This paper proposes a novel field of technology, “Ghost Engineering”, for enabling us to change our cognitive functions as we hope by modifying our body perception and recognition. Recent embodied cognition studies revealed that our mind can be influenced by the states and recognition of our bodies. Meanwhile, recent development in virtual reality and augmented human technologies enable us to flexibly modify/extend our body itself and recognition of our bodily states. Considering these together, our mind would be designed by utilizing these novel techniques which provide augmented body. In this paper, function of human mind is called as “Ghost” after the concept of “Ghost in the machine” by G. Ryle, and recent achievement, possibilities, tentative limitations, and future implication of Ghost Engineering technologies are introduced based on three categories: Body transformation for modifying our emotion, creativity and empathy; Body multiplexing/unification for enhancing our social abilities; and Body motion modification for enhancing our physical performance via mental support.
Severe pain/pain-related fear prevent improvement of motor function, hence rehabilitation for pain is one of most important matter in clinical practice. Recent studies revealed that pain perception was modulated with multi-modality (e.g. visual information, auditory information). Seeing own body which projected on the mirror or virtual space reportedly attenuate pain perception, such attenuate effect was called “Visually induced analgesia”. Additionally, seeing size/color manipulated own body reportedly attenuated pain perception much further. However, we reported seeing rubber hand which appearance was manipulated to elicit participants negative emotion. We conducted such rubber hand illusion paradigm using “injured rubber hand” to evoke unpleasantness associated with pain, a “hairy rubber hand” to evoke unpleasantness associated with embarrassment, and a “twisted rubber hand” to evoke unpleasantness associated with deviation from the concept of normality. The pain threshold was lower under the “injured rubber hand” condition than with the other condition. Such modulation of pain perception could not be adequately interpreted as cross-modal shaping pain. Therefore, we thought again about “cross-modal shaping pain” in the perspective from projection science, hence then proposed new pain rehabilitation model in the review article. We particularly focused on the process of back-projection which has potential to improve pain-related negative emotion and distorted body image. The proposed rehabilitation model would be an opportunity for future interdisciplinary approaches.
Humans have repeatedly reproduced original stories by interpreting them via new works of art (novels and paintings) through the ages. The motivation behind such reproductions seem to be related to “misprojection” and “fictional projection”. According to Suzuki (2016), who used the term “projection science,” misprojection refers to situations in which internal representations of the real world are projected onto a wrong target, like in a ventriloquism effect, whereas fictional projection refers to situations in which internal representations are projected onto something in the real world despite the absence of actual visual input (e.g., ghost). Women who create fan fiction in which an existing story of friendship or rivalry between two men is changed into a love story between men, and who prefer love stories about homosexual men (referred to in Japanese as “Fujoshi”) are considered to be converting the original work into a reproduction through misprojection and fictional projection. We discuss the similarities between fan fictions by Fujoshi and academic activities, because both fan fictions and scientific hypotheses describe things that do not exist in reality, yet are shared by many people if they are convincing enough. Products of misprojection and fictional projection shared by the community are overwritten and more refined. Previous literatures on “projection science” have focused on each individual, and barely address the dynamics of sharing and the propagation of new works reproduced through misprojection and fictional projection. This review paper analyzes the sharing of misprojection and fictional projection common to art, religion, and academic activities, and proposes that the sharing of those projections is an important function related to various human cognitive activities.
Human cognition necessarily involves the process of projecting internal representations to the real world. However, little effort has been made to explore its process and mechanism. This paper aims at stressing the importance of projection for the total understanding of mind. Next, we propose that there are three types of projection: (proper) projection, misprojection, and fictional projection, depending on the relationships between internal representations and external objects. Then, we discuss possible mechanisms of projection, based on the idea of “overprint” developed by a Japanese philosopher Omori (1982). Finally, we contrast the notion of projection with alternative explanations that deny the notion of projection.
In the mirror visual-feedback paradigm, the mirrored hand image directly affects the sense of motion of the hand hidden behind the mirror (mirror kinesthetic illusion). Our previous study found that the kinesthetic illusion was observed even when both hands were not anatomically congruent, suggesting that showing the hand image in the mirror is not a minimal requirement for inducing the kinesthetic illusion. However, what critical factor yields this illusion in such an incongruent situation remains unclear. This paper introduces a new concept of “hand imaginability” relating to what extent we can imagine an “invisible hand” in the mirror when the mirror does not in fact reflect the hand. This experiment asked participants to report the hidden hand’s subjective speed using the original mirror visual-feedback setup and examined the effect of the handle’s visuo-tactile congruency. The result showed that the kinesthetic illusion became active mainly when the same shaped handle was used on both sides, suggesting a significant contribution by the invisible hand’s imaginability.
