From Say to Do: It's a Very Short Trip

The brain, it seems, does not make much of a distinction between second- and firsthand experiences. Whether you're doing something or watching someone else do the same thing, the same neurological regions in your brain are stimulated. This phenomenon has been illuminated by recent findings in neuroscience and cognitive and social psychology. Research shows that the same pattern of neurons, called mirror neurons, fires in the observer as in the person performing a task or telling a story.1

Neuroscientists attribute the understanding of the goals, desires, intentions, feelings, and actions of others in large measure to the mirror neuron system. Cognitive and social psychologists have found that mirror neurons ...

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