Soul-Chaplain Institute - Regenerating the Noosphere
For no light matter is at stake; the question concerns the very manner in which human lfe is to be lived.
"Tell me what you pay attention to - I will tell you what you are"
Jose Ortega y Gasset
Shared attention
The emergence of neuronal and cognitive resonances

Co-creating meaning since 2001     
"All our words are but crumbs falling from the feast of our mind"
Khalil Gibran
What is shared attention?
Shared attention is an interaction between two or more individuals collectively responding to the same stimulus. It is an emotion-related process.
Two chimpanzees individually watching a leopard are not sharing their attention; but if one alerts the other to the leopard then they are sharing attention.
Two people watching a film are NOT sharing attention - but two people watching the film and commenting on it are sharing attention.
Shared attention is always multipartite; there will be at least two individuals and acommon activating stimulus.
Shared attention is essential for all working groups, seminars and discussions - and the ability to generate and control shared attention is essential for all leaders, teachers, facilitators and effective parents. It is central to Relationship Based Pedagogy and learning.
Shared attention is generated through mirror neurons and neuronal resonance.
What is neuronal resonance?
Coordination of neuronal functioning between brain areas depends on them working in synchrony - neurons must be firing at the same rate i.e. they must be in resonance. Such resonances are observed in coordinations between areas within the same brain, but they are also observed in coordinations between corresponding areas in different brains that are in communication.
What is cognitive resonance?
Cognitive resonance occurs when two or more brains begin to think the same things or in the same way. Cognitive resonance can manifest itself as agreement and harmony, or at the extreme, as mindless conformity of behaviour, attitude and opinion.
Cognitive resonance is thus the goal of most human interactions, and the achievement of harmonious cognitive resonance should be an explicit and central aim in the functioning of all leaders and educators. On the darker side, it is also the ultimate aim of the demagogue and the tyrant.
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