Have a nice trip

A psychedelic experience can be deeply rewarding, but also carries real risks. Here’s how to avoid a bad trip. Humans have consumed substances with consciousness-altering properties for millennia. Traditional societies used them in healing rituals, initiation ceremonies and to make contact with the gods and the dead, among other practices. Today they are known as psychedelics, and include the naturally…

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Is this the real life?

Is this just fantasy? Philosophers and physicists say we might be living in a computer simulation, but how can we tell? And does it matter? Our species is not going to last forever. One way or another, humanity will vanish from the Universe, but before it does, it might summon together sufficient computing power to emulate human experience, in all…

Can you bare it?

I stumbled upon Daphne on the rooftop of a dusky riad in Marrakech. This six-foot Canadienne with man-sized feet was the only other guest there, and she was naked. Or mostly naked, which is startling for me at the best of times, but particularly in Morocco – a conservative north-African Muslim country. “Oh, er, hello!” “Hi,” she said, blowing a…

Hang out in Japanese neighbourhoods

Did you know that Japan’s shrines and temples welcome regular tourists to stay for a night or more? Experience authentic Zen meditation, the traditional, vegetarian cuisine called shojin ryori, and explore a fascinating world so different from anything you know. Staying at a shrine or temple is an experience that even a lot of Japanese people don’t get to have that easily, a unique glimpse into the realm…

Modest mosque

Centrally located in the Iranian capital Tehran, the Vali-e-Asr Mosque’s most distinguishing aspect is the fact that it does not look like a mosque. Designed by Iranian architects Reza Daneshmir and Catherine Spiridonoff of Fluid Motion Architects, the building eschews the stereotypical typology of large domes and tall minarets in favour of a modest horizontality thereby making the mosque harmoniously…

Stay at a traditional Japanese house

It had been a packed afternoon of exploring the charming city of Tamba Sasayama, where the vibrant energy of young businesses ran hot through the city. But it was also a relentlessly cold and rainy day. so I was already fantasizing about hot baths and steaming hot pots when we arrived at the 100-year-old traditional Japanese house. Read more courtesy of Voyapon.com…

Let’s rock!

Rock art, that is paintings and carvings on natural rock formations, is one of the earliest forms of creative expression and a universal phenomenon among prehistoric societies. An instrument of communication rather than simply art, it is an assemblage of material culture which provides a glimpse into the lives of people who painted them. Rock art is the primary source…

Déjà vu, all over again

A brain glitch? A sign of quantum entanglement? What science says about déjà vu. Roughly two-thirds of people have had déjà vu, or the weird feeling that a new situation has been experienced before. Yet its prevalence belies just how mysterious the phenomenon remains to researchers, despite some extraordinary recent leaps in neuroscience. In part, this is because it’s extremely…

I’m not here

When many of us think about hallucinations, we tend to think about schizophrenia. However, hallucinations are incredibly varied, and can happen for many different reasons, many of which are unrelated to mental illness. In fact, many people experience hallucinations at some point in their life even when there’s nothing wrong with them. Many simple hallucinations, for example, are caused by sensory deprivation.…

Brain science meets meditation

It’s Tuesday, June 11, 1963, and Buddhist monk Thích Quảng Đức steps out of a car into the middle of a Saigon intersection. He is followed by 350 Buddhist monks and nuns, all marching to end their persecution by Vietnam’s government. A monk places a cushion in the middle of the intersection. Read more courtesy of medium.com  

Train your heart

In the six years since I was diagnosed with both generalized anxiety disorder and panic disorder—what can I say, I’m an overachiever—I’ve tried just about everything to manage my symptoms. I’ve been in and out of therapy and took medication for a year, but ultimately decided to taper off the medication because I didn’t like the side effects. I’ve tested just about…

Ye olde Japan

While the 2020 Summer Olympics bring a brand new stadium and state-of-the-art facilities to host city Tokyo, don’t get it twisted: things in Japan are old – really, really old. As an elementary school history class might’ve taught you, Christopher Columbus sailed to what would later be known as North America in 1492, a cool 528 years ago. On the other side of the globe, Japan’s ancient…

Why do you think they call it work?

Work: sometimes it’s all a bit too much, isn’t it? The digital age bombards workers with new tasks from all directions, while the backlog of things that need doing builds and builds. Unfortunately, that feeling of being overwhelmed by emails, colleague interactions and an infinite to-do list only makes it more difficult to make any progress towards a sense of…

Mexigo-go-go!

Mexico is as vast as it is diverse. Its 761,600 square miles of land range from arid coastal regions in the west to verdant Rousseau-esque jungles in the south. Long known for its cultural roots in plant medicines and healing temazcal (or sweat lodge) ceremonies, Mexico has always been a wellness haven—a place of ritualized healing on sacred lands. Whatever…

Energy conservation

Losing chunks of time down internet rabbit holes is a natural consequence of waning energy. After intense work, you need a break. If you don’t take a real break, your brain will take a fake one — which explains why you wind up at Pottery Barn’s website even though you don’t need a sofa. But, sadly, finding a great deal…

The clock is ticking

One of the most difficult aspects of retirement planning is that you don’t know how long you will live and therefore how many years of retirement you need to save up for. Most people plan for retirement using an estimate of their life expectancy. However, if you guess too young an age, you risk spending down your savings too quickly and coming to…

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