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Sentience is the capacity of living beings to sense objects or other beings in their environment. Usually the term is applied to animals and not to plants. However, some plants do seem to react to prey or to potential enemies as if they were sentient. Sentience refers to feeling or to perceiving. This requires that sensory organs or nerve agents be engaged in the animal that is sensing. Sentience may, but does not necessarily include self-awareness. Many mammals have a sentience that includes a limited degree of self-awareness.

It is widely believed, however, that only humans are conscious of self in connection with time, so that memory and imagination can project mental images back into the history of that being, or into some imagined future state. ...

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