Michael Egnor: Is reality fundamentally more like a mind than a physical object?
Many are sure of the answer without understanding the question.News, “Why idealism is actually a practical philosophy” at Mind Matters News
Basically, it’s the idea that material substances, as substantial entities, do not exist and are not the cause of our perceptions. They do not mediate our experience of the world. Rather, what constitutes what we would call the physical realm are ideas that exist solely in the mind of God, who, as an unlimited and uncreated immaterial being, is the ultimate cause of the sensations and ideas that we, as finite spiritual beings, experience intersubjectively and subjectively as the material universe.
Note: Philosopher George Berkeley (1685–1753) was a Church of England bishop in Ireland. Among his other accomplishments were his studies of human vision: “Berkeley’s empirical theory of vision challenged the then-standard account of distance vision, an account which requires tacit geometrical calculations. His alternative account focuses on visual and tactual objects. Berkeley argues that the visual perception of distance is explained by the correlation of ideas of sight and touch. This associative approach does away with appeals to geometrical calculation while explaining monocular vision and the moon illusion, anomalies that had plagued the geometric account.” – Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy
About his idealism: “Berkeley’s system, while it strikes many as counter-intuitive, is strong and flexible enough to counter most objections.” – Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
“All the choir of heaven and furniture of earth — in a word, all those bodies which compose the frame of the world — have not any subsistence without a mind.” ~ George Berkeley
Bruce Gordon: So we are, in effect, living our lives in the mind of God. And he is a mediator of our experience and of our inner subjectivity, rather than some sort of neutral material realm that serves as a third thing between us and the mind of God, so to speak.
Gordon thinks idealism (= reality is first and foremost a mental phenomenon) is defensible, reasonable, and too easily discarded.
(We enjoy setting the cat among the pigeons. But remember, the cat is serious. )
See also: Bill Dembski on how a new book expertly dissects AI doomsday scenarios