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People Paid Money To Go To A Psychedelics Conference And Listen To Aaron Rodgers Say, “Words Are So Interesting”

1:23 PM EDT on June 22, 2023

DENVER, COLORADO - JUNE 21: NFL Quarterback Aaron Rodgers participates in a talk with author Aubrey Marcus as part of Psychedelic Science 2023 in the Bellcor Theatre of the Colorado Convention Center on June 21, 2023 in Denver, Colorado.
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

New Jets QB Aaron Rodgers has really gotten into psychedelics and other new age-y stuff. A while back he spoke on a podcast about tripping on ayahuasca, a tea generally prepared with the psychedelic DMT. He credited it for his back-to-back MVPs.

Rodgers’s trip report was from a time in South America, but openly bragging about using drugs that are as-illegal-as-they-can-get in the United States is going to get him invited to some drug conferences. And yesterday he had a conversation with a man named Aubrey Marcus at a psychedelics conference. Passes for the five-day conference were between $805 and $1,795; if you just want to hit it up tomorrow’s final day it’s $200.

If you’ve read some of my work, you might know drug law reform is one of my hobbyhorses. I also sometimes annoyingly brag about violating federal drug laws. And so when Aaron Rodgers talks about how psychedelics should be legalized, I do think he might have something to say in this instance.

If I were asked to talk about my experiences with psychedelics, I would probably share the story about meeting a guy who did not know the word “hermit.” (It’s a long story. You will have to get me to tell it in person. I swear I did not imagine this man.) Rodgers, per reports, talked about legalization. And then he also said this:

“You know,” Rodgers said, “words are so interesting. They have such power in their spells. There’s a reason it’s called ‘spelling,’ because the way that the letters are put together have such power.”

Great stuff! Per Webster’s, spell has three distinct etymological branches and the one that led to the word spelling “probably developed from Anglo-French espelier, itself from Middle High German spellen, meaning ‘to relate’ or ‘to talk.’” The word spelling came in the 16th century. “Spell” to mean magic is “strictly Germanic (from the noun spel) and refers to talk, storytelling, gossip, and a sermon.” It’s derivative of gospel. Neat!

Anyway, hopefully Rodgers sees this and updates his spiel.

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