The Body in a Multisensory World
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The Body in a Multisensory World book
It is our body through which we interact with the environment. We have a very clear sense about who we are in the sense that we know where our body ends, and what body parts we own. Above that, we usually are (or can easily become) aware of where each of our body parts is currently located, and most of our movements seem effortless, whether performed under conscious control or not. When we think about ourselves, we normally perceive our body as a stable entity. For example, when we go to bed, we do not expect that our body will be different when we wake up the next morning. Quite contrary to such introspective assessment, the brain has been found to be surprisingly ‡exible in updating its representation of the body. As an illustration, consider what happens when an arm or leg becomes numb after you have sat or slept in an unsuitable position for too long. Touching the numb foot feels very strange, as if you touch someone else’s foot. When you lift a numb hand with the other hand, it feels far too heavy. Somehow, it feels as if the limb does not belong to the own body.