reification

Reification is when you think of or treat something abstract as a physical thing.

Reification is a complex idea for when you treat something immaterial — like happiness, fear, or evil — as a material thing. This can be a way of making something concrete and easier to understand, like how a wedding ring is the reification of a couple's love. However, reification is often considered a sign that someone is thinking illogically. For example, if you think of justice as something physical, you're confusing ideas and things, which can lead to problems.

Definitions of reification
  1. noun
    regarding something abstract as a material thing
    synonyms: hypostatisation, hypostatization
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    type of:
    objectification
    the act of representing an abstraction as a physical thing
  2. noun
    representing a human being as a physical thing deprived of personal qualities or individuality
    “according to Marx, treating labor as a commodity exemplified the reification of the individual”
    synonyms: depersonalisation, depersonalization
    see moresee less
    type of:
    objectification
    the act of representing an abstraction as a physical thing
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