Thursday, May 24, 2012

Theory of Mind: Cognitives for the Catastrophe Theorist

Art of Manliness: Why Men Should Read more fiction

Reading Fiction Strengthens Your Theory of Mind

Theory of mind is a cognitive ability that humans use all the time, but take for granted. Basically, it’s our ability to attribute mental states (like thoughts, feelings, and beliefs) to others based on a whole host of input in order to predict and explain what they are thinking. Cognitive scientists call this ability “theory of mind” because when we interact with others, it’s impossible for us to know exactly what they’re thinking/feeling/perceiving, so we have to construct a theory of what they’re thinking/feeling/perceiving in their mind. Without theory of mind, social interaction would be awkward, clumsy, and nearly impossible.

Catastrophe Theory: Theory of Mind is necessary, and very important cognitive function for developing Catastrophe Theory and predicting and solving problems. Catastrophe is a social interaction, but Theory of Mind isn't just limited to social interaction.

One can use Theory of Mind to attribute Catastrophe Theory to time, place, scenes, events, by placing clues, media, things that can lead to a formulation and solving a Catastrophe Theory. To see past events and the clues and things that tell us about the Catastrophe and its effect on our lives- does art imitate life, or does life imitate art? Thus with art, media, our media that we so engage in and interact with, gives us a rich window to view the universe in which one could perceive and predict a Catastrophe and predict it.

Theory of mind is a theory insofar as the mind is not directly observable.[1] The presumption that others have a mind is termed a theory of mind because each human can only intuit the existence of his or her own mind through introspection, and no one has direct access to the mind of another. It is typically assumed that others have minds by analogy with one's own, and based on the reciprocal nature of social interaction, as observed in joint attention,[2] the functional use of language,[3] and understanding of others' emotions and actions.[4] Having a theory of mind allows one to attribute thoughts, desires, and intentions to others, to predict or explain their actions, and to posit their intentions. As originally defined, it enables one to understand that mental states can be the cause of—and thus be used to explain and predict—others’ behavior.[1] Being able to attribute mental states to others and understanding them as causes of behavior implies, in part, that one must be able to conceive of the mind as a "generator of representations".[5][6] If a person does not have a complete theory of mind it may be a sign of cognitive or developmental impairment.
Theory of mind appears to be an innate potential ability in humans, but one requiring social and other experience over many years to bring to fruition. Different people may develop more, or less, effective theories of mind. Empathy is a related concept, meaning experientially recognizing and understanding the states of mind, including beliefs, desires and particularly emotions of others, often characterized as the ability to "put oneself into another's shoes." Recent neuro ethological studies of animal behaviour suggest that even rodents may exhibit ethical or empathic abilities.[7] Neo-Piagetian theories of cognitive development maintain that theory of mind is a byproduct of a broader hypercognitive ability of the human mind to register, monitor, and represent its own functioning

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