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What Causes the Mandela Effect

The Mandela Effect is a phenomena in which a large group of people all misremember a specific detail or event. Some famous examples of this are the lyrics to Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood being different, the monopoly man not having a monocle, and of course the date of Nelson Mandela’s death. There are times in which we have all misremembered something in our lives, but what makes a large group of people all misremember the same information in the same way?

One of the most accurate explanations of the Mandela Effect is ash conformity. This is when a person conforms to a certain view in  order to align with a group’s opinion. Humans naturally want to fit in, and sometimes we can change our views in order to conform without even realizing it. This conformity over a long group of time can lead to false memories or source-memory errors which only strengthen the ideas that are being remembered incorrectly. 

The emergence of the internet and technology has led to the idea that the Mandela Effect may be more common now than it has been in the past. The internet allows for more people to share their ideas and can lead to more conformity than has occurred previously. The emergence of deep fakes, highly believable altered images, are blurring the line between reality and imagination in a way that could lead to more people experiencing instances of the Mandela Effect. 

To avoid the Mandela Effect, it is important to fact check news and make sure you are looking at more than one source. It is also important to critically analyze information and memories to ensure you are not conforming to a larger group’s opinion. Most importantly, if you find that you have experienced the Mandela Effect in your life, don’t panic! It is more common than you may think.

Mandela Effect
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