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Ritual Use of Cannabis Through the Ages

 A lot of people who are new to marijuana, especially in recently legalized states, are only familiar with a cliché stereotype that adversaries of the industry have been all too quick to plant in their minds over the past century. People who are paying new attention to marijuana, now that negative stigmas are fading, might envision a long-haired surfer with a blunt on the beach, or a grungy art student with dreads and a Rasta bong. It makes sense because that’s all they needed to know, as marijuana wasn’t legally accessible to them anyway. Now that it is and they’re becoming more informed, it is important to understand how different cultures view marijuana so you can help educate them as well!

 In some places, marijuana use in religious rituals has been a sacred part of their identities for thousands of years; a stark contrast to how Western culture can portray cannabis as a drug that only addicts and criminals use and promote. One of the oldest pieces of evidence of marijuana used in religious practices comes from 1400 B.C. from the Greek Oracle of Delphi shrine. The Oracle of Delphi was built around a sacred spring, and for centuries priestesses would sit atop a platform in the middle of a hole which smoke would rise from. It was thought that through this ritual, the god Apollo would grant visions to the priestesses that foretold the future and helped them to make important decisions regarding things such as declarations of war and the keys to economic prosperity.

 It is thought that there might have been several different chemicals involved in the gaseous visions, but one of them according to bacteriologist Dr. DCA Hillman includes THC. Marijuana had already been a known substance in Greece from Central Asian tribes, where the ancestor plants of the modern-day strains we smoke today originated. Most of the marijuana grew naturally around the foothills of the various mountain ranges in the area including the Himalayas and Hindu Kush Mountain Range near The Silk Road, which in-coincidentally is the birthplace of the Kush THC strain.

 In modern times these rituals have largely been debunked by science as more molecule-based and less to do with gods, but the effects they’ve had on ancient figures are still relevant in today’s spiritual community. In Colorado especially, one of the first states to fully embrace and legalize marijuana, there is a large community of marijuana advocates that use it as a healing aid. Marijuana can be highly therapeutic for many people, and these co-op spiritual groups thrive on guiding people to calmer places using marijuana as a vehicle for navigating their stress. Though they may not rely as much on spirituality, the veterans cannabis project is also a great organization that promotes well-being with the use of marijuana. 

There are so many benefits to cannabis use for many people, and with modern technology and changing attitudes towards cannabis we’re living in one of the best and most accepting times to be aware. Marijuana storage is so much more effective and convenient now than it has ever been, and we’re so excited that people are learning more about the industry and its long history in bringing harmony to various communities. The cannabis industry is fortunate to have so many amazing new marijuana accessories and inventions like dab rigs that are constantly evolving, and with the winds changing so quickly in favor of cannabis, it seems we’re all on track for a higher self-awareness.