The Will to Novelty: Ennui, Neophilia, and Whitehead’s Metaphysics

Ennui is the feeling of boredom, listlessness, dissatisfaction, and fatigue that results from a lack of occupation or excitement in one’s life. Ennui has been felt by many of us over the past two years. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent restrictions, many of us were forced to lead quite repetitive days:…

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Can Psychedelics Make People More Drawn to Conspiracy Theories?

It is widely known that psychedelics and cannabis are associated with non-conventional thinking. The way that these psychoactive substances change how people think – including cannabis, which can have mild and sometimes profound psychedelic effects – can be viewed with serious interest; psychedelics can, after all, alter people’s metaphysical beliefs, including those of psychologists and…

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Metaphysical Insight: Psychedelics, Noetic Experiences, and Spinoza’s God

The feeling of gaining direct knowledge of something grand or important about reality is a common aspect of mystical experiences generally and psychedelic mystical states more specifically. This is known as a noetic experience, one of the four defining qualities of a mystical experience, as propounded by the American psychologist and philosopher William James in…

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The Relationship Between Personality and Sensitivity to Psychedelics

When different people take the same dose of any psychedelic, some will have a more subjectively intense experience than others. This is due to dose-independent factors, or what many psychonauts, psychedelic enthusiasts, and researchers call set and setting. Set is your mindset going into the experience, whereas setting refers to all the environmental factors that…

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Mescaline Revelations: Hume, Buddhism, and the Illusory Nature of the Self

One of the most interesting aspects of psychedelics is how the experience ties into philosophy. I am especially drawn to the notion that they can attract one to – or concretise – certain philosophical ideas, theories, and systems. For example, in The Subjective Effects of Nitrous Oxide (1882), the psychologist William James wrote how the…

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