Creativity is defined as a phenomenon whereby something new and somehow valuable is formed. There are two main types of thinking: convergent and divergent. Convergent thinking involves aiming for a single, correct solution to a problem. Divergent, on the other hand, involves creative generation of multiple answers to a set problem. Commonly, divergent thinking is synonymous for creative thinking. Some may think that you are just born the way you are, and must accept your creativity or lack thereof. But what if there was something you could do to aid in your creative thinking?
It's commonly known that using cannabis has an effect on your mental state. One of the primary properties of cannabis that affects the creative process is the ability to increase hyper-priming, which is where one can encounter a concept and easily relate to another concept without obvious connection. The frontal lobe hosts this activity.
It has been shown that a person with a higher creativity level experiences far more activity in the brain's frontal lobe. It is linked to sensory and memory centers, which makes up a large portion of your personality, emotions, and problem solving. The frontal lobe of the brain is the entertainer for creative divergent thinking. How does the frontal lobe relate to cannabis?
Cerebral blood flow is the amount of blood in the brain at any given time, and higher amounts in specific areas of the brain indicate higher activity of those areas. When neurons in the brain are being used, they require energy. Energy requires glucose and oxygen supplied by blood. Cannabis increases cerebral blood flow, which in turn, increases frontal lobe activity, which promotes creativity.
Cannabis also causes your brain to release the neurochemical called dopamine, which produces a calm, euphoric feeling. Many people that use cannabis often describe their thoughts and feelings as moving more freely and less restricted. Research also suggests that cannabis blurs the lines between a person's five senses, allowing for increased capacity for wonder, promoting you to experience events in a profound, new way. Several proclaimed geniuses including Steve Jobs, Neil deGrasse Tyson, and Bill Gates have admitted to using and enjoying cannabis.
Carl Sagan contributed an essay to the 1971 book titled “Marijuana Reconsidered” that spoke to the virtues of marijuana use.
Louis Armstrong's sobriety from alcohol was attributed to his massive marijuana consumption throughout his life, which Armstrong regarded as a healthy alternative to drinking.
The relationship between cannabis and creativity isn't black and white, although maybe less confusing than before. Using cannabis can clearly help some people generate new thoughts, ideas, or emotions, while others may not receive such a break-through moment. The decision to use Cannabis as an aid to creativity is a personal choice. If you are an artist that can't come up with anything to paint, a writer with a serious block, or a musician who can't seem to come up with a new chord progression, cannabis might be just the thing your right-brain needs.
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