No-self calls for an alternative model for conceptualizing reality as a human being. This post outlines what I think is the most accurate model for individualized subjective experience – at least the most accurate I have come across so far. In this model experience consists not of a self and that which is other than self, but... [Read More]
I recently attended Psychedelic Science 2017 in Oakland, California. Overall it was a highly encouraging and impressive event, put on by MAPS and the Beckley Foundation. Here’s what I discovered at the conference. 1) There’s more psychedelic research going on than I’d ever imagined Psychedelic Science 2017 was the largest psychedelic research conference ever. There were... [Read More]
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The lack of a substantive self is the core counterintuitive truth of the human experience. No-self runs counter to our habitual thoughts, feelings, and beliefs, as well as our experiences interacting with one another and the world. Nevertheless, it is true. The sense of being a distinct, independent self – a conscious actor who thinks... [Read More]
Hold firmly enough so that it can’t fly away, but don’t squeeze so tightly that you kill the bird! This is a concept sometimes taught in meditation, where holding the bird is a metaphor for the use of attention. One should focus on the object of attention – the breath, for example – forcefully enough so... [Read More]
The world gets faster and crazier every day. More happens on a monthly, weekly, daily basis than ever before. I know I’m not the only one who feels it. There’s just so much going on. You could spend every waking hour reading news articles and end each day with thousands left to read. New discoveries, new technologies,... [Read More]
This is the introduction to my new book Self Improvement in Practice The nature of this book – and of any reader-writer relationship – is such that I feel the need to tell you at least something about myself before we get started. In that sense we start off not so much on the wrong... [Read More]
I first ran into this problem when I told my mom I had tried LSD. She took it surprisingly well, especially as someone who grew up during the peak of 1970s/80s drug war propaganda. But what preceded this admission was a long conversation, walking along the beach, where I tried repeatedly and unsuccessfully to convince her... [Read More]
This is a review of Modup.net, one of the oldest sellers of generic modafinil online. In this Modup review I’ll cover the pros and cons of the site, explain what they have to offer, what to expect when you order, and how you can get discounts of up to 33%. You should also know that... [Read More]
For some time now I’ve been interested in the prospect of recreating the psychedelic experience in virtual reality. This has led me to try several “consciousness” based VR experiences, mostly around meditation and most of which were unremarkable. Recently one VR experience stood out, called SoundSelf. SoundSelf involves chanting while the game creates a real-time feedback loop of audio-visual... [Read More]
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Death is painful and often tragic. It’s frightening and one of the hardest things we face. It’s been said that all human fears are individual manifestations of the one fundamental fear: fear of death. This makes sense from an evolutionary perspective; survival and reproduction are the driving forces of any living organism. Death is the... [Read More]
Listen. I could write you a long sales letter, telling you all the benefits of my new book. (I’m actually a pretty good copywriter, when it comes down to it.) I could say that this book will improve your discipline, your courage, and that it will instil in you character virtues that will serve you... [Read More]
The nature of the mind is such that nothing is ever perfect. Anytime, anywhere, it always seems possible to invent a way for things to be better or a reason that something is wrong. Sometimes in big ways, but often in small ones too. Maybe you feel tired or hungry. Or your seat is uncomfortable. You... [Read More]
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There has been a disturbing trend of increasing censorship against free speech on Twitter. This comes not from radicals or extremists on the platform but from Twitter itself. Twitter’s new safety policies On Tuesday Twitter Safety made an announcement about new policies rolling out in the coming weeks. “We stand for freedom of expression and people being able... [Read More]
For many years I had absolutely terrible posture. My upper back was rounded, shoulders rolled forward and my head stuck out in front of me. A friend once joked that when I entered a room, my head came in a foot in front of the rest of my body. I was a student at the time... [Read More]
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This is a quick review of Tim Ferriss’ new book Tools of Titans. Tools of Titans is, for the most part, a compilation of excerpts from Tim Ferriss’ podcast “The Tim Ferriss Show”. Here he interviews experts and high performers in fields like business, science, sports, investing, technology, military and more. While Tim Ferriss may be best... [Read More]
Cheese and crackers are laid out on the table along with a box of assorted biscuits. The youngest child reaches for a chocolate cookie and her mom grabs her hand. No, you need to eat some crackers first! The little girl sulks for a bit before begrudgingly munching on a plain white cracker. Internally I go like this:... [Read More]
Something I’m planning to do on a semi-regular basis this year is to set aside time to think deeply about important questions. These are questions about the future: what kind of person you want to be for the remaining years of your life and what you want to experience, achieve and see happen during those... [Read More]
These aren’t resolutions or concrete goals so much as things I’ll be trying to focus on and traits I’m looking to develop in the coming year. Switching between focused/intense mode and relaxed/enjoyment mode on command On the one hand there is a state of determined, focused and intense work mode and on the other hand there... [Read More]
2016 was a good year. Was it the best year of my life? Hard to say. In broad strokes this was a year about exploring emotions. Actually feeling them in the moment as well as processing powerful emotions from the past. It has made me a better person. I also got deeper into spirituality. I spent... [Read More]
If you feel dissatisfied you are probably going through a lot of unnecessary stress. Dissatisfaction follows you around, nagging at you. It tugs at your attention when you’re trying to focus on something else. But there’s a simple way to avoid this problem, and it is to understand the following: When you feel dissatisfied there... [Read More]