For Love of Matter

A Contemporary Panpsychism

By Freya Mathews

Subjects: Spirituality
Series: SUNY series in Environmental Philosophy and Ethics
Paperback : 9780791458082, 223 pages, August 2003
Hardcover : 9780791458075, 223 pages, August 2003

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Table of contents



Part 1: Invitation to Panpsychism

1. Love and Metaphysics

Part 2: Defense of Panpsychism

2. An Argument from Realism

3. The Way of the One and the Many

Part 3: A Practice of Encounter

4. The Priority of Encounter Over Knowledge

5. Suffering and the Tree of Life

6. From Pan to Eros and Psyche: The Testimony of the Tower

Epilogue: Moon and Crow: The Double Edge of Eros

Appendix 1: A Survey of De-Realization in Modern Philosophy: From Idealism to Poststructuralism

Appendix 2: Frans Hoogland on "Living Country"



A bold and original work in ecocosmology and metaphysics.


In For Love of Matter Freya Mathews challenges basic assumptions of Western science, modern philosophy, and environmental philosophy, arguing that the environmental crisis is a symptom of a larger, metaphysical crisis. Western science rests on the premise that the world is an inert backdrop to human presence rather than a communicative presence in its own right, one capable of dialogical congress with us. Mathews explores the transformative effects of a substitution of the latter, panpsychist premise for the former, materialist one. She suggests that to exist in a dialogical modality is to enter an expanded realm of eros in which the self and world are mutually kindled into a larger, more incandescent state of realization. She argues that any adequate philosophical response to the so-called "environmental crisis" cannot be encompassed within the minor discipline of environmental philosophy but must instead address the full range of existential questions.

Freya Mathews is Senior Lecturer of Philosophy at La Trobe University. She is the author of The Ecological Self and editor of Ecology and Democracy.