Sam Woolfe

Dr Rick Strassman, currently an Adjunct Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of New Mexico, is one of the leading pioneers of modern psychedelic research. His studies on DMT, which took place between 1990 and 1995, broke the 20-year gap in psychedelic research. This halting of prolific and promising…

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John Koenig’s book The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows takes its name from the website and YouTube channel that Koenig set up for defining neologisms. Koenig’s dictionary compiles these new words for obscure emotions — extremely specific feelings that are commonplace but which we have not yet seen articulated. Koenig is a keen and brilliant writer, and his masterful use of language, analogy, and real-life examples really helps those unexpressed emotions — which you might have felt alone in feeling — come to life, making you realise that others out there experience the world as you do.

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Originally published at https://www.samwoolfe.com on September 26, 2022.

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The impulse to travel can be cryptic; sometimes it seems to be a kind of knee-jerk escapist tendency, while other times it is based more on a wish for expansion — for broader and more novel experiences. Actually deciphering the impulse can be tricky, though, as it’s not always clear if it — and the fulfilment of it — is based on escapism or not.

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Originally published at https://www.samwoolfe.com on September 12, 2022.

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Flânerie refers to the concept and lifestyle practice of walking aimlessly (typically around a city, with Paris being the epitomical city of the flâneur — the street wanderer). I analysed this concept in a previous post, touching on its historical, philosophical, literary, and cultural dimensions. However, flânerie extends well beyond the limits of the city, or I should say, it has implications for the inner world of exploration, not just the outer.

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Originally published at https://www.samwoolfe.com on September 5, 2022.

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There are classic psychedelics (psilocybin, LSD, DMT) and non-classic psychedelics (ketamine, MDMA) that receive a lot of scientific and public attention regarding their potential mental health benefits. These are substances that, when combined with psychotherapy, can be helpful in resolving or alleviating conditions such as depressive and anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and addiction. There are also other non-classic psychedelics that are receiving increased attention for their ability to effectively improve people’s mental health, including 5-MeO-DMT and ibogaine.

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Originally published at https://www.samwoolfe.com on August 1, 2022.

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One of the most common pieces of advice you’ll hear when it comes to tripping is not to take psychedelics if you’re in a negative frame of mind. This is encompassed by the concept of ‘set and setting’, with the first half — ‘set’ — referring to the fact that one’s mindset can influence the quality of a psychedelic experience. (Setting, meanwhile, refers to how one’s environment and social context can affect the journey.)

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Originally published at https://www.samwoolfe.com on July 11, 2022.

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Strolling aimlessly — instead of having set routes, and set sites to see — is something I’ve always enjoyed doing, especially in big or new cities. I discovered that there was a French term for this aimless strolling, considered to be a kind of art. And that’s flânerie, while the person who engages in this activity is called a flâneur. These terms are derived from the Old Norse verb flana, which means “to wander with no purpose”.

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Originally published at https://www.samwoolfe.com on June 27, 2022.

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Sam Woolfe

Sam Woolfe

I'm a freelance writer interested in philosophy, ethics, psychology, and mental health. Website: www.samwoolfe.com