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Feelings Of Sympathy And Empathy Dictated by Personal Experience

e impression the subject was unloading something, suggests a lower weight.

In the second part of the task, the patients also saw videos of people who were lifting boxes. However, this time, in some cases, the people in the film were deceived about the actual weight of the boxes. So the actor, for example, received the information before lifting the box that he was lifting 18 kilograms - when indeed the box weighed only three.

The patients then had to state whether the person in the video had the right or the wrong expectation regarding the weight of the box. In the second task, normal control subjects didn’t have a problem correctly evaluating the situation. The two patients, on the other hand, had great difficulties. They were notably poorer than the control subjects in determining whether the person in the video had guessed correctly the weight of the box correctly, or had been deceived.

Finally, in a further experiment the scientists inverted the task. They asked the patients themselves to lift boxes and filmed them while they did so. It was found out that the patients, because of their lack of self-perception, were unable to adjust their movements to their expectations of the weight of the box or they were not able to judge other people’s expectations based on their movement.

Models of movement, which are activated in the brain when we observe the actions of another person, hold information and knowledge about the way our own body functions. The possibilities and limitations of movement of our own body are the reference from which we process and interpret the actions of another person.

Feedback from our own bodies apparently plays a role in our intuitive knowledge of the intentions of other people. In this way, we can predict not only the consequences of other people’s actions, but we are able to "put ourselves in the position" of the other person. Such a mechanism is the basis for sympathy and empathy, a
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