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Analytic Idealism: A consciousness-only ontology

Dissertation, Radboud University Nijmegen (2019)

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  1. Unconscious Influences on Decision Making: A Critical Review – ERRATUM.Ben R. Newell & David R. Shanks - 2014 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 37 (2):23.
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  • Irreducible Mind: Toward a Psychology for the 21st Century.Edward F. Kelly, Emily Williams Kelly, Adam Crabtree, Alan Gauld & Michael Grosso - 2006 - Lanham, MD 20706, USA: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
    Practically every contemporary mainstream scientist presumes that all aspects of mind are generated by brain activity. We demonstrate the inadequacy of this picture by assembling evidence for a variety of empirical phenomena which it cannot explain. We further show that an alternative picture developed by F. W. H. Myers and William James successfully accommodates these phenomena, ratifies the common sense view of ourselves as causally effective conscious agents, and is fully compatible with contemporary physics and neuroscience.
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  • The End of Time: The Next Revolution in Physics.Julian Barbour - 1999 - Weidenfeld & Nicholson.
    In a revolutionary new book, a theoretical physicist attacks the foundations of modern scientific theory, including the notion of time, as he shares evidence of ...
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  • Appearing Out of Nowhere: The Emergence of Spacetime in Quantum Gravity.Karen Crowther - 2014 - Dissertation, University of Sydney
    Quantum gravity is understood as a theory that, in some sense, unifies general relativity (GR) and quantum theory, and is supposed to replace GR at extremely small distances (high-energies). It may be that quantum gravity represents the breakdown of spacetime geometry described by GR. The relationship between quantum gravity and spacetime has been deemed ``emergence'', and the aim of this thesis is to investigate and explicate this relation. After finding traditional philosophical accounts of emergence to be inappropriate, I develop a (...)
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  • The Feeling of Personal Ownership of One’s Mental States: A Conceptual Argument and Empirical Evidence for an Essential, but Underappreciated, Mechanism of Mind.Stan Klein - 2015 - Psychology of Consciousness: Research, Practice, and Theory 2 (4):355-376.
    I argue that the feeling that one is the owner of his or her mental states is not an intrinsic property of those states. Rather, it consists in a contingent relation between consciousness and its intentional objects. As such, there are (a variety of) circumstances, varying in their interpretive clarity, in which this relation can come undone. When this happens, the content of consciousness still is apprehended, but the feeling that the content “belongs to me” no longer is secured. I (...)
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  • No-Report Paradigms: Extracting the True Neural Correlates of Consciousness.Naotsugu Tsuchiya, Melanie Wilke, Stefan Frässle & Victor A. F. Lamme - 2015 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 19 (12):757-770.
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  • Idealism and the Mind-Body Problem.David Chalmers - forthcoming - In William Seager (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Panpsychism. Routledge.
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  • There Is an ‘Unconscious,’ but It May Well Be Conscious.Bernardo Kastrup - 2017 - Europe's Journal of Psychology 13 (3):559-572.
    Depth psychology finds empirical validation today in a variety of observations that suggest the presence of causally effective mental processes outside conscious experience. I submit that this is due to misinterpretation of the observations: the subset of consciousness called “meta-consciousness” in the literature is often mistaken for consciousness proper, thereby artificially creating space for an “unconscious.” The implied hypothesis is that all mental processes may in fact be conscious, the appearance of unconsciousness arising from our dependence on self-reflective introspection for (...)
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  • Making Sense of the Mental Universe.Bernardo Kastrup - 2017 - Philosophy and Cosmology 19 (1):33-49.
    In 2005, an essay was published in Nature asserting that the universe is mental and that we must abandon our tendency to conceptualize observations as things. Since then, experiments have confirmed that — as predicted by quantum mechanics — reality is contextual, which contradicts at least intuitive formulations of realism and corroborates the hypothesis of a mental universe. Yet, to give this hypothesis a coherent rendering, one must explain how a mental universe can — at least in principle — accommodate (...)
