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On why Idealism is superior to Physicalism and


Micropsychism
Bernardo Kastrup
Abstract: I argue for a coherent Idealist metaphysics that explains reality in a more parsimonious and empirically
honest manner than mainstream Physicalism and Micropsychism. This Idealist metaphysics also offers more
explanatory power than both Physicalism and Micropsychism, in that it doesnt fall prey to either the hard
problem of consciousness or the combination problem, respectively. It can be summarized as follows: there is
only universal consciousness. We, as well as all other living creatures, are but dissociated alters of universal
consciousness, surrounded like islands by the ocean of its mentation. The inanimate universe we see around us is
the extrinsic view of thoughts and emotions in universal consciousness. The living creatures we share the world
with are the extrinsic views of other dissociated alters of universal consciousness. A physical world independent of
consciousness is a mistaken intellectual abstraction.
Keywords: metaphysics, ontology, idealism, panpsychism, micropsychism, physicalism, mind-body problem, hard
problem of consciousness, combination problem

I. INTRODUCTION
This article elaborates on how the most parsimonious possible metaphysics can be derived, through rigorous
reasoning, from the basic empirical facts available to observation. It starts by stating these facts in a way that avoids any a
priori metaphysical assumption or bias. A series of ontological inferences is then made, based on empirical honesty,
logical consistency and parsimony. For clarity, the argument is constructed on a point-by-point basis. Explicit
comparisons are made between the metaphysics so derived and those of Physicalism and Micropsychism (which I
interpret to comprise Micropanpsychism), in terms of parsimony and explanatory power.

II. THE FACTS OF NATURE


Let us start by neutrally and precisely stating nine things we know about the universe, irrespective of theory or
metaphysics. These are empirical facts accessible to anyone through simple observation:
[1]
[2]
[3]
[4]
[5]

[6]

[7]

There is subjective experience. This is the primary and incontrovertible datum of existence.
From [1], there is that which experiences, since experience entails an experiencer.1 For ease of reference, I
will henceforth refer to That Which Experiences simply as TWE.
A persons experiences are private, in the sense that other people do not have direct access to them.
Measurable electrochemical activity in a persons nervous system correlates with the persons private
experiences.
Measurements of the activity of a persons nervous system can only be known insofar as they are
themselves experienced in the form of perceptions. For instance, if a neurologist performs a functional scan
or an electroencephalogram (EEG) of your brain, the results are only known insofar as the neurologistor
someone elsesees them consciously.
From [4] and [5], there is at least a partial correspondence between two different types of experience: the
conscious perceptions of activity in a persons nervous system, and the private thoughts, emotions and
perceptions of that person. Let us call them the extrinsic and intrinsic views, respectively. Both views, of
course, are still experiences insofar as they can be known.
Nervous systems have the same essential naturethat is, they belong to the same ontological classas the
rest of the physical universe. After all, nervous systems are physical systems. They are composed of the
same types of fundamental subatomic particles and force fields that make up the universe as a whole.

Gottlob Frege said: An experience is impossible without an experient (Frege 1956, p. 18).

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[8]
[9]

We all inhabit the same universe, despite the different points-of-view from which each person observes it
and the different ways in which each person interacts with it.
The universe unfolds according to patterns and regularities independent of our personal volition. In other
words, human beings cannot change the laws of nature by wishing them to be different.

III. AN IDEALIST METAPHYSICS


The question now is: What is the most parsimonious metaphysical explanation for these nine facts? Here I use the
qualifier parsimonious in the sense of Occams Razor: the most parsimonious metaphysics is that which requires the
lowest number of ontological postulates whilst maintaining sufficient explanatory power to make sense of all known facts.
In what follows, I offer nine inferences that, together, aim to answer this question:
[10]

[11]

[12]

[13]

