The Popular Internet Conspiracy: The Mandela Effect

Have you ever felt like, you’ve known something in a particular way but then, you look back at it and it didn’t actually happen or it happened the other way round??

If you’ve ever experienced something like this, then it seems like you’ve experienced the phenomenon known as The Mandela Effect.

It all started with the controversy over Nelson Mandela’s death. Hence, that’s where the name for this phenomenon comes from. Many people say that they remember Nelson Mandela not making it out of prison alive in the 1980s. There are some others, who firmly believe that they saw his funeral on the news.

Yet Nelson Mandela didn’t actually die until 2013.

When Nelson Mandela died in 2013, a paranormal consultant Fiona Broome, discovered this phenomenon. She firmly believed that Nelson Mandela had died in the prison.

Then, she launched a website where she shared her experience and found out that so many other people recollected the same memory. Weird, isn’t it?

People began sharing their experiences regarding other false memories they’d noticed. It then blew up from there and became an internet phenomenon. Here’s a list of the most famous and mind-blowing examples of the Mandela Effect:

1. The Berenstain Bears

These popular children’s books and television show series were loved by many for years. Anyone whom you ask will tell you that the correct way to spell “Bernstein” is with an “e”  and not “a”. What if I told you that’s wrong?

That’s right, it’s actually called the “Berenstain Bears”. There are a number of testimonials from Fiona Boome’s website of people who remember it as “stein”. One person wrote “Didn’t it used to be the Bernstein Bears? Now, suddenly it’s the Berenstain bears? Is this some sort of anti-Semitic cover-up? Or are people born in the 1980’s misinformed?

2. Mirror Mirror On The Wall

This line is probably one of the most famous lines ever from a Disney movie or even outside Disney.

The line is so famous that, there is literally a whole movie named after it, called “Mirror Mirror” starring Lily Collins and Julia  Roberts. What if I told you that we were all remembering it wrong! Snow White’s evil stepmother actually says,  “Magic mirror on the wall.” We couldn’t believe it either.

3. Missing lyrics of “We are the Champions”

Remember singing this iconic Queen song as a kid everytime you beat someone at something? Most of us believe that the song ends with: “We are the champions….of the world!” But if you listen to the song now, it doesn’t end with “of the world.” Those words literally disappeared into thin air.

The song just ends and it’s making us crazy. Don’t believe us? Hit the play button.

4. The Pikachu tail controversy

Pikachu is arguably one of the most well-known Pokémon in the world. Which is why, it’s sort of funny that, people can’t remember what his tail looks like.

People remember there being a black mark on Pikachu’s tail, but if you take a look at Pikachu now, you’ll see no black marks there. Some people remember his tail with a black tip, while others believe it to be just another example of the Mandela effect.

5. The popular cartoon network show- Is it Looney ‘Toons’ or ‘Tunes’?

Another popular cartoon show, the “Looney Toons” was loved by many.

The name, “Looney Toons” makes sense because “toons” of course, is the short form of cartoons. But, apparently, it has always been ” Looney Tunes” and not “Looney Toons”.  It doesn’t make sense because the show was not a musical.  When on Earth did it change to Looney Tunes? And How? We’re baffled too.

6. Does Darth Vader really said, “Luke, I am your father”

After the premiere of Star Wars-The Empire Strikes Back, in 1980, the line,”Luke, I am your father” quickly became one of the most popular and quoted movie lines of all time.

The phrase could be seen on t-shirts, hats, phone cases, memes and just about anything. Even the people who hadn’t seen Star Wars knew about this famous line.

Except that, Darth Vader never actually said this! He said,”No, I am your father”.

These were some of the most popular examples of The Mandela effect. Clearly, there’s something interesting going on here, but what could it possibly be?

How to explain the fact that, many different people can share the same false memory?

These are certain theories try to explain the same.

1. Parallel Universe/Virtual Realities

Some people believe that it could be due to the shifting of the universe.

Conspiracy theorists believe, that it’s possible that we first lived in an alternate universe where it was ‘Berenstein ‘bears but then, one day we all shifted to another universe where it was Berenstain bears.

It just means that we all still remember things in a specific way, that we have known from the original universe we once lived in. But now, we are living in an alternate universe where things are slightly different.

There have been a number of debates among physicists regarding the parallel universe theory. Even today, it remains debatable.

2. Time Travel

This theory is about time travel. Many people believe that somebody traveled back in time and changed something small and this small change affected a lot of other things.

A good example of this is the movie ‘The Butterfly Effect’ where Ashton Kutcher goes back in time, picks up a pencil, and draws something, and then when he goes back to the future a bunch of things are different.

3. Confabulation/memory defects

Psychologists came up with the term confabulation which is a clinical term to refer to memory defects.

According to them, the Mandela effect is a result of false memories that occur in a number of ways which could be biased or maybe as simple as not remembering things right. Memories aren’t pure. But it’s fascinating to think that people whom we have never even met, have the exact false memory.

Whether you believe in this theory or not, the Mandela effect will make you question your entire knowledge.

We are not stating that the Mandela Effect is 100% real because that simply can’t be proven now and won’t be proven anytime soon.  It is just an interesting theory whether you’re into conspiracy theories or not.

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