordance with the commission of enquiry act, 1952, led by a retd. judge. Therefore, publics are not expecting any concrete outcomes from the presently formed three member committee led by Principal Secretary. People of Manipur are so unfortunate that we are boarded in the same sinking boat because our leaders think all problems as temporary and closes the chapter by temporary solutions. It is often questionable whether the functions of state accounts finance dept, officials are completely paralyzed and failed. Now, the issue is not simply differences in opinion, it is as magnified as a big crisis indulging to central leaders.  Some experts felt, is it because of power mongers or Mafias, some sort of organised group who directly involve in brokering and enforcing illegal transaction. Something like as, no matter the problem is or having a black sheep in a family, all members get embarrassed and suffers, but parents or guardian should be responsible, similarly government is responsible to detect it, to resolve it.
Opinion may differ among family members, but the leaders should be in a position to settle it with amicable solutions before it turns into a big devastating turmoil.