We cannot ignore the presence of others in our society. Previous studies have suggested that humans are inclined to feel “the presence” of other people, even when other people do not actually exist. In this review paper, we raise some examples in which various performances of participants were altered by the belief in the presence of others or by mirror-reflections of selves, even if no one do not actually exist. We discuss these mental processes in terms of “projections,” referring to the cognitive processes of projecting someone’s mental representation of events or others onto the real (external) world. The first set of studies demonstrates that other people existing only in our brains could be projected onto the real world without real people existing (fictional projection), such as “the third-man” phenomenon and imaginary companions. The second set illustrates that people sometimes “see” objects or others in the real world with different representations (i.e., misprojection). For instance, children often project imaginary characters onto the real people (e.g., pretended play), and people interact with artificial objects by personification. Furthermore, we have newly demonstrated that the misprojection of other people could “socially” influence individuals’ psychological,physiological, and behavioral states. Our studies show that an imaginary competitor could change the amplitude of the event-related potential P300 and encourage high engagement states as with a real competitor when playing video games. Another series of studies shows that visual information of “someone” is sufficient to produce the “social”facilitation of eating.
Classic research in developmental psychology proposed that children gradually abandon magical or supernatural beliefs and instead acquire a more scientific or natural appreciation of cause and effect. However, recent studies have shown that adults across highly diverse cultural contexts rely on magical beliefs that violate, operate outside of,or are distinct from the empirically verifiable phenomena of the physical or material world. These magical beliefs are examples of mis- or fictional-projection in projection science. The current study reviewed the literature on the development of magical thought including immanent justice reasoning, conceptions of afterlife, and beliefs of magical contagion. Overall, recent studies have suggested that these phenomena of mis- or fictional-projection are pervasive across cultures, and also across developmental stages. Several studies found a U-shaped developmental pattern in which magical thought decreased with age throughout childhood and adolescence, but then increased again among adults, implying that formal education cannot suppress magical mind only temporally. These recent studies suggested that mis- or fictional-projection is a core feature of human cognition.
The concept of immersion into stories refers to the degree to which readers focus their attention fully on a story and experience the situation in the story like a real world. During such an experience, readers project the representations of the story onto the text itself. Although researchers have investigated whether reading narrative fiction is positively associated with social ability, empirical studies do not provide consistent results. We hypothesized that individual differences in story immersion can influence the relationship between reading stories and mindreading. In Study 1 (with adults) and Study 2 (with children), we measured participants’ exposure to stories, their proneness to story immersion, and mindreading. In contrast to previous studies, we did not find significant correlation between exposure to stories and mindreading. Story exposure,however, was associated with the story immersion in both adults and children. Furthermore, the result of Study 1 showed significant correlation between story immersion and mindreading. These results suggest an important role for story immersion on the enhancement of mindreading. This possibility is discussed in light of the methodology used to measure story immersion and developmental changes in reading experience.
In this article, we extensively reviewed film studies from the perspectives of the “projection science” as well as neuroscience, to consider what kind of information in the viewer is projected onto the characters and objects in the fictional world on the screen. The general art, such as films, has not been a major topic in the scientific research, but only recently has grown to form a new academic branch under a new scientific term of “neurocinematics”, which is made up of the words “neuroscience” and “cinematics”. We first outlines what kind of cognitive abilities, such as empathy and absorption, are involved in projection during film viewing. Then, four potential research questions are introduced. The first question is related to what kind of cognitive strategy the viewer should take towards the “transgressive characters”. The second question is about the role of the autobiographical self, which would be projected onto the characters, in appreciating the depth of the fictional world that is not directly presented in the film. The third question is about how it is possible to scientifically address the cognitive effects of “defamiliarization”, which prevents viewers from being sympathetic or absorbed. The fourth question is about the specific problem of films caused by cameras. We further reviewed several studies that have examined viewers’ emotional responses to films such as sadness and crying, laughter and humor, and unpleasantness and fear evoked by violence, to consider such kinds of vicarious emotions felt in cinematic projections in various film genres. Finally, we discuss that there are many interesting research topics in the cognitive science of film and that neurocinematics can be an effective research methodology to further investigating and understanding the role of projection in film viewing.
In this paper, we explicate the ambiguous role of the body in projection science by focusing on the experiments on bodily illusions. First, we trace back to the original experiment of rubber hand illusion, in which the participants feel illusory touch on the synchronously stroked fake hand as well as the sense of ownership on it. From a phenomenological perspective, we clarify that the rubber hand is incorporated into the inner space of one’s own body, and subjectively experienced as located “here” during the illusion. Based on this clarification, we give a new account to the full-body illusion experiments. In the past research, they have been considered as a sort of out-of-body illusion in which one’s sense of self-location is transferred outside the physical body toward the virtual body. However, this does not describe the actual experience of the illusion. What the participants experience in fact is the sense of self-location that tacitly extends from the physical body to the virtual body. After reconsidering these bodily illusions, it is suggested that the spatiality of one’s own body is not the product of projection but the source to be projected onto the spatiality of objects.
Projective test in clinical psychology is utilized for intersubjective understanding between therapist and client. Conventional projective test cannot eliminate the subjective factor of therapist scientifically. In Getting Other Perspective Therapy, participants experienced intersubjectivity with their representations of other, themselves and the relationships in their internal representation system without intervention of therapist. Two kind of projective drawing, two- tree-test invented by us and two-circle-test were carried out before and after getting other perspective therapy. In the result, many of participants join the program how they used to be and their positive images and attachment relationship were correlated in the results, in their drawing.