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Fox K.C.R, Christoff K. The Oxford Handbook of Spontaneous Thought: Mind-Wandering, Creativity, and Dreaming

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Fox K.C.R, Christoff K. The Oxford Handbook of Spontaneous Thought: Mind-Wandering, Creativity, and Dreaming
Oxford University Press, 2018. — 654 p.
Where do spontaneous thoughts come from? It may be surprising that the seemingly straightforward answers "from the mind" or "from the brain" are in fact an incredibly recent understanding of the origins of spontaneous thought. For nearly all of human history, our thoughts - especially the most sudden, insightful, and important - were almost universally ascribed to divine or other external sources. Only in the past few centuries have we truly taken responsibility for their own mental content, and finally localized thought to the central nervous system - laying the foundations for a protoscience of spontaneous thought. But enormous questions still loom: what, exactly, is spontaneous thought? Why does our brain engage in spontaneous forms of thinking, and when is this most likely to occur? And perhaps the question most interesting and accessible from a scientific perspective: how does the brain generate and evaluate its own spontaneous creations?
Spontaneous thought includes our daytime fantasies and mind-wandering; the flashes of insight and inspiration familiar to the artist, scientist, and inventor; and the nighttime visions we call dreams.
This Handbook brings together views from neuroscience, psychology, philosophy, phenomenology, history, education, contemplative traditions, and clinical practice to begin to address the ubiquitous but poorly understood mental phenomena that we collectively call 'spontaneous thought.'
In studying such an abstruse and seemingly impractical subject, we should remember that our capacity for spontaneity, originality, and creativity defines us as a species - and as individuals. Spontaneous forms of thought enable us to transcend not only the here and now of perceptual experience, but also the bonds of our deliberately-controlled and goal-directed cognition; they allow the space for us to be other than who we are, and for our minds to think beyond the limitations of our current viewpoints and beliefs.
Introduction: Toward an Interdisciplinary Science of Spontaneous Thought
Why the Mind Wanders: How Spontaneous Thoughts Default Variability May Support Episodic Efficiency and Semantic Optimization
An Exploration/Exploitation Trade-off Between Mind-Wandering and Goal-Directed Thinking
When the Absence of Reasoning Breeds Meaning: Metacognitive Appraisals of Spontaneous Thought
The Mind Wanders with Ease: Low Motivational Intensity Is an Essential Quality of Mind-Wandering
How Does the Brains Spontaneous Activity Generate Our Thoughts? The Spatio temporal Theory of Task-Unrelated Thought (STTT)
Investigating the Elements of Thought: Toward a Component Process Account of Spontaneous Cognition
The Philosophy of Mind-Wandering
Why Is Mind-Wandering Interesting for Philosophers?
Spontaneity in Evolution, Learning, Creativity, and Free Will: Spontaneous Variation in Four Selectionist Phenomena
How Does the Waking and Sleeping Brain Produce Spontaneous Thought and Imagery, and Why?
Spontaneous Thinking in Creative Lives: Building Connections Between Science and History
The Neuroscience of Spontaneous Thought: An Evolving Interdisciplinary Field
Neural Origins of Self-Generated Thought: Insights from Intracranial Electrical Stimulation and Recordings in Humans
Mind-Wandering and Self-Referential Thought
Phenomenological Properties of Mind-Wandering and Daydreaming: A Historical Overview and Functional Correlates
Spontaneous Thought and Goal Pursuit: From Functions Such as Planning to Dysfunctions Such as Rumination
Unraveling What’s on Our Minds: How Different Types of Mind-Wandering Affect Cognition and Behavior
Electrophysiological Evidence for Attentional Decoupling during Mind-Wandering
Mind-Wandering in Educational Settings
Interacting Brain Networks Underlying Creative Cognition and Artistic Performance
Spontaneous and Controlled Processes in Creative Cognition
Wandering and Direction in Creative Production
Flow as Spontaneous Thought: Insight and Implicit Learning
Internal Orientation in Aesthetic Experience
Neuropsychopharmacology of Flexible and Creative Thinking
Dreaming Is an Intensified Form of Mind-Wandering, Based in an Augmented Portions of the Default Network
Neural Correlates of Self-Generated Imagery and Cognition Throughout the Sleep Cycle
Spontaneous Thought, Insight, and Control in Lucid Dreams
Microdream Neurophenomenology: A Paradigm for Dream Neuroscience
Sleep Paralysis: Phenomenology, Neurophysiology, and Treatment
Dreaming and Waking Thought as a Reflection of Memory Consolidation
Involuntary Autobiographical Memories: Spontaneous Recollections of the Past
Potential Clinical Benefits and Risks of Spontaneous Thought: Unconstrained Attention as a Way into and a Way out of Psychological Disharmony
Candidate Mechanisms of Spontaneous Cognition as Revealed by Dementia Syndromes
Rumination Is a Sticky Form of Spontaneous Thought
Pain and Spontaneous Thought
Spontaneous Thought in Contemplative Traditions
Catching the Wandering Mind: Meditation as a Window into Spontaneous Thought
Spontaneous Mental Experiences in Extreme and Unusual Environments
Cultural Neurophenomenology of Psychedelic Thought: Guiding the “Unconstrained” Mind Through Ritual Context
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