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  • The Universe in Consciousness.Bernardo Kastrup - 2018 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 25 (5-6):125-155.
    I propose an idealist ontology that makes sense of reality in a more parsimonious and empirically rigorous manner than mainstream physicalism, bottom-up panpsychism, and cosmopsychism. The proposed ontology also offers more explanatory power than these three alternatives, in that it does not fall prey to the hard problem of consciousness, the combination problem, or the decombination problem, respectively. It can be summarized as follows: there is only cosmic consciousness. We, as well as all other living organisms, are but dissociated alters (...)
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  • Conflating Abstraction with Empirical Observation: The False Mind-Matter Dichotomy.Bernardo Kastrup - 2018 - Constructivist Foundations 13 (3):341-361.
    > Context • The alleged dichotomy between mind and matter is pervasive. Therefore, the attempt to explain mat- ter in terms of mind (idealism) is often considered a mirror image of that of explaining mind in terms of mat- ter (mainstream physicalism), in the sense of being structurally equivalent despite being reversely arranged. > Problem • I argue that this is an error arising from language artifacts, for dichotomies must reside in the same level of abstraction. > Method • I (...)
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  • An Ontological Solution to the Mind-Body Problem.Bernardo Kastrup - 2017 - Philosophies 2 (2):doi:10.3390/philosophies2020010.
    I argue for an idealist ontology consistent with empirical observations, which seeks to explain the facts of nature more parsimoniously than physicalism and bottom-up panpsychism. This ontology also attempts to offer more explanatory power than both physicalism and bottom-up panpsychism, in that it does not fall prey to either the ‘hard problem of consciousness’ or the ‘subject combination problem’, respectively. It can be summarized as follows: spatially unbound consciousness is posited to be nature’s sole ontological primitive. We, as well as (...)
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  • Brief Peeks Beyond: Critical Essays on Metaphysics, Neuroscience, Free Will, Skepticism and Culture.Bernardo Kastrup - 2015 - Winchester, UK: Iff Books.
    This book is a multi-faceted exploration and critique of the human condition as it is presently manifested. It addresses science and philosophy, explores the underlying nature of reality, the state of our society and culture, the influence of the mainstream media, the nature of free will and a number of other topics. Each of these examinations contributes an angle to an emerging idea gestalt that challenges present mainstream views and behaviors and offers a sane alternative. The book is organized as (...)
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  • More Than Allegory: On Religious Myth, Truth and Belief.Bernardo Kastrup - 2016 - Winchester, UK: Iff Books.
    This book is a three-part journey into the rabbit hole we call the nature of reality. Its ultimate destination is a plausible, living validation of transcendence. Each of its three parts is like a turn of a spiral, exploring recurring ideas through the prisms of religious myth, truth and belief, respectively. With each turn, the book seeks to convey a more nuanced and complete understanding of the many facets of transcendence. Part I puts forward the controversial notion that many religious (...)
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  • Self-Transcendence Correlates with Brain Function Impairment.Bernardo Kastrup - 2017 - Journal of Cognition and Neuroethics 4 (3):33-42.
    A broad pattern of correlations between mechanisms of brain function impairment and self-transcendence is shown. The pattern includes such mechanisms as cerebral hypoxia, physiological stress, transcranial magnetic stimulation, trance-induced physiological effects, the action of psychoactive substances and even physical trauma to the brain. In all these cases, subjects report self-transcending experiences o en described as ‘mystical’ and ‘awareness-expanding,’ as well as self-transcending skills o en described as ‘savant.’ The idea that these correlations could be rather trivially accounted for on the (...)
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  • Why Materialism Is Baloney: How True Skeptics Know There is No Death and Fathom Answers to Life, the Universe, and Everything.Bernardo Kastrup - 2014 - Winchester, UK: Iff Books.
