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Religion and Psychoactive Sacraments:
An Entheogen Chrestomathy

Thomas B. Roberts, Ph.D. and Paula Jo Hruby, Ed.D.
Author Index | Title Index

Marihuana-Hashish Epidemic and Its Impact on United States Security.

Senate Subcommittee on Internal Security. (1974).
Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.

ISBN: None

Description: Stapled in wrappers, xx + 430 + xxi pages.

Contents:Introduction, 6 days of testimony, testimony of 23 witnesses, appendix: 1 statement, 11 articles, 7 miscellaneous materials ordered into the record.

Note: Hearings before the Subcommittee to Investigate the Administration of the Internal Security Act and Other Internal Security Laws of the Committee on the Judiciary United States Senate. Ninety-third Congress, Second Session . May 9, 16, 17, 20, 21 and June 13, 1974.

Excerpt(s): The epidemic began at Berkeley University at the time of the famous 1965 "Berkeley Uprising." Not only was pot-smoking embraced as a symbolic rejection of the establishment, but, together with the "dirty speech movement," the right to pot became an integral part of the catalogue of demands of the uprising. From Berkeley, the marihuana epidemic spread rapidly throughout the American campus community. Then it spread down into the high schools and junior high schools-and within the last year or two it has begun to invade the grade schools. It has also spread into the ranks of professional society and of the blue-collar workers, so that all sectors of our society are today affected by the epidemic. Today it is estimated that there are some millions of regular marijuana users in the country, and the evidence indicates that they are graduating rapidly to the stronger hemp drugs, hashish and liquid hashish. (James O. Eastland, Introduction, page v)

Dr. [John A. S.] Hall: Quiet acceptance and public indifference to the use of ganja continued until 1954 when the village, Pinnacle, in the hills of St. Kingston, was destroyed by a police raiding party. The village had become notorious as the home of praedial larceny, a center for the propagation and use of ganja, and the headquarters of the Rastafari cult.

The resulting dispersal of the Rastafari cultists into the urban slums of Kingston, and into rural areas, was to have far-reaching consequences, as has been published elsewhere. (page 148)

Significantly, none of these patients has been exposed to amphetamines, LSD, heroin, or other hallucinogens. Those interviewed could do without ganja for long periods of months at a time. Ritual smokers also knew when they had enough. (page 150)

Personality changes among ganja smokers and members of the Rastafari cult are a matter of common observation in Jamaica. The apathy, retreat from reality, the incapacity or unwillingness for sustained concentration, and the lifetime drifting are best summed up in the "amotivational syndrome" of McGlothin & West.

Many smokers come to no grief, as it were, after several years of ganja use. On this basis some workers, and the media make a fashionable virtue of its use; they recommend it as a panacea for poverty, or a benevolent alternative to alcohol. This view is, at best, half truth. Common observation in Jamaica is that ganja smoking can be a catalyst for cataclysmic change for ill in the life of a ganja smoker. The Rastafarians to whom I have referred earlier in particular typify this picture. (page 151)

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