Personal meaning enhancement

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Personal meaning enhancement is the experience of a considerably increased sense of personal significance becoming attributed to external stimuli, innocuous situations, and coincidences. For example, one may feel that the lyrics of a song or events in a film directly relate to their life in a meaningful and distinct manner that is not usually felt during everyday sobriety. This feeling can continue to occur even when it is rationally understood that the external stimuli does not genuinely relate to the person experiencing it in such a direct manner.

At its highest level, this effect will often synergize with delusions in a manner which can result in one genuinely believing that innocuous events are directly related to them. For example, one may begin to believe that the plot of a film is about their life or that a song was written for them. This phenomenon is well established within psychology and is commonly known as a "delusion of reference."[1][2]

Personal meaning enhancement is most commonly induced under the influence of moderate dosages of hallucinogenic compounds, such as psychedelics, dissociatives, cannabinoids, and deliriants. However, it can also occur under the influence of sleep deprivation and stimulant psychosis.

Psychoactive substances

Compounds within our psychoactive substance index which may cause this effect include:

See also

External links


  1. Sedler, M. J. (1995). Understanding delusions. Psychiatric Clinics, 18(2), 251-262.
  2. Ideas of Reference | Encyclopedia of Psychology (PsychCentral) |