We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Damasio does not view consciousness and culture as resulting from some additive ingredient unique to human beings: reason, logic, or language. In this story, a form of awareness appears in all animals equipped with nervous systems. Differences in animal mental life emerge with increasing anatomical complexity. Human beings are sophisticated, feeling, affective, social body-subjects who may speak, write, make art, and build technologies, but we share the homeostatic impulse with all other living things.
"His [Aristotle] discussion centres on the kinds of souls possessed by different kinds of living things, distinguished by their different operations. Thus plants have the capacity for nourishment and reproduction, the minimum that must be possessed by any kind of living organism. Lower animals have, in addition, the powers of sense-perception and self-motion (action) Humans have all these as well as intellect."
Aristotle, "On the Soul", ca. 350 B.C.
This logically leads to Dualism and Vitalism. Not to worry though as those two pernicious doctrines have been thoroughly discredited by many luminaries because reasons.