from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Philosophy The view that all that exists is ultimately physical.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A philosophical position holding that everything which exists is no more extensive than its physical properties; that is, that there are no kinds of things other than physical things.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. (philosophy) the philosophical theory that matter is the only reality
That doesn't lead to 'physicalism is triumphant' but 'all bets are off'.
In metaphysics this idea is often called physicalism (or materialism), which assumes in a biological context that (a) biological properties supervene on physical properties (i.e., no difference in a biological property without a difference in some underlying physical property), and (b) each particular biological process (or token) is metaphysically identical to some particular physico-chemical process.
I have an interest in the notion of physicalism, but I don't really have a complete grasp of the idea - this idea seems to go a long way toward helping me understand it more.
Edit materialism aka physicalism aka postmodernism aka monism
The same taste for cartoons seems to be in evidence among critics of evolution who imagine that they are attacking some monolithic conspiracy such as “materialism aka physicalism aka postmodernism aka monism.”
This is exactly where materialism aka physicalism aka postmodernism aka monism falls very squarely on its face, which, poetically, is the appropriate attitude for repentance. steve s
This is exactly where materialism aka physicalism aka postmodernism aka monism falls very squarely on its face, which, poetically, is the appropriate attitude for repentance.
-- "Physicalism" seems to be the thesis that there are only: (i) physical entities like elementary particles (or physical strings, or physical fields) or (ii) their wholes (and maybe also (iii) some inner, immanent ontological principles or parts of (i) and (ii), like essences, in case the physicalism is ontologically sophisticated, or even (iv) "supervening" mental entities, properties or states in case the physicalism is a non-reductive one, e.g. like that of John Post).
materialism aka physicalism aka postmodernism aka monism
Neither of these philosophers counts as the sort of whimsical crank that Sal and Soft seem to think anyone arguing against physicalism must be.
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