Hemp in various religions
The cannabis plant has been growing and evolving near humans for thousands of years. There is ample evidence to show that our relationship with the cannabis plant goes back to the Neolithic revolution at the end of the last ice age.
Marijuana is a gift from the earth that can provide people with nutritious food, strong clothing, clean fuel, building materials, can serve as an escape from many diseases and a path to enlightenment. Moreover, it is now possible to medical marijuana card online.
In 2008, researchers in China found the world’s oldest cache of marijuana cultivated for its psychotropic properties. It is not surprising that cannabis has made its way into spiritual practices in both ancient and modern religions. Today we will look at 5 religions in which marijuana holds a special position.
This is perhaps the most famous for its reverent attitude towards cannabis, a religion that originated in Jamaica in the 1930s. Its followers, called Rastamans, are most commonly associated with long dreadlocks and the use of bright red, gold and green (they represent the first three chakras). They believe in the equality of all people and in the god Jha. Rastamans use ganja to purify, relax, enhance consciousness and enjoyment, thus bringing them closer to Jha. They refer to Revelation 22:2 to explain their position:
“And he showed me a clear river of the water of life, as bright as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the midst of its street, and on this side and on the other side of the river, a tree of life, twelve times bearing fruit, giving for each month its fruit; and the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations.”
Followers of Hinduism believe that cannabis was created by the god Shiva and is directly related to the elixir of life. The use of cannabis in the form of bhang is particularly widespread. Bhang is a spicy milky drink made from the leaves and female inflorescences of marijuana (however, there are many other variations of the composition). It is believed that drinking bhang cleanses the body of sins and helps to avoid dangers in the afterlife. This drink is commonly drunk during Holi (“festival of colors”) and Mahashivaratri (“the great night of Shiva”).
Germanic Paganism (Scandinavian Mythology)
In many ancient European clerics it was believed that cannabis was directly related to the Norse goddess of love, beauty and fertility, Freya. People believed that Freya’s feminine energy lived in the plant itself, and consuming the inflorescences would allow Freya’s divine power to penetrate the body. The cannabis harvest was accompanied by celebrations and an erotic festival.
According to Taoism, everything in the universe should be in harmonious balance. For most people, the most recognizable symbols of Taoism are Yin and Yang. As early as the 4th century, Taoist texts referred to cannabis as “purifying incense.” They also say that cannabis helps achieve a state of “naturalness (at ease)”, freeing one from selfish desires and promoting an appreciation of beauty and simplicity.
Over the last century, many modern sects have emerged that proclaim cannabis to be a godsend. These include THC Ministry, Temple 420, Green Faith Ministries, Cantheism, The Cannabis Assembly, The Church of the Universe, The Free Marijuana Church of Honolulu and many others. Many believe that for every ailment on earth there is a natural cure given by the same earth.
Cannabis can serve as a cure for body and soul for many people, not just the five groups mentioned above. Maybe this plant really is sacred, maybe we wouldn’t even be alive today if our caveman ancestors hadn’t figured out how to use cannabis for food, clothing and medicine.