Edition 6: You have a limited amount of “Weird” points

Also in this edition: Birthdays, Sage, Wellness and Church of Satan.

Welcome to your weekly dose of weird, where I share new age trends and dig up gems from the counter culture. You can sign up for the newsletter or find previous editions here.

Tell me when you put out new (age) content:

You have a limited amount weird points to spend 💸

Would you consider yourself one of the more “eccentric” individuals in your group? There’s an idea called the idiosyncratic credit, which explains that the more social status you have, the more that others will allow you to “deviate from group expectations.”

Imagine the intern who’s awkward, unsure and unproven at work. He’s going to have a lot less “weirdness” points to spend than the CEO of the company. OTOH, executives can be quite eccentric.

I enjoyed Less Wrong’s post on this topic, which gives practical examples of how to “spend” your weirdness points. I love the advice of ramping up your “weird spend” one topic at a time – rather than trying to convince your friends to become vegan, try psychedelics and sun their buttholes, just try to get your foot in the door with a less-weird version of something.

One simple solution: share my newsletter with everyone you know. They more that your group gets their weekly dose of weird, the more you’ll be permitted to be weird around them. Win-win! 😉

Your birthday is not about you, it’s about your mom. 👩‍👦

I don’t usually drop poetic posts like this, and felt like my birthday was an especially good day to spend some of my weirdpoints.

Because I’m self-centered, I usually think my birthday is about me.

The recent births of my nieces and nephews reminded me that birthdays should be about my mother’s “birth day.” It’s a huge day for her after carrying me for 9 months.

Thanks mom for giving birth to me.

“Smudging” is the practice of burning sage 🌿

You’ll see sage burned at yoga classes, sound baths and even at a friend’s housewarming. I thought of this practice as some ironic “millennial” thing. But it’s a practice called smudging, the burning of sacred herbs used ceremoniously by some indigenous groups in America.

The white sage is at the center of this conversation. It smells good, Instagrammers love it and there’s some purported health benefits.

It wasn’t officially legal for American Natives to practice their religion – which includes burning sage – until 1978. That context, plus the over-harvesting of sage, has led to appropriate backlash from indigenous communities.

This Bustle article outlines some culturally sensitive ways to approach sage, including alternatives like burning cinnamon sticks and lavender. And if you’re really into it, there’s also responsible ways to buy sage.

Wellness is a trillion dollar industry 😲

The health and wellness industry is a $4.2 trillion dollar industry, according to Global Wellness Institute.

That’s a huge number that takes into account 10 sub-industries including traditional medicine, “wellness tourism” and even workplace wellness.

All the “wellness” sparked in me two thoughts –

  1. Are we collectively that unwell to need all this wellness? Or is that that…
  2. We’ve come so far as a society that we now have new problems of luxury?

It’s mostly likely a some mix of the two. What do you think?

Church of Satan is actually not devil worship

This is not the first time I wrote about misunderstanding Satan. I long associated Satanists and the Church of Satan – by their names alone – with evil evil devil worship. In my mind Satanist and the Ku Klux Klan were unfairly synonymous.

Turns out, the Church of Satan celebrates the human condition and is quite atheist in philosophy. From their official website, which curiously links to the Amazon listing for The Satanic Bible…

“Man—using his brain—invented all the Gods, doing so because many of our species cannot accept or control their personal egos…We Satanists are thus our own ‘Gods,’ and as beneficent ‘deities’ we can offer love to those who deserve it”

In case you’re wondering (you weren’t), the similarly-named group The Satanic Temple has a hilarious checklist comparing itself to the Church of Satan.

Random Corner: “Cereal for adults”

I think health-friendly, delicious versions of classic eats is the most obvious cash grab in the food industry right now.

Speaking of the health and wellness industry, there’s. a low carb, high protein cereal called Magic Spoon.

The reviews are just as amazing as the macronutrients – 13g of protein, 3g net carbs, gluten free – and apparently taste just like good ol cereal.

Not a sponsor, but here’s my referral link. Looks like the “for adults” trend will cross over to all categories. If you’re constipated, there’s the Poop Like a Champion Cereal.

closing circle

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Oz Chen

Oz Chen

Oz is the host of Hippiecritical, a blog and podcast exploring new age trends with both skepticism and an open heart. He's a designer + writer by day, hippie whisperer by night.

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