We propose that the capacity for a symbolic self (a flexible and multifaceted cognitive
representation of an organism's own attributes) in humans is a product of evolution. In
pursuing this argument, we note that some primates possess rudimentary elements Of a self
(an objectified self) and that the symbolic self (a) is a trait that is widely shared among
humans, (b) serves adaptive functions, and (c) could have evolved in response to
environmental pressures, with ecological and social pressures being of particular relevance.
We suggest that these two environmental pressures caused the symbolic self to emerge in the
Pleistocene epoch as an adaptation for Homo erectus.
I don't really buy this theory, but I hardly see it as an disadvantage.
The animal self should be denied. It is primitive, and does not serve a greater purpose.