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Learn | 06.21.2022

Does Cannabis Use Make People Less Greedy And More Empathetic?

Let's see what research has to say.

Are you willing to share your stash with a friend? What if that friend is running low?

In my personal experience, stoners have an empathetic nature about them. It’s almost like they feel sorry when a friend is running out of weed, inviting them to take a few puffs of their joint.

If you can relate, you’re part of the majority of cannabis users who show more empathy and “prosociality” compared to non-users, at least that’s what research says.

A new study published in the journal Scientific Reports asked the question, does weed make people more empathetic and less greedy?

The researchers from the University of New Mexico conducted the study alongside leader Jacob Vigil. They were interested in seeing the pattern between empathy and cannabis consumption.

Interestingly, the researchers also wanted their findings to help point society in a more welcoming, progressive direction. One that doesn’t shame cannabis use. Instead, it hopes to diminish the stigma that weed smokers are often lazy, unmotivated, and ambitionless people.

 

Photo by iStock

Changing society’s perspective on cannabis use was important to the researchers so we can better understand why so many people use the plant.

Vigil explained that general cannabis use has “never really been approached objectively to see what’s going on before making negative interpretations.”

So, the team gathered a group of college students who were given numerous psychological tests alongside urine tests for THC. The study notes that people who recently consumed cannabis showed increased levels of “pro-social behaviors and higher measurements of empathy.”

Its next finding was perhaps the most interesting one. Vigil stated that people who recently used cannabis also showed fewer signs of greediness and were less inclined to take a job just for the money.

This means that cannabis users are less motivated by money and would rather do something they’re passionate about. The study concluded that its findings show how cannabis may help people become less greedy, vain, and more empathetic.

Vigil stated how the lingering stigma around cannabis use needs to stop, especially the notion that weed leads to addiction and dangerous behavior.

He hopes the new study will help people see that cannabis isn’t so dangerous after all, and maybe it’s the key to living a happy, non-judgmental, and empathetic life.

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