Theory of mind


Theory of mind is the ability to attribute mental states — beliefs, intents, desires, emotions, knowledge, etc. — to oneself, and to others, and to understand that others have beliefs, desires, intentions, and perspectives that are different from one's own.[1] Theory of mind is crucial for everyday human social interactions and is used when analyzing, judging, and inferring others' behaviors.[2] Deficits can occur in people with autism spectrum disorders, schizophrenia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder,[3] cocaine addiction,[4] and brain damage suffered from alcohol's neurotoxicity.[5] Although philosophical approaches to this exist, the theory of mind as such is distinct from the philosophy of mind.

     Understanding attention, understanding of others' intentions, and imitative experience with other people are                                                                        Hallmarks of a theory of mind 

                                      Thus a Being Human is ability to have well developed Theory of Mind and Empathy

           Theory of Mind and need for Universal  Language

Empathy is a related concept, meaning the recognition and understanding of the states of mind of others, including their beliefs, desires and particularly emotions. This is 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 empathetic abilities.[12] 

                                           While empathy is known as emotional perspective-taking,

                                            theory of mind is defined as cognitive perspective-taking.

Language may be key to theory of mind

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Life 23 June 2009

How blind and deaf people approach a cognitive test regarded as a milestone in human development has provided clues to how we deduce what others are thinking.

Understanding another person’s perspective, and realising that it can differ from our own, is known as theory of mind. It underpins empathy, communication and the ability to deceive – all of which we take for granted. Although our theory of mind is more developed than it is in other animals, we don’t acquire it until around age four, and how it develops is a mystery.

You can test for theory of mind via the false-belief test, in which two children are shown playing. One puts a toy under the bed and leaves the room. The second then removes it and puts it in the toy box. On returning, where will the older child look for the toy? Those under the age of four choose the box, while older children correctly say under the bed.

Where does this leap in understanding come from? According to one hypothesis, children gradually deduce that other people have internal experiences that are different from their own by observing the facial expressions and gestures of others over time.

Read more: https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn17352-language-may-be-key-to-theory-of-mind/#ixzz5xk8tGQMN


Human beings are the only primates with a large, bright, and highly visible white part of the eye—which is called the sclera. Why did humans evolve to have more visible eye whites? A new study has found that our eye whites communicate important social cues that are key to our bonding and survival at a conscious and subconscious level.

                              false-belief understanding

Executive function is responsible for a number of skills, including:

  • Paying attention.
  • Organizing, planning and prioritizing.
  • Starting tasks and staying focused on them to completion.
  • Understanding different points of view.
  • Regulating emotions.
  • Self-monitoring (keeping track of what you’re doing).
                                         - understood.org