Monday, May 25, 2009

doing, not seeing, is believing

It looks like there's a mechanism in our brain that knows whether something is doable or not:
The team compared how the [mirror] neurons fired when a person grabbed a metallic object within a monkey's reach and again from a greater distance. They found that rather than simply responding to the action, the mirror neurons also responded to whether or not the action was close enough for the monkey to intervene.

To show that those differing responses were to do with what the monkey could reach rather than how close an object was, the experimenters placed a panel in front of the primate's chair, preventing the monkey from reaching objects close to its body.

In this situation, the neurons that previously reacted to reachable objects no longer responded to the human's actions at all, suggesting that mirror neurons change their properties according to the possibility that one can act.

Is it true then that thinking that something is impossible makes it impossible?

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