panpsychism

panpsychism
pan·psy·chism (păn-sīʹkĭz'əm) n.
The view that all matter has consciousness.

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      (from Greek pan, “all”; psychē, “soul”), a philosophical theory asserting that a plurality of separate and distinct psychic beings or minds constitute reality. Panpsychism is distinguished from hylozoism (all matter is living) and pantheism (everything is God). For Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (Leibniz, Gottfried Wilhelm), the 17th-century German philosopher and a typical panpsychist, the world is composed of atoms of energy that are psychic. These monads (monad) have different levels of consciousness: in inorganic reality they are sleeping, in animals they are dreaming, in human beings they are waking; God is the fully conscious monad.

      In 19th-century Germany, Arthur Schopenhauer (Schopenhauer, Arthur) asserted that the inner nature of all things is will—a panpsychistic thesis. And Gustav Theodor Fechner (Fechner, Gustav Theodor), the founder of experimental psychology and an ardent defender of panpsychism, contended that even trees are sentient and conscious. In the United States, Josiah Royce (Royce, Josiah), an absolute idealist, not only followed Fechner in affirming that heavenly bodies have souls but also adopted a unique theory that each species of animal is a single conscious individual—incorporating into itself the individual souls of each of its members.

      Among other 20th-century philosophers, Alfred North Whitehead (Whitehead, Alfred North) may fittingly be called a panpsychist inasmuch as in his philosophy each actual entity is capable of prehensions that involve feelings, emotions, consciousness, and so on.

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • Panpsychism — Panpsychism, in philosophy, is either the view that all parts of matter involve mind, or the more holistic view that the whole universe is an organism that possesses a mind (see Pantheism and Panentheism). It is thus a stronger and more ambitious …   Wikipedia

  • Panpsychism — • A philosophical theory which holds that everything in the universe, inorganic and organic, has some degree of consciousness Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Panpsychism     Panpsychism …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Panpsychism — Pan*psy chism, n. [See {Pan }; {Psychic}.] The theory that all nature is psychical or has a psychical aspect; the theory that every particle of matter has a psychical character or aspect. {Pan*psy chic}, a. {Pan*psy chist}, n. {Pan psy*chis tic} …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Panpsychism — either the view that all parts of matter involve mind, or the more holistic view that the whole universe is an organism that possesses a mind. It is thus a stronger and more ambitious view than hylozoism, which holds only that all things are… …   Mini philosophy glossary

  • panpsychism — noun a) A philosophy which holds that all parts of matter involve mind. b) A philosophy which holds that the whole universe is an organism that possesses a mind …   Wiktionary

  • panpsychism — Either the view that all parts of matter involve consciousness, or the more holistic view that the whole world ‘is but the veil of an infinite realm of mental life’ ( Lotze ). The world, or nature, produces living creatures, and accordingly ought …   Philosophy dictionary

  • panpsychism — theory that all nature has a psychic side Philosophical Isms …   Phrontistery dictionary

  • panpsychism — n. theory and philosophy that everything in the world has a consciousness and a psychic side …   English contemporary dictionary

  • panpsychism — [pan sʌɪkɪz(ə)m] noun the doctrine or belief that everything material, however small, has an element of individual consciousness. Derivatives panpsychist adjective &noun …   English new terms dictionary

  • panpsychism — pan·psychism …   English syllables

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