There's a particular flavor of pleasure that leads to obsessively geeky behavior. One example might be poring over a book of baseball statistics, another might be coding up a minimax tree pruning algorithm just for the fun of it.

Is there a word for this particular thing?

Edit: The closest word I can think of is gratification or gratified, but it captures neither the fact that conception of an idea can be rewarding by itself, nor the compulsive intensity of the feeling. Addiction/addicted might work if it emphasized pleasure more than behavior. Compulsion/compelled might also work except it doesn't necessarily imply euphoria at all.

Passion/passionate seems to connote an ongoing focused interest in an object, or a class of ideas or activities. The word I'm looking for would refer to an immediate sensation, like happy, despondent, or bemused.

Edit: Enthralled is quite close except I think it connotes a lack of motivation.

I've thought of closer words: stimulated and inspired. They're not quite right either because they still don't emphasize euphoria.

Edit: OK check this out. There's a term "ideas as opiates", which expresses my thoughts exactly. I don't know its origin. There's a song by Tears for Fears with that name but I know they got a lot of their ideas from philosophical readings. Anyway, is there a word that means, "high on an idea as if it were an opiate"?

Edit: That term says what I mean only coincidentally. It's based on Marx's writings and doesn't use opiate the same way I do. I'm not talking about using an idea to self-medicate. I'm talking about being euphorically "intoxicated", so to speak.

Edit: Are captivated etc feelings? They're states of being but I don't think they're feelings. Or am I wrong?

  • .....passion?...... Jun 3, 2017 at 0:36
  • entranced or spellbound possibly? Or you can be absorbed in a book or statistics. Or obsessed!
    – LalageH
    Jun 3, 2017 at 0:43
  • How about "enthralled"?
    – Xanne
    Jun 3, 2017 at 1:14
  • engrossed? Sucked in? Captivated? As in, I picked up an undergraduate text on string theory, and (was sucked in) (was captivated) (became engrossed).
    – ab2
    Jun 3, 2017 at 1:54
  • I was thinking of "mesmerized" which has the "opiate" sort of effect, but it is most commonly used for a visual sort of stimulus rather than engrossment with a subject.
    – Tom22
    Jun 3, 2017 at 3:39

2 Answers 2


Engrossed, enwrapped, hooked, addicted, obsessed, manic, crazed, consumed, captivated, absorbed, psyched, stoked. And if there's not already a word for it, try making a new one.

  • I think I'll have to make a new one. Jun 3, 2017 at 23:45


verb [intransitive, transitive] (often disapproving)Verb Forms

to interest or excite somebody, especially in a sexual way

Note the "especially", which means it doesn't have to mean a sort of sexual thrill but does hold that possibility.

Seems a really good fit to "aroused, pleased, or excited". It doesn't signify anything regarding the nature of the source, though. (juicy gossip, a strip tease, or an interesting puzzle?) Can't think of anything that contains that particular aspect, as well.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.