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"The world is really so surreal these days that it's necessary for us to blunt it somehow in order to stay sane. The artist functions to short-circuit the buffering mechanism, so that people can occasionally perceive the weirdness of things as they are."
- William Gibson

Allswell  
  An organic compound found (or placed) in food that calms and mellows those who partake of it.  

Allswell: A naturally occurring chemical that, when present in sufficient concentrations in the brain, engenders the feeling that everything is fine...

The food that you eat is probably grown from crops whose genes partake of the Allswell sequence, or even stronger stuff. Melancholy thoughts may never come into your mind at all. When they do, you have the power to dismiss them...

From Anathem, by Neal Stephenson.
Published by Morrow in 2008
Additional resources -

After one of the avout had left his concent, and had partaken of outsider foods, he had this experience.

Allswell! The thought hit me like a snowball in the nose. I'd been out of the concent for a little more than two months, eating extramuros food the whole time. Lio and Arsibalt and the others had probably made it to Tredegarh in less than a week - too brief a time for them to be affected. But I had been out long enough that the ubiquitous chemical must have taken up residence in my brain - subtly altering the way I thought about everything.

Philip K. DIck fans may recognize "hubrizine" from We Can Build You.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Anathem
  More Ideas and Technology by Neal Stephenson
  Tech news articles related to Anathem
  Tech news articles related to works by Neal Stephenson

Allswell-related news articles:
  - Kava 'Anti-Energy' Drinks

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Mice Gestate In Mechanical Womb
Worlds With Underground Oceans More Conducive To Life
Monkey Gets A Bigger Brain, Thanks To Human Gene
Mushroom Coffin Returns You To Nature, Naturally

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