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A paracosm is a phenomenon in which a richly detailed, meticulously crafted imaginary world is created in one’s mind. Sometimes, the phenomenon can occur amongst a group. The condition is generally thought to originate within the creator’s mind during childhood, and can continue to develop into adulthood. Oftentimes, aspects of the individual’s real-life is incorporated into the paracosm. As it develops, so does its history, geography, and language.
A paracosm can simply be a creative output, but there are cases in which it can be a trauma response. The concept was first introduced by a researcher for the BBC, Robert Silvey, and the term “paracosm” was coined by Ben Vincent, a participant in Silvey’s 1976 study and a self-professed paracosmist.