Nautilus

A Clash of Perspectives on Panpsychism

In recent years the concept of panpsychism, “which entertains the possibility that all matter is imbued with consciousness,” writes Annaka Harris, has been firing up cognitive scientists who plumb the nature of consciousness. Some entertain the possibility with enthusiasm and some entertain the possibility with the enthusiasm of an archer eyeing a choice target. Nautilus has sparked the debate with articles by leading thinkers about panpsychism, which continues this week with two new essays, by, respectively, Harris and science writer George Musser, and a rerun of our most popular essay on the subject, in support of panpsychism, by Norwegian philosopher Hedda Hassel Mørch. To amplify the clash, here are three more perspectives from Nautilus articles and interviews.

AFFINITY WITH NATURE

Philip Goff, author of Galileo’s Error: Foundations for a New Science of Consciousness, philosopher and consciousness researcher at Durham University, United Kingdom:

While materialists and dualists believe that consciousness exists only within the brains of humans and other animals, panpsychists believe that consciousness pervades the universe, and is as basic as mass and charge. If panpsychism is true, the rainforest

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