Materialism seems very intuitive to me, so much so that when we speak of 'apparently' non-physical things (ie: belief, awareness, concepts, ideas, sensations), my initial reaction is that there must be something deeply embedded in our semantics and language that is the culprit. Something about the way in which we speak of these things which is not accurately representing reality, because for me, if something accurately represents reality, it represents something physical.
For example, take the proposition "I have an idea." For me, I take it that this could be reducible to a set of propositions which refer to something physical in the universe. Perhaps those propositions might be, "I believe x," which would be reducible to "There is brain-state y that I am experiencing."
One thing that really stumps me, though, is speaking of sensations. To feel pain or happiness, for example. These feel very real, yet they feel "immaterial". But I still have a stronger intuition that even mention of sensations can be reducible to the physical, and that no such non-physical thing exists. Calling them "immaterial" is almost nonsensical in my eyes, yet at the same time, it seems as if they are "immaterial."
The problem for me is largely feeling unsure about what we are in fact talking about when we speak of such things.
My question is, if one accepts that only the physical exists, what on earth are we doing when we refer to the aforementioned things?