• Grre
    137
    Over the last year, after becoming a more substantial marijuana user, i have tried to access studies regarding marijuana's affect on the mind/cognitive abilities, including of course, abstract thought (inherent to philosophy of course).

    I'm curious to what extent people have had experience with marijuana and philosophical thought/discussion. I can say from experience that I don't conceive of much original philosophical thought when I'm high (nor do I write as clearly) but I have on occasion, made some breakthroughs while in discussion with someone else when I'm high...also I tend to appreciate philosophy more when I'm high. ie. Once I spent an entire day watching documentaries on Sartre, something I wouldn't have probably done sober.

    But on the flip side, marijuana I have noticed also impairs good mental functioning the following day. Also, there's those who have no background/understanding of philosophy yet when they're high, start saying cliched phrases like "what if nothing is real bro".

    I guess I just feel like one overlooked area in philosophical inquiry, particularly philosophy of the mind, is drug use-particularly 'natural' drugs like marijuana (or mushrooms, but they are more commonly cited).
  • I like sushi
    1.3k


    Once I spent an entire day watching documentaries on Sartre, something I wouldn't have probably done sober.

    There’s gotta be a joke in there somewhere! Make your own punchline folks. :razz:

    Here’s something related:

    https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news/newsroom/news-releases/experiences-of-ultimate-reality-or-god-confer-lasting-benefits-to-mental-health?fbclid=IwAR1hTS29kyFqpygHtfmJUQYtPzo46qhq0cJ48HW3oxvKAGmQR3CO0DBfXsY
  • fdrake
    2.6k
    Trying to study things rigorously when on marijuana doesn't work so well, usually. I tried. A lot. It probably depends on the strength of it too, if you're smoking crazy-ass skunk I'd be surprised if you could muster the mental discipline to check your thoughts even if you make many more associations than you would while thinking sober.

    There's only one time I've found it helpful, specifically for revising one idea in maths I knew the formulas and algorithms for inside out, but didn't really understand precisely why the formula was defined the way it was. It required a ritual of sorts. I studied the definition (soberly) thoroughly for about 3 hours straight, focussed on the definition, taking apart every term in it and linking it to a sketch of the idea, but I couldn't synthesise all the sketches and sub-formulas in my head at once. I got frustrated, because I'd been banging my head against a conceptual wall for hours, and decided to lock myself in my room and smoke up while studying the definition and the sketches.

    I can still remember the definition to this day 'the pair correlation function of r of a spatial point pattern is the rate of change of the expected number of points in a ball of radius r divided by the volume of the ball with respect to the ball radius normalised with the average intensity of the pattern', and the trippy visualisation I got for it.

    But that was it working well once. After.... err... many other failed attempts on other things.

    In summary: I don't think it actually helps you think rigorously, but it might help you make associations if you already understand something rigorously.
  • Pattern-chaser
    1.8k
    I've found it useful to enhance creativity, to help it along. I think it enhances (only) instinctive or intuitive thought, so could be unhelpful when revising facts.
  • Daniel Cox
    129
    Hi, addiction recovery is my bread & butter.

    Been through the CORE Curriculum upwards of 7 times. Sadly, all of academia for the last century plus hasn't cared about addiction or anything meaningful, it was lost in their quest for moral neutrality.

    CORE is Co-Occurring Recovery Education, the CO = Mental illness & drug addiction.

    Sometimes the mental clinic gets it right by accident. Most of the workers in the mental health field actually care about the people they're being paid to cure and stumble across one of very few people in this world who have the answers.

    Johann Hari - TED Talks - Everything you think you know about addiction is wrong.

    "What if addiction isn't about your chemical hooks? What if addiction is about your cage, what if an addiction is an adaptation to your environment?" - Hari.