The most parsimonious ontological underpinning for facts [1] and [2] is that experiences are patterns of
excitation of TWE. This avoids the need to postulate two different ontological classes for TWE and
experiences, respectively. As excitations of TWE, experiences arent distinct from it in exactly the same
way that ripples arent distinct from water, or that a dance isnt distinct from the dancer. There is nothing to
ripples but water in motion. There is nothing to a dance but the dancer in motion. In exactly the same way,
there is nothing to experience but TWE in motion. Ripples, dances and experiences are merely patterns of
excitation of water, dancers and TWE, respectively.
From [4], we know that a nervous system is sentient. In other words, there is something it is like to be a
nervous system. Somehow, the activity of these systems is accompanied by inner experience. One
possibility is that there is something about the particular structure or function of nervous systems that
causes sentience. However, it is impossible to conceiveeven in principleof how or why any particular
structural or functional arrangement of physical elements would cause sentience (Strawson et al. 2006, pp.
2-30). This is a well-known problem in neuroscience and philosophy of mind, often referred to as the hard
problem of consciousness. The qualities of experience are irreducible to the observable parameters of
physical arrangementswhatever the arrangement isin the sense that it is impossible to deduce those
qualitieseven in principlefrom these parameters (Chalmers 2003). From this and [10], we must
conclude that TWE is irreducible. TWE is thus an ontological primitive.
From [4], [7] and [11], we must also conclude that TWE is coextensive with the universe as a whole. After
all, since sentience cannot be caused by local physical arrangements ([11]), and since nervous systems
which are sentient ([4])are of the same physical nature as the universe as a whole ([7]), it follows that the
latter must also be sentient. Rejecting this conclusion entails accepting a completely arbitrary discontinuity
in nature. As such, the physical universe must be, in at least some sense, akin to a cosmic nervous system. Is
there any circumstantial evidence for this? As it turns out, there is: a study has shown surprising and as-ofyet unexplained similarities between the structure and growth patterns of the cosmos and those of biological
nervous systems (Krioukov 2012).
Inference [12] asserts that TWE is coextensive with the entire universe. However, from [3] we know that
people have separate, private inner experiences. My personal inner experiences are surely not the same as
yours. Moreover, I am not aware of what is going on in the universe as a whole and, presumably, neither are
you. To reconcile these facts with inference [12], we need to consider a common mental phenomenon called
dissociation. For instance, a person suffering from Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) exhibits multiple,
disjoint centers of experience called alters. Each alter experiences the world as a separate subject,
remaining largely unaware ofthat is, dissociated fromthe inner experiences of other alters (Braude
1991). So even while granting that TWE is co-extensive with the universe as a whole, we can still
coherently explain the private character of our inner experiences by inferring that there is a sense in which
we are dissociated alters of TWE. Indeed, dissociation elegantly explains fact [3] while reconciling it with
inference [12].

There has been debate about the authenticity of DID as a psychiatric phenomenon. After all, it is conceivable that
patients could fake it. Recent research, however, confirms DIDs legitimacy. For instance, in 2015 doctors reported on the
case of a German woman who exhibited a variety of alters. Peculiarly, some of her alters claimed to be blind while others
could see normally. Through EEGs, the doctors were able to ascertain that the brain activity normally associated with
sight wasnt present while a blind alter was in control of the womans body, even though her eyes were open. When a
sighted alter assumed control, the usual brain activity returned (Strasburger and Waldvogel 2015). This is a sobering
result that shows the literally blinding power of dissociation. In another study, doctors performed functional brain scans
on both DID patients and actors simulating DID. The scans of the actual patients displayed clear and significant
differences when compared to those of the actors (Schlumpf et al. 2014). This study is interesting not only for confirming
the authenticity of DID, but also for showing that dissociation has an extrinsic view. In other words, there is something
dissociation looks like when observed from the outside, through a brain scanner. The significance I see in this will become
clear shortly. For now, the point is that dissociation is an empirically established phenomenon known to occur in mental

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space. And since TWE is universal mental space ([12]), it is empirically coherent to infer that dissociation can happen at a
universal level as well.
Inference [13] allows discrete centers of experience to form within the all-encompassing and otherwise unitary
TWE, through top-down dissociation. The challenge we must now tackle is the so-called boundary problem for
experiencing subjects (Rosenberg 2004, pp. 77-90): What physical arrangements in nature correspond to dissociated
alters of TWE? We know that we, human beings, do. Do animals too? What about plants? Rocks? Atoms? Subatomic
particles?
[14]