    The present framing of the cultural debate in terms of materialism versus religion has allowed materialism to go unchallenged as the only rationally-viable metaphysics. This book seeks to change this. It uncovers the absurd implications of materialism and then, uniquely, presents a hard-nosed non-materialist metaphysics substantiated by skepticism, hard empirical evidence, and clear logical argumentation. It lays out a coherent framework upon which one can interpret and make sense of every natural phenomenon and physical law, as well as the modalities (...)
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  • What Neuroimaging of the Psychedelic State Tells Us About the Mind-Body Problem.Bernardo Kastrup - 2016 - Journal of Cognition and Neuroethics 4 (2):1-9.
    Recent neuroimaging studies of the psychedelic state, which have commanded great media attention, are reviewed. They show that psychedelic trances are consistently accompanied by broad reductions in brain activity, despite their experiential richness. This result is at least counterintuitive from the perspective of mainstream physicalism, according to which subjective experience is entirely constituted by brain activity. In this brief analysis, the generic implications of physicalism regarding the relationship between the richness of experience and brain activity levels are rigorously examined from (...)
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  • The Information Integration Theory of Consciousness.Giulio Tononi - 2007 - In Max Velmans & Susan Schneider (eds.), The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness. Blackwell. pp. 287--299.
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  • Unconscious Cerebral Initiative and the Role of Conscious Will in Voluntary Action.Benjamin Libet - 1985 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 8 (4):529-66.
    Voluntary acts are preceded by electrophysiological (RPs). With spontaneous acts involving no preplanning, the main negative RP shift begins at about200 ms. Control experiments, in which a skin stimulus was timed (S), helped evaluate each subject's error in reporting the clock times for awareness of any perceived event.
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  • On the Plausibility of Idealism: Refuting Criticisms.Bernardo Kastrup - 2017 - Disputatio 9 (44):13-34.
    Several alternatives vie today for recognition as the most plausible ontology, from physicalism to panpsychism. By and large, these ontologies entail that physical structures circumscribe consciousness by bearing phenomenal properties within their physical boundaries. The ontology of idealism, on the other hand, entails that all physical structures are circumscribed by consciousness in that they exist solely as phenomenality in the first place. Unlike the other alternatives, however, idealism is often considered implausible today, particularly by analytic philosophers. A reason for this (...)
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  • The Embodied Mind: Cognitive Science and Human Experience.Francisco Varela, Evan Thompson & Eleanor Rosch - 1991 - MIT Press.
    The Embodied Mind provides a unique, sophisticated treatment of the spontaneous and reflective dimension of human experience.
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  • On a Confusion About a Function of Consciousness.Ned Block - 1995 - Brain and Behavioral Sciences 18 (2):227-–247.
    Consciousness is a mongrel concept: there are a number of very different "consciousnesses." Phenomenal consciousness is experience; the phenomenally conscious aspect of a state is what it is like to be in that state. The mark of access-consciousness, by contrast, is availability for use in reasoning and rationally guiding speech and action. These concepts are often partly or totally conflated, with bad results. This target article uses as an example a form of reasoning about a function of "consciousness" based on (...)
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  • A Place for Consciousness: Probing the Deep Structure of the Natural World.Gregg H. Rosenberg - 2004 - Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    What place does consciousness have in the natural world? If we reject materialism, could there be a credible alternative? In one classic example, philosophers ask whether we can ever know what is it is like for bats to sense the world using sonar. It seems obvious to many that any amount of information about a bat's physical structure and information processing leaves us guessing about the central questions concerning the character of its experience. A Place for Consciousness begins with reflections (...)
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  • Panpsychism and Panprotopsychism.David Chalmers - 2013 - Amherst Lecture in Philosophy 8.