    It was early on in the six plus years I've been participating in therapy groups where I had a breakthrough. It was a Behavioral Health Specialist III and about my favorite worker at the clinic, a peer support specialist, who were both helping me get to the root of my addiction when I realized I started smoking pot as a gateway drug after my brother was hooked based on our dad marrying a horrific, diabolical, backstabbing bitch of an outhouse whore. It was our environment, "It's not your fault, it's not your fault, it's not your fault." - Good Will Hunting.

    It's that word, "substantial." That's why my love is saying, "Get a support group." I've learned as much from other patients to be free as I have the so-called "professionals." Look at the core of the comments here, we all know that recreational marijuana use (I was King at one time) doesn't help our education.
  • VagabondSpectre
    1.6k
    For me, marijuana doesn't at all help with rigor, but sometimes it does help with focus problems caused by uninteresting subject matter.

    If I have a lot on my mind, and I need to exert some mental effort toward something that is very boring, then THC will help me be comfortable while forcing myself to confront it. Normally when people are "stoned", their minds will ramble and wander through a series of seemingly random subjects, which causes stoners to generally accomplish nothing. For whatever reason, I'm able to instead use it like a Ritalin (although it doesn't improve my thinking per se; it just makes me mentally relaxed and comfortable despite the situation).

    Maybe it helps me with creativity in some ways, but I know that when I'm not high I'm quicker-witted and that I write better.

    If it does help me think, it's because it allows me to control my emotions.
  • VagabondSpectre
    1.6k
    In novice smokers, marijuana can cause acute paranoia, which can form interesting, albeit ridiculous, lines of thought...
  • Wallows
    9k
    I guess I just feel like one overlooked area in philosophical inquiry, particularly philosophy of the mind, is drug use-particularly 'natural' drugs like marijuana (or mushrooms, but they are more commonly cited)Grre

    I've been involved in the nootropics movement for a good 8 years. Marijuana by most standards is not considered a "nootropic". So, whatever falls under the category (which you seem to be searching for) of "nootropic" seems to imply that has some benefit to the discussion.

    Now, there's the case of "behavioral effects" that are independent of what is considered "nootropic" in-of-itself. Is that the case here? I think so.
  • Wallows
    9k
    So, just to give an example.

    Ritalin is considered a "nootropic" due to its effects on memory consolidation and cognitive function.

    Amphetamine is not typically considered a nootropic, yet, is more effective than Ritalin at treating ADHD.

    Both are used to treat ADHD.


    So, what gives? Again, behavioral effects are independent of cognitive enhancing effects.
  • Wallows
    9k
    Also, if you're looking at trying to potentiate the high of marijuana, try some caffeine or agmatine. Blast off!
  • Christoffer
    543
    The observations I've made is that it can trigger an experience of constant deja vu. I.e you experience something and you remember it happened before but didn't. With a bit more you get the same sensation with muscles, making the choice to move your arm feels like it happens after you move the arm. It makes the jaw feel strange when speaking since the conscious speak feels like happening after the mouth forms the words.

