Religion and Psychoactive Sacraments:
An Entheogen Chrestomathy
Thomas B. Roberts, Ph.D. and Paula Jo Hruby, Ed.D.
Author Index | Title Index
The Pot Book.
Lloyd, Pamela. (1976). ISBN: 0-89104-051-X hardcover
New York: Ridge Press and A & W Visual Library.
Contents: Foreword, 6
chapters, glossary, index.
Excerpt(s): Enter written
history, and the earliest surviving written reference to the intoxic ating
effects of cannabis resin. In 600 B.C. the Sanskrit Zend-Avesta
first described the pot high for posterity, and the sacred Athara-Veda
called cannabis " heavenly" and a "liberator
of sin." Indeed, the Indians were so impressed with the psychotropic
effects of the plant that they made it sacred and used it for
religious ceremonies in three basic forms: bhang, the dried
powdered plant infused in milk and drunk (bhang was also sometimes
mixed with sugar to make a candy known as majoon); ganga,
the dried tops of the female plant, usually smoked, sometimes
mixed with tobacco, and occasionally drunk as an infusion or eaten;
and charas, the pure resin removed from the leaves and
stems of the mature plant. Of all the ancient cultures to cultivate
cannabis, the Indians were the most successful in developing the
narcotic properties by selective breeding.
To the Indians, cannabis was a gift of the gods,
and, as is often the case with hallucinogenic or narcotic plants,
its religious significance combined with its physical effects
to render it a "panacea." (page 14)
By the Middle Ages, the weed had become well entrenched
among the followers of Mohammed. In 1271 Marco
Polo described the use of hashish, a resinous extract of cannabis,
by the supposedly secret political-religious order known as the
Hashishins. Although hash smoking penetrated Africa partly under
Moslem influence, the use of some very potent strains among the
primitive native cultures of the Zambezi valley, the Congo, and
parts of eastern and southern Africa predated the arrival of Islam.
The present-day Kasai have revived an ancient cult in which pot
replaces some of the ceremonial fetishes and becomes a god who
protects the tribe from physical and spiritual danger. (page 15)
[Error Creating Counter File -- Click for more info]
Compilation copyright © 1995 2001 CSP