    I present an argument for panpsychism: the thesis that everything is conscious, or at least that fundamental physical entities are conscious. The argument takes a Hegelian dialectical form. Panpsychism emerges as a synthesis of the thesis of materalism and the antithesis of dualism. In particular, the key premises of the causal argument for materialism and the conceivability argument for dualism are all accommodated by a certain version of panpsychism. This synthesis has its own antithesis in turn: panprotopsychism, the thesis that (...)
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  • Strong and Weak Emergence.David J. Chalmers - 2006 - In P. Davies & P. Clayton (eds.), The Re-Emergence of Emergence: The Emergentist Hypothesis From Science to Religion. Oxford University Press.
    The term ‘emergence’ often causes confusion in science and philosophy, as it is used to express at least two quite different concepts. We can label these concepts _strong_ _emergence_ and _weak emergence_. Both of these concepts are important, but it is vital to keep them separate.
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  • Monism: The Priority of the Whole.Jonathan Schaffer - 2010 - Philosophical Review 119 (1):31-76.
    Consider a circle and a pair of its semicircles. Which is prior, the whole or its parts? Are the semicircles dependent abstractions from their whole, or is the circle a derivative construction from its parts? Now in place of the circle consider the entire cosmos (the ultimate concrete whole), and in place of the pair of semicircles consider the myriad particles (the ultimate concrete parts). Which if either is ultimately prior, the one ultimate whole or its many ultimate parts?
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  • Consciousness Explained.William G. Lycan & Daniel C. Dennett - 1993 - Philosophical Review 102 (3):424.
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  • Unsnarling the World–Knot: Consciousness, Freedom, and the Mind–Body Problem. [REVIEW]David Griffin - 1998 - Religious Studies 34 (3):353-367.
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  • The Conscious Mind: In Search of a Fundamental Theory.David J. Chalmers - 1996 - Oxford University Press.
    The book is an extended study of the problem of consciousness. After setting up the problem, I argue that reductive explanation of consciousness is impossible , and that if one takes consciousness seriously, one has to go beyond a strict materialist framework. In the second half of the book, I move toward a positive theory of consciousness with fundamental laws linking the physical and the experiential in a systematic way. Finally, I use the ideas and arguments developed earlier to defend (...)
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  • Consciousness Explained.Daniel C. DENNETT - 1991 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 53 (4):905-910.
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  • The Book; on the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are.Alan Watts - 1966 - New York: Vintage Books.
    Drawing upon ancient Hindu philosophy, the author explores the human psyche and the importance of personal identity.
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  • The Primacy of Perception and Other Essays on Phenomenological Psychology, the Philosophy of Art, History and Politics.Maurice Merleau-Ponty - 1964 - Northwestern University Press.
    This book consists of Northwestern University Studies in Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy.
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  • Physicalism.Daniel Stoljar - 2010 - Routledge.
    The standard picture -- Form and alternatives -- The starting point view -- The theory view -- Hempel's dilemma -- The necessity view -- Is necessitation necessary? -- Is necessitation sufficient? -- Skeptics and true believers -- Arguments against physicalism -- Arguments for physicalism.
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  • Can Panpsychism Bridge the Explanatory Gap?Peter Carruthers & Elizabeth Schechter - 2006 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 13 (10-11):32-39.
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  • The Sense of the World.Andrés Ortiz-Osés - 2007 - Davies Group.
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  • The Combination Problem for Panpsychism.David Chalmers - 2016 - In Godehard Brüntrup & Ludwig Jaskolla (eds.), Panpsychism. Oxford University Press.
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  • Consciousness and its Place in Nature.David J. Chalmers - 2003 - In Stephen P. Stich & Ted A. Warfield (eds.), Blackwell Guide to the Philosophy of Mind. Blackwell. pp. 102--142.
    Consciousness fits uneasily into our conception of the natural world. On the most common conception of nature, the natural world is the physical world. But on the most common conception of consciousness, it is not easy to see how it could be part of the physical world. So it seems that to find a place for consciousness within the natural order, we must either revise our conception of consciousness, or revise our conception of nature. In twentieth-century philosophy, this dilemma is (...)