    I was thinking about the effect THC has on patients with severe Parkinson's disease. Studies have shown that they regain a lot of control over their muscles and movements after taking it. By my observations, it might be that Parkinson's disease disjoints the nerve signals so that the intention to move and the movement gets fractured and overlap. So after my observations, the separation of intention to move and the movement itself might be why patients with Parkinson's disease experience an improvement in movement, since the overlapping and disjointed nerve signals separate so far between intention and movement that it no longer overlaps as much as without it.
  • ArguingWAristotleTiff
    3.6k
    I was thinking about the effect THC has on patients with severe Parkinson's disease. Studies have shown that they regain a lot of control over their muscles and movements after taking it. By my observations, it might be that Parkinson's disease disjoints the nerve signals so that the intention to move and the movement gets fractured and overlap. So after my observations, the separation of intention to move and the movement itself might be why patients with Parkinson's disease experience an improvement in movement, since the overlapping and disjointed nerve signals separate so far between intention and movement that it no longer overlaps as much as without it.Christoffer
    Wow! Keep thinking Christoffer! If you wish you can read thru my mostly emotional posts in my history but let me just touch on a few things you are pondering and see what you think.
    You are the first who I have seen focusing on the effects of the THC which because of the Reefer Madness bs has been summarily dismissed for the CBD and it's antinflamitory affects. The path you are on is the one less travelled, one which you are ahead of me on and that is impressive to me seeing as how long I have been on this pursuit measures in the decades. My Dad passed away last summer from complications of Parkinson's disease and as an advocate for Cannabis, I thought a lot about what I could have done for him had he lived in my state. 10+ years into his disease he was as sharp mentally as he ever was. I listened to him as he would tell me his struggles as he became confined to a nursing home. When we would eat, his shaking would be impacted to the degree that 10% of what he started with made it to his mouth. As a practicing Mormon, it was the best I could do to get him to drink caffeine to help control the tremors. Caffeine helped but made him "think" about the next in life and he didn't want to think more about the inevitable, which is when I stopped pushing the caffeine. But Cannabis...to have the fresh, never explored, Endocannabinoid receptor system already in place in the patient? I will be accused of seeing Cannabis as a panacea and at times I let it stifle my words but not in my actions.
    As you look for the effects on Parkinson's, I am in active pursuit of the impact Cannabis can have not just treating the symptoms of Alzheimer's dis-ease but in using Cannabis profolactictly, to keep the plaque from ever forming.
    Part of my theory is based on the idea that if someone is administered a concentrated dose of Cannabis within 48 hrs of an event that has a history of producing traumatic result, it can keep the nueropathways from holding onto the stress and has the potential to reduce the chances of PTS in soldiers and maybe onto the general population at some point.
    Whether it is Parkinson's and the muscle memory I think you are speaking of which has been shown to be overcome with music that the patient knows the dance beat to with no shuffle or Parkinson's instability. My thought is that music crosses both sides of the brain barrier and muscles have enough memory within them, that somehow that connection is stable again.
    Just before I go, when I talk about muscle memory, I use the analogy of a coiled garden hose. If you wrap the hose the right way, the way it knows, it coils easily. But when you try to reverse coil the hose, you are likely in for a fight to keep it from getting tangled up in it's efforts to return to it's original coil. That which you are fighting to reverse coil is similar to the 'memory' that muscles have and in a Parkinson's patient I wonder if you are onto something with Cannabis, specifically THC, and tapping into the muscle memory in the way music does.
    Keep thinking Christoffer and keep posting your ideas for we are here, standing beside you, even if it doesn't always feel that way. The impact we have on one life at a time adds up but maybe more importantly is when we can help those we love most in life. :sparkle:
    Oh and Welcome to The Philosophy Forum!
  • Pattern-chaser
    1.8k
    In novice smokers, marijuana can cause acute paranoiaVagabondSpectre

    Oh, thank you. I've never experienced it myself. I didn't know it was mainly novices that suffer.
  • Pattern-chaser
    1.8k
    By my observations, it might be that Parkinson's disease disjoints the nerve signals so that the intention to move and the movement gets fractured and overlap.Christoffer

    Please be careful about theorising what people with neurological conditions might experience - unless you have Parkinson's yourself? I have MS, and your 'explanation' seems garbled to me. How much do you know about the human CNS, and how it actually works?
  • Wallows
    9k
    Oh, thank you. I've never experienced it myself. I didn't know it was mainly novices that suffer.Pattern-chaser

    I could never get around the anxiety and paranoia that MJ produces. Every time I smoke it I become hyper-aware of my surroundings. A rather uncomfortable feeling, despite what others might say. Your mileage may vary.
  • VagabondSpectre
    1.6k
    I think teenagers are most vulnerable to the paranoia. (maybe it magnifies angst for them). But generally it just chills people out (especially "indica" strains that are high in CBD, opposed to "sativa' strains that are higher in THC).

