Panpsychism and Pantheism. An Uneasy Alliance?

Roczniki Filozoficzne 71 (2):163-183 (2023)
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Abstract

Although panpsychism and pantheism were seen as natural allies in the past, in contemporary philosophy it is widely common to stress differences rather than similarities between them. As a result, only few panpsychists (e.g. so-called cosmopsychists) acknowledge that their view may imply pantheism. In my paper, I argue that at least some popular versions of panpsychism do lead to pantheism. My main argument is that panpsychism meets the minimal requirements for pantheism, defined as a view that the world is identical to all-encompassing Unity and that this Unity is divine. Although there are kinds of panpsychism that allow one to avoid these consequences, the most popular versions of this view pave the way to pantheism. Many philosophers will find this a serious challenge for panpsychism. On the other hand, it can be argued that this conclusion is not as grim as it seems. An all-encompassing Cosmic Mind has little to do with the God of Abrahamic religions, so it does not necessarily deprive panpsychism of its naturalistic flavor that many find non-negotiable. Be that as it may, the aim of this paper is to turn the attention of proponents of panpsychism to yet another problem they need to solve.

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Jacek Jarocki
Katolicki Uniwersytet Lubelski (KUL)

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