I was recently watching John Myungs progressive bass concepts video and to anyone who is familiar with it he talks about how he plays through several octaves of a given scale by thinking about going through the first six notes of a mode and then playing backwards through the modes. For Instance, playing the first six notes of Ionian, then the first six of Locrian..etc.

He later calls this a backwards modal approach to scales that he claims helps him stay in key no matter where he is on the bass neck. What im wondering is, how is this advantageous? Wouldn't it be just as easy to simply memorize the pattern/notes of a scale relative to the neck?
If you memorize a pattern, you will always play in that pattern. If you learn the notes, or an approach like this, you can vary the pattern and still be in key.
I have:
Acoustic B200H+B115 cab, Schecter Stiletto Custom 4, Rondo Fretless, Boss EQ-7.

Some men just want to watch the world burn. And they work at Behringer.
^there's the truth.

I've been working the chordal approaches to scales (i.e. ionian = maj7) and my teacher has me working the triads in each mode backwards and in different ways. Its not easy and it does break you out of those autopilot approaches to playing and improvisation.