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This sort of thinking is called theory of mind (not to be confused with theories of how the mind works). It's not entirely clear whether theory of mind is a discrete ability or a spectrum, but tasks requiring higher-order theorizing tend to be more difficult and are more likely to be lost to dysfunction: Cognitive theory of mind is further separated into ...


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To test self-awareness in animals there is the Mirror test. It involves painting something on the animal's head/face without their knowledge and observing what they do when they notice the paint in their own reflection in a mirror. Additionally, robots have been tested for simple self-awareness by researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.


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Mirror neurons are actually quite a contentious area in cogsci. The debate is most certainly not settled as to what role they play, and whether they even exist, in humans. In short though, my argument would be that there are no specific awareness related mirror neurons in the brain because mirror neurons themselves are awareness. Again, this is an extremely ...


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With regard to emotions, it may be more useful to think about things in terms of interoception and attention. Interoception involves awareness of one's inner bodily sensations (e.g., pleasantness/unpleasantness, high/low arousal; Craig, 2002), and we can (rapidly) direct our attention to shifts in these sensations. Changes in our inner physiological ...


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According to the article "Brief meditation training induces smoking reduction" one kind of mediation-training reduced smoking by 60% while a control group (relaxation training) showed no such effect. "Integrative body-mind training (IBMT) is a form of mindfulness meditation that involves body relaxation, mental imagery, and mindfulness training accompanied ...


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In a famous experiment Luigi Galvani conducted in 1780, he observed that a dead frog leg was twitching when electricity was applied to its nerves. Following your line of argument, electricity would be the meta-physical phenomena that gives rise to life. Brainwaves are the signature of neural activity; we capture them through electrical measurements. We ...


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I have seen - and enjoyed! - the movie last week-end and asked myself the same question. Let's face it, we are so far from being able to transfer knowledge from one human being to a machine with the help of a "mind-reader". The main point is that we don't have a useful brain signal to read from (the ones we know have structural limits). No good brain ...


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Here is an excellent article on self awareness and associated phenomena. The author (his quote is linked in the original question) describes various forms of brain damage and psychiatric conditions and their impact on (self)awareness and perception of the world. He mentions mirror neurons on multiple occasions.


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