Comment by MJusten on AMA: Tim Ferriss, Michael Pollan, and Dr. Matthew W. Johnson on psychedelics research and philanthropy · 2021-05-15T00:19:03.984Z · EA · GW

For Michael (or others): Do you think there might be a connection between (responsible) Psychedelic use and altruism? And if so, do you think this is a promising research avenue or future application for psychedelics?

In  How to Change Your Mind,  you reference the sense of 'oneness' and global community that often follows a psychedelic experience. I imagine these same feelings motivate many altruists, so psychedelics' ability to dial them up could potentially lead to some inspiring ethical change; the change that has motivated many players in the colorful history of Psychedelics. From personal experience starting student organizations for both EA and Psychedelic Research advocacy, I've perceived an above-random  overlap, but I'm not sure if there's a causal relationship– and if so which comes first– or if there's selection effects at play. Really exciting to see this AMA! 

Comment by MJusten on What key facts do you find are compelling when talking about effective altruism? · 2021-04-21T16:45:30.321Z · EA · GW

I find the emphasis on just how much good we can do and how unique this is from a historical perspective engaging. There is an extremely high level of wealth concentrated in rich countries, but in the increasingly connected world we live in, it is possible to have a remarkable impact with well-thought out donations. This goes well with the Will MacAskill argument asking one to think of how great they would feel if they ran into a burning building and saved a child. 

Also find that appeals to psychology that references how EA is not intuitive (e.g. scope neglect, compassion fade, pseudo-inefficacy) convincing

Comment by MJusten on Don't Be Bycatch · 2021-03-11T21:35:33.296Z · EA · GW

This really resonated for a young EA like myself. EA totally transformed the way I think about my career decisions, but I quickly realized how competitive jobs at the organizations I looked up to were. (The 80k job board is a tough place for an undergraduate to NOT feel like an imposter). This didn't discourage me from EA in general, but it did leave me with some uncertainty about how much I should let EA dictate my pursuits. This post offered some excellent reassurances and reminders to stay grounded.

Inspired me to leave my first comment on the forum. Thank you for the lovely post :)