The palest ink lasts longer than the most retentive memory.
— Chinese Proverbs

A retentive memory may be a good thing, but the ability to forget is the true token of greatness.
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There is no memory or retentive faculty based on lasting impression. What we designate as memory is but increased responsiveness to repeated stimuli.
— Nikola Tesla

Progress, far from consisting in change, depends on retentiveness. when experience is not retained, as among savages, infancy is perpetual. Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. This is the condition of children and barbarians, in whom instinct has learned nothing from experience.
— George Santayana

Progress, far from consisting in change, depends on retentiveness. When change is absolute there remains no being to improve and no direction is set for possible improvement: and when experience is not retained, as among savages, infancy is perpetual. Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. In the first stage of life the mind is frivolous and easily distracted; it misses progress by failing in consecutiveness and persistence. This is the condition of children and barbarians.
— retentive quotation by George Santayana