Thursday, November 20, 2008

Studying Mental States of Others through Expression | How We Introspect | The Mind and Its Education

Studying Mental States of Others through Expression.—Although I can meet only my own mind face to face, I am, nevertheless, under the necessity of judging your mental states and knowing what is taking place in your consciousness. For in order to work successfully with you, in order to teach you, understand you, control you or obey you, be your friend or enemy, or associate with you in any other way, I must know you. But the real you that I must know is hidden behind the physical mask that we call the body. I must, therefore, be able to understand your states of consciousness as they are reflected in your bodily expressions. Your face, form, gesture, speech, the tone of voice, laughter and tears, the poise of attention, the droop of grief, the tenseness of anger and start of fear,—all these tell the story of the mental state that lies behind the senses. These various expressions are the pictures on the screen by which your mind reveals itself to others; they are the language by which the inner self speaks to the world without.

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