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  • Bryan W. Alaspa

What is the Mandela Effect?

Quick, answer from your heart and not from your brain. Did South African civil rights leader, Nelson Mandela die while in prison during the late 70s or did he get out of jail in the 90s and eventually become the President of South Africa and die in his old age decades later?

As for me, I distinctly remember the day, when I was in college, watching Mandela released from jail. My friends and I watched this event happen on CNN and were amazed. It seemed like it would never happen. I have distinct memories of him being the President. I recall the special concert for him when he turned 70. I remember when he died and the funeral.

But there are people out there, in the world, who are absolutely certain it happened the other way. They remember it as distinctly as I do, that the man died in prison before 1980.

This is what has given rise to something known as The Mandela Effect. You can find all kinds of forums discussing this on the internet. Glitches in the matrix, as they are sometimes called. But, is there a way to manipulate reality? The collective thought? Is there some way to alter history and reality to make most of the people believe something else? And if so, what about the people who remember things the other way?

What is collective conscious?

The collective conscious is actually a thing. It’s the set of morals and values that we, as a society, have in place about the world. The collective conscious can change from culture to culture and is, in fact, what gives the world culture. However, when you think about certain things like movies, songs, books, good and bad, there are things which pop into your mind. Such things like your upbringing, religious beliefs, etc., can color how you view some of these things, but there is the overall belief of the entirety of humanity which pushes certain things to the forefront while other things drift to the back.

What is the collective unconscious?

This is more theoretical. If there is a collective conscious, then there stands to reason there is a collective unconscious. This is a sort of cloud of collective thought we are unaware of. Working away at our subconscious, guiding our thoughts and actions without even realizing it’s happening. There are some who say there’s no proof, but there’s no way to know because, of course, this would be undetectable since it’s subconscious. However, there are times when multiple people have the same idea, or the same dream.

What are examples of the Mandela Effect?

Look at some of these oft-cited examples of the supposed Mandela Effect.

The Ford Logo

Which Ford logo to you recall? The one with a straight line through the F or the one with the line ending in a weird pig’s-tail curly-cue thing?

My dad was a Ford man and owned a couple of Mustangs and a Ford Probe during my lifetime. I do not recall the weird curly-cue pig’s-tail thing at all. But Ford says that is how their logo has always been.

Berenstain or Berenstein Bears?

Which is correct? Which do you remember from childhood? Personally, I remember the EIN ending to their name. However, apparently, the publishers and writer of these books insists it has always been AIN.

The Volkswagen logo

Just like with the Ford logo, which one do you remember? The V and W separated by a thin line between the two letters? Or merged together into one symbol? I remember it being merged into one, but Volkswagen says it has always been the one with the line separating the two.

Sinbad Genie movie

Here’s a final one and one of my favorites. Did comedian Sinbad star in a movie back in the 90s where he played a genie? Many people insist he did and the movie was called Shazam. Others say they are confusing him with other things he was in or mixing it up with the Shaq disaster known as Kazaam. There are those out there who have posted supposed copies of the VHS tape, or scenes from this supposed movie. They can cite chapter and verse from the film.

Personally, I have no memory of this movie. I don’t remember it at all, but perhaps the glitch just worked better with me than others.

It goes on and on from there, too. Other logos and things people are certain they remember one way, but others insist are another.

What does this have to do with my new novel?

In my new novel The Revisionists, I took this concept and made it a reality. What if a man who has spent his life creating technology, invented a way to access both the collective conscious and unconscious to FORCE the Mandela Effect and actually change history? What if he could tap into the right group of people to cause history itself to change on a larger scale than just logos and children’s book titles? What would happen to reality? What would it do to the people who still remembered things the other way? If there are people like me who insist Mandela was President of South Africa and there was never a Sinbad genie movie, but others who insist otherwise, what would this do to the people who believe different things?

Of course, there are those who insist these alterations are taking place all the time. There are constant tinkerings with reality itself. I don’t really know if the Mandela Effect is real or just poor memories, but what if...?

The results could be devastating.

You can pre-order The Revisionists at Amazon. It comes out in March 2019.

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