Cognitive Stimulants

Cognitive stimulant is a name for entities, music pieces, artworks, texts, software, products, ideas — anything that is not a pharmaceutical product — that has the capacity to stimulate imagination, perception, and thinking and shift it to a different perspective, at least for some moment of time.

A good example is a song that gives you shivers. Or a book that changed your life. It could also be an artwork that puts you in a different state, so that when you come out from the gallery, you feel differently, as if wearing invisible glasses that warp your sense of reality. Instagram is also a cognitive stimulant, but it’s not made like artwork, so everyone chooses the stimulants that work for them, hoping that they follow their own intention and not some general outside agenda that doesn’t take into consideration the whole ecology of the situation.

To think of immaterial and material products as cognitive stimulants is to give them the capacity to affect and have a certain effect, avoiding the trap of optimization and improvement, aiming for increased interest, awe, fascination, boredom, despair, crisis, reconfiguration, and a new beginning instead.

Of course, there are multiple cognitive stimulants that are made as pharmaceutical products, but these interfere directly with the chemistry of the body. In this context, we select only those entities that cannot penetrate using chemical pathways and instead have to use other routes to the body and mind, which is what makes them different from the rest.

More can be obtained in this article on various examples of cognitive stimulants.