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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Jacob’s Ladder (Adrian Lyne, 1990): A Meditation on Making Peace With Death

Jacob’s Ladder (1990) – directed by Adrian Lyne and written by Bruce Joel Rubin – is, in my opinion, one of the greatest psychological horror films ever made. It is a multilayered film that draws on many spiritual and religious influences and themes. Rubin, the screenwriter, is also a meditation teacher and has a long-standing…

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The Aesthetics of Narcissism and Failure in Bad Movies

Part of what makes bad movies (here I mean ‘so bad it’s good’ movies) appealing is the sincerity with which they are created. The directors sincerely believe that their choices, and the resulting film, are good, in a conventional sense, and artistically serious. We can contrast this intention and belief with the perspective of the…

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