As Gregg Rosenberg put it, we must find something in nature to ground [the boundaries of] an
experiencing subject (Rosenberg 2004, p. 80)that is, the boundaries of a dissociated alter of TWE. This
something in nature must be a physical arrangement whose structural and functional characteristics allow
us to differentiate it from everything else. After all, only on the basis of this differentiation can we delineate
the boundaries of dissociated alters from an extrinsic perspective. But just what is the physical arrangement
Rosenberg was looking for? The answer seems empirically obvious to me: metabolizing life. My reasoning
is simple: since we only have intrinsic access to ourselves, we are the only physical arrangements known to
have dissociated streams of inner experiences. We also know that our metabolism is essential for the
maintenance of this dissociation, for when it slows down or stops the dissociation seems to reduce or end
(Kastrup 2014, pp. 42-50). These observations alone suggest strongly that metabolizing life is the physical
arrangement corresponding to alters of TWE. But there is more: insofar as it resembles our own, the
extrinsic behavior of all metabolizing organisms is also suggestive of their having dissociated streams of
inner experiences analogous to ours in some sense. This is obvious enough for cats and dogs, butyou
might askwhat about single-celled organisms such as amoebae? Well, consider this: many types of
amoeba construct glassy shells by picking up sand grains from the mud in which they live. The typical
Difflugia shell, for example, is shaped like a vase, and has a remarkable symmetry (Ford 2010, p. 26).
Clearly, thus, even single-celled organisms exhibit extrinsic behavior somewhat analogous to our own,
further suggesting that they, too, have dissociated streams of inner experiences. Of course, the same cannot
be said of any inanimate object or phenomenon that hasnt been engineered by humans. Finally, there is no
doubt that metabolism is a highly differentiated process. Consider DNA, morphogenesis, transcription,
protein folding, mitosis, etc.: nothing else in nature exhibits structural and functional characteristics such as
these. And it is these characteristics that unify all metabolizing life into a unique, clearly distinct natural
category, despite the wildly different forms organisms can take. This category is the unambiguously
demarcated something in nature that Rosenberg was looking for. Metabolizing organisms are the extrinsic
view of dissociated alters of TWE.

By taking complete living beings to be unitary experiencing subjects, inference [14] avoids the so-called
combination problem2 that plagues Micropsychism. Increasingly popular in academia, the metaphysics of
Micropsychism posits that entities as small as subatomic particles are experiencing subjects in their own merit (Strawson
et al. 2006, pp. 24-29). In other words, electrons are supposed to be sentient. Micropsychists imagine that the unitary
consciousness of more complex experiencing subjects, such as human beings, arise from bottom-up combination of
countless simpler subjects. Leaving aside the complete lack of empirical substantiation for the alleged sentience of
electrons, the problem is that the bottom-up combination of subjects is an unexplainable process, perhaps even incoherent
(Coleman 2014). It is as much an appeal to magic as the hard problem of consciousness (Goff 2009). Inference [14]
circumvents this altogether by positing that top-down dissociationinstead of bottom-up combinationhappens exactly
at the level of individual living creatures with unitary consciousness, such as ourselves. And unlike bottom-up
combination, we actually understand and have plenty of empirical evidence for top-down dissociation, as discussed in the
context of inference [13].
The motivation for Micropsychism is that, undeniably, subatomic particles are the discernible pixels of the
physical world we see. But to imagine, for this reason alone, that the awareness of living beings is composed of myriad
subatomic-level subjects makes a rather simple mistake: it attributes to TWE itself a structure that is discernible only in
the excitations of TWEthat is, in our experience of the physical world ([10]). This is entirely equivalent to saying, for
instance, that water is made of ripples simply because one can discern individual ripples in water. Obviously, individual
ripples make up the structure of the movements of water, not of water itself. In exactly the same way, subatomic particles
are the pixels of the observable movements of TWE, not the building blocks of TWE itself. Our unitary awareness is not
composed of micro-subjects for exactly the same reason that water is not made up of ripples.
The essence of inference [14] is that there is something a dissociated alter of TWE looks likenamely, a
metabolizing body. By now this shouldnt come as a surprise: recall that, as per inference [12], the universe as a whole is
akin to a cosmic nervous system. Recall also that a study has shown that dissociative processes in the nervous systems of
DID patients have a distinct extrinsic view, detectable by brain scans. Therefore, it is only natural that dissociation in the
cosmic nervous system should also have a distinct extrinsic view. It so happens that this view is what we call

Skrbina describes the combination problem as the question of how many, small atomic experiencers can combine to form, for
example, our singular sense of consciousness (Strawson et al. 2006, p. 155).

