Grigoris wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 27, 2018 10:56 pm
When I am talking about smaskara I am referring to karmic formations, to (put it simply) habits.
Then you are not talking about the samskara skangha, you are talking about second link in the twelve links of dependent origination.
In Tibetan Buddhism, we don't use this lingo. This lingo comes from Goenka's Vipassna.
What are you are talking about is bag chags
. This is a term derived from Yogacāra theory. They are impressions upon consciousness which are activated through a specific cause and condition which causes them to generate a karmic appearance.
Vasubandhu defines memories as concepts connected with the seven mental elements: i.e. eye through mental consciousness as well as the manodhātu.
Asanga defines memory as the absence of forgetting an object with which the mind is familiar. He further defines affliction as the basis of a distracted memory, as does Vasubandhu in his treatise on the five aggregates.
Basically, they both define the mechanism of memory as being free from mental distractions. The more undistracted one is, that is free from affliction one is, the better one's memory will become. But there is no definition of memory having some matrix, or memories existing in some latent form. Memories are simply knowing some familiar entity that one experienced in the past. This also explains why we do not remember and will never remember most of what we experience on a day to day basis. Most of what we experience is either too trivial to recall or it is an object with which we have no repeated familiarity.
I do not think that neuroscience will be able to adequately explain memory, mainly because neuroscience deals with brain and not mind. I believe that the explanation found in Buddhism based on the idea of the alaya-vijnana, or of samskara (as habits based on past volitional actions) is more fitting.
That explanation which you seek does not exist in Buddhist texts. You are fabricating it. If you examine Abhidharma, Madhyamaka, Yogācara, etc., you will never find the definition of memory presented in the terms you describe. One does not even see memory described in terms of bag chags.