In “USC researchers explore the source of empathy in the brain” (Eurekalert, July 15, 2011), we learn,
According to a new study from USC, even failing to possess a full complement of limbs will not stop your brain from understanding what it is like for someone else to experience pain in one of them. It may, however, change the way your brain does so.
The most important thing about this “mind is merely brain” story, for any traditional human being is what is supposed to be a surprise.
In an additional finding, Aziz-Zadeh discovered that when the congenital amputee viewed videos of tasks being performed that she could also perform but using body parts that she did not have, the sensory-motor parts of her brain were still strongly engaged. For example, the participant can hold objects, but uses a stump in conjunction with her chin to do so rather than a hand.
They used to call it empathy. Wait, that term is being phased out. Doesn’t coincide with “mind as illusion, governed by the selfish gene.”
Does coincide with what zillions of health care workers have done, from time immemorial.
So stuff many care workers would just expect can be a big surprise, under Darwinrules.
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