    It affects everyone differently, and your attitude going into it will probably color your experience, should you choose to do so. Novice smokers get a lot more "high", so results vary most greatly with initial usage.
  • Grre
    137

    From personal experience, marijuana can certainly heighten paranoia when done in ituations/circumstances that are uncomfortable/negative or otherwise, as you point out, experience with marijuana and the various strain.
    When I first smoked/ate edibles back in high school (15-16) I was incredibly anxious and unhappy, I was worried I would be caught, and was friends with a "rougher" more judgmental crowd that laughed at me and made me feel insecure on a regular basis. Then I went to university and everything changed, I made good friends and started vaping it regularly, often in the comfort of my own room. My experienced changed drastically. Now I take medicinal marijuana (indica) almost every night to help combat my anxiety and depression, yes I will admit, it does make you lazy and not a lot of "productive" philosophy is done while high, only brainstorming and random research. But I'm not productive at all when I'm anxious, my anxiety has gotten so bad that I could not sit down and read let alone, write something of merit.
  • VagabondSpectre
    1.6k
    I 100% support moderated medical usage. It's so gratifying to see social mores about it change right before our eyes.

    Also true about the impact on productivity, which is one of the few reasons I don't smoke it constantly!
  • Wallows
    9k
    Now I take medicinal marijuana (indica) almost every night to help combat my anxiety and depression, yes I will admit, it does make you lazy and not a lot of "productive" philosophy is done while high, only brainstorming and random research. But I'm not productive at all when I'm anxious, my anxiety has gotten so bad that I could not sit down and read let alone, write something of merit.Grre

    Hmm, self medication tends to be a dead end. But, my experience is similar to yours in that I vaped cannabis a lot in college. Everyone at my college was on some kind of drug. Though, it helped me read material related to studies. Many people claim that marijuana helps ease ADHD, which is most likely true.

    There are some studies linking cannabis use with an intensification of social anxiety by the very use of the drug, which is one of the reasons I don't smoke it anymore.
  • Merkwurdichliebe
    1.3k
    There are some studies linking cannabis use with an intensification of social anxiety by the very use of the drug, which is one of the reasons I don't smoke it anymore.Wallows

    I'm all for social anxiety. If everyone in society smoked the fine herbals, and it amplified their anxiety, they would be forced to live with it, or deal with it. But that would also mean they couldn't resort to the big pharma drug lords with all their demonic poison. I think everyone would chill out, man.
  • Wallows
    9k


    Impressive. Pick your poison?
  • Merkwurdichliebe
    1.3k

    Right?

    Thank God for the free world.
  • Merkwurdichliebe
    1.3k


    I think this thread would've got more hits if it was titled: Marijuana for Philosophy .
  • Pattern-chaser
    1.8k
    Do you see any breakthroughs?TheMadFool

    Plenty, I imagine. ... Provided, of course, we remember to spend some time in sober reflection, following our stoned insights. :smile: Some of those insights are thoroughly worthwhile; others prove to be less, er, useful. :up: It's our creative faculties that can be enhanced by marijuana, but this enhancement is matched by a similar dis-benefit when carrying out more rigorous tasks, like a code review (if you're into software), or the like.
  • Grre
    137


    I think again, it depends on context and circumstance. I certainly would feel anxious if I was smoking around my family/or with people I didn't particularly like or trust (or at least, I used to).
    But marijuana helps me so much with my generalized anxiety because it allows me 1) to sleep, or at least, calm myself down enough to sleep/relax 2) eat, when I was severely depressed and anxious in the winter I could not usually bring myself to eat more than a bagel a day-the only time I could stop feeling anxious long enough to really eat (and enjoy the food I ate) was when I was high, it was scary watching myself lose so much weight and having no energy and 3) marijuana makes anxiety/fears less 'real'; my anxiety means that I often overthink/evaluate certain events, and I seem to perceive threats and react, even when the threat is not really there-my anxiety thus threatened all my relationships with people; being anxious all the time + not eating meant not only did I not have the energy to properly socialize, but that I was often extremely emotional/depressed/and worried consistently that I was too 'anxious', making me, LOL, more anxious ect. Marijuana helped break that cycle, because of course I got anxious/had bad thoughts when I was high, but then, I was able to dismiss them more easily, because everyone gets anxious when they're high sometimes and I was just 'too high'-by inducing anxiety, it helped me feel normal and put things in perspective. I also spoke a lot to my bestfriend when we used to 'sesh' together almost every night-it felt great to decompress and let me feel safe enough to share a little about how I was feeling.


