The Use of Marijuana In Ancient Times

The use of marijuana is as old as the history of man and dates to the prehistoric period. Marijuana is closely connected with the history and development of some of the oldest nations on earth.
It has played a significant role in the religions and cultures of Africa, the Middle East, India, and China Richard E. Schultes, a prominent researcher in the field of psychoactive plants, said in an article he wrote entitled “Man and Marijuana”:

“…that early man experimented with all plant materials that he could chew and could not have avoided discovering the properties of cannabis (marijuana), for in his quest for seeds and oil, he certainly ate the sticky tops of the plant. Upon eating hemp the euphoric, ecstatic and hallucinatory aspects may have introduced man to an other-worldly plane from which emerged religious beliefs, perhaps even the concept of deity.

The plant became accepted as a special gift of the gods, a sacred medium for communion with the spiritual world and as such it has remained in some cultures to the present.”

The effects of marijuana was proof to the ancients that the spirit and power of the god(s) existed in this plant and that it was literally a messenger (angel) or actually the Flesh and Blood and/or Bread of the god(s) and was and continues to be a holy sacrament. Considered to be sacred, marijuana has been used in religious worship from before recorded history.

According to William A. Embolden in his book Ritual Use of Cannabis Sativa L, p. 235:

“Shamanistic traditions of great antiquity in Asia and the Near East has as one of their most important elements the attempt to find God without a vale of tears; that cannabis played a role in this, at least in some areas, is born out in the philology surrounding the ritualistic use of the plant. Whereas Western religious traditions generally stress sin, repentance, and mortification of the flesh, certain older non-Western religious cults seem to have employed Cannabis as a euphoriant, which allowed the participant a joyous path to the Ultimate; hence such appellations as “heavenly guide”.

According to “Licit and Illicit Drugs” by the Consumer Union, page 397-398:

“Ashurbanipal lived about 650 B.C., but the cuneiform descriptions of marijuana in his library “are generally regarded as obvious copies of much older texts.” Says Dr. Robert P. Walton, an American physician and authority on marijuana, “This evidence serves to project the origin of hashish back to the earliest beginnings of history.”

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