As I grew up, I was taught that the difference between humans and animals was that human being have free will and animals do not. The basis being animals will act accordingly to the nature of their species. I never fully understood this statement and still wonder whether it is, indeed, a valid claim.
From an evolutionary perspective, we would be regarded as a species at the top of the food chain. The main advantage in our development being our brains.
If we put aside the differences in what human beings are capable of, eg making clothes, machinery, etc, Is there a real distinction between human beings and other animals? Do we really have free will, or an illusion of free will? Or are we behaving, as other animals, in accordance with the nature of our species.
I know this is a big question and could result in a range of debates over my definitions. So for the sake of clarity. Let's keep this question limited to what defines a human brain, as opposed to an animal brain and any evidence that supports any significant difference. Allowing for the fact that the human brain is well developed (as opposed for eg to our canines).
Please advise, if you would like me to alter the format of this post.