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3:AM Magazine: You wrote about a thing called ‘panabstractism’. Is this the sort of phenomenon that made Adam Melinn ask, ‘What’s it like to be a baseball bat?’ So what’s this and what’s your view? And what are the experiments you know about that test out whether this is something folk actually hold in some cases?
Bryony Pierce: If I remember correctly, Adam’s view is a version of panpsychism. Panabstractism doesn’t claim that consciousness pervades physical matter, as panpsychism does, but draws on the fact that abstract relations are a fundamental feature of the physical world. Panpsychism, physicalism, idealism, and substance or property dualism make a distinction between the mental and physical, leading to the problem of how the mental, or consciousness, could arise out of physical matter. This distinction is orthogonal to another distinction: the distinction between the concrete and the abstract.