Where does your mind feel like it is?
Ken Aizawa asks why we intuitively feel like our minds are in our heads, and answers by saying it’s because humans discovered early on that damaging the head disables the mind, and have passed the knowledge of their equivalence on since. This seems unlikely to me, since damaging other parts of the body well enough also disables the mind and damaging the head also disables other bodily functions. Plus it seems a much stronger intuition to me than ‘my feet are made of atoms’ for instance, a belief about the composition of my body that culture gave me early on. I also doubt the ‘I am in my head’ intuition is a direct evolutionary result, since it doesn’t seem useful. I suspect instead that I feel like ‘I’ am located in my head since my eyes are there, and they give me most of the information about my location. I can look down and see my feet a long way away, and it would be complicated to think I was over there. Next I might think I was a person on the other side of the room. I am simply at the center of my perspective of the world.
A way to test this is to ask blind people, though they may get the same effect with their ears. Better would be to ask people who are blind and deaf. I know few of the former and none of the latter – can any of my readers enlighten me?
Also, I’m not sure that the assumption in the original question is right, since at least once I have heard someone imply they feel like they are located elsewhere. Do most people actually feel like their minds are in their heads?