Even worse - although there are 8 options to choose from - I don't find myself fitting into any of the categories.
In a way it's funny, either you hate it or you still use it on a regular basis.
There seems to be a lot of anecdote in this thread so I'll offer up some of my own.
I have met many people, often in MH hospital, who have complex interactions with their mental illness and cannabis use.
Some of those people had a psychotic illness and self medicated woth cannabis and other drugs. (Some of these people said their illness was easier to deal with now they had been off cannabis for a while).
Some people probably had underlying psychosis that was brought out by heavy cannabis use. They had family history of mental illness; their cannabis use was on the heavy end.
But then I've met people who had no family history of mental illness and who believed that cannabis caused their illness. They felt that since cannabis can cause temporary psychosis it can probably cause long term psychosis.
And it wasn't just psychotic illnesses. I've met people woth anxiety disorders and depression who's illness was made much worse hy cannabis.
The illegality of the drug makes good quality research really hard. It also makes people dismiss research as government funded propaganda.
So, while cannabis is great for some people we need to acknowledge that it is peoblematic for an unknown quantity of other people and put in place safeguards - nonise by under 18s; helplines and treatment for people having problems.
Being honest about the possibility of harm makes legalisation easier.
Things like "anyone can try it if willing to" is different for "it is selling at any sypermarket".
Any way, the exceptions don't affect a open poll as this one. But I would be interest in a research that answer this questions at different realities, such as, slums, high society, drug dealers family, public high school, private high school, etc.
Now I live in San Francisco and it's a bit of a different story here.
Why do you say that? Seems kinda silly to think that "socially accepted" drugs make someone more rational than the non-socially-accepted drugs.
If something is socially acceptable then more people will try it because of group pressure. That's why I don't consider those to be as bad as stronger stuff. But in principle they are the same and alcohol is stronger than most soft drugs that are permitted in the Netherlands. Still doesn't seem to be outlawed in many places though...
i find that people who go down this path of thought often misuse or abuse words like irrational, though.
The introductory text explains that there is no way to know if the person is answering truthfully or following the coin 'heads' rule.
When you get the results you adjust for probability of the coin toss.
I don't like it enough to risk legal trouble to use it regularly. It's nice a few times a week, a healthier way to unwind than alcohol (it has replaced alcohol entirely for me with the exception of social drinking), but it's nothing special.
I've never had luck with getting edible dosage correct (to my liking), so I avoid those.
It actually makes my pain worse overall, as a lot of my daily pain management is very mental. Sure, immediately after use, my pain lessens, but I feel too foggy and 'not there' to take advantage of being temporarily pain-free, and as it wears off, my pain increases faster than my brain's ability to wall it off and I wind up worse off than I was before I took it.
Fibromyalgia already comes with 'brain fog', and while high I start to lose the ability to tell the difference between being awake and being asleep and dreaming. It's very disconcerting to feel like you're waking up every five seconds. I definitely do not feel more creative, and there is no way I could code in that state. I just feel lost.
It would probably help my insomnia if I just used it and went straight to bed, but it's too much of a pain/risk to acquire for it to be worth it. And I detest the smell.
If you're already anxious, you'll become more anxious. If you're relaxed, you'll become more relaxed. If you're drunk, you'll be more drunk. Food is tastier. Music is more musical.
It just makes everything more. As a once in a while thing, I find this enhancement useful.
Being stoned is a state of mind halfway between dreaming where you subconsciously imagine everything and being awake where you consciously see everything. If you play music you already know this as being in "the zone". Over time you get a feel for this state of mind and can easily get back there without smoking.
I suspect people who feel anxious when high are those trying to control everything as if they were fully awake. The big paradigm shift comes when you learn to give up control of your own thoughts to your subconscious. Just like the musicians who try to control everything about how they play and end up thinking about what others might think instead of imagining the sounds they should be playing in the first place.
Weed can most definitely help with your work by changing your perspective over it and thus exposing new relations between ideas. But in doing so you will also get a new perspective on yourself. This in turn expose the mental barriers currently blocking your creativity and there lies the paradigm shift. Being creative is something we all do from birth but lose as we grow up depending on our life experiences. Being high is a ticket for introspection where you revisit what caused the barriers to exist in the first place, accept it and then move on to be freely creative.
You might also want to check out Effortless Mastery by Kenny Werner. He talks in depth about the psychology of our own mental barriers and how to overcome them.
If you think of weed as a magic thought enhancer, it's not. It's a magic introspection device and the results of that introspection is enhanced creativity.
Many of my favorite personal projects come from (or at least start during) a marijuana session.
I'm sure there is a scientific story out there to either confirm or deny this, it's just a personal observation.
I had never tried it before moving to California (I come from a European country that vilifies all these things, and until I was an adult I thought it was some weird evil substance that turned anyone who tried it into a zombie), and then realized that I enjoyed the experience. If I were in a country where it is illegal, I'd be fine, but I'd definitely miss it (the same way I'd miss tea or chocolate).