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  • Re-Representing Consciousness: Dissociations Between Experience and Meta-Consciousness.Jonathan W. Schooler - 2002 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 6 (8):339-344.
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  • Can Quantum-Mechanical Description of Physical Reality Be Considered Complete?Albert Einstein, Boris Podolsky & Nathan Rosen - 1935 - Physical Review (47):777-780.
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  • On the Einstein Podolsky Rosen Paradox.J. S. Bell - 2004 [1964] - In Speakable and Unspeakable in Quantum Mechanics. Cambridge University Press. pp. 14--21.
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  • What is It Like to Be a Bat.Thomas Nagel - 1974 - E-Journal Philosophie der Psychologie 5.
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  • Materialism and Qualia: The Explanatory Gap.Joseph Levine - 1983 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 64 (October):354-61.
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  • The Real Combination Problem: Panpsychism, Micro-Subjects, and Emergence.Sam Coleman - 2013 - Erkenntnis (1):1-26.
    Taking their motivation from the perceived failure of the reductive physicalist project concerning consciousness, panpsychists ascribe subjectivity to fundamental material entities in order to account for macro-consciousness. But there exists an unresolved tension within the mainstream panpsychist position, the seriousness of which has yet to be appreciated. I capture this tension as a dilemma, and offer advice to panpsychists on how to resolve it. The dilemma is as follows: Panpsychists take the micro-material realm to feature phenomenal properties, plus micro-subjects to (...)
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  • Does Consciousness Disappear in Dreamless Sleep?Jennifer M. Windt, Tore Nielsen & Evan Thompson - 2016 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 20 (12):871-882.
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  • Cosmopsychism: A Holistic Approach to the Metaphysics of Experience.Itay Shani - 2015 - Philosophical Papers 44 (3):389-437.
    This paper introduces cosmopsychism as a holistic alternative to atomistic panpsychism, and as a general perspective on the metaphysics of consciousness. I begin with some necessary background details concerning contemporary panpsychism and the problems it faces, and then proceed to the theory itself. The starting point of the theory is the assumption that an all pervading cosmic consciousness is the single ontological ultimate. From this assumption, a panpsychist ontology of mind with distinct holistic overtones is developed. In particular, I argue (...)
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  • The Scientific Image by Bas C. Van Fraassen. [REVIEW]Michael Friedman - 1982 - Journal of Philosophy 79 (5):274-283.
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  • Nonlocal Hidden-Variable Theories and Quantum Mechanics: An Incompatibility Theorem. [REVIEW]A. J. Leggett - 2003 - Foundations of Physics 33 (10):1469-1493.
    It is argued that among possible nonlocal hidden-variable theories a particular class (called here “crypto-nonlocal” or CN) is relatively plausible on physical grounds. CN theories have the property that (for example) the two photons emitted in an atomic cascade process are indistinguishable in their individual statistical properties from photons emitted singly, and that in the latter case the effects of nonlocality are unobservable. It is demonstrated that all CN theories are constrained by inequalities which are violated by the quantum-mechanical predictions; (...)
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  • Dualism.Howard Robinson - 2002 - In Stephen P. Stich & Ted A. Warfield (eds.), Blackwell Guide to Philosophy of Mind. Blackwell. pp. 85--101.
    This entry concerns dualism in the philosophy of mind. The term ‘dualism’ has a variety of uses in the history of thought. In general, the idea is that, for some particular domain, there are two fundamental kinds or categories of things or principles. In theology, for example a ‘dualist’ is someone who believes that Good and Evil — or God and the Devil — are independent and more or less equal forces in the world. Dualism contrasts with monism, which is (...)
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  • A Mathematical Theory of Communication.Claude E. Shannon - 1948 - Bell System Technical Journal 27:379–423.
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  • The Source of Consciousness.Ken A. Paller & Satoru Suzuki - 2014 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 18 (8):387-389.
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