Single Idea 23224

[catalogued under 17. Mind and Body / A. Mind-Body Dualism / 3. Panpsychism]

Full Idea

[Belief in thinking matter] leads to monstrous absurdities. …Every stock and stone would be a percipient and rational creature. …every single Atom of our bodies would be a distinct Animal, endued with self-consciousness and personal sensation of its own.

Gist of Idea

That all matter thinks is absurd, and would make each part of our bodies a distinct self-consciousness


Richard Bentley (Matter and Motion Cannot Think [1692], p.14-15), quoted by Matthew Cobb - The Idea of the Brain 2

Book Reference

Cobb,Matthew: 'The Idea of the Brain' [Penguin 2020], p.45

A Reaction

Sounds correct, though presumably panpsychists don't think the flickers of consciousness in my toenails and hair constitute full-blown persons. I can't imagine what awareness is being claimed for my toenails.