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Brain Region Linked to Introspective Thinking

There was a new study reported in the September 17th issue of the research journal, Science, which showed that there may be a brain region linked to introspective thinking as the study found that a spe­cif­ic brain re­gion is larg­er in peo­ple who are good at turn­ing their thoughts in­ward and re­flect­ing on their de­ci­sions.
This pro­cess of “think­ing about your think­ing,” called in­tro­spec­tion, is a key part of hu­man con­scious­ness. Sci­en­tists, however, have not­ed plen­ty of varia­t­ion in peo­ples’ abil­i­ties to in­tro­spect. “We want to know why we are aware of some men­tal pro­cesses,” while oth­ers pro­ceed with­out awareness, said Ste­phen Flem­ing of Uni­vers­ity Col­lege Lon­don, one of the au­thors.  “There may be dif­fer­ent lev­els of con­scious­ness, rang­ing from simply hav­ing an ex­pe­ri­ence, to re­flect­ing up­on that ex­pe­ri­ence. In­tro­spec­tion is on the high­er end of this spec­trum. By meas­ur­ing this pro­cess and re­lat­ing it to the brain we hope to gain in­sight in­to the bi­ol­o­gy of con­scious thought.” The brain re­gion found to be ap­par­ently linked to in­tro­spec­tion is the called the an­te­ri­or pre­fron­tal cor­tex, right be­hind our eyes, said the sci­en­tists, who were led by re­searcher Ge­raint Rees of the uni­vers­ity. The “gray mat­ter” in this re­gion tends to be larg­er in people with great­er in­tro­spective abil­ity, they ex­plained. Gray mat­ter con­sists of the types of brain cells chiefly known for pro­cessing in­forma­t­ion, called neu­rons. See http://www.world-science.net/othernews/100916_introspection.htm

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