Perception - what's that?

"Wara neman" - with the old Teutons this meant paying attention to one thing. From this moment to "perceiving, " that is, grasping what something is, many complex processes take place in the body involving many structures. In order to survive, the organism has to find its way in its environment - an environment that is constantly changing and continuously radiating innumerable stimuli. These must be recorded, sorted by importance, processed and interpreted, the brain must decide whether a reaction is necessary and useful and initiate this if necessary. Most of these processes are ongoing and unconscious, with only a tiny part coming into consciousness.

Perception, cognition and apperception

Perception or perception is closely linked to cognition, a term derived from the Latin word for cognition. Although it is defined inconsistently, it usually means the processing and transformation of information in the brain, which is expressed through skills such as learning, memory, attention, planning skills, creativity, reflection or will and constitutes an important part of the individual character.

The conscious grasping of the perceived for arbitrary attention is also called apperception.

With all your senses

In order to receive information from its environment, humans have different sense organs. Each individual specializes in a particular physical or chemical stimulus, and the brain then assembles these pieces of the puzzle to form an overall picture of the environment. To contain the flood of information, stimuli must have a certain intensity. If they are too weak, they are not even perceived, they are too strong - and thus potentially dangerous - they trigger an unspecific pain sensation.

Sensory organs include the visual, auditory, olfactory, equilibrium and taste organs, but also other stimulus receptors, such as the mechanoreceptors, which respond to pressure, contact or stretching, for example in the muscles.

In principle, the sensory cells can be divided into extero and enteroceptors, with extero receptors receiving external stimuli such as light, sound, smells or touch, whereas enteroceptors register stimuli within the body, for example blood pressure.

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