is the decline in memory a symptom of kaliyuga, or of the changes in the brain (or functioning) that come about with exposure to technology such as text and image saturation?
context: consider the cases of old Yugoslav epic singers, who could remember by heart a voluminous catalogue of material in rhyme... but would lose that faculty if taught how to read and write.
a result in the imbalanbce of the inner and outer winds, and so forth. So, if that's the case, a result of Kali Yuga yes. Which, is a result of beings lack of accumulated merit. So a result of actions of body, speech, and mind, due mostly to ignorance.
There are a number of factors that play into poor memory based on my experience in trying to make my memory better.
1) Poor diet in early childhood, ages 0-6. This includes the mothers diet during gestation. If a child is fed junk food during their first 6 years of life, and not the right nutrients, the brain will develop poorly. This can result in a decrease in IQ of 20-30 points, which is a lot when you consider the average is around 100. I learned this from a book on poor nutrition in Americas Ghettos.
2) Poor diet in present life. Even if you had a good diet as a child, having a poor diet now will deprive your body of the nutrients, proteins and aminoacids it needs to work properly now. The two biggest things are eating heart and brain healthy foods.
3) Indeed, poor circulation of Lung, improper breathing, bad posture, all contribute to the functioning of all things in the body.
4) Doing things that promote unconsciousness/non awareness or damage the brain outright. Drugs, alcohol, television, video games. The less conscious you are, the less you are going to remember. The more you engage in unconscious promoting activities, the less you are going to be conscious/aware/present in your daily life.
5) Learning how to learn. There are five keys to learning-
A- Learning with emotion. If you are not emotionally connected to what you are learning, it will be harder to remember. Yet if you have an emotional connection, you will find it much easier to remember anything. You need to care. If you don't care, you won't retain the information. The same can be said for anything in your daily life. You don't care what car was turning right at such an such an intersection at 3:44pm, so you don't remember that it was a red Ford Mustang. You may have had no awareness of it at all.
B- Learning in large quantity. The more you read and study, the more you will retain information.
C- Contemplating what you have learned. Not only analyzing it, but sorting it out. Understanding which traditions which beliefs come from, and so forth. This is kind of like sorting knowledge. You have to consciously recognize it for it to be sorted properly though, otherwise it will just all go into your "Buddhist" memory bank. You have to learn to compartmentalize, just like organizing files on a computer. Doing this takes time, but it means doing more than just absorbing information, it also means categorization.
D- Repetition. The reason past scholars would memorize texts like the Prajnaparamita is because they would read them over and over again, chant them as mantras, translate them, read commentaries on them, and so forth. We either don't do this today, or don't have the time.
E- Usage. You need to use the information you obtain either in contemplation, but better yet in participation in discussions. That will not only help you to retain the information more, but it will show you what you have learned and also what you still need to learn.
So its true to say that Kaliyuga might be the cause of not having a good memory, but most of those causes can be reduced or eliminated. They are a result of conditions, not some absolute truth about our minds right now. If we remove the conditions that cause bad memory, we will at least see our memory improved, even if we don't develop some kind of photographic memory.