Additionally, I have anxiety/depression/social issues that are greatly helped by THC. For example, I am extremely introverted, and tend to live in my head/on my computer all the time. Smoking a bit opens me up and makes me very talkative, which has been very helpful in social situations/relationships many, many times. Besides making me very talkative and much more upbeat and excited than I usually am, friends have told me that my behavior is not noticeably different while influenced by marijuana (i.e., my ideas are still coherent, I can still reason logically and rigorously, etc.). These friends have always been very straightforward and honest with me, so I trust them to not sugarcoat things for me. (to reinforce this, some of my most upvoted comments on Hacker News were written while high!)
I relate a lot to this essay by Carl Sagan in which he describes his relationship with the substance: http://marijuana-uses.com/mr-x/ . I find marijuana very helpful when doing certain kinds of intellectual or creative work. For instance, it's not that helpful when learning new things, but it is very helpful when going over ideas and concepts that I am already familiar with. It is helpful in 2 main ways: 1) linking ideas together that I had not linked together before, and 2) visualizing things better (especially in mathematics/physics). Re-reading a book or paper that I have already read, while high, is almost always sure to yield new understanding or ideas for me. It has also happened that I'd struggle with a musical piece (eg. on the piano or guitar) and that it all "crystallized" once high. Maybe this phenomenon is similar to why some people can pronounce foreign languages better when drunk. I do retain the insights and advancements when sober, and take notes in a notebook (which are coherent and hold up to scrutiny the next day). The one disappointment has been with programming: at best I program as well high as I do sober, and at worst it does slow me down a bit, without making my code any better.
I have been meaning to make more "formal" experiments on myself while high vs sober, e.g. on learning tasks etc. (I did do various tasks on the Nintendo DS game "Brain Training", and noticed no difference in my results while high vs while sober).
(I'm obviously always sober during work hours etc. - what I described above I only do on my free time, ie. weekends or evenings, while working on personal projects/research)
All in all, I think you get out of weed what you "put into it". Smoking weed doesn't turn burnouts into math geniuses, and vice versa. It needs to be an addition to your lifestyle rather than your whole lifestyle. I certainly don't think marijuana is a magical substance that makes you smarter or anything. I do believe that it puts your brain in a state in which it usually is not, and that this can be constructive for reasoning (the same way that talking to someone you've never talked to before, or talking to yourself (see rubber ducking) can help reasoning). All that being said, it is obviously not the case for everyone. For example, my girlfriend does not experience all of what I just described - for her, smoking weed just makes her more relaxed and happy. I'm sure there are many, many variables at play; but I'd still encourage everyone to give it a few tries (the first few times being not representative of the experience in general because it's all new to you) to see what it does for them.
Finally, I really like this essay by Sam Harris: http://www.samharris.org/blog/item/drugs-and-the-meaning-of-...
I guess having it available in ample (i.e. Cheap) takes the excitement/suspense/mystery away...
I'm not the "productive user" type. Wish I was.
patch i'm not familiar with, i guess there is some kind of patch. sounds boring.
Melatonin always worked very well for me but I developed an allergy to it.
from the article:
“I have to hire a great work force to compete with those cyber criminals and some of those kids want to smoke weed on the way to the interview,” Mr. Comey said.
The impression seems to be that all people from NL must use soft drugs because they are more or less legal there. It couldn't be further from the truth, the majority of the people that I see use drugs (soft/hard) in NL are actually foreigners that moved to NL specifically because of that particular freedom (and the generally laid back atmosphere of Amsterdam I guess) and tourists.
So, as a dutch person I'm kind of interested in the outcome of this poll too, especially given that in the rest of the developed world use/possession could easily be a misdemeanour or even a crime.
I worked with someone who designed a sophisticated DSL and a framework surrounding it. They said the basic design of the framework occurred to them when they were high.
I am guessing this could be the reason the OP is running this poll. He or she might consider Hacker News readers/contributors to be the smart/creative. And might be wondering if there is a correlation between these readers/contributors and Marijuana use.
Because someone doesn't adhere to your standards, they are weak? That's a pretty poor outlook. Besides, there are perfectly safe ways to consume marijuana that aren't destructive, as with just about any other substance.
Tell me how exactly you safely consume marijuana? Please don't spread disinformation like that. I am not the one to judge you, but if you through all means try to good-talk your faulty behavior, this is a sign of addiction.
I encourage you to read the following page and seek help before it drags you down to a place you cannot recover from. It's not too late.
For some however, it is a very real solution to problems like anxiety, insomnia, depression, low appetite, etc. Marijuana often has fewer side-effects than medications prescribed for those same ailments, making it a better option for many. That is how some people justify consuming the drug, and I think it's pretty narrow-minded to assume anyone who makes such a justification is an addict.
A natural process applied by our Creator. Amplifying this deprecation of your body by using drugs or other substances is bad form. The more so if you are fully aware these substances do that damage.
There it is
You need to do your own research as opposed to looking at government-funded studies which are only funded to show harm. Start with www.leafscience.com and take it from there.
Do you drink alcohol? Coffee? Asprin?
Comment: Funny how everyone hates on my life choices as if I was pushing them on others! You a-hats are all just bullys!
I challenge every bully here to a fight. You want to twist my words? Why don't you try to twist my arm too? Chicken? Of course you are! You're just a bully!
Personally I don't like it in recent years, but I used to years ago, and it was certainly not as an escape from anything.