    YES, especially now in Canada with weed legalized, it represents a huge threat to big Pharma, especially Pharma for mental health-which, I agree with, I think is more 'placebo' than anything. I considered looking for an anti-anxiety medication; but I read a lot of research and not only are many addicting, they are also expensive, and need to be monitored closely by a mental health professional. I had 1) no money for expensive prescriptions 2) struggling to hide my deteriorating mental illness from my parents 3) have no family doctor let alone a psychiatrist who could prescribe such a medication let alone monitor its effects. I was also worried about side effects and how it would change my personality. I recommend trying weed for anyone who has severe anxiety/problems sleeping, before I would recommend prescription sleep medication.
  • Grre
    137

    Laughed a bit when I read that the James only understood Hegel when high, the first time I watched a documentary on Hegel I was pretty baked myself. But it didn't help with comprehension. Not sure WTF Hegel was on back in the day-but I could sure use some of it (joke).

    Not sure about break throughs-perhaps we'll never know how much of philosophy, let alone art or science, are thanks to break throughs made while high. Its worthy to note that many of the best writers in the world/history are known alcoholics or ex-drug addicts...interesting correlation between substance abuse and long-term abstract conceptional thinking...I think that the majority of artists/philosophers experimented with drugs and alcohol because substance using attracts a certain kind of person, just like philosophy attracts a certain kind of person, thus the two overlap (ie. introspective tendencies, curiosity, mental illnesses/life issues/need to escape). This is a big mistake that people make when talking about marijuana 'causing' mental illness-it doesn't, marijuana attracts a kind of person already pre-disposed to or suffering the mental illnesses-in many ways, that's why people often seek out drugs, due to uncomfortable circumstances. I stopped smoking weed for more than a year-and i admit, it was one of my most productive self-improvement years of my life, but that's not because I stopped smoking weed, but because my life circumstances more generally, got better.
  • Wallows
    9k


    Yeah, your milage may vary. Set and setting also...

    I'm surprised you have such a positive reaction to THC. Do you smoke pot rich in CBD? CBD binds to the 5-HTA1 receptor that mediates the stress response of an individual through the limbic system. It also is a potent antidepressant.

    I tried even growing pot in my backyard. Some strains are rich in CBD, like ACDC or Harlequin or Cannatinic, which you can look up on Leafly.com . Give it a shot and see if it suites your needs.

    Best regards.
  • Maw
    1.6k
    The first time I dropped acid I was basically like postmodernism is 100% accurate
  • Grre
    137


    Yes I've tried smoking high high CBD weed (I think it only had trace amounts of THC) but this was about two months ago when I was still smoking regular weed every day, so, didn't notice that much of a difference. I recently bought Indica oil (restock my own), I'm not sure what percentage of CBD it has in comparison to the 10 mg of ThC per ml but I will look into it. I've heard CBD helps with muscle cramps and have begun researching to what extent it could help with menstrual cramps-another big health issue that big Pharma fails to address that I feel marijuana could. Again, since it is legal now in my country I'm looking forward to a burst of innovations, research, and more reliable results in the next decade or so regarding its various benefits. Just felt like debunking some of the myths.

    What failed with your growing venture, if you don't mind me asking? My best friend/roommate and his friends set up a substantial grow-op in our rental house basement all year and it was quite successful, a good 19-25 plants/clones and some good weed came of it. At one point every cubbord in our hallway was filled with plants HAHA.
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