Psychedelics as Trickster Chemicals

There are many ways to define and conceptualise psychedelics. For example, these chemicals may be referred to as plant medicines or entheogens, based on their ability to generate healing or spiritual experiences, respectively. The Aztecs called Psilocybe mexicana (a species of psychedelic mushroom) teonanácatl, which in the Aztec Nahuatl language means ‘divine mushroom’ or ‘flesh…

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Can an Intentionally Bad Movie Achieve ‘So Bad It’s Good’ Status?

In my previous post on what defines a ‘so bad it’s good’ movie, one essential feature I looked at was a movie intending to be good but unintentionally becoming bad – and bad to such a degree that it becomes aesthetically valuable. Because of incompetence and/or limited budget, the film can take on characteristics –…

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How Psychedelics Can Affect People’s Career Choices and Attitudes Towards Work

An underexplored effect of psychedelics is how their use can affect both the career choices someone makes and the attitudes they have towards work in general. The LSD guru Timothy Leary famously told a countercultural audience – 30,000 hippies who gathered at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco in 1967 – to “turn on, tune…

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What Makes a Movie ‘So Bad It’s Good’?

In my book review of Why It’s OK to Love Bad Movies by philosopher Matthew Strohl, I outlined some of the features of ‘so bad they’re good’ movies and what distinguishes them from movies that are just bad. However, I think a point that wasn’t stressed enough in that review was how it is often…

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Some Reflections on the Backlash Against Psychedelic Hype

The hype surrounding psychedelics can be characterised as an overly positive picture of the benefits of psychedelics and an attitude of overlooking, ignoring, or downplaying the harms and risks of these compounds. We can view this as Pollyannaism applied to psychedelics. The growing psychedelic industry can be seen as following the trend of the Gartner…

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