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metabolizing organisms. As such, living bodies are to universal-level dissociation in TWE as certain patterns of brain
activity are to DID patients. In the case of the cosmic nervous system, however, we dont need brain scanners, since we
are already inside the nervous system. To see the extrinsic views of dissociated alters within it we just need to look
around: the people, cats, dogs, insects, plants, amoebae and all other life forms we see around are the diagnostic images of
cosmic DID. Each corresponds to at least one alter.
For emphasis: there are two ways in which a dissociated alter of TWE can be experienced. One is the extrinsic
viewthat is, the metabolizing organisms we can perceive around us. The other is the intrinsic view, an example of which
is your own stream of inner experiences as a dissociated alter yourself. Moreover, unless we are prepared to accept an
arbitrary discontinuity in nature, the same must apply to the universe as a whole: its extrinsic view is the cosmos we can
perceive around us, while its intrinsic view is the stream of inner experiences of TWE as a whole.
One may feel tempted to conclude that this implies some form of dual-aspect monism, a la Spinoza (Skrbina 2007,
p. 88), whereby intrinsic and extrinsic views are irreducible to one another. What I will attempt to show next is that this
isnt so: extrinsic views can in fact be reduced to intrinsic views.
Before I continue, however, notice that it is perceptions that carry the extrinsic views, not thoughts or emotions. If
all you experienced were thoughts and emotions, you would have no extrinsic point-of-view at all, only an intrinsic one.
Therefore, if I can coherently reduce perceptions to thoughts and emotionsthat is, explain perceptions in terms of
thoughts and emotionsI will have shown that nature, at its most fundamental level, consists of purely intrinsic views.
[15]

Before its first alter formed, I submit that TWE experienced only abstract thoughts and emotions. There
were no perceptions. The formation of the first alter then demarcated a boundary separating the experiences
within the alter from those outside the alter (all of which were, of course, still within TWE). This newly
formed boundary is what enabled perceptions to arise: the abstract thoughts and emotions surrounding the
alter stimulated its boundary from the outside, which in turn impinged on the alters internal dynamics.
What we call perception is the experience of this impingement. More generally, the perceptions of an alter
can be reduced to the cognitive activity of TWE that impinges on the alter from the outside. See Figure 1.

TWE
Alter
Thoughts

Thoughts
Emo+ons

Emo+ons

Figure 1. Thoughts and emotions in TWE causing perceptions in a dissociated alter.

The extrinsic view of an alters boundary is, of course, an organisms sense organs. In our case, these are our skin,
eyes, ears, nose and tongue. Therefore, even if the outside stimulation is very faint and subtle, evolution has had billions
of years to optimize the sensitivity of our sense organsour alters boundariesto pick up on these hypothetically faint
signals.
Two questions can be raised at this point: First, how can a mere dissociative boundary give rise to a qualitatively
different type of experience? After all, perceptions feel very distinct from thoughts and emotions. Second, how can
outside experiences, which are by definition dissociated from the alter, cause experiences inside the alter? This seems
contradictory at first sight.
Let us start from the second question. Contrary to the questions premise, we are all, in fact, familiar with
dissociated experiences that causally affect each other while remaining dissociated from each other. Imagine, for instance,
that you are having relationship problems at home. When you go to work, you successfully park your problemsthat is,
repress your emotional lifein order to perform your tasks. Your emotions then become temporarily dissociated from
your ego, in the sense that they are no longer in your awareness while you work. But they do still impinge on it: they may
e.g. cause your imagination to flow in a somber direction, lead you to misunderstand comments received from colleagues,
lock your intellect into repetitive patterns of reasoning, etc. All the while, your ego doesnt directly experience the

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emotions themselves. They remain dissociated from it. But from across the dissociative boundary they, somehow, still
causally influence what arises in your awareness. My claim is that something analogous to this happens across the
boundaries of dissociated alters of TWE, generating perceptions.
I acknowledge that this causal influence across a dissociative boundary seems rather faint and subtle. But then
again, evolution favors the sensitization of sense organsthe extrinsic view of an alters boundaryfor picking up on
very faint signals. And evolution has had a lot of time to do its job.
Lets now tackle the first question. Still with reference to the example above, notice that your dissociated emotions
at work have an impact on qualitatively different types of experience: they interfere with your imagination, understanding
and reasoning, none of which feels like emotions. This shows empirically that, not only can there be a causal link across a
dissociative boundary, this causal link can also connect qualitatively dissimilar experiences. A dissociated emotion can
cause a thought; a dissociated belief can distort a perception or even generate one through hallucinatory mechanisms; etc.
Therefore, it is empirically coherent to infer that cognitive activity outside an alter can cause experiences in the alter that
are qualitatively dissimilar from such cognitive activity. It is reasonable to postulate even that evolution would have
emphasized this kind of qualitative transition, if it helped enhance the sensitivity of the alter to external stimuli. I posit
that the more sophisticated perceptual apparatuses in nature are the result of just such evolutionary emphasis.
Before taking the final steps to complete this metaphysics, we must briefly review the underpinnings of todays
mainstream Physicalism, which posits that physical reality is fundamentally independent of experience and that
experience is somehow generated by particular physical arrangements.
To begin with, notice that our only access to a world allegedly independent of experience takes the form of
perceptions, which are themselves experiences. Therefore, Physicalism is a tentative explanatory model produced by
thought, not an observable empirical fact. Its motivation is to provide a tentative explanation for fact [6]which
comprises [4] and [5]as well as facts [8] and [9]. After all, if the physical brain doesnt somehow generate experience,
how can there be such tight correlations between observable brain activity and experience ([6])? Moreover, if the physical
world isnt fundamentally independent of experience, it must be a kind of mentally-generated dream. How can we all be
having the same dream ([8]) then? Finally, if the world is mentally-generated, how can it unfold according to patterns and
regularities independent of our volition ([9])?
Physicalism is inflationary: in addition to experience itselfthe one undeniable ontological classit postulates the
existence of unprovable physical stuff independent of experience. This step would only be justifiable if we could not
make sense of facts [6], [8] and [9] without it. Moreover, Physicalism is severely limited in its explanatory power, for it
fails to explain experience itself (recall the hard problem of consciousness).
Therefore, if we can explain facts [6], [8] and [9] without postulating anything fundamentally independent of
experience, Physicalism must be rejected on grounds of parsimony. Furthermore, if we can circumvent the hard problem
of consciousness in the process of doing so, Physicalism must be further rejected on grounds of explanatory power. As it
turns out, this is precisely what we can now do:
[16]

[17]

[18]

Our inferences thus far allow us to elegantly explain fact [8] based on excitations of TWE alone. Since
TWE is co-extensive with the universe as a whole ([12]), it follows that all dissociated alters of TWEthat
is, metabolizing organisms such as ourselves ([13] and [14])are immersed, like islands in a single ocean,
in the thoughts and emotions that constitute the intrinsic view of the inanimate universe. These universal
thoughts and emotions surround all alters and cause their perceptions by stimulating their respective
dissociative boundaries ([15]). This explains the fact that we all perceive the same universe around us ([8]).
Moreover, since the thoughts and emotions of TWE are excitations of TWE itself ([10]), it follows trivially
that we can explain our shared universe based on excitations of TWE alone.
We can also explain fact [9] on the same basis: since volition is innately experiential, the volition of each
and every alter of TWE is also dissociated from the rest of TWE ([13]). This explains why we do not have
personal volitional control over the laws of nature ([9]). The unfolding of the empirical universe reflects
excitations of TWE from which we are dissociated.
Finally, the explanation for fact [6]: as weve seen in inference [15] and Figure 1, for any given alter A1 of
TWE, it is the cognitive activity surrounding A1 that causes its perceptions of the world around it.
Naturally, dissociated activity corresponding to an alter A2 can be part of the cognitive activity surrounding
A1. As such, the inner experiences of A2 can stimulate A1s boundary and cause A1s perceptions of A2.
This is what gives A1 an extrinsic view of the inner experiences of A2 in the form of A2s metabolizing
body ([14]). See Figure 2. And since A2s nervous system is an integral part of its body, it follows that A2s
inner experiences cause the perception by A1 of the electrochemical activity in A2s nervous system. This
causal link explains fact [6]. Putting it more generally, the extrinsic and intrinsic views of an organism
correlate tightly with one another because the intrinsic view causes the extrinsic viewnot the other way
around. Contrary to Physicalism, thus, it is the inner experiences of an organismboth self-reflective and
obfuscated, so-called unconscious experiences (Kastrup 2015, pp. 17-18, 189-190)that cause its body,
insofar as the body is no more than a set of perceptions. (It goes without saying that A1 and A2 can also be
the same alter, since an organism can perceive its own body.)

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This completes the proposed metaphysics. Facts [1] to [9] are now explained in terms of TWE. Naturally, from
[11] we know that we dont need to explain TWE itself: it is an ontological primitive. Indeed, every theory of nature
needs to identify at least one ontological primitive, since we cannot keep on explaining one thing in terms of another
forever. At some point we have to stop and say: at this level, nature simply is. So TWE simply is. The fact that I dont
reduce it to something else is in no way a shortcoming. Physicalism itself, depending on its specific formulation,
postulates a slew of abstract subatomic particles, superstrings, hyper-dimensional branes and whatnot as primitives, all
of which also remain fundamentally unexplainable. If anything, my formulation has the advantages of both parsimony
for making do with a single primitiveand empirical honestyfor choosing an indisputable empirical fact as primitive,
as opposed to abstractions of thought.

TWE
Thoughts

A1

A2
Thoughts

Thoughts

Percep+ons

Emo+ons

Emo+ons

Emo+ons

Figure 2. The dissociated cognitive activity of an alter A2 can also stimulate the boundary of another alter A1.

The proposed metaphysics thus reduces everything to TWE, its sole ontological primitive. And as youve probably
already noticed, consciousness is the ordinary English word that best fits what I mean by TWE. Ive avoided using the
word consciousness so far because it is loaded: different people interpret it in different ways. To keep my argument free
of semantic noise, Ive opted for a neutral term whose meaning I could explicitly and unambiguously define upfront.
Nonetheless, at the present point of this essay Ive already provided sufficient context to prevent misunderstandings. So I
now feel comfortable to state:
TWE = universal consciousness
The proposed metaphysics is Idealist, in the sense that it explains reality purely in terms of ideasthoughts and
emotionsin universal consciousness. It also circumvents the hard problem altogether: since consciousness is taken to
be an ontological primitive, it doesnt need to be reduced to begin with. As a matter of fact, the hard problem has never
been more than a purely conceptual invention of confused human thinking; confused because it triesabsurdlyto turn
abstractions of consciousness into concrete ontological primitives, and then finds it puzzling that it cant reduce
consciousness to consciousnesss own abstractions. Duh.
One final point: in an earlier work, Ive rebutted the sixteen best Physicalist criticisms of my proposed metaphysics
(Kastrup 2015, pp. 22-36). Its not in the scope of this essay to repeat those rebuttals, but I do feel the need to anticipate
and answer one particularly pervasive criticism related to inference [18]. It goes like this: Ive stated that an organisms
inner experiencesboth self-reflective and obfuscated, so-called unconscious experiences (Kastrup 2015, pp. 17-18,
189-190)cause its body, not the other way around. However, its a well-established fact that physical interference with
our brainthrough psychoactive drugs, trauma to the head, exposure to electromagnetic fields, etc.affects our inner
experiences. So the arrow of causation must point the other way: from the body to inner experiences. Or so the criticism
goes.
Although this may sound persuasive at first, its based on an unexamined, pervasive and highly pernicious dualist
assumption: that the physical is in some sense distinct from, yet causally effective upon, the mental. This is precisely what
I am denying. I am saying precisely that, in essence, there is only the mental, since there is only That Which Experiences.
The physical is simply the contents of perception, a particular type of experience. As such, everything is essentially
mental, including the physical. Physical interference with the brain is simply the extrinsic view of mental activity in
TWE that disrupts the inner experiences of an alter from across its dissociative boundary. This disruption, in turn, is
simultaneously reflected on the extrinsic view of the alternamely, the body just as the proposed metaphysics
explains. That certain types of mental activity disrupt other types of mental activity is not only entailed by the proposed

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metaphysics, but also empirically trivial. After all, our thoughts disrupt our emotionsand vice-versaevery day. For
exactly the same reason that thoughts disrupt emotions, physical interference with the brain disrupts an organisms inner
experiences. None of this contradicts the proposed metaphysics; on the contrary.

IV. CONCLUSIONS
Ive argued for a coherent Idealist metaphysics that explains reality in a more parsimonious and empirically honest
manner than mainstream Physicalism and Micropsychism. This Idealist metaphysics also offers more explanatory power
than both Physicalism and Micropsychism, in that it doesnt fall prey to either the hard problem of consciousness or the
combination problem, respectively. It can be summarized as follows: there is only universal consciousness. We, as well
as all other living creatures, are but dissociated alters of universal consciousness, surrounded like islands by the ocean of
its mentation. The inanimate universe we see around us is the extrinsic view of thoughts and emotions in universal
consciousness. The living creatures we share the world with are the extrinsic views of other dissociated alters of universal
consciousness. A physical world independent of consciousness is a mistaken intellectual abstraction.
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Copyright 2016 by Bernardo Kastrup